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Cheyenne Archuleta

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The Existence of God

Is there really a God? Or did everything just poof?

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    Jun 14 2013: Tom to summarise

    My starting point is not that the bible was a myth, but I am assessing the bible related claims based on the evidence and arguments.

    Actually I don't mean to claim that Christianity is false in its central claims, I don't know, but it sure looks similar to other religions and belief often seems to be based on web of flimsy foundations similar to other religions.
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      Jun 14 2013: "I guess we agree there is no physical evidence of gods existence in the way we can prove you and I exist."

      And this has been my perennial argument: Your "existence" is predicated on God's existence. God's not separate from that which She's created: She's your Life and your Mind, neither of which can be sourced in our physical body, not life in body nor mind in brain. You can't source what's not there.

      "Maybe you can define what god is, and if you say spirit, what is spirit and how do you know there is spirit."

      There's no definitive definition of God, as She can't be compressed within such a narrow box and still be infinite. Spirit is one of Her known attributes as well as Life and Mind, but there are others. Each night you lay yourself down to sleep you enter a spiritual world (realm), taking on a non-material body, and interacting with non-material things, including non-physical people.

      Because many dismiss their dreaming and dreams as a nighttime respite from their real world, and real-world activity, although most of us spend a third of our life asleep, they aren't considered highly important in our culture.

      Nevertheless, our dream world brings us closer to our natural environ, and our natural state of being, more so than our supposed non-dreaming state.

      "What is your best evidence any god exists."

      YOU.

      You're my "best evidence any god exists."
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        Jun 15 2013: Wil there are a few things going on in this comment,

        First you are using the word god for life and mind, the latter two I agree exist in reality, , then assuming a supernatural dimension to these.

        You assert life and mind can not be based in the physical alone. How do you know this?

        To me you are making a connection between consciousness that seems exist and some sort of spiritual supernatural stuff that is speculative.

        I seem to exist. I don't see any proof my mind and consciousness is evidence of a supernatural realm and is not a product of my brain. But open to new information.

        At what point do the less sophisticated brains of say a slug not include some supernatural spirit juice.

        You'll also need to support your premise that my existence is predicated on gods existence. Just a bold assertion I don't accept unless you can provide reason.

        A similar variant is when people say god is the universe or love. We reasonably know the universe exists and the abstract concept of love or expressions of love, but then they add a magic dimension with no evidence.

        What is spirit. How can I test if it exists. Other than fallacious reasoning like life proves spirit exists. Life proves life exists.
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          Jun 15 2013: "First you are using the word god for life and mind, the latter two I agree exist in reality, , then assuming a supernatural dimension to these."

          Actually, I don't see Life and Mind as "supernatural" but preeminently natural. Placing them in the supernatural realm is how you choose to perceive the nexus.

          I posit instead that Life and Mind has never existed within the body, but exist outside of physicality, which is why science has failed, and will continue to fail, to source them in the body.

          "To me you are making a connection between consciousness that seems exist and some sort of spiritual supernatural stuff that is speculative."

          Are you denying the existence "consciousness"? If this "spiritual supernatural stuff is speculative," as you contend, then your very existence is speculative, as life and mind are two of your attributes as well as attributes of divinity.

          "I seem to exist."

          Are you saying, too, that your very existence is as speculative as life and mind. If we can't agree that you exist, that you possess life and a mind, where do we have common ground for a discussion of this sort?

          "You'll also need to support your premise that my existence is predicated on gods existence. Just a bold assertion."

          I supported it. You just refuse to acknowledge my argument. Once more: "Your 'existence' is predicated on God's existence. God's not separate from that which She created: She's your Life and your Mind, neither of which can be sourced in our physical body, not life in body nor mind in brain. You can't source what's not there."

          "I don't see any proof my mind and consciousness is evidence of a supernatural realm and is not a product of my brain. But open to new information."

          For all of its physical intricacies, the brain can't house the mind. It can only allow consciousness to be expressed through the brain, and that not always fully.

          I'm running out of characters, but will continue below.
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          Jun 15 2013: TWO

          "What is spirit. How can I test if it exists. Other than fallacious reasoning like life proves spirit exists. Life proves life exists."

          I agree, "Life proves life exists," and God is Life.

          Since Spirit is as elusive as Life and Mind, all of which are attributes of God, they can't be tested, as God's not "testable."

          What kind of God would She be if She allowed Her infinitude to be studied using empiricism? Frankly, God can't be studied in the same way that one might study man, or other lifeforms.

          Even then, science is limited as to what it might learn from man, as the very essence of man, his life and his mind, eludes scientific inquiry, just as God eludes scientific inquiry.

          Why?

          Well, we're back where we started: You can't test what does not exist in the material, physical realm--mind nor life, nor spirit (this universe's real substance).

          "What is spirit. How can I test if it exists."

          You test it in the same way that you test the existence of life and mind.

          Yet, you're as familiar with "spirit" as you are with life and mind. As I stated previously, you enter the spiritual, non-physical, realm frequently. We call it sleep.

          Now you may dismiss the sleep realm as insubstantial, but many an adept would aver that this realm--the physical realm--is the insubstantial one. You might dismiss mind and life as two attributes of the divine, as well as attributes of your own existence, but it won't make it less so.

          I'll recant when science can show me incontrovertibly that it has sourced mind in brain and life in body. But, frankly, I'm not holding my breath.
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          Jun 15 2013: "I guess there is no reason why a god would provide compelling evidence that would easily convince people using their brains and looking for sufficient evidence and reason to believe in them."

          What can be more "compelling evidence" than life and mind, and even that you dismiss? God's won't force you to believe in Her. Count on it. She will be to you, however, what you wish Her to be to you.

          If you say She doesn't exist, She'll give you ample evidence to support that claim. If you say that She exists, She'll give you ample evidence of that claim.

          "What is true is independent of what we believe."

          You think? We're continually updating what we believe, as our beliefs undergo alterations. Here's a truth: Science "can't handle the truth," literally. Truth resides outside of the physical realm, and, accept it or not, we're only seeing the outlines of the Truth, and shadows of the Real.

          "What is true is not a matter of opinion by my definition."

          A person's truth is not an "opinion," as you suggest, it's who they are. And who people say they are has held sway for millineum, for better or for worse, changing the course of history in some instances, and doing so, notwithstand the path of the sun, whether it revolves around the earth, or the earth the sun.
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        Jun 15 2013: No I'm not denying consciousness. I'm explicitly acknowledging mind and consciousness.

        As far as we reasonably know mind and brain seem intertwined. You damage the brain, you impact mind/cognitive function.

        You have not provided a compelling argument or rationale that life and the mind is anything more than natural biological processes.

        Its fallacious to claim either consciousness and some other dimensional magic spirit juice exist or there is no consciousness.

        Consciousness seems to be be an emergent property of brains. More sophisticated brains, more sophisticated consciousness and cognitive abilities. Humans have a neo cortex, slugs don't.

        You admit your assertions can not be tested. Case closed really. You could be right but no compelling evidence or reason.

        It seems you can not grasp the possibility of our mind and consciousness being the product of the brain. This is not evidence or a sound argument for your position.

        The existence of the conceptual realm of thought and mind, or feelings, or our basic senses which come back to detecting and processing external stimuli is all contingent on biological and physical foundations. You seem to be equating thought and consciousness as independent in some way from physical reality.

        We can come up with any number of speculative assertions with equal lack of evidence and fallacious arguments as your position, that can not be tested as per all the other belief systems with immaterial constructs that contradict yours.

        Spirit above and beyond any connections to the physical world or the conceptual world is not just elusive it is entirely speculative.

        Your last statement highlights the argument from ignorance fallacy of your position. We don't know everything about the mind. This is not evidence for your position.

        Two thousand years ago you could have said the same about disease.

        You could be right, but we seem to have no way of knowing.

        Perhaps consciousness and life baffles people so assume go
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          Jun 15 2013: "You damage the brain, you impact mind/cognitive function."

          I think we've had this conversation before. If you damage any receiver (which is what the brain is), whether it be a television receiver or a radio receiver, you impact the quality of the signal it receives, and therefore the quality of the sound and the picture.

          But in the instance of a television of radio receiver, we can source the television and radio signals, but we can't do the same with our brain, only observe certain portions of the brain light up when certain thoughts are thought.

          "You have not provided a compelling argument or rationale that life and the mind is anything more than natural biological processes."

          If it's as you say, then source this "natural biological process."

          "Consciousness seems to be be an emergent property of brains. More sophisticated brains, more sophisticated consciousness and cognitive abilities. Humans have a neo cortex, slugs don't."

          I could tell you how it works, but you'll merely discount It, as it won't dovetail into your worldview. Suffice to say mind isn't in brain, and it will never be found there, and life exists beyond the physical body.

          "It seems you can not grasp the possibility of our mind and consciousness being the product of the brain."

          I can grasp it, but that doesn't make the "possibility" a reality. The brain can no more generate a thought than the body can live on its own. And science will never prove me wrong. How's that for certitude?

          "You seem to be equating thought and consciousness with some supernatural connection that can not be confirmed."

          And you're "equating thought and consciousness with some ['biological and physical foundations'] that can not be confirmed."

          "You admit your assertions can not be tested. Case closed really. You could be right but no compelling evidence or reason."

          I admit this: Life, Mind, Spirit (All One) can't be tested. True. And what's supernatural about life and mind?
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        Jun 15 2013: Also I using natural in the scientific sense, ie the material world
        Matter, energy etc.

        Ideas, thoughts, mind consciousness are contingent on the this physical reality as far as we know.

        Someone might say that if god exists she is natural. If telekinesis exists it is natural. But the point is at this time there is no evidence for it or explanation that does not involve breaking the physical laws.

        The transcendent realm of thought exists. But I suspect you are conflating this to something more. An idea has no mass, but it is a product of my brain, at least in part I guess you agree? We just disagree about the speculative part.

        I'm thinking of an apple. Parts of my brain light up in an MRI - chemicals, energy etc.

        The thought exists in a way different to a physical apple.

        Matter, energy, logical absolutes, thoughts do not necessarily require a god. A god you assert while not being able to demonstrate or test.

        You could be right, we just have no way to know right now so it seems reasonable to withhold belief.

        A person who holds a belief in spite of compelling evidence is not the critical thinking skeptic I try to be. I try to look for compelling evidence or a good reason.

        You seem not to appreciate the flawed reasoning in this position, how you back up one assertion with another equally speculative etc etc. It seems acceptable to you and not to me. I'm not disagreeing because I don't want to. It would be nice perhaps if there was some benign guiding
        force. I'm disagreeing because your argument does not stack up and is not supported by evidence.

        Let me put it this way, perhaps due to our limited capabilities we can not tell the difference between a universe with some spirit force which you may be implying has some agency and a universe that is matter, energy, with biological life, some of which is self aware and thinks without any of this spirit realm and agency. So why believe.
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        Jun 15 2013: The way you describe god is perhaps like describing the feeling I too share when deeply contemplating life and the universe. What separates life from non life. What really is matter and energy. If the universe is expanding but finite what does the edge look like. What is time and space. etc etc

        It hurts my poor brain. There is stuff I struggle to comprehend. I guess while we have the greatest minds we confidently know exist in the universe (there may be unknown smarter aliens), our best current explanation is that we evolved living in groups and avoiding agents trying to kill us. Our brain developed to consider medium sized stuff. Our immune systems evolved to deal with the micro stuff and the quantum and cosmic is outside our day to day survival needs. But reasoning helped us survive and not just intuition, at a human scale. No surprise the complexity of the universe baffles us.

        But intuitive connections and speculative explanations leave us open to all sorts of conjecture. And I'm interested in believing what can be reasonably demonstrated. Not that a donkey talked as per the bible, or that buddha's mother was impregnated by a ray of light unless there is sufficient reason and evidence.

        I just don't wrap up that which is beyond my comprehension and personify it or attribute some spiritual essence to it. I don't accept a god or spirit plug without some critical thinking.

        One final point that may help you understand where I'm coming from:

        How do you know there is one spirit god and not billions?
        How do you know there are not billions of other dimensional universes completely different to ours?
        How do you know that the spirit realm if it exists other than a concept does not work in some profoundly different way to your belief?
        How do you know there are not 50 levels of spirit realms and realities, with many types of beings in each one?

        I reject these for the same reason I reject your view until there is compelling reason and evidence.
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        Jun 15 2013: Your definition of life is disconnected to the life we see around us re :Life and Mind has never existed within the body, but exist outside of physicality

        The life biologists talk about is the physical plants and animals that reproduce etc etc.

        You seem to be on about some sort of immaterial life force that can not be defined or tested and seems purely speculative.

        What can we reasonably confirm about what is outside physicality or emergent from the physical realm?
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        Jun 15 2013: Wil I understand that life and mind are amazing, as is matter and energy, or feeling love etc, they are not evidence for some immaterial agency or god.

        We seem stuck on this point. You see life and connect that to something you call god. You could be right I just don't know how you can conclude that with confidence.

        Someone could look at the stars and feel a god created this amazing universe. Its a feeling not evidence. Its an intuitive leap, not evidence.

        I don't recall asserting she does not exist. I'm saying so far I haven't heard or seen either a coherent description of what she is or sufficient evidence or reasoning to support a belief in what my best efforts to understand what you are calling god.

        Life exists, therefore god. No, unless you are using god as a synonym for what we reasonably know life to be.
        Mind exists, therefore god. No etc.

        God is an open question. From what you have said, god is also beyond definition and not detectable in a material sense.

        I think the "truth" you are referring to is not the logic related truth term I am referring to. Like fast can mean not eating or rapidly.
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        Jun 15 2013: Actually I'm staring to get Deja vous as well.

        You can tell me how you think it works.

        I'll ask how you know that, and what evidence you having other than it makes sense in your intuitive world view or specific knowledge revealed to you or you found in a book that yopu believe just like some Christians literally believe the bible and that God destroyed cities and ordered genocide (and got angry when they didn't kill the children) and homosexuals to be killed.

        If I can make that parallel, why is your belief more reliable than that of the Christians or any similar spiritual beliefs? Why is your revelation more reliable than any other?

        We will end up disagreeing because you won't have evidence Ï consider compelling and I won't accept mere speculation just because it makes sense to you or is reinforced by some spiritual experience or is written in a book you believe is true without sufficient reason IMO.

        I think we both see where this is going. Anyway it has been mentally stimulating. Thanks.
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          Jun 15 2013: "If I can make that parallel, why is your belief more reliable than that of the Christians or any similar spiritual beliefs? Why is your revelation more reliable than any other?"

          It's not more "reliable." I don't tell people what they should and shouldn't think, believe or not to believe. They can choose to think or believe as they wish. In that I have no preference.

          If what I say resonates more, or less, than what another might say on the subject so be it. I'm not here to persuade or to convince. Besides, I don't have that kind of power. No one does. We either choose to convince ourselves, or we don't.

          "We will end up disagreeing because you won't have evidence Ï consider compelling and I won't accept mere speculation just because it makes sense to you or is reinforced by some spiritual experience or is written in a book you believe is true without sufficient reason IMO."

          And that's your prerogative. I have no "evidence" that you will accept. And that, too, if fine. I have no need to persuade, with or without "compelling" evidence.

          You will find, as life continues, that it was all "speculation," that we're making it all up. You didn't believe that any of this is real did you?

          "I think we both see where this is going. Anyway it has been mentally stimulating. Thanks."

          I do. And it has been "stimulating," thanks to you.

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