I just can't believe in god


#1

I have tried so hard over the past ten years to believe in god; specifically the christian god but I just can’t. To believe in something, I need to be able to verify it with at least one of the five senses that god supposedly blessed us with and/or indisputable archeological/historical evidence.

I can’t just believe in something because everybody around me does; I am just not wired that way. I would love to believe and have faith in god but no evidence points in that direction.

I have looked at previous answers here on the boards so please don’t use the “how do you know that you exist?” argument. I guess if blind faith is what it takes to be saved and the christian god exists, I’ll just be outta luck. There, however, is no proof that I have ever seen for the existance of god, satan, heaven, hell, or anything else of that nature.

Extraordinary claims demand extraordinary evidence and that is completely lacking in my opinion. I hope not too many people jump all over at once for this post. Take care.

-Curtis


#2

I like the Alcoholic Anonymous (AA) solution to this. It comes from the story of one of the founders of AA. A total drunk sat across the table looking at his old drinking buddy who found religion and was now sober and didn’t know what to do. He wanted to be sober and the evidence that it could be done was sitting across the table from him but he had a hard time believing in God. His friend’s answer to him was to believe in God as he knew Him. This is where their concept of just believing in a higher power comes from. Sometimes you just have to start someplace.

But you don’t have to be an alcoholic or be caught in the fox hole in a battle to believe in God (they say there are no aitheists in fox holes). Faith is a gift from God. Ask Him for it.

“God if you are there please give me the faith to believe you are there.”

Also, I’ll pray that God give you the faith that only comes from him. While you are talking to Him please pray for me. I could use some more faith too.
Steve


#3

Well I tried to pray for both of us to have more faith. After saying that prayer, I could feel deepdown that I have no faith whatsoever. That prayer did one thing. It affirmed that I have barely a traceable drop of faith left; if that. It’s sobering but helped show me where I stand. Thank you for that. Good luck with finding your faith.


#4

Then look at the evidence of history.

  1. Read G.K. Chesterton’s The Everlasting Man. It’s a bit long, but bear with it. It’s a very good read. C.S. Lewis credited this book as one of the books that converted him from atheism back to Christianity.

  2. Visit the website Star of Bethlehem.

Look also at the philosophy and theology of the Catholic Church and compare it with the other religions and philosophies in the world.

G.K. Chesterton’s The Catholic Church and Conversion, The Everlasting Man, Orthodoxy, and St. Thomas Aquinas would be good guides in this aspect.

God bless you, I’ll be praying for you.


#5

quite right
much better to believe that you created yourself, that the world created itself, because a logical absurdity is easier to absorb without evidence than the alternative.

Since the refusal to believe in God means that you are free to construct any belief system you wish, and since you say you would love to believe and have faith, why not use that freedom to construct the god of your dreams? What kind of god would that be? Loving? great make your god a loving god. all-powerful? yeah, throw that in too. Your alternative is to believe in nothing and no one. how is that working out for you?


#6

About as well as your venomous sarcasm.


#7

Do you love anyone Curtis? Love is the way I came to “see” God in action in our world every day. Think about what Jesus teaches us about what is important, what is most important in life to you and see how it correlates with your own experience.

Another emprical proof that might interest you is that espoused by Bernard Lonergan- we can observe our thought and thus it is a proof of a metaphysical reality.

We also have historical reality. If Jesus was just a nice bloke, how could he have revealed what he did about himself in his words and actions? If we take what he said and did seriously, he was either an egotistical madman of demonic proportions or actually the divine Son of God.

Do you know what Jesus did and what he said?


#8

This is an outline of Lonergan’s Generalised Empirical Method (GEM hereafter): - GEM proposes for anyone seeking to ground the methods of any discipline. (1) A cognitional theory asks, “What do I do when I know?” It encompasses what occurs in our judgments of fact and value. (2) An epistemology asks, “Why is doing that knowing?” It demonstrates how these occurrences may appropriately be called “objective.” (3) A metaphysics asks “What do I know when I do it?” It identifies corresponding structures of the realities we know and value. (4) A methodology asks, “What therefore should we do?” It lays out a framework for collaboration, based on the answers to the first three questions.


#9

Hi curtishouse29 :wave:

I can understand how you feel. The doubt and feeling like something was missing but I didn’t know what.

What did it for me? Because I am right there with most people who have to see it or feel it. Yeah and I have trust issues too:rolleyes:

I mean it’s funny I have never been to Europe and I have never touched it but I know it’s there. Same thing with alot of other things like Texas and the statue of liberty I have never been in it but i know it’s there. Why? Because I have faith. Faith in what? Must be with my fellow human beings because it’s because of them i even know such things. So it is with God. I have faith in my fellowhuman beings who have passed on the knowledge of God. Through traditions and scripture.

This is the same way I believe in Queen Elizabeth or King Henry viii or even Cleopatra and Mark Antony. It was through my fellowhuman beings that I came to know about such people.

But when I learned about how all Protestant religions originated from the Catholic Faith that got me searching through history.

When I found out that it was possible to visit Saint Peter’s tomb or that there was a stone found with Pontius Pilate’s name engraved on it. Or that Rome has records of King Herod it blew me away!

All those people,King Herod, Saint Peter, Pontius Pilate and even Cesar who is mentioned in Scripture are real! You can visit the Catacombs of Rome and walk through and see tombs from 90a.d. with pictures of Jesus and Peter and Paul engraved on them!

So if you think about it all those people were here on earth and all those people who died for Jesus did not do so for nothing. Mathew,Mark, Luke and John wrote so that we may know that Jesus is God and He lives!


#10

Oh good post- the faith and doubt thing is really interesting! If we knew there would be no need for faith, would there?

Also think about faith for a minute- you can’t dismiss it because you have faith in all kinds of stuff every day. It really is part of the human condition!


#11

Hello! :slight_smile:

I know how you feel. The whole world - well, most of it - feels the same. God dose exist and He is leading you through a spiritual darkness so that when you come to Him, Who is the Light, you will see all too clearly that He dose exist.

Now, one thing a lot of people say when I tell them God exists is, “Oh, you just believe that because that’s what the Church/the Bible/priests teach”. But that’s actually not true. I’ve actually seen God - that’s how I know He exists. Of course, the first reaction people give is, “You need to see a doctor”. But I’m not crazy, or insane. I have seen the Lord with my own eyes and He has spoken to me. That’s why I’m a Catholic now. I used to be an atheist, but then I saw the Lord and now I am a Catholic. A lot of people don’t believe me, for various reasons (the most common reason is “how do you know for sure the Lord is the Lord?”), but I don’t try to force myself on them. They are free to believe or not.

If you want, I can tell you more. :slight_smile:


#12

Ouch. :eek:

(I have to agree, though)

If this is the case, “It affirmed that I have barely a traceable drop of faith left”, please don’t give up seeking. I can’t relate to your situation since I’ve been steeped in the faith since day 1, and perhaps sometimes take it for granted.

When I was a kid, I used to mow a neighbor’s lawn. Long story short, I saved the money and at the end of the summer, bought a ten-speed bike that I’d wanted. When it was stolen in college, it was more than just losing a posession; it was something I’d worked very hard for.

Perhaps this is a case where the Almighty is asking you to put in quite a lot of effort, perhaps over a long period of time, asking for an increase in that drop of faith.

Are you familiar with Pascal’s wager? It’s worth keeping up the efforts, and we’ll pray for you too. :thumbsup:


#13

Could always try a different christian sect/religion. No need to put all your eggs in one basket (so to speak):smiley:

I suggest reading the Upanishads the Gita.:thumbsup:


#14

I have always taken great solace in the fact that the entire creation of the universe is a paradox with no answer, and so one must go beyond science into the realm of faith. Even if the Big Bang is a correct theory, it in no way explains how a Big Bang would have arisen out of nothing. There are only two ways the universe could have existed:

  1. The universe always existed, which is an impossibility. How can something have NO beginning?!

OR

  1. The universe was created from nothing, which is an impossibility. How can something be created out of NOTHING?!

Either way, there is a paradox. BOTH scenarios are utterly impossible, and yet ONE of them is correct! Given that understanding, it gives me great hope that the existence of God could ALSO be true. It is no less difficult for me to believe in God, since a can find a scientific truth that has no scientific answer.


#15

Curtis, faith is hard, Jesus told us it would be.

Keep praying and seeking God’s help. A good prayer is “God I believe, help me in my disbelief”.

One point, I bet you believe in a lot of things you can’t verify with your five senses.

Do you believe Black Holes exist? Do you believe in the theory of relativity? The Big Bang? The laws of mathematics? You can’t verify any of them with your senses. Much of science is unverifiable, it just makes logical sense.

God is the same way. He’s unverifiable, but makes logical sense. What was there before the big bang? God. Who was the first mover that set the Universe in motion. God. Why do we know there are moral absolutes. God.

I suggest you read Aquinas on the logical necessity of God. It might help. This is the link.

newadvent.org/summa/1002.htm

God Bless


#16

I wish you the best in (re)discovering your faith.

If it is of any help, I prayed to God and to Jesus that they would come into my life and show me the way to truth. It has not been an easy journey (I have sometimes had to look outside the formal Christian teaching for answers and ‘work things out for myself’ - not easy when you have been brought up with more reliance placed on rigid dogma rather than the love of God - but, all along, I truly believe that He has been guiding me and continues to do so). If you truly want and ask God to come into your life, He will do.

Recently, I started to ask Jesus/ the Holy Spirit to come into my dreams. I believe that our ego/ daily cares can often stop us from properly listening to God during the day; at night, the constant stream of ‘thoughts’ is not a distraction. I promise you that I have been blessed with many incredible dreams that came straight from God. I know, it sounds a little bit fantastic…The most memorable dream involved loving enemies/ returning good to those who hurt us - one of Christ’s central teachings. For someone who finds this difficult to put into practice in my wakened state, this dream in particular has had a powerful impact on me.

If you truly ask with a sincere heart, He will help you.


#17

#18

Curtis, I am in the process of reading “Reason for Belief” by Scott Hahn. In this book, he starts off by giving compelling reasons without the use of scripture for a belief in God based upon natural reasoning abilities. Its an easy read that I wish I had found when I was an Atheist.

Just the fact that you wish you had faith is a very good starting point for you. This is the opening of your heart that God will use to make His presence known to you (He will not force Himself on you, you must first seek Him), but God works on HIS time table, not ours, so please don’t loose hope. Keep asking Him for faith, and when God knows you are ready, He will make Himself known to you. In the mean time, I will pray for you.

As a former Atheist, I kinda have a feeling for what you are going through, and when you DO find faith in God, the difference in your life will be like going from a dark and cold room into a brightly lit and warm meadow. Trust me, I know because it happened to me.:thumbsup:


#19

Been there, done that. :slight_smile: I understand. I used to look at people with faith and be quite puzzled as to how they “got” God, and I didn’t. I called myself God-broken.

Do you pray?


#20

Keep praying.

And go to Mass.

And study up on God.


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