Religion an Elaborate Mechanism to Deal with Man's Fear of Death? DOUBTS at times?

For a conciouse being the idea of blinking into oblivion, of not being conciouse, simply ending, is totally outside comprehension. All we know of it is when we sleep, which (without dreaming) is simply a gap in our conciouseness. We die, the synapses stop firing, all thoughts and awareness stop. The universe is nothing but material, our minds the sum total of billions of connections between neural cells. That’s the scariest thing possible. There is no way an aware entity could come to terms with this. The idea spending eternity in Hell would be preferable.

[quote=cynic]For a conciouse being the idea of blinking into oblivion, of not being conciouse, simply ending, is totally outside comprehension. All we know of it is when we sleep, which (without dreaming) is simply a gap in our conciouseness. We die, the synapses stop firing, all thoughts and awareness stop. The universe is nothing but material, our minds the sum total of billions of connections between neural cells. That’s the scariest thing possible. There is no way an aware entity could come to terms with this. The idea spending eternity in Hell would be preferable.
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Dear cynic,
Yes, what you describe is very true, that the thought of not existing at all is unfathomnable. Is it possible that we all existed at one time before we were born, and that we chose to decend into this base existance where our human ego can rule. Hence the Biblical story of ‘The Fall’. Could this represent the fact that we individually opted for this world, shosing to separate ourselves from God?

Perhaps, when we die and unite with God we do lose some of our individual identity. The Church says we will have to ‘die to self’ and give up our egoism in order to enter Heaven.

[quote=spiritblows] From the obtainable data the world presents to us through our senses, and what can be measured through science, we have no hard evidence to the contrary.
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If you are looking to the world, and science for proof of God…you will never find Him.

[quote=spiritblows]Dear Snowman,
You sound a little upset, my friend. Does my honesty in sharing my doubts disturb you? These ARE very private thoughts of mine that I don’t normally share. I was hoping this would be a safe place to discuss them.

I do have faith, but my doubts pop into my head sometimes too. To be accused of wrongdoing for thinking things over is really not fair. I can’t help it that I live in a confusing world where things aren’t exactly obvious. I mean, if God wanted to make his truth readily apparent, I’m sure he could. But no, he chose to come in human form 2000 years ago, making us all rely on third hand reports from ancient scriptures that are often unclear and open to wildly varying interpertations. Do you follow me? Life on this planet is often perplexing!
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May I suggest SB that if these truly are private thoughts you quit trying to spread ideas of doubt on this forum… I honestly have to wonder what exactly your intentions are on being here. I’ve gone through all of the threads you started, and none of them do anything but spread doubt. If I may suggest…you do not seem like a private person at all. You seem quite willing to try to multiply your doubts in others…this, my friend is not a good fruit.

God does make His truth readily apparent. All you have to do my friend is look, see, and believe. Faith, Hope, and Love…and you will see God in this time, in this world. He is working Just as hard spreading His word today with people as He did 2000 years ago. For you to suggest otherwise is simply wrong!

Life here is only complexing when you do not have a shepherd to lead you.

[quote=tossolul]If you are looking to the world, and science for proof of God…you will never find Him.
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I think science can help…the idea of something from nothing. It is impossible without God. I think the world can help as well. Do you really think everything here is just one big accident? I don’t think it is. So to a degree, I must disagree.

peace to all,
dxu

Honestly, the idea that religion is the result of wishful thinking is absurd. Who would create a religion in which the Deity demands every bit our being and devtion, even to the point of death? Who would wish for an eternal hell that is always held over our head as a consequence for not living up to his seemingly impossible demands. I am sorry but If I were to invent a religion, it would not be Catholicism. If I were to invent a religion, everyone would go to heaven, there would be no demands on the part of God, and it would be easy and fun. Non-existsence is absolutelyl preferable to the possibility of hell. Hands down. Atheism is truly prefereable because one would have nothing to fear at death. If there was no God, one would simply be able to fall asleep into nothingness without the fear of divine judgment waiting on the other side. But that is not the reality of the situation. Divine judgement does await us and I have had to comes to terms with that. I am not Catholic because it brings me comfort. No, Catholicism brings hardship and difficulty into my life. Rather, I am Catholic because it is inescapable to the intellectually honest person. Not Catholic through wishful thinking but because I have come to grips with the hard reality of the truth.

[quote=tossolul]May I suggest SB that if these truly are private thoughts you quit trying to spread ideas of doubt on this forum… I honestly have to wonder what exactly your intentions are on being here. I’ve gone through all of the threads you started, and none of them do anything but spread doubt. If I may suggest…you do not seem like a private person at all. You seem quite willing to try to multiply your doubts in others…this, my friend is not a good fruit.

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This is an “apologetics” forum. It is a legitimate place for people to express their doubts about religion. If you find the material here hazardous to your faith, then stop coming here. I mean, what did you expect from a forum labeled so?

[quote=snowman10]I think science can help…the idea of something from nothing. It is impossible without God. I think the world can help as well. Do you really think everything here is just one big accident? I don’t think it is. So to a degree, I must disagree.

peace to all,
dxu
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When I refer to the world…I mean how the world sees things. When I refer to science…I mean looking for explanations rather than faith, and believing that God has the answers to our questions that perhaps we need not understand right now. If there was something needed for us to believe, He would supply it. He has given us everything needed, it is only if we use our free will and choose to believe what has been given. This continuos search, drive for more knowledge is not only unnecessary, but dangerous to a persons faith.

To me it is a modern day example of the very first story in the bible of Adam and Eve. God gave them everything needed to live an eternity in His Garden of Eden (heaven)…All He asked is that they do not eat the ‘fruit’ from the tree of knowledge. What is this modern day fruit from knowledge??? It only leads to doubt, confusion, lack of belief that we need a God, or that there ever was one to begin with, and lastly seeing man as self sufficient in and of himself (putting man in the place of God). Looking to the world and science for God, will never bring you closer- It is in actuality turning your back on Him…and that leads to places that no one wants to go.

[quote=tossolul]When I refer to the world…I mean how the world sees things. When I refer to science…I mean looking for explanations rather than faith, and believing that God has the answers to our questions that perhaps we need not understand right now. If there was something needed for us to believe, He would supply it. He has given us everything needed, it is only if we use our free will and choose to believe what has been given. This continuos search, drive for more knowledge is not only unnecessary, but dangerous to a persons faith.

To me it is a modern day example of the very first story in the bible of Adam and Eve. God gave them everything needed to live an eternity in His Garden of Eden (heaven)…All He asked is that they do not eat the ‘fruit’ from the tree of knowledge. What is this modern day fruit from knowledge??? It only leads to doubt, confusion, lack of belief that we need a God, or that there ever was one to begin with, and lastly seeing man as self sufficient in and of himself (putting man in the place of God). Looking to the world and science for God, will never bring you closer- It is in actuality turning your back on Him…and that leads to places that no one wants to go.
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Thank you for clarifying and I agree…:smiley:

take care,
dxu

Is religion a mechanism to deal with fear of death? …

Not really. Christians are an offshoot of Judaism, which had no ideas about an after life for a long time and even in Jesus’ time there was no broad concensus on the topic.

[quote=clarkal]This is an “apologetics” forum. It is a legitimate place for people to express their doubts about religion. If you find the material here hazardous to your faith, then stop coming here. I mean, what did you expect from a forum labeled so?
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Thank you. I’m not trying to destroy anyone’s faith. FYI, I am very devout, observe all the rules of the church, very conservative, and attend daily Mass when it is offered. I’m not perfect, but I try.

However, I need an outlet for some of my philosophical, and intellectual musings and doubts, hopefully in a safe forum. I really appreciate the wonderful and thoughtful responses I’ve received on this thread.

No problem. :slight_smile:

[quote=spiritblows]Thank you. I’m not trying to destroy anyone’s faith. FYI, I am very devout, observe all the rules of the church, very conservative, and attend daily Mass when it is offered. I’m not perfect, but I try.

However,** I need an outlet for some of my philosophical, and intellectual musings and doubts, hopefully in a safe forum**. I really appreciate the wonderful and thoughtful responses I’ve received on this thread.
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May I once again suggest that intellectualizing, and philosophying is not a way in which you will find God. If you truly are a Catholic like you say you are…I suggest you try to stear clear of these thoughts…They will never help in your search for God’s will for your life.

[quote=Topher]Honestly, the idea that religion is the result of wishful thinking is absurd. Who would create a religion in which the Deity demands every bit our being and devtion, even to the point of death?
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This reminds me of what C.S. Lewis wrote in his spiritual autobiography “Surprised by Joy”. To paraphrase: “[God’s] demand was not even ‘All or Nothing’. That chance had passed. Now the demand was simply ‘All’.”

[quote=snowman10]I don’t mean to be rude to anybody here, but to even consider this as a possibility shows a true lack of faith, in the Christian sense. Please have no doubt.God does exist and He loves you.
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But doesn’t being 100% sure about God, Christianity, Catholicism, etc. lead to bigger problems- like exrtemeism?

Or is it the other way around?

[quote=tossolul]May I once again suggest that intellectualizing, and philosophying is not a way in which you will find God. If you truly are a Catholic like you say you are…I suggest you try to stear clear of these thoughts…They will never help in your search for God’s will for your life.
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Are you joking*?* What about Catholic philosophers and theologians? Ever hear of Augustine or Thomas Aquinas? John Paul II? Jesuits? Pope Benedict XVI?

Indeed, we have our minds for a reason.

If you can comprehend this much then think about, let it draw you closer to God. If you cant, then be happy with your fill, and that God has put you in a stable position, ready to serve Him with all you will. Do not think about what would be without Him, for the very soil you stand on trembles at his voice, he created all things.

To doubt is to worry, and to worry is to lack faith. To lack faith is to fear and to fear is to despair. Despair can only lead to death. Cut the chain. Now.

I often had thoughts popping into my head (and indeed they still do) about whether i had it right. The Lord Almighty finally cleared my doubts when he somehow got me to read the entire treatise on devotion to the blessed Virgin on the 1st October this year. Coincidence, i think not.

God is ALmighty!

[quote=Topher]Honestly, the idea that religion is the result of wishful thinking is absurd. Who would create a religion in which the Deity demands every bit our being and devtion, even to the point of death? Who would wish for an eternal hell that is always held over our head as a consequence for not living up to his seemingly impossible demands. I am sorry but If I were to invent a religion, it would not be Catholicism. If I were to invent a religion, everyone would go to heaven, there would be no demands on the part of God, and it would be easy and fun. Non-existsence is absolutelyl preferable to the possibility of hell. Hands down. Atheism is truly prefereable because one would have nothing to fear at death. If there was no God, one would simply be able to fall asleep into nothingness without the fear of divine judgment waiting on the other side. But that is not the reality of the situation. Divine judgement does await us and I have had to comes to terms with that. I am not Catholic because it brings me comfort. No, Catholicism brings hardship and difficulty into my life. Rather, I am Catholic because it is inescapable to the intellectually honest person. Not Catholic through wishful thinking but because I have come to grips with the hard reality of the truth.
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or we could be externalising our self love, by not loving ourselves directly, instead loving an all powerful ‘other’. That’s what an atheist would say.

[quote=cynic]or we could be externalising our self love, by not loving ourselves directly, instead loving an all powerful ‘other’. That’s what an atheist would say.
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Really? What atheists say that?

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