The 'miracles happen in other religions too' argument


#1

I was speaking with an atheist recently. I cited several miracles that have happened within our Church as one of the reasons to believe. As I’m sure you know, there are many good ones within the Catholic Church, Fatima, Eucharistic Miracles, and the list goes on.

He came back and said “well then how do you explain the miracles that happen in other religions? how do you hold the Catholic Church over another like the Islam?”

I’m really not aware of any miracles that have happened in other religions…At least not any that have been well documented and investigated. I did a google search for ‘Muslim Miracles’, and I got a top ten. They are all rediculous, one of them was ‘Allah’s name written in the clouds.’

What is a good way to handle this argument?


#2

First of all, he made the accusation so he should be the one to provide proof and an example of a miracle in another religon. I would simply answer that God is very merciful and loving and will provide miracles for anyone if it is his will. God does not only love Catholics or even Christians for that matter.


#3

I agree with above poster. Make him give you examples of the “miracles”. It would be interesting to ask or research what the investigative process of Islam is regarding their alleged miracles. As you know, the Vatican does exhaustive investigation and usually dismisses most miraculous accounts. The Church also includes medical and scientific evidence to back up the claims of miracles. Do other religions do this as well?


#4

What miracles??? Benny Hinn style miracles don’t count :wink:

Does your friend have any idea as to how hard it is for a Catholic miracle to be approved? I doubt Muslim or Protestant “miracles” are subjected to the same level of scrutiny as they are in the RCC.


#5

Miracles by themselves is not a proof of a true prophet because of the possiblity of “lying wonders”.

2 Thessalonians 2:9
Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,

Rain round Medina Sahih Bukhari
Volume 8, Book 73, Number 115:
Narrated by Anas:

A man came to the Prophet on a Friday while he was delivering a sermon at Medina, and said,

“There is lack of rain, so please invoke your Lord to bless us with the rain.” The Prophet looked at the sky when no cloud could be detected. Then he invoked Allah for rain. Clouds started gathering together and it rained till the Medina valleys started flowing with water. It continued raining till the next Friday.

Then that man (or some other man) stood up while the Prophet was delivering the Friday sermon, and said, “We are drowned; Please invoke your Lord to withhold it (rain) from us” The Prophet smiled and said twice or thrice, “O Allah! Please let it rain round about us and not upon us.” The clouds started dispersing over Medina to the right and to the left, and it rained round about Medina and not upon Medina. Allah showed them (the people) the miracle of His Prophet and His response to his invocation.

ummah.com/islam/taqwapalace/articles/d013d.html


#6

Seems like you went from Christian to Muslim in that post.

But I have another question. I saw a thing on youtube, and it claimed there was a 5-year-old who could recite the koran without even knowing arabic and not even being muslim. but they only showed him speaking for like 2 seconds. what should I make of stuff that I see like this?


#7

If the atheist actually believes in any of the miracles, then ask’em why doesn’t s/he practice the religion in question?


#8

I can’t think of many religions that don’t have records of miraculous happenings.

This is a rather famous Hindu modern miracle.


#9

So the question becomes for the skepitc/unbeliever like yourself:

Does this convince you that a higher being(s) exist or will you dismiss it as being a sort of natural phenomena beyond our current scientific comprehension and understanding. :cool:

'Tis a rhetorical question, for I already know the answer. :wink:

Personally, I do in fact believe that miracles *do *exist and transcend culture, time, and religion. However, I also believe that you can’t just attribute any sort of miracle to God Himself (maybe it’s from, you know, perhaps maybe the DEVIL :whistle:)

I mean really, what’s God (or a bunch of pagan “gods”) doing asking for milk! What would be their “holy” intention? Don’t the being(s) that created the universe know how to find themselves a local watering hole? What example are they setting by taking away milk that could be moistening my bowl of lucky charms? It’s not like these pagan gods would DIE if they didn’t have their milk! (after all, ya can’t die if ya never lived :whistle:)

So call me Christian-biased, but I would just say it’s “the devil misleading people away from the goodness of the Lord.” Yeah, I’m probably unknowingly quoting Pat Robertson :whistle:, but keep in mind all the rigor the Church puts into examining each “miracle” before approving it as being purely Christian in origin. What sort of Hindu council sat in their lotus positions and debated the Hindu-oriented authenticity of these spoon-dryers?

If this anwer is satisfying, great :thumbsup:. If not, at least make me an anchor on the 700 Club! (those “gods” get sent milky-white mailed-envelopes full of “offerings” from viewers across a rich country!) :smiley:


#10

I wouldn’t call you “Christian-biased”. “Christian” would be sufficient.:smiley:

People of religion A shouldn’t be surprised if people of religion B reject the divine-nature of the miracles claimed by religion A.

The very existence of religion A and religion B is based on (1) religion A rejecting essential elements claimed by religion B; and (2) religion B doing the same.

Religions are like trees. The bark (the doctrine, the dogmas, e.g.) give the tree structure, definition, and protection from the harsh world. The heartwood (the visions, experiences, miracles, and illuminations) is not harsh like the trunk, but moist and flowing. The existence of the miracle, then, depends upon the existence of the well-defined trunk. Eliminate the trunk, and the miracle cannot exist.

People like Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell are simply defenders of the trunk, and such people play an essential role, so that the heartwood can do its job.:thumbsup:


#11

nothing can compare to Fatima… 70,000 people saw a miracle that day… no other religion can claim this …

Many weeping statues havent been explained either.

The allah writings in the sky and on fruit is not good evidence at all… in fact it makes thier religion look very silly lol,in no way should that be compared to the true miracle at fatima…


#12

Milk represents motherhood, kindness, and nurture, as well as being central to their origin myth. Additionally, Ganesha is a holy-child figure, being the son of Shiva and Parvati.

What was your God doing asking for lambs and pigeons back in the Old Testament?

So call me Christian-biased, but I would just say it’s “the devil misleading people away from the goodness of the Lord.” Yeah, I’m probably unknowingly quoting Pat Robertson :whistle:, but keep in mind all the rigor the Church puts into examining each “miracle” before approving it as being purely Christian in origin. What sort of Hindu council sat in their lotus positions and debated the Hindu-oriented authenticity of these spoon-dryers?

The World Hindu Council announced a miracle was occurring that same day; considering milk was vanishing across the world, they did not have to go off a single report of an incident in the past. However, the structure of Hinduism is not much like Catholicism; there is no one Magisterium, but many intellectual schools and councils. It might be easier to think of their theological hierarchy as more like those of Judaism, representing both scholarly and mystical traditions.

For what it’s worth, speaking pejoratively of another faith’s miracles doesn’t make your own any more credible.

If this anwer is satisfying, great :thumbsup:. If not, at least make me an anchor on the 700 Club! (those “gods” get sent milky-white mailed-envelopes full of “offerings” from viewers across a rich country!) :smiley:

Much thanks to John R. Butler…

Make me flashy, make me florid
Make my oratory torrid
When I preach on the devil and the communists.
Let me pace across the stage
Like a silk-suited animal in a cage -
Make me a televangelist.

Let me preach on the teaching of creation.
Let me reach out and get me some of them love donations.
Take me from this revival tent.
Make me a friend of the president.
Let me preach from Leviticus when I’m ****ed.
Well, Christianity’s more excitin’
With a good sound system and dramatic lightin’
Make me a televangelist.

Make them tune in to Channel 34
I’ll grab ‘em then with my booming voice and pompadour
Give me a choir and a smokin’ band
Guns for hire in Evangeland.
Let me use the Scriptures like a fist.
Mmm, I’ll give credit where credit’s due
And all the credit belongs to you, so
Hey, big fella, sure would be swella

If you make me a televange-
With a great big Texas ranch-a!
Make me a televangelist!

:smiley:


#13

Yeah well, sometimes it’s the Pat Robertson-types who take the life-giving, nurturting “tree” of Christianity and hack at it until the wood’s good enough to make sharpened-spears with. After which, they take whatever’'s left, send it to the U.S Mint and stuff their wallets with fresh batches of Christ’s-Blood-money, and, I might add, the wallets were made from the leather of the great cow of…feel free to insert favorite metaphor… Then, having done this, they make a pilgrimage to Wall-Mart to buy a nice *artificial tree *to put in the actual one’s place! :smiley:

So, I wouldn’t exactly say these two people are defending the tree *I *hang out in too well.

Nevertheless, I understand your analogy, but understand that I don’t reject the miracles of other religions themselves so much as the explanations for them. :wink:

Peace.


#14

#15

Okay, you got me, I was a little rude and pompous about my lucky charms (I don’t even like lucky charms :smiley: ), but I still rank Ganesha up there with Ba’al. Sure they accept offerings like good stone idols do (they did back in Old Testament times, too), but…, there doesn’t seem to be much purpose behind these miracles beyond shear symbolism, and, from a Christian point-of-view only remember, they do nothing but mislead people’s faith away from God. Otherwise, I don’t have a problem with it and apologize for my milky comments.

And about the lambs and pigeons, I’ll come right out and admit I really don’t know. In fact, to get voices more qualified than mine to answer it, I think I’ll open up a new thread on it. Thanks for the idea :D.

The World Hindu Council announced a miracle was occurring that same day; considering milk was vanishing across the world, they did not have to go off a single report of an incident in the past. However, the structure of Hinduism is not much like Catholicism; there is no one Magisterium, but many intellectual schools and councils. It might be easier to think of their theological hierarchy as more like those of Judaism, representing both scholarly and mystical traditions.

Still, I don’t see the purpose of the miracles as being much beyond symbolic gestures, and (dare I say it…) demonic. Of course, the same could be said about the bread and wine of the Eucharist, but these are more about the redemption of man-kind (I suppose/I guess) (don’t critique me here since I admit I’m not the most well-versed defender of the Eucharist and I probably don’t sell my point too well :o).

For what it’s worth, speaking pejoratively of another faith’s miracles doesn’t make your own any more credible.

Okay, Okay. I’m sorry, but while we’re pulling the big words, why didn’t you acquiesce my original question about the higher being thing (yes, I probably already know the answer, but I’d like to see your commentary on it :thumbsup:)

Much thanks to John R. Butler…

Many thanks indeed :D. Now are you gonna get me that anchorship or what? I promise on seven bibles to give you 10% of all the donations sent to my televangelical Swiss Bank Account.

You know I was just kidding, right?


#16

Keep in mind that the Vatican itself is of the opinion that all faiths hold some grain of the truth, Catholicism being simply the only one to possess it in full. It should not surprise one who believes in miracles that God might choose to work one for a billion people who may not recognize him fully, but are trying to the best of their ability.

Assuming ‘if it ain’t Catholic, it’s Satan’ ignores Rome’s pronouncement (not to mention the Christian spirit of reaching out to others) and does a grievous disservice to the other five and a half billion people on this planet who aren’t Catholic, but may well be trying to reach God as best they can.

The situation with Baal was quite different from this. The Abrahamic God and Baal were in direct competition, with the followers of each going head-to-head; nowadays, Catholics understand the Hindu gods as being a misperception of their own God – and, I believe, vice versa :wink:

Okay, Okay. I’m sorry, but while we’re pulling the big words, why didn’t you acquiesce my original question about the higher being thing (yes, I probably already know the answer, but I’d like to see your commentary on it :thumbsup:)

Nope, it didn’t make a believer of me. You answered it well enough yourself :slight_smile:


#17

The CCC acknowledges that Muslims worship the same God (though incorrectly). And the Muslims acknowledge that Hindus worship the same God (though incorrectly), since the Qur’an explicitly teaches that God has sent a prophet to every nation, even if such teaching later became corrupted. Ergo, the CCC acknowledges that Hindus worship the same God (though incorrectly).

QED:D


#18

Yes, this is a beautiful answer, and I apologize about the whole “If it ain’t Catholic, it’s the devil” idea I was conveying before (if you note, I’ve never been too fond of it, hence the Pat Robertsonian references and whistling signs). But of course, as a Catholic, I still believe that Hindus are misled through such miracles away from the truth of Christ (just a point of view, no need to critique it). If such “milk miracles” are derived from He who we know as God so as to strenghthen their faith in Him: Great! Yet the whole idea of stone idols being different god-manifestations is incompatible with Christianity. One way or another, I still wish them the best in finding fulfilling lives and perhaps eventually finding Christ! :o (once again: just a point of view :D)

Also I always wondered: as a Bhuddist, what is your quip on God? You seem to understand how He is acknowledged across cultures, so is He in yours?

And to Mirdath about the whole lamb and pigeons thing in the Old Testament:

The reason for these rituals stemmed from the tendency of Jews to wander off into pagan animal-worship. Whenever they felt isolated from God, the Jews seemed to cast idols of different animals, including Ba’al, and promptly prayed for their blessings and intervention. However, God wanted to make an example of their powerlessness and how He was the only deity, so, He had them sacrifice animals ranging from cows to sheep to (I guess) pigeons – the sort of animals whom they had once *worshipped *-- so as to refocus their faith.

In the Old Testament, it wasn’t a matter of God needing milk or being hungry, it was a matter of making the Jews understand who their daddy was. I hope this helps :thumbsup:.


#19

Authentic miracles according to Catholic criterion must be supernatural in nature. In other words, if there’s even a possibility of some sort of natural explanation, it doesn’t constitute something supernatural. Part of this is owed to the fact that demons can make use of natural properties to create illusion. The intelligence of the angels (good and bad) far supercedes that of man. So if man is capable of, say, producing a holographic image of the Blessed Virgin Mary on a hillside, Satan is even moreso. Satan, however, cannot supercede the boundaries of nature. He cannot take rain-drenched crowd of 70,000 and dry them in a moment’s time (Fatima). He cannot cause a person to walk whose spinal cord is severed. He cannot create ANYTHING. He cannot reconstruct heart tissue or joints in the blink of an eye. He cannot cause a naturally incurable disease to suddenly be irradicated without human intervention. He cannot preserve a dead body to the point that the eyes are still moistened (St. Bernadette).

So, if we applied the criterion “supernatural” to all alleged miracles, short of actual event proof, it’s likely that the only bona fide miracles are taking place in the Catholic Church. Given that the Church participates in the miraculous transubstantiation EVERY SINGLE DAY, it should come as no surprise…


#20

The Hindu would agree. The “stone idol”, or “murti” in Sanskrit, is not itself “God”, but a representation of He Who Cannot Be Represented.

Also I always wondered: as a Bhuddist, what is your quip on God? You seem to understand how He is acknowledged across cultures, so is He in yours?

I have no problem with God. From my particular perspective (which is not necessarily held by all other Buddhists), “God” is the name given to the experience of Pure Love, Pure Wisdom, and Pure Mystery.


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