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God and 9/11


Buckeye
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Really this applies to anything where a bunch of people have lost their lives (holcausts, the Russian Revolution, any war). But, here goes:

 

How do you justify, in your mind, if you believe in God (or, if you don't feel free to weigh in, just don't make it personal) that a supposed all-knowing, all-loving God could let so many people die so horribly? Which leads to the second part, do you believe God is all-knowing, all-loving?

 

I personally don't know where I stand on this, because it's a pretty slippery slope. But, I'm interested in how the Judeo-Christian mind can defend (poor word choice) their belief in a diety that lets thing like this happen.

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My belief is quite simple.

 

We're on Earth. We're not in heaven. If it were heaven on earth.. what would God believing folks look forward to?

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Interesting point to jump off of:

 

So, do you believe that only God believe people go to the great reward? Or that Buddhists get their wish and go onto the next stage of spiritual elightenment, that Krishna's go wherever they go?

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Really this applies to anything where a bunch of people have lost their lives (holcausts, the Russian Revolution, any war).? But, here goes:

 

How do you justify, in your mind, if you believe in God (or, if you don't feel free to weigh in, just don't make it personal) that a supposed all-knowing, all-loving God could let so many people die so horribly?? Which leads to the second part, do you believe God is all-knowing, all-loving?

 

I personally don't know where I stand on this, because it's a pretty slippery slope.? But, I'm interested in how the Judeo-Christian mind can defend (poor word choice) their belief in a diety that lets thing like this happen.

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The answer to your first question is simple in some sense. Its a simple concept but throughout human history, it has ferociously been debated. FREE WILL.

 

God has given us the gift of free will. It is what makes us human. If we were do as whatever he chooses, then we would not be human. We would be robots. We would have no choice.

 

There are two ways to look at this then. First, if God could simply interfere and protect us or sweep us away, has he truly given us free will? Would we never know the consequences that come with out wrong actions if everytime someone engaged in those wrong actions, the victim of such was protected or God simply prevented it from happening?

 

IMO that is why, if there is a God, he cannot interfere and protect us. He has to let bad things happen to good people.

 

Which brings me to the second way to look at it. This free will gives us something else. A formative defense of doing the right thing. Which IMO goes against some Christian teachings. Just as God cannot protect us from the wrongs of life, he cannot force the rights of life upon us. For morals and the right way must be valuable in and of themselves. If he did demand we do the right thing lest we be punished (i.e. hell), then he has removed our free will and not only do we become robots, but we become slaves.

 

Ultmatley God cannot remove us from evil lest we be robots, he cannot force us to act right lest we be slaves, and he cannot show himself to us lest he be a parlor magician. The last one I didnt get into but its another thing to discuss. Its another problem I have with a lot of relgion. God to too many people is he who has shown us miracles. But what happens when a figure adept at tricks preforms many so called miracles before his death. Has he become God? Precisley why God cannot simply come to us. This last paragraph is a defense of faith.

 

As far as God being all knowing and all loving, these are interesting things to discuss. I dont know if we can attribute these features to a God for arent they human qualities. And for God to be God, doesnt he have to be all knowing? If he isnt, then doesnt he ask what he does not know what created him and where his God is? Thats the ultimate problem with God. Infinity. Yet we know we exist. Its the torture of the human mind. The all loving goes the same in some sense. I however, refuse to believe God could not love any of his creations or be wrathful or vengeful towards any of them. These are human qualities and in saying God is so, you are saying God is human.

 

Another point to touch on what CFdodgemarlin said. IMO the afterlife and the vengeful God were created by humans for two reasons. One to explain death and two to explain justice. Its so baffling to we humans to accept that we could simply cease to exist so we create the afterlife to comfort us in this life. Then when evil people commit their acts and then die, we equally cannot stand for it and hence create a bad life after death to feed our insatiable desire for justice. How difficult would it be if reality was that one day we simply fall asleep and never wake up and that Hitler faces no consquence for his actions? Its harsh to take. So while we are alive and while we DONT KNOW and are in ignorance, we will comfort ourselves.

 

 

I say this all as an agnostic.

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You bring up an interesting point, but, however, since we're dealing with the Judeo-Christian God, in a sense, then I have a counter question... If God's so into Free Will how is it he's always showing up in the bible to help people. Doesn't the woman in the plane praying that she doesn't die deserve the same kind of treatment Moses and the Jews got? I mean, if you're going to go from the bible as a jumping off point (Flying Mollusk, you didn't, you went from a completely rational perspective) then God's showing up all the time to help his followers and basically show he's there. Now a days we just have crazy people seeing Mary in the morning frost of a windshield.

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My thinking on that is God showed up in Old Testament to help the Jews, before Jesus came and open up the Pearly Gates if you will. But you have to remember, the God portrayed in the Old Testament is different than the one portrayed in the New Testament - The Old Testament God lingers in and out, has the Angel of Death destroy two cities, talks to Moses and Noah, causes floods, etc. The New Testament God basically sits back and watches from afar, talking to Jesus everyonce in a while but that's it. From Jesus' Resurrection onward, the communication out of Heaven (which has now been opened, there was no one in Heaven originally to talk to people besides God) is left to the Holy Spirit who otherwise has nothing to do, the tribunal of saints, and in extreme cases Mary and Jesus.

 

The Bible is hard thing to bring up to prove or disprove anything, since it differs from itself so much and it's basically just a long storybook. The Old Testament basically taught submission to God, while the New Testament brought Free Will but the reconciliation for your sins, which Jesus introduced to us when He was living. That's my take anyways.

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You bring up an interesting point, but, however, since we're dealing with the Judeo-Christian God, in a sense, then I have a counter question... If God's so into Free Will how is it he's always showing up in the bible to help people. Doesn't the woman in the plane praying that she doesn't die deserve the same kind of treatment Moses and the Jews got? I mean, if you're going to go from the bible as a jumping off point (Flying Mollusk, you didn't, you went from a completely rational perspective) then God's showing up all the time to help his followers and basically show he's there. Now a days we just have crazy people seeing Mary in the morning frost of a windshield.

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The free will of the terrorists on 9/11 have an affect on the lives of other people. The problem with this post is it can receive different answers based solely on faith and nothing on hard fact, b/c in the end thats what religions rely on.

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Guest marlins02

this is what i believe. God made Adam and Eve.

 

Satan told them that God was a liar and they didnt have to listen to him and told them a bunch of other crap.

 

Adam and Eve believed him, disobeyed and ate that fruit that God made perfectly clear they werent to touch showing that they felt they didnt need God in their lives.

 

God couldve wiped them out and start over or do something else but decided to give humans free will to show us how well (or how bad) we can do on our own and also to see who can still obey him under such horrible circumstances.

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This will be one of my few responses in this forum...

 

 

 

 

Why does god let it happen? Because God does have a bit of an anger management issue first of all. See case in question, Noah's Ark. Second of all, he periodically, at least from the Jewish standpoint, tests our covenant with God. Pretty famous passage that has stumped many Jewish scholars for years in a haftarah portion I read.

 

 

It states basically that is the men build weapons of war and make war, these nations shall fall and Judiasm will live on past these prejudices.

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Now a days we just have crazy people seeing Mary in the morning frost of a windshield.

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Your example is completely close-minded. You are using people who are so out going and are viewed as crazies with their points of relegious moments. It's like saying football fans in the fifties were their to watch the games and now their all painted up like jackasses. To say that all footballs fans today are these outgoing painted idiots is completely wrong because most fans still are there to watch the game yet you still use the outgoing person to brand the entire group.

 

It's completely wrong.

 

The Bible was meant to teach as a set of example to try to guide a faith based system, so then who are you to try to bring down a faith based system you have no belief in.

 

What if a hardcore racist said that blacks shouldn't be treated equal and said that his opposers beliefs were not right because blacks on average do not make as much money as whites? therefore he was right because of numbers or an example not on the basic human belief that all men are equal.

 

Would you take that seriously?

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So wait, the person who sees Mary in a windshield is crazy, but the prophets aren't crazy?

 

I think you're crazy now.

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That's was your own point, that a person who says she sees something is the person who only sees god. Not the person who feels they've had a connection with them. You try to brand connecting with god as seeing something in your windshield, not having a state of calm after prayer but seeing something in your window.

 

Again with these questions against a faith based belief, you ignored my question. If he has evidence that Blacks do not make as much money as whites which proves they are not equal, Therefore any person who simply believes that all men are created equal are looneys because their belief is founded on compassion.

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What if a hardcore racist said that blacks shouldn't be treated equal and said that his opposers beliefs were not right because blacks on average do not make as much money as whites? therefore he was right because of numbers or an example not on the basic human belief that all men are equal.

 

A spritiual yet hardcore racist wouldn't use some empirical fact to justify his racism. He's just point to the several dozen passages in the bible that acknowledge, condone and in some cases advocate racism via slavery.

 

As for free will...

 

Sure when something great happens everyone looks to the heavens and thanks God for his benevolence and generousity. But when something really bad happens where does everyone look? No, not to the all knowing being who can control everything and allowed the bad thing to occur. They blame it on themselves because of this little thing called free will. :blink:

 

IMHO "Sh*t Happens." Looking to a/the God for some type of answer is a coping mechanism confused and scared humans use in order to answer unanswerable questions.

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What if a hardcore racist said that blacks shouldn't be treated equal and said that his opposers beliefs were not right because blacks on average do not make as much money as whites? therefore he was right because of numbers or an example not on the basic human belief that all men are equal.

 

A spritiual yet hardcore racist wouldn't use some empirical fact to justify his racism. He's just point to the several dozen passages in the bible that acknowledge, condone and in some cases advocate racism via slavery.

 

As for free will...

 

Sure when something great happens everyone looks to the heavens and thanks God for his benevolence and generousity. But when something really bad happens where does everyone look? No, not to the all knowing being who can control everything and allowed the bad thing to occur. They blame it on themselves because of this little thing called free will. :blink:

 

IMHO "Sh*t Happens." Looking to a/the God for some type of answer is a coping mechanism confused and scared humans use in order to answer unanswerable questions.

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Yet we cannot answer those questions, which makes me much further from athiesm than religion. Therein lies the problem. Do we just ignore and take things as s*** happens? I think when you are closer to death, you abandon that view. But youre right in that most organized religion is set up around the explanation for the lost sheep theory.

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Sure when something great happens everyone looks to the heavens and thanks God for his benevolence and generousity. But when something really bad happens where does everyone look? No, not to the all knowing being who can control everything and allowed the bad thing to occur. They blame it on themselves because of this little thing called free will.? :blink:

 

IMHO "Sh*t Happens." Looking to a/the God for some type of answer is a coping mechanism confused and scared humans use in order to answer unanswerable questions.

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Yet we cannot answer those questions, which makes me much further from athiesm than religion. Therein lies the problem. Do we just ignore and take things as s*** happens? I think when you are closer to death, you abandon that view. But youre right in that most organized religion is set up around the explanation for the lost sheep theory.

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Well which questions are we talking about?

 

I would argue that there plenty of of times when people "look to the heavens" when the issue is firmly planted in humanity. 9/11 was caused by people. There were purposes and reasons behind it, twisted as they were.

 

2 categories of questions/issues for me:

 

The question is either A) one that is based in reality and our understanding of the physical universe, (how did Hurricane Jeanne kill all those people in Haiti, is the earth round or flat, why did 9/11 happen, what causes a disease), or B) it's the big metaphysical questions (why are we here, why is there evil, is there life after death, what is the appeal of Michael Bolton's music, etc).

 

The first group of questions we can either answer now or can come up with a pretty good hypothesis, and surmise that we'll be able to get to the root of it at some point in the future. 9/11, cancer, earthquakes, etc.

 

The second group (the big metaphysical questions) are issues that religion can give possible answers to, but they're only one of many MANY possibilities and many religions. If people want to pick & chose their answers from a long list, largely based on faith, that's fine for them. But they're also the questions that will most likely always be unanswerable. If people are just able to admit "I don't know" once in a while, that's a big step IMO. But "I don't know yet" is uncomfortable for people.

 

And my hope and trust is that humanity will try to seek the answers to even the most unanswerable "big" questions, instead of just saying "well it's allah's will, or it was meant to happen, or because it was written in an old book, or god works in mysterious ways.

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Another thing about all these natural diasasters, the foundation of relegion is on a personal connection between you and god. How can you try to prove that because God let 9/11 happen, the relationionship you've experienced is non existent.

 

If someone you loved and cared for did a bad thing to another person, does every feeling you've ever experienced for that person become erased? If you did drugs and your mother found out, does she in one short moment remove all the love she's ever had for you because she saw you do a bad thing.

 

My relationship with God is a matter of faith, faith that the beautiful feelings I've had after prayer was not me, the fact that he has cleared the mental hurdles in my head before and yet I'm supposed to throw that away because of 9/11 in Batman's question.

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