Saturday, March 28, 2009

I am so terrified! Please don't come.
Wow! Should we be afraid of God? I am not!
As I continue to keep up with a discussion entitled, Does Satan Exist?, on my Howard University social networking web page I wonder why many are fearful of publicly asking, Does God Exist? I know if I were to solely utilize my common sense I would answer that question like this:
No! Are you crazy? God? What is that? If I cannot see and/or touch this being, He/She must be some spirit thing humans have created to help them ‘deal’ with the unexplainable. A God, yeah right!
Here is my answer while in Sunday school 30 years ago:
“What you talking bout? You expect me to believe that, Deacon Johnson?”
Waiting on the LIGHTENING to strike me!
The first response is full of sarcasm – but I am trying to be sarcastic because deep down inside the only reason I believe that there is a God is because I fear the outcome if there is (I wanna be on the RIGHT side – Heaven sounds like a good place to go). I also refuse to acknowledge that the disgustingly flawed and dangerously complex humans are in control. No way!
The second response was an innocent kid’s thought process at the time. What caused me to abandon where I was at in my understanding then: Forced-fed Christianity.
I know there are those reading who are clicking off my blog right now. Afraid that I am Satan. Go ahead, click away. But, you know the only reason you believe is because of an unsubstantiated faith.
Two plus two equals four. That is fact!God plus Jesus plus Heaven equals belief based on Faith. That’s belief, not fact.
I believe in God because I am afraid not to. Such a PUNK.
Written by Brian E. Payne.

37 comments:

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader Response:

"Afraid that I am Satan. Go ahead, click away."

You are not Satan brother, I am not afraid of that.

"But, you know the only reason you believe is because of an unsubstantiated faith."

My faith has been validated and it is a personal decision to believe. I think we are all entitled to that.I believe in GOD and that he exist based on my own personal experiences and that is something that no person can take away.

I am not a punk for doing so.

-O

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader Response:

There are millions (if not billions) waiting for Jesus to come down here. What does that mean?

-EAS

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

O Responds to EAS:

I don't mind saying that I am waiting for His second coming but the person of the Holy Spirit is here right now.

-O

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

EAS responds to O:

Is that you? Or an entity outside of you?

-EAS

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

O responds to EAS:

The Holy Spirit is His own person who lives inside of a person and helps them. It is the comforting Spirit of GOD and helper. He enables a person to do GOD will.

-O

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Eas responds to O:

I don't know. There's something about that Opé will that is undeniable. So outside of yourself appears to be your answer. As in He lives.

-EAS

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

EAS Responds again:

I'm thankful that I know that God lives in me! And not as a separate entity! Uh-Oh! Danger!

Remember when the enslaved weren't permitted to read period (let alone the BIBLE, KORAN, I-CHING, etc?)

Were the enslaved heathen that needed to be...educated?

-EAS

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader TJW responds to EAS:

I think O clearly stated that God's Spirit lives IN HER. I think she stated God's is with her (us) HERE and NOW. And those enslaved ancestors to which you referred often already knew of a Spirit Who abided with them before their enslavement... therefore, the experience of which Ope speaks is not newly revealed. That being said, there is no reason to disparage the concept of a Holy Being who is separate and superior and different from us. The fact that God is separate and higher than us is a very good thing. If God we worship is not an entity separate from us, are we not worshiping ourselves?

-TJW

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader responds to TJW:

"I think Ope clearly stated that God's Spirit lives IN HER. I think she stated God's is with her (us) HERE and NOW."

I definitely think belief in God is a personal decision and experience...

"That being said, there is no reason to disparage the concept of a Holy Being who is separate and superior and different from us."

I don't know TJW, other statements may show bias .. but I believe his core premise is to simply question whether God exists or not.. to ask is not to disparage..

"The fact that God is separate and higher than us is a very good thing."

It is not a fact.. It is a belief.. that's very individual and personal... and not at all universal or inherently self evident to those not indoctrinated culturally...

"If God we worship is not an entity separate from us, are we not worshiping ourselves?"

This question assumes that worship of something must happen... and that God exists but separate from us.. I think one would have to first start at whether or not God exists...

~Peace
-K

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds to O:

Why can't this 'Holy Spirit' be YOU making better decisions? Decisions to live right? Where does the person God supposedly created come into play here?
It sounds like God created a bunch of defects. Unable to be effective at living right without His assistance. Didn't He give s the tools we need to be upright? His work is not defective...so I am told.

-Muata

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds to EAS:

Waiting and waiting and waiting...

It could mean that millions/billions have decided to believe based on fear, love, and/or faith.

Decades upon decades ago people professed to be 'waiting on the Lord'. As it is described in the bible He has yet to show His face. So, I ask, are we certain He is returning or is this another detail to get us to act 'right'? You know folk wanna be on the right side when the separation of good and evil begins. But, guess what, that detail evidently does not curtail evil behavior. So, what are we really believing...Foolishness? That's what we call aspects/circumstances that do not quite add up. Right?

-Muata

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader Responds to Muata:

Faith takes believers like myself a long way. I believe God created the heaven, earth, man and much more. I also believe that while science helps explain the now, creation provides explanation for then and that to come. God isn't through with me yet, I don't believe (that word again) he brought me this far to leave me and I don't feel no ways tired. May the gospel be heard and may evangelism touch us such that although He may not come when we want Him to, but, he's always right on time (good family, friends, faith and fellowship).

-LLW

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds to LLW:

So, LLW you believe that God created man and woman? If you do, please explain to me all the imperfections. The bible says God is flawless. Perfect - but yet He has created millions of defective persons e.g. mentally ill, physical handicapped, and anything that does not fall into line with 'order'. Does that make sense?

"Right on time"

By whose standards? Yours? You may have decided that it was God working on your behalf, and then came a breakthrough. How do you know God had anything to do with the breakthrough that was "right on time"? Could it be that you and you alone ascribed this right on time status to it? God could have been doing something else. Like sleeping on the job. There are COUNTLESS men, women, and children praying for a breakthrough, and it has never come. So, I guess God was too busy with your break through? This is where I take a lot of issue with people claiming that God did this and did that when MILLIONS of people are perishing due to His non-involvement. Leaving them to ask, ‘Where are you God?’ While you are praising Him for a breakthrough and claiming that he is right on time.

Help me out here. Can you explain some of this to me without referencing a book written by men who had their own agendas? Without relying on a faith that was established via your emotionalism and possibly indoctrination?

-Muata

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

LLW responds to Muata:

Brian,

Question to me- Who created heaven and earth; who said "let there be light, water, a sky, land between the waters, let land produced vegetation". My anwer for me is GOD, from the reference book that I believe is what it is. IMO, God is a creator.

-LLW

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds to LLW:

LLW-
With all due respect: You used that book.

Dang! I thought you could help a brotha.

-Muata

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

LLW responds to Muata:

Brian,

We're grown; I won't disrespect if I'm not disrespected. I was taught business from various business books and unless shown otherwise, I will learn my beliefs from the Bible (oops, that book). Some folks call their God Buddah, Emmanuel, Muhammed, Jehovah, Jesus based on a belief and I believe as I see my blessings occur every day. No confusion this way, God is good!

-LLW

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds to O:

So, YOU have created this belief? This faith? It is not something that can be found in a library or museum. It is all hypothetical? A mind creation? Something you cannot substantiate if a gun was to your head.

Now, believe me I am not being an asshole. I am intrigued by a person's ability to extend faith. This was one my of reasons to go to seminary.

The power of faith is marvelous - but I chose to question it so that I will not become a victim of believing just because or because I made it through cancer (not me). Perhaps, technology and science cured/removed the cancer? And, if God was involved in saying a dying person from cancer, why in the hell isn't he saving the straving kids in Africa/Asia?

-Muata

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader LB responds:

well it has been proved that man cannot direct his/her own steps.. yes, God has given us a tool: the Bible, and He has given us free will. we are free moral agents which is why we have some that make bad decisions and some that make good decisions.
those that do it God's way fare much better. maybe not materially or financially..but spiritually and mentally they do.. have you talked to someone who is really striving to do it God's way? how much peace they have? even if they don't know where their next meal is coming from.. they aren't anxious over the current events for they know it has been written and that this too shall pass. we are w/o a doubt living in the last of the last days

have you seen how some peeps look after going through life doing it their way w/o God's helP? they look totally beat up. like the world had unleashed Mike Tyson on them during his 30 sec knockout era.

it's like obeying a green light.. if you run it, you are liable to get a ticket or even your car ran into.. however if you really want to, you can run it but if you obide by the law, you would 95% of the time fare better. the same with God's law. yeah there are some who do it their way and it appears that they ain't getting a ticket or getting the car crashed up...like they getting off scott free..but i am telling you, if you looked a lil closer you would see that they living in misery.

-LB

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds to LB:

LB-
I know happy atheist. They live 'right'. They are not living in misery. So, who is this God that makes you and others happy? Is it a Christian God? I ask because I have interfaced with people all around the world who are not 'Believers' - but their lives are in order. They are at peace. Actually, the most pathetic people I know are those who claim to be Christian. Seriously.

And, what is God's help? Does He help you and not others? How can you distinguish/discern what God's help is? If He helps you, why not INNOCENT children who die at the hands of maniacs? Where is His help then?

Free will? This is a Christian's way to explain their unexplainable.

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

LB responds to Muata:

i know happy drug addicts ~ does that mean that their way of life is right? it's always easier to live in ignorance/darkness than it is to walk in light.

do you know how much easier it would be if i didn't know some things were wrong? whether it be morally, legally, spiritually? i betcha madoff was happy up until recently.

what is God's help?

His help is His Holy Spirit, his active force that He bestows upon us when we are acting in harmony with our prayers and doing his will..

Does He help you and not others?

He helps all those desiring to be helped and that are doing what's right.. the Bible says seek first the kingdom and all else will be added to you. so doing God's will should come first..and we were given a "model prayer" setting out the things that we should pray for, and we need to act in harmony with our prayers... it says God is the hearer of all prayers..does He answer all prayers? hmmm, if HE doesn't answer in the manner that we hope for or the way we played it out in our heads, is it still an answer?

How can you distinguish/discern what God's help is? well, for me personally, i know that i only made a certain amount of money last year and it wasn't enough to feed my child let alone pay my mortgage, YET i never missed a mortgage payment and da boi never went hunger.. that was truly by the grace of God.. people forget that God uses humans to carry out His will and purposes..so it wasn't by no mistake that i rec'd a check from a friend out of the blue for no reason..or that i was invited to dinners where i was encouraged to take food with me..etc, etc.

and sometimes we have to remind ourselves that the blessing is that nothing bad has happen to us.. a lot of people think that by serving God and doing things His way that they going to get a windfall of blessings. they gonna get a brand new house, they gonna get the man of their dreams, they gonna get that banging job and sometimes we have to realize the blessing is that we weren't evicted or foreclosed on, that we haven't lost our poor excuse for a job and that we ain't got a man/woman beating on us or mistreating us.

If He helps you, why not INNOCENT children who die at the hands of maniacs? Where is His help then?

God is a loving God make no mistake about that. But it is written that unforseen occurrences happen to us all. And if He saved everybody, how would He be making His point to Satan? How would we show that we are faithful and true? The devil challenged God and basically said ( and imma put this in Tweety words) "these people only following you and doing what you say because you keep giving them stuff..you letting them live a cushy life...i betcha if you stop letting them live the good life they wouldn't do what you say..they wouldn't even like you..they basically just using you because of what you do for them..they llike the benefits." This was why it was so important that Job remained faithful. If we only willing to serve God when it's going good for us, then how can we say we have trust and faith in the Lord?

The fact of the matter is: Humans are the blame for most suffering. The use their free will which means they make their own decisions because we aren't robots.. we aren't stepford men and women.. and decide that they are going to do things the way they see fit. The outcome of doing it man's way: wars, food shortages, pestilence, disease, crime, ozone depletion (can't think of the other name for this), greed, and the beat goes on.

But know this, God is not going to sit around and do nothing. His day is coming, and maybe it's not coming as fast as we like, but it is coming.. we are told to keep on the watch, that it will come like a thief in the night. and if you have been taking note of world events, you will have to concede that there are prophecies being fulfill before our very eyes. God is going to put an end to all of this suffering, it is written in Revelation that death will be no more neither mourning nor outcry because the former things have passed away. and we know that He can and will do these things because it was by means of Him that Jesus was able to perform miracles. Jesus had the power to heal and raise the dead; however, he didn't heal everybody and he didn't resurrect everybody..WHY? because it wasn't time.. God has a timetable and when it is time to act, He will do just that.

-LB

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader response:

Belief in a personal God, outside of themselves, for many, is a coping mechanism... For which you will rarely get a rational or completely honest discussion that does not deteriorate into circular reasoning...

Ultimately many people believe in God because they haven't found a better thing to believe in that gives them "hope"... and will not or can not objectively critically analyze the source of their beliefs, because it is too embedded in their psyche and to be objective about it for some may even cause a mental breakdown..... or some version of one...

-K

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds to K:

How is this hope acquired/gained when God has been absent for so many? Think about the slaves, the Jews, the Africans now dying from violence and starvation. This leads me to believe that the hope that is gained is based on a selfish/self-centered reasoning/justification. Here are people dying for no legitimate reason at all - but yet some of us have the audacity to blurt, "God saved me. He answered my prayers." That is pathetic to me.

God and His 'prayer answering ability' is a self creation concept. If it was REAL, why isn't He coming to the rescue of those innocent and PRAYING people I mentioned above? NO ONE HAS BEEN ABLE TO ANSWER THAT QUESTION.

-Muata

Torrance Stephens - All-Mi-T said...

boy u a fool lmao

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Torrance-
My grandmother told me:

"Boy, sometimes a fool has a message for ya. Ignore the foolishness from him, and LISTEN."

-Muata

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader Response:

Yea, God Exists

the phony part is normally "religion".

-WKJ

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata ask K questions K responds:

"How is this hope acquired/gained when God has been absent for so many? Think about the slaves, the Jews, the Africans now dying from violence and starvation. This leads me to believe that the hope that is gained is based on a selfish/self-centered reasoning/justification. Here are people dying for no legitimate reason at all - but yet some of us have the audacity to blurt, "God saved me. He answered my prayers." That is pathetic to me." -Muata

Comparatively in all honesty most religious people do not seem to be exclaiming being saved with the thought in mind that they are better than those suffering.. it seems more a cry of relief... grateful that they have found a safe haven... Finding shelter in a cave from a hungry bear does not mean you haughtily think yourself better than those eaten.. you're just grateful you're still alive...


That doesn't mean that there aren't those who ARE haughty.. I just wouldn't put that sentiment on all religious persons...


"God and His 'prayer answering ability' is a self creation concept. If it was REAL, why isn't He coming to the rescue of those innocent and PRAYING people I mentioned above? NO ONE HAS BEEN ABLE TO ANSWER THAT QUESTION." -Muata

I can see how it could be seen as such ... I tend to look at those who pray in times of peril, however somewhat admirably.. considering that when all is loss the mind reaches for something outside its scope.. it's almost mathematically beautiful.. there are no more possibilities the mind can discern for its survival.. it calls upon something outside of known laws and experience and tests it through the call and rests hope that an answer will come soon... this is one way of handling a situation is faced with...

-K

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds to everyone:

The fact of the matter is no one in support that God is real can prove it. And, it is not that I am seeking proof. Because in totality it does not matter to me. I live a decent life. I respect people. I don't go around living like a fool. I try to be 'righteously upright'. I make an attempt to do all the things necessary to be a good person, and I did not need some ancient book (bible) to tell me how to live. Besides each and every time someone uses the bible to support their belief they invalidate reality. My desire is for the "Believers" to be honest about their belief. Say what it is based on: Conjecture, myths, and stories. Instead of frontin' like a story that they possibly did not believe as a child is truth to them now as adults. Children are so much smarter than adults because for a significant amount of time their minds are not poisoned with fantasy stories e.g. Jesus walked on water and Moses parted the Red Sea. We all know that stuff did not occur. It is believed from a faith disposition. A disposition that typically changes from day to day and life event to life event.

So, Muata what is your point?

TRUTH

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

TJW responds to Muata:

What I find so amazing about Brian is while he presents himself as some champion of "truth", he has espoused a patently materialistic and Eurocentric belief ... that only which has been "proven" is "real", that miracles (didn't our African ancestors "believe" in a supernatural world?) are mythological impossibilities and only what can be seen and touched is to be believed. Such a materialistic worldview is the exact opposite of the African worldview and it would appear he attempts to be Afrocentric in his presentation.

But when it comes to the application of the scientific method, even the most tested construct cannot be "proven" with 100 percent certitude and no scientist will contend that he can "prove" a construct. Research studies will state that an experiement will "demonstrate" a particular level of "statistical significance" and even then, will always defer to future studies to demonstrate the strength of significance in greater detail. Thus, science builds its knowledge base upon previous experience (old church folks call this a "testimony"). Therefore, the requirement that believers in God "prove" faith is a hypocritical red-herring.

Brian states he "desires believers to be honest about their belief" ... so how does one measure when this "desire" has been fulfilled? Desire cannot be seen or touched or tested. So when desire is met, where's the "proof"?

As a matter of fact, while we are at it, answer this: how does one measure "TRUTH"? Is there an experimental laboratory test for "truth"? Isn't one measure of truth relative and variable to another measure? If you insist that your measure of "truth" is superior to my measure of "truth", how do you "prove it"?

-TJW

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds to TJW:

Again, you cannot answer my questions because your belief is based on faith. Faith in many cases is fragile. Two plus two is four. Now that is a definite/unbreakable.

Go some where, and present $3.90 when the clerk says your total is $4.00. What will happen?

Go some where, and scream at the top of your lungs that God prevented you from being struck by a Mack truck. Only believing people who believe by faith alone will believe you. Why? Because you cannot prove your statement.

-Muata

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader Response:

I remember questioning certain biblical stories and other religious teachings as a child (I attended a fundamentalist white southern baptist church school for 5 years... yipes!) and when I would go too far with my why's and how's (too far meaning they either ran out of new and sufficient answers or they assumed I was just being difficult when I really just wanted to understand) I'd be punished (time outs, paddles, parents called, etc.). It was interesting at best.

People's experiences (coupled with socialization) are/become their reality. When their questions are sufficiently answered for them, they are sated and remain in that space unless something pushes them off center (or is allowed to). For some, that push only solidifies their hold. When it comes to religion, for the devout, all of those experiences and teachings become so intertwined and ingrained that one becomes impenetrable. This can be good or bad. (an example of bad would be the Jim Jones incident which was less about God than it was about man but that leads to another discussion I am not prepared to have)

Since one's life is generally designed around these beliefs, I figure it is difficult to have any portion challenged without feeling attacked. Approach will dictate the beginning of the discussion but after a while I seldom see things go well as either side will eventually read disdain from the other side. From my experience, mostly what I learned (or just chose to take from it) is to let folks alone and just do my own research and go from there. Of course there is no progress that occurs from that. And that is just my choice to stay away form the actual discussion. I just have other agendas... or maybe I am an instigator...

-LC

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader LB responds:

it's like when i learn Cal 1 i was taught the fundamentals and the principals from the Cal book.. there was a formula.. a guide.. then by the time i got to Cal 3 i was able to derive answers on my own using the fundamentals i was taught from the Cal book, i was able to build upon my previous experiences.

-LB

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds to LB:

Your Cal 1 source was, IMO, a legitimate source. It can bring one to a logical and factual truth. The bible can not IMO. It is a flawed source, so why put forth a response bleeding with bibilical scripture/teachings when the source by all accounts is weak. It can be torn apart with theology and in many cases come sense.

-Muata

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader Response:

By that I mean, you want answers that are not Bible- or experience-based. The bible and their experiences are all (to my knowledge) on which Christians base their religion ... those and their faith. So for all who continue to try and answer you, until they can come from another direction, this will continue to just be a... hmmmmmm.... an exercise in futility maybe?"

-X

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader K responds to X:

I think so.. I've been in dialogue like this and also have had the unpleasant and very regrettable experience of watching someone go into a complete mental breakdown just by asking them to think about why they believe something....

People's faith's are very ingrained and not at all logical and really can't be subjected to logical analysis until the person is ready to analyze themselves in that manner... otherwise if they submit and are not ready you could end up harming them...

I don't think people are less intelligent because they believe in God.. I do not think many people objectively believe in God.. and have no rational basis for their belief outside of what things feel like for them... or they are used to...

But the world is made up of our experiences.. we each experience "qualia" or our own subjective truth.. and we have a right to it...

When the student is ready the teacher will come...

-K

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader Response:

Brian,

I'm just thinking 2; if I required fact that stove tops can get hot or fire can burn or water can drown or land (eath) can quake (a Cali ting), perhaps I wouldn't believe that trouble can arise. Thank God I believe!

LLW

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds to LLW:

Your belief is impressive. I mean that! To declare that you believe and then believe without substantive (factual) info/detail is remarkable. It leads to a faith that should be UNBREAKABLE.

Let's just agree that a suicide bomber who states he believes is not insane. Not a lunatic. That level of belief is more than IMPRESSIVE AND REMARKABLE. While wrong in my book (the act), however...

This is fascinating to me: FAITH

I may question. I may state I am not a Believer - but I know where my soul sits. Holla!

Thanks for the dialogue.

-Muata

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader response:

...why do we spend so much of our time concerned with this question and why does it matter?...to my knowledge there has NEVER been any confirmation or validation that a higher power exists...whomever and whatever anyone chooses to pray to is pretty much based on the words of his fellow MAN...so if you feel the need to have someone or something police your behavior, GO AHEAD...if you feel that what you cannot explain has to have an explanation, FEEL FREE TO EXPLAIN...faith and spirituality are good things in that they make us act in a fairly civil manner...is it also necessary to have a "symbol" to represent the reality that if we all treat each other as we would like to be treated that things would still work out?...i guess that HUMAN NATURE requires some means of restraint even if we have to manufacture it through fear and persecution...

-HMH