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The Power of Prayer
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Posted 9/4/08

SeraphAlford wrote:


angelseraphim wrote:
I'll define my value and my purpose by myself by my own means. I just can't allow something or someone else define me. I wont be controlled or commanded by a God. Thats just how I am.


But if evolution programmed you then you’re not defining yourself at all. Evolution is. As a matter of a fact, free will cannot exist without some kind of God because every moment in time exists in cognition to one another. In other-words, the future is already determined. It is true to say that what will be will be, but at the same time what will be already is; therefore, free will must be an illusion because you have no control over your future actions and cannot change them. The only way to escape this is to call upon an entity which can surpass human logic-aka, a mystical God.


Wonderful. So no matter what I'm in a cage. Something is bending me to its design. Be it God or evolution. No way. I can't accept that. I want to be free.
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Posted 9/4/08

Intranetusa wrote:


SeraphAlford wrote:
Please read my discussion with angleseraphem. The patients weren't aware that they were being prayed for, so the placebo effect can't be given credit for this. Does that mean the study proves God? Hardly, if you read the afore mentioned dialogue I provide a perfectly logical explanation. This doesn’t prove anything. It’s just an interesting topic.


Proves God? Which God? Maybe God(s) of Hindusim, Vishnu and Brahamin, decided to smile on these patients? We can't automatically assume it's the Judeo-Christian God.



Let's say it is the Almighty Creator of the Universe.

However, why would God do something like this? A God doing this during a study would seem like a diety stoking his ego, in order to show followers he exists.

Why would he create immutable laws of nature, just so he can break it himself?
Philosophically, divine intervention/miracles make no sense...and is an insult to God.


I would like to think it most likely is coincidence, or some of the patients were given different or even preferential treatment (as in not a true double-blind test). That's a better explanation than insulting the Almighty by saying "God did it."


Did you even read my post? I just said that I don’t believe God did anything. As far as the study goes, the document didn’t mention anything about any specific religion. In short, people were merely asked “Would you pray for John Dough?” To which they said, “Sure.” The study wasn’t specific to any religion; therefore, I doubt we can accredit any of this to divine intervention.

As far as your deistic argument, I think it’s silly. Just because God created a finite being such as humankind doesn’t mean God himself is finite. Just because we can’t break a law doesn’t mean he can’t. Police officers who enforce law are allowed to carry guns, even though it’s against the law for citizens to carry guns. My father forbade me from touching kitchen knives when I was little, yet he and my mother both used them all the time…


On your last note, you answered yourself. It was a double-blind experiment so the patients didn't receive different or preferential treatment.
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Posted 9/4/08

SeraphAlford wrote:


crunchypibb wrote:

Holy S*** you wrote a thesis, I took a two second glance and saw the last paragraph. So you're saying there's other ways to have our prayers answered other than through God? I agree but your last paragraph suggests that God may not be the cause. How come? And please keep the details to a minimum, for this debate if I want to know I'll ask.


*Grumbles* No, that was my post. He was trying to quote it but my name didn’t appear. The quote program on CR is flawed and buggy, it sometimes messes up. Anyway, that was my essay.

To answer your question I wasn’t saying that God isn’t the cause. I was saying that there’s no proof that he was the cause because we don’t currently understand the mind. In other words, we have –at least- two technical possibilities.

1. Divine/Spiritual intervention
2. The mind can interact with the environment through natural/scientific means that we’ve yet to uncover.


-Oh that makes more sense now. Ya, what I think your talking about is spirituality or maybe physiology. The easiest thing to relate it to is that rush you get when you're really into whatever sport you're doing. It's like we're doing more than 100% than we can normally do. Doing these sort of things usually require more energy to consume so when you don't condition your body to those sort of things then you tend to fatigue more often and longer. But that's just explaining the physical boosts that we can get.
-To further explain, humans at full potential can do more than just give themselves a rush. They can do stuff like boost their immune system. Normally we can use placebos to make our bodies do such things but humans can do the same thing without the placebo.
Of course all of that can be supported by God but we ourselves can perform such tasks without God if we please, so I think. But I think it's really evident that God is intervening when we pray for other people and those people are not even aware we're praying for them.
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Posted 9/4/08

SeraphAlford wrote:


Why can’t it be both? Einstein believed that science, logic, and math were the brush, canvas, and colors God used to paint the universe.


"There is one thing that science cannot accept, and that is a person God who meddles in the affairs of his creation." -Albert Einstein

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2008/may/12/peopleinscience.religion

News: Einstein's letter:

"In the letter, he states: "The word god is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honourable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this."

Einstein, who was Jewish and who declined an offer to be the state of Israel's second president, also rejected the idea that the Jews are God's favoured people.

"For me the Jewish religion like all others is an incarnation of the most childish superstitions. And the Jewish people to whom I gladly belong and with whose mentality I have a deep affinity have no different quality for me than all other people. As far as my experience goes, they are no better than other human groups, although they are protected from the worst cancers by a lack of power. Otherwise I cannot see anything 'chosen' about them....""


SeraphAlford wrote:
You know, most of the founding fathers of science weren’t secular and clinical. They were religious and passionate.

If they weren't secular, then why did they institute the separation of church and state?
Separation of church and state = secular

And what religion were they?


"And the day will come, when the mystical generation [birth] of Jesus, by the Supreme Being as his father, in the womb of a virgin, will be classed with the fable of the generation [birth] of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter."
- Thomas Jefferson

"The way to see by faith is to shut the eye of reason."
-Benjamin Franklin

"Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprise."
- James Madison

'"The divinity of Jesus is made a convenient cover for absurdity."
-John Adams

"All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit."
-Thomas Paine

"Religious controversies are always productive of more acrimony and irreconcilable hatreds than those which spring from any other cause. .."
-George Washington
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Posted 9/4/08

angelseraphim wrote:


SeraphAlford wrote:


angelseraphim wrote:
I'll define my value and my purpose by myself by my own means. I just can't allow something or someone else define me. I wont be controlled or commanded by a God. Thats just how I am.


But if evolution programmed you then you’re not defining yourself at all. Evolution is. As a matter of a fact, free will cannot exist without some kind of God because every moment in time exists in cognition to one another. In other-words, the future is already determined. It is true to say that what will be will be, but at the same time what will be already is; therefore, free will must be an illusion because you have no control over your future actions and cannot change them. The only way to escape this is to call upon an entity which can surpass human logic-aka, a mystical God.


Wonderful. So no matter what I'm in a cage. Something is bending me to its design. Be it God or evolution. No way. I can't accept that. I want to be free.


Well, the only way for free-will to exist is for a God-such as the Judeo/Christian God-to exist. People think that God’s existence nulls the existence of free-will, but that’s not necessarily true. That idea came from the Calvinistic church, which in my personal opinion is highly self-contradictory.

The original Judeo/Christian god didn’t bend anybody to his will. Quite the opposite, he allowed them to make choices. As a matter of a fact, a major biblical theme found in the Old Testament is the consequence of choice. Without consequence a choice isn’t a choice at all. It’s a nothing, a mechanical action. Hints, there’s evil in the world.

People always say, “If there is a God then why is there evil?”

Because the only way to remove evil is to remove the unfavorable consequences…but, in doing this, you remove free-will. The original Judeo/Christian God, however, didn’t want slaves. He wanted people who could love and choose him.

So, he created mankind with free-will. There’s always the argument of “Well, if God knows the future then we can’t have free will,” but this argument is logically self-contradictory and scientifically false.
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Posted 9/4/08 , edited 9/4/08

SeraphAlford wrote:
Did you even read my post? I just said that I don’t believe God did anything. As far as the study goes, the document didn’t mention anything about any specific religion. In short, people were merely asked “Would you pray for John Dough?” To which they said, “Sure.” The study wasn’t specific to any religion; therefore, I doubt we can accredit any of this to divine intervention.

As far as your deistic argument, I think it’s silly. Just because God created a finite being such as humankind doesn’t mean God himself is finite. Just because we can’t break a law doesn’t mean he can’t.


I brought up God just in case you did think that God was responsible.


And you've missed the entire point of the Deistic argument.

It's not that God "can't" break the law but that God "doesn't need to" break the law.

God needing to break a law would show that God is imperfect, since God has to 'revise' a course of set course of actions. God needing to intervene and personally change fate would show that God is not content with the original progression of events...meaning God messed up when he first created the universe and set events in motion.

Perfection of God is the main reason why there is no such thing as divine intervention in Deism.




SeraphAlford wrote:
On your last note, you answered yourself. It was a double-blind experiment so the patients didn't receive different or preferential treatment.


I'm saying that someone might have screwed up in the experiment (so it was not a double blind experiment or the patients did know they were being prayed for)

Another explanation could be coincidence - some just happened to heal faster.

Another could be simply coincidence due to genetics, as you brushed upon earlier.



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Posted 9/4/08

SeraphAlford wrote:


angelseraphim wrote:


SeraphAlford wrote:


angelseraphim wrote:
I'll define my value and my purpose by myself by my own means. I just can't allow something or someone else define me. I wont be controlled or commanded by a God. Thats just how I am.


But if evolution programmed you then you’re not defining yourself at all. Evolution is. As a matter of a fact, free will cannot exist without some kind of God because every moment in time exists in cognition to one another. In other-words, the future is already determined. It is true to say that what will be will be, but at the same time what will be already is; therefore, free will must be an illusion because you have no control over your future actions and cannot change them. The only way to escape this is to call upon an entity which can surpass human logic-aka, a mystical God.


Wonderful. So no matter what I'm in a cage. Something is bending me to its design. Be it God or evolution. No way. I can't accept that. I want to be free.


Well, the only way for free-will to exist is for a God-such as the Judeo/Christian God-to exist. People think that God’s existence nulls the existence of free-will, but that’s not necessarily true. That idea came from the Calvinistic church, which in my personal opinion is highly self-contradictory.

The original Judeo/Christian god didn’t bend anybody to his will. Quite the opposite, he allowed them to make choices. As a matter of a fact, a major biblical theme found in the Old Testament is the consequence of choice. Without consequence a choice isn’t a choice at all. It’s a nothing, a mechanical action. Hints, there’s evil in the world.

People always say, “If there is a God then why is there evil?”

Because the only way to remove evil is to remove the unfavorable consequences…but, in doing this, you remove free-will. The original Judeo/Christian God, however, didn’t want slaves. He wanted people who could love and choose him.

So, he created mankind with free-will. There’s always the argument of “Well, if God knows the future then we can’t have free will,” but this argument is logically self-contradictory and scientifically false.


So where do you stand on this. Creationism?
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Posted 9/4/08

Intranetusa wrote:


SeraphAlford wrote:


Why can’t it be both? Einstein believed that science, logic, and math were the brush, canvas, and colors God used to paint the universe.


"There is one thing that science cannot accept, and that is a person God who meddles in the affairs of his creation." -Albert Einstein

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2008/may/12/peopleinscience.religion

News: Einstein's letter:

"In the letter, he states: "The word god is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honourable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this."

Einstein, who was Jewish and who declined an offer to be the state of Israel's second president, also rejected the idea that the Jews are God's favoured people.

"For me the Jewish religion like all others is an incarnation of the most childish superstitions. And the Jewish people to whom I gladly belong and with whose mentality I have a deep affinity have no different quality for me than all other people. As far as my experience goes, they are no better than other human groups, although they are protected from the worst cancers by a lack of power. Otherwise I cannot see anything 'chosen' about them....""


SeraphAlford wrote:
You know, most of the founding fathers of science weren’t secular and clinical. They were religious and passionate.

If they weren't secular, then why did they institute the separation of church and state?
Separation of church and state = secular

And what religion were they?


"And the day will come, when the mystical generation [birth] of Jesus, by the Supreme Being as his father, in the womb of a virgin, will be classed with the fable of the generation [birth] of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter."
- Thomas Jefferson

"The way to see by faith is to shut the eye of reason."
-Benjamin Franklin

"Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprise."
- James Madison

'"The divinity of Jesus is made a convenient cover for absurdity."
-John Adams

"All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit."
-Thomas Paine

"Religious controversies are always productive of more acrimony and irreconcilable hatreds than those which spring from any other cause. .."
-George Washington


You do know the founding fathers of America and the founding fathers of science aren’t the same people, right? In addition, I’m religious; therefore, not secular. However, I support separation of church and state. For me, as well as many of the founding fathers, philosophers like Christ, Buddha, and Kierkegaard religion is a personal experience. Supporting separation of church and state does not make you secular, does not mean you’re not religious, and does not make you an atheist in any way, shape, or form.

Most of the founding fathers were Deists. I find Deism flawed in its own logic.

But, once again, we weren’t talking about the founding fathers of America. We were talking about the founding fathers of science. Einstein, Galileo, Newton, Dirac, Bohr, and so very many others. Were all of the fathers of science religious? No, most certainly not. Just most of them.
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Posted 9/4/08

SeraphAlford wrote:
Well, the only way for free-will to exist is for a God-such as the Judeo/Christian God-to exist. People think that God’s existence nulls the existence of free-will, but that’s not necessarily true. That idea came from the Calvinistic church, which in my personal opinion is highly self-contradictory.



That's not necessarily true - there is far more free will in Zoroastrianism, Buddhism, Hinduism, etc

And sure, we may bad mouth the Calvinists, or the Mormons - but hey, the Protestant Anglican church was founded because King Henry wanted to divorce his wives.



SeraphAlford wrote:
The original Judeo/Christian god didn’t bend anybody to his will. Quite the opposite, he allowed them to make choices. As a matter of a fact, a major biblical theme found in the Old Testament is the consequence of choice. Without consequence a choice isn’t a choice at all. It’s a nothing, a mechanical action. Hints, there’s evil in the world.


I believe that's most just for the Abrahamic God of Judaism. Christianity and Islam introduced the idea of hell and brimstone for non-believers, while the Old Testament only lightly touched upon it and didn't focus on faith alone.



SeraphAlford wrote:
People always say, “If there is a God then why is there evil?”

Because the only way to remove evil is to remove the unfavorable consequences…but, in doing this, you remove free-will. The original Judeo/Christian God, however, didn’t want slaves. He wanted people who could love and choose him.


Umm...I believe the Jews did end up enslaving and slaughtering the Caanites and others, with God's blessing. And the Jews were allowed to be briefly 'enslaved' by the Babylonians after they 'fell out of favor.'


SeraphAlford wrote:
So, he created mankind with free-will. There’s always the argument of “Well, if God knows the future then we can’t have free will,” but this argument is logically self-contradictory and scientifically false.


If you want to bring science into this, then scientifically speaking, most of the bible is false and logically self contradictory...essentially a supernatural spin on natural events + tons of exageration.
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Posted 9/4/08

angelseraphim wrote:

So where do you stand on this. Creationism?


I’m deistic as far as that goes. Would you like me to explain why?
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Posted 9/4/08 , edited 9/4/08

SeraphAlford wrote:
You do know the founding fathers of America and the founding fathers of science aren’t the same people, right? In addition, I’m religious; therefore, not secular. However, I support separation of church and state. For me, as well as many of the founding fathers, philosophers like Christ, Buddha, and Kierkegaard religion is a personal experience.

Supporting separation of church and state does not make you secular, does not mean you’re not religious, and does not make you an atheist in any way, shape, or form.


Ummm, then you have the wrong definition of secularism. Secularism is the separation of church and state. Atheism is just Atheism...it has nothing to do with secularism.
Turkey is a country that is 99% Muslim, and they are a secular state because they are not a religious theocracy.


SeraphAlford wrote:

Most of the founding fathers were Deists. I find Deism flawed in its own logic.


Well, Judeo-Christianity-Islam is flawed in evidence, self contradictory, and flawed in logic.

We can't have it all, but we might as well pick something that makes at least some sense.

Deism isn't perfect, but at least it doesn't contradict any form of science, doesn't have dogma, and allows belief in God to coexist with belief in science being the supreme tool of knowledge.




SeraphAlford wrote:
But, once again, we weren’t talking about the founding fathers of America. We were talking about the founding fathers of science. Einstein, Galileo, Newton, Dirac, Bohr, and so very many others. Were all of the fathers of science religious? No, most certainly not. Just most of them.


"There is one thing that science cannot accept, and that is a person God who meddles in the affairs of his creation." -Albert Einstein
cough...Deism...cough

And when you bring up Galieo, Newton, etc you do realize that nearly everybody back then was religious.
Hell, Richard Dawkins would've been an evangelical too if he lived in the 14th cenutry.
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Posted 9/4/08

SeraphAlford wrote:


angelseraphim wrote:

So where do you stand on this. Creationism?


I’m deistic as far as that goes. Would you like me to explain why?


Of coarse I would. You have a wide array knowledge and your topics are always interesting.
Posted 9/4/08
miracles do happen
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Posted 9/4/08
Hmmmm.....something sounds a little off about that. >_>
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Posted 9/4/08

angelseraphim wrote:


SeraphAlford wrote:


angelseraphim wrote:

So where do you stand on this. Creationism?


I’m deistic as far as that goes. Would you like me to explain why?


Of coarse I would. You have a wide array knowledge and your topics are always interesting.


Hey, that other user is getting upset that somebody disagrees with him. I'll answer your question through a private message, okay?
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