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Even If I believed - Ed's journal
Even If I believed
Whilst trolling through memories, I found this article.

The link is out of date, but where the essay to which it refers may be found here. It was written about 20 years ago, and the approximate subject is 'Even if I did believe in God, I still wouldn't worship Him'.

And it's interesting reading. Regardless of your personal point of view, I think it's quite thought provoking.
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jorune From: jorune Date: March 26th, 2004 09:01 am (UTC) (Link)

My, what a lovely troll

Some thoughts are not new but do raise interesting questions. From his perspective Christians assume that there is an Omnipotent, Omniscient entity (heretoafter referred as God) that allows pain and suffering in the world and that unless you worship God you will suffer God's wrath. ' For his own glory he condemns ' is the quote that starts off this venal rant.

Well let me state that I have read not the works of Augustine fully so my knowledge is slight and open to huge holes. This essay appears to me like a 'Manichaen' critique of Christianity. The Manichees were a Christian subcult in Roman times, a dualistic religion that resolved the problem of evil by blaming it on the powers of an evil god, and explained the history of the universe as an eternal struggle between two equal forces. To a manichee the mortal world was evil and therefore must be the home of an evil god. (paragraphs below are copied from another website)

Augustine created the concept of original sin to understand the philosophical dimension of evil in a Christian world. Christians have different views on the way to receive salvation from original sin. On one end of the spectrum are those such as Calvinists who believe that each particular person who puts faith in Christ is predestined from the foundation of the world to live in the light of God's love, but those who do not trust in Christ will remain in darkness and the guilt of sin. On the other end are those such as universalists that believe that every person ever born will ultimately be justified, restored and saved. Between those two poles are those that emphasize man's ability to choose life with God or separation from God; people remain dependent on God's grace and mercy, but also have a part to play in achieving their own salvation.

Augustine wrote in Latin in the fourth century, but his writings were not translated into Greek until the fourteenth century. Consequently, Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Christianity never held that guilt is inherited, and began repudiating this idea once they learned of it. They teach that we inherit a corrupted or damaged human nature in which the tendency to do bad is greater, but that each person is only guilty of their own sins. By participating in the life of the church, each person's human nature is healed and it becomes easier to do good; at the same time, the Christian becomes more acutely aware of his or her shortcomings. Eastern Orthodox theologians believe that Adam and Eve began to choose separation from God when they chose independence and took fruit for themselves, rather than allow God to continue to feed them and remain dependent on Him. The expulsion from the Garden was not a legal consequence, but to prevent them from eating of the Tree of Life and immortalizing their sin. As Christians partake of the Eucharist and eat and drink the Body and Blood of Christ, they return to dependence on God and experience a gradual healing of the relationship between God and humanity. The ultimate goal is theosis or divinisation, an even closer union with God and closer likeness to God than existed in the Garden of Eden.

If God intervenes on a daily basis for each and every person then our writers goose is cooked, Goodbye Paganism! If so we could have a worldwide religious fundamentalism where free will and free action are restricted for daily, maybe even hourly prayers.

Other Gods:
Ok, you got me. There is no other God but God. Muhammad (peace be upon him) is his last messenger and seal of prophets.

Other charges:
Another manichean observation. Life is lead in a world where suffering and death exists, fortunately we have the work of the prophets and wise men to guide us.

Human judgement:
Humans are weak and do bad things. The Christian Church has been one of the most powerful forces for good across the world through all time. How many atheist charities are you aware of? The message is ambigious, it is open to misinterpretation. Written down by man and preached by man it is open to flaws and imperfections. It is through faith and prayer that wisdom is achieved. Wisdom leads to answers that resolve problems and provides for the future.

Do you enjoy your troll?
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