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Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: October 30, 2018 05:43PM

I’ll start by saying Mormonism is not an option. It has too much wrong with it. But looking at the doctrine as the steaming pile that it is, it’s rather paradoxical that it got some things right. Mormonism is a system of belief that works because you believe it. It’s the same way any other religion works. It’s a technology of belief. The only real problem is bad management. Good management wouldn’t have relied on lies to hold it together. Truth claims should have been tossed out as they were disproven, replaced by “continuing revelation”. Didn’t happen. If you’ve come through all of this with your belief in God intact, it might nag you that Mormonism wasn’t completely wrong. Maybe their language is wrong.

Religion can be good. It could be right in a way. I’ll start with an axiom coined by smarter guys than me: Consciousness is a fundamental property of matter. A different kind of physics than what you’re used to, but Physics we can’t pin numbers on. Yet. I think Feynman would call it Physics. It forms both objective and subjective reality, as opposed to the known fundamental forces which only form objective reality. You might say that objective reality started out as subjective reality, what the Bible says in a different language.

It’s not called “the hard problem of consciousness” for nothing. Taking consciousness as a fundamental property of matter allows for a more modern view of God. It’s experienced in our brains because our brains evolved to exploit that Physics. If all things are subjective before they are objective, maybe we are God. All things are collectively the logos made “real”. There’s something about inner harmony that this Physics depends on, and when it works it works. Faith does things.

So the Mormons had it right, in a way. But no, you shouldn’t go back. Should this line of thought be taken seriously? If we want to live in a decent world. The Physics of consciousness, if harnessed, would solve many of life’s problems.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/30/2018 05:52PM by babyloncansuckit.

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Posted by: Kathleen ( )
Date: October 30, 2018 06:05PM

I came through it with my faith intact.

But, it was largely due to listening to people like Charles Stanley and my wonderful Catholic mother—-certainly NOTHING I learned from Mormonism.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/30/2018 06:07PM by kathleen.

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: October 30, 2018 06:07PM

"Evolved" is the key. Gods evolved at the same rate as humans evolved. There is an obvious reason for that.

We started with the God of Thunder who was perfect for his time--sticks, stone, and lightening bolts. Next we had all sorts of Gods from the Greeks to the Egyptians to the Aztecs and on and on. Muscles, special powers, snakes for hair, Jackal heads to think with, and plumed green serpents. Each suited the stage of evolution that each civilization was currently residing in. Hmmmmnnn. Just when we started wearing jackets and ties and silk dresses with our hair up, God became much more sophisticated as well. I'm sure he wears a white tux in many peoples minds.

The good news---We are now at the beginning of new dispensation where God is having yet another face lift. We have evolved to a place in time wherein the majority of the world is happy to pay for an expensive Broadway Ticket to hear the song "Hasa Diga Ebowai."

We're finally getting there.

I like your post babylon, but I must say, if the physics of consciousness is harnessed it would open a Pandora's box like nothing we have ever seen. My God!

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: October 30, 2018 06:15PM

Set God = 0.

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Posted by: Tevai ( )
Date: October 30, 2018 06:41PM

I agree that the reality (whatever "the reality" IS) behind human understanding of deity is often (but not always: I am thinking of ancestor-based tribal religions here) physics (by our understanding), which becomes consciousness as it is comprehended or thought about--but I disagree with the "any other religion" part.

I know of two religions (Hinduism and Judaism; there are probably more, very possibly including Buddhism which is an offshoot of Hinduism) which have been seriously jousting with these kinds of concepts for literally thousands of years, right up through this present day. [I tried again, a couple of days ago, to understand the incredible time span that Hinduism uses routinely and matter-of-factly, because I came across personal papers and notes I had made on my other, previous, far less than successful attempts--and, someday, I MAY actually GET there! ;) ]

On this subject, where "we" are in 2018 is a kind of general agreement, among those who think deeply and seriously about these issues, that the Jewish concept of "Ein Sof" and the Hindu concept of Brahman (WITH the "n" at the end!--"Brahma" is a different "thing"), are effectively either identical or are very similar.

A very important part of this discussion is probably that neither Judaism nor Hinduism are religions of "belief." In both cases, it is possible to list "items of belief" which are identified with the religion, and are certainly believed by literally millions of people, but (in both religions) no one cares what anyone else "believes."

[For anyone who is wondering how a "religion" can possibly NOT be a "religion of belief," there can be religions of various kinds of practices, and religions of cultures, where it is possible that individuals who identify with those religions can "practice" (or not!), with or without "belief" in that religion's characteristic "set of beliefs." (Easy example: a minority of Jews believe that a number of specific events in the Bible actually occurred: slavery in Egypt, 40 years of walking around the desert, Noah's flood (as written; could have been a local flood), etc.--but in almost all Jewish communities, no one expects that these stories "should" be "believed," and today only a small percentage of Jews believe that these events in the Bible actually happened.)]



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 10/30/2018 06:48PM by Tevai.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: October 30, 2018 07:20PM

Tevai, I quibble with several elements of your argument. Thus...



-----------
> I agree that the reality (whatever "the reality"
> IS) behind human understanding of deity is often
> (but not always: I am thinking of ancestor-based
> tribal religions here) physics (by our
> understanding), which becomes consciousness as it
> is comprehended or thought about--but I disagree
> with the "any other religion" part.

I don't think you can assume that the physics/consciousness idea is persuasive. Some people have asserted that, but the argument is not widely accepted--in part because it is not even well articulated physically or theologically.



------------------
> I know of two religions (Hinduism and Judaism;
> there are probably more, very possibly including
> Buddhism which is an offshoot of Hinduism) which
> have been seriously jousting with these kinds of
> concepts for literally thousands of years, right
> up through this present day.

Buddhism isn't an offshoot of Hinduism. Both arose more or less simultaneously from the Vedic tradition, and there is evidence that Buddhism may have been the earlier of the two "sister" faiths. In my view, Buddhism is the preferable religion because it rejects the caste system, which is of course the core (or near the core) of Hinduism.



------------
> On this subject, where "we" are in 2018 is a kind
> of general agreement, among those who think deeply
> and seriously about these issues, that the Jewish
> concept of "Ein Sof" and the Hindu concept of
> Brahman (WITH the "n" at the end!--"Brahma" is a
> different "thing"), are effectively either
> identical or are very similar.

I am always skeptical of identifications of multiple religions that are born in vastly different circumstances. There is definitely a series of commonalities that develop in various forms of mysticism, as if humans are addressing the same questions, which they naturally are. So there are significant similarities between, for example, the Indian faiths, some forms of Gnosticism, the Kaballah, and Sufism.

But when you get into the details, the comparisons become more problematic. Ein Sof existed in infinite indefinition until God chose to manifest. In Hinduism/Buddhism, God still hasn't manifested; God will not and, in fact, cannot do that. Deities, gods, arise from the opposite end of existence: fragments of spirit that, through reincarnation, rise through the ranks of inanimate things, through insects and animals to humans, and then to godhood. But godhood is itself a delusion from which the spiritual entity (the god) must escape if it wants to achieve Nirvana ("extinction") which is merging into a reality without passion and without consciousness.

There is, in short, a vast gulf between a God who chose personalization and manifestation on the one hand and, on the other, "extinction," a state of being that cannot "choose" to do anything. The "will" in the Indian faiths is manifestated by lesser--and delusional--beings, such as gods, Bodhisattvas, and enlightened human teachers. "Will" is not an extension of ultimate reality.



------------
> A very important part of this discussion is
> probably that neither Judaism nor Hinduism are
> religions of "belief." In both cases, it is
> possible to list "items of belief" which are
> identified with the religion, and are certainly
> believed by literally millions of people, but (in
> both religions) no one cares what anyone else
> "believes."

While I generally agree with you and, in fact, like the notion of communities of faith that leave the important matters to the individual, I would also note that Hinduism does have one belief that is firmly entrenched in the societies that it pervades: the caste system. You are right that individuals can worship more or less as they please with no authoritative leadership or doctrine, but class/socioeconomic/ethnic differences are so deeply entrenched in the karmic scheme that it is difficult to envision a Hindu society or polity that actively resists it.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/30/2018 07:22PM by Lot's Wife.

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: October 30, 2018 08:13PM

I don't know how to read a post such a the OP or Tevai with any real meaning. At least the OP admitted God is a problem.

The average person I dare say would see religion the way the main Dictionary listing defines it:

"The belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods."

Also, "A particular system of faith and worship." Worship what? Some God most likely. Or perhaps a hand bag. OR in the case of this post--consciousness which seems like self worship which seems somehow unnecessary as appreciating yourself is enough. Of course we do have mirrors we can bow to, so . . .

And physics? The science of matter and energy. Just because you can consciously conjure a God with your matter doesn't mean it exists. I can also conjure consciously with "my matter" all sorts of things that don't exist. Imagination. So what does the consciousness of matter have to do with some God? And why did Mormons get that right? I'm lost. Really. (As usual)

This seems like we're using any definition at all in order to hang on to our diety at any cost at all. No?

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: October 30, 2018 08:44PM

I understand your feelings, especially with regard to Babylon's OP. I'm not sure what it means to say that Mormonism "works" or that "any other religion. . ." "works."

What exactly does "work" mean? What scientifically valid evidence is there for that "working?"

The rest of it--the belief that consciousness informs matter--seems so arbitrary as to defy thoughtful consideration. What on earth does it mean? Are the (rare) physicists who have used that term using it in the same way that people mean it religiously? Even colloquially?

It strikes me that there are a lot of partially formed, and in some cases contradictory, ideas in that argument. Which makes it difficult to reply.

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Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: October 31, 2018 02:57AM

“What exactly does "work" mean? What scientifically valid evidence is there for that "working?"”

“Work” means discover principles of transcendent reality that you would expect to remain hidden. Mostly the power of prayer and effective use of intuition. If they’re so dumb, how did they know that?

“Scientifically valid” is an oxymoron when phenomena exhibit backward time effects and respond to experimenter intent. Anecdotal observation is usually the best you can do. But why not? You know what you saw. Although what people really do when they see something is pretend it didn’t happen. Just like a TBM finding out something about real church history.

The elephant in the room is G, the gravitational constant. While most of the other physical constants are known to a good number of decimal places, G is known to four or five. Consciousness as a property of matter (it can absorb photons after all) would explain this imprecision in G. My thinking could be way of, but Occam’s razor suggests it’s on the right track. For example, GR has no explanation for levitation caused by consciousness except for “it didn’t happen”. Label the observer and you’re done. I would rather apply this blade to the Gordian Knot of religion.

The point of this thread is to do something about the “that’s not supposed to happen” experience that makes it hard to leave Mormonism or other religions where the tares have overrun the wheat.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: October 31, 2018 03:35AM

> “Work” means discover principles of
> transcendent reality that you would expect to
> remain hidden. Mostly the power of prayer and
> effective use of intuition. If they’re so dumb,
> how did they know that?

Do you have scientifically (meaning statistically) verified proof of such efficacy?



------------------
> “Scientifically valid” is an oxymoron when
> phenomena exhibit backward time effects and
> respond to experimenter intent. Anecdotal
> observation is usually the best you can do. But
> why not? You know what you saw. Although what
> people really do when they see something is
> pretend it didn’t happen. Just like a TBM
> finding out something about real church history.

"Scientifically valid" cannot ever be an oxymoron since the first and second words do not contradict each other. What you mean to say, I believe, is that scientific demonstrability is irrelevant to your argument.

Anecdotal evidence is not persuasive. If it were, then there are as many realities as there are schizophrenics hearing voices on the street; as many visual realities as there are people who indulge in hallucinogenics; and Chinggis Khan was right when he thought God told him to conquer the world. Putting the point differently, what principle do we use to differentiate between your accurate insights and the erroneous experiences of people in asylums?



----------------
> The elephant in the room is G, the gravitational
> constant. While most of the other physical
> constants are known to a good number of decimal
> places, G is known to four or five. Consciousness
> as a property of matter (it can absorb photons
> after all) would explain this imprecision in G. My
> thinking could be way of, but Occam’s razor
> suggests it’s on the right track. For example,
> GR has no explanation for levitation caused by
> consciousness except for “it didn’t happen”.
> Label the observer and you’re done. I would
> rather apply this blade to the Gordian Knot of
> religion.

Consciousness can absorb photons? Do you have any peer-reviewed analysis suggesting the truth of that proposition? Or is the absorption of photons by consciousness something that is only true anecdotally? Going a step further, how could one possibly observe the absorption of any sub-atomic particle by consciousness? And if one cannot literally experience such an event, then anecdotal observation is surely impossible.


---------------
> The point of this thread is to do something about
> the “that’s not supposed to happen”
> experience that makes it hard to leave Mormonism
> or other religions where the tares have overrun
> the wheat.

If we live in a word of probabilities, meaning that if 100 people pray over very sick babies some number of them will survive, then things that "are not supposed to happen" are, in fact, supposed to happen. A one-in-a-million event should occur, on average, once every million times. The person who experiences one of those exceptionally rare events could decide he had seen the hand of God but that conclusion would be wrong: he had actually seen the hand of probability.

Those are the things that keep people in Mormonism. The inevitability of probabilistic outcomes (confirmation bias), the malleability of memory and even perception, the distortional effect of shared emotional experience, the psychology of sunk costs: these are the accretions against which Occam's Razor "works."

The only way to get beyond those irrational mistakes and prove that a perceived answer to prayer, or intuitive insight, is more than illusion is to eschew anecdotalism and employ well-controlled statistical analysis. Otherwise the schizophrenic's worldview is as valid as yours.

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: October 30, 2018 09:05PM

"Faith does things."

So does the Placebo Effect.

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Posted by: ificouldhietokolob ( )
Date: October 31, 2018 09:58AM

Hmm.

There are lots of things that are claimed in mormonism that I can point to and say "They're wrong." Because substantial, verifiable evidence shows them wrong.

Their "god" claims aren't among those things. I can't point to evidence to show the mormon version of Elohim and the "war in heaven" and Jesus/Jehovah and Michael/Adam and all the rest is wrong.

It's the same with the various versions of "god" claimed by catholics and the thousands of protestant sects and islam and most of the rest. I can't provide evidence their claims are wrong (other than some glaring internal inconsistencies and self-contradictions).

But that doesn't matter. Because there's no evidence they're *right,* either. Any of them. Mormons, catholics, muslims, methodists, evangelicals, zoroastrians, deists, you name it -- none of them have a shred of evidence their god-thing ideas are right. So there's no point "believing" them. Their claims are worthless. Nothing to give them credibility. They have no more merit than claims about leprechauns or bigfoot.

I don't see that there's a "god problem" at all. Wanting there to be such a thing, I sort of get. Trying to call human consciousness, or the universe, or physical particles "god" -- that, IMHO, is just silly. The concept has nothing to back it up. It's wishful thinking. There's no need to assign the concept to other things, the best thing to do with the concept is to toss it like the trash it is, and move on.

Now, as I pointed out above, I can't prove by evidence most god claims wrong. So there's the possibility (though extremely remote) that someday, somewhere, there might be some evidence of some kind of "god" thing found. At that point, we can examine the evidence and figure out what kind of "god" thing we're talking about that might be real. Until then, the concept has no merit, and it simply puts irrational superstition in the way of a rational evaluation of the universe and our place in it. Toss it.

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