Christmas is a mystery. One great big "How can it be?" I don't understand it all, but I believe in it. I believe because I need to believe. If the mystery of Christmas is not true, then we are alone in this world. If hope was not born at Christmas, if love did not come as a baby, if God was not made flesh, then we are alone and helpless. So I believe in Christmas with all my might, because without it I am without hope.
How can this be? It can be because God Almighty says it can be. Christmas is impossible by human designs and devises and conceptions. But with God nothing is impossible.---Sermons for the 4th Sunday in Advent
First of all, he's not saying December 25th, so I'm going to ignore the whole issue. I'd get carried away.
If Jesus was not born, then "we are alone in this world." Helpless. That's the essence of atheism, isn't it? There are 6 billion people on earth, and he says we would be alone without one mythological figure. There are maybe 10 sextillion stars in the galaxy. Maybe 10 million billion planets. It's possible that none of them but one have some kind of life. But I don't think so. And without a mythological figure, one that has many copies in the myths of the world, we are alone? So I have to wonder if this "need to believe" exists. Maybe it's the Christians who are the hopeless ones! This business of "if God were not made flesh then everything would be terrible!" is even more unbelievably sad. How sad are christians? But luckily with God, everything is possible!
So, if everything were possible, then this God could have made it so people have hope without God making himself into a man. He could have made it so humans never sineed, yet have free will. He could have made it so people lived forever on a clean and lovely earth. But he didn't. He made suffering, then went down to earth in a great show of "suffering" where he "suffered" for two days, tops, to "save" us from himself. Inspiring.
I believe in Christ because to do otherwise would require that I ignore the overwhelming evidence around me. I believe because I must--to do otherwise would be irrational. God has offered a lifeline, and I have chosen to reach out and take hold of it. God has offered a gift, and I have chosen to receive it.--Tim Krell
So much for faith. But a person who believes on evidence must ignore the overwhelming evidence around him of either terrible cruelty on God's part or natural processes. That's a lot of ignored evidence. Every time one claims supernaturalism, every time one says "God did it" has chosen to stop looking for evidence and rest on his desires. What did he say about being "irrational?"
He said, "I don’t believe because you believe, I don’t believe because my parents believe. I believe because when I ride my bike in the park in our neighborhood, I feel God’s presence and I know God is real.--Turning Doubt into Faith
This is the "I feel good, therefore God exists" argument. There are many ways to achieve this feeling. actually, I make a mistake in saying "this feeling." The feeling of "God's Presence" is subjective. There is a physical anomally that caises that specific feeling, (temporal lobe seizures can give you the massive feeling of significance, and such huge rightness that people should follow you) and is really the only objective "I feel god's presence" feeling. But many people interpret many different feelings to be God's Presence, because they want to think that God acknowledges them personally. They want to feel special.
I know that many Christians would never believe me, but I am certain that I have felt the same rush while alone in nature that this young person has. It could be called "the warm fuzzies," but it feels so much more important than that. There is a deep, spiritual lift, a feeling that all is well with the world, one knows one's place in it, and one may feel one's connection to it. Some things in the world are inspiring. Mount Rainier, for one. The Tumwater Canyon near Leavenworth, Washington. The Columbia River Gorge. Mozart's Jupiter Symphony. Shostokovich's 5th. Beethoven's 6th and 9th. I even felt that in New York City the first time. Once, I felt it when I was around 8 and my mother tucked me into bed. This is life. This is not death. This is material. This is not supernatural. The fact that your brain sent signals to release hormones does not diminish the experience in any way. It's just one of the greatest physical benefits I can think of. What that girl felt was real. Not God.
*Always be open to possibilities* I have become very much in touch with my spiritual side and soul, therefore allowing me to grant myself much enlightenment on a vast variety of subjects. I stand greatly by what I believe, because, truthfully, it is all I can be sure I really know. As long as I believe what I truly believe, then that is all the truth I'll ever know, yet all the truth I shall ever need. I've finally become more in touch with my totems (Cat, Wolf, Crow, and Horse) and I know that my soul is that of a cat. Therefore, I am a cat's soul inside a human "anchor". As for my religion: I'm a Pagan (though not a Wiccan) with my own, individual beliefs.--Animal Spirit Guides and Totems
I thought I'd throw this in to illustrate how very little people know about the nature of belief and knowledge. And it's not just believers, of Dear Readers. If you are reading this, I would like your assignment for today to be a short essay on the difference between belief and knowledge. Send it to me if you want me to mark it and send it back!