And some people say there's no God..........

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Last night just before bed, I looked out over my deck, and there over the middle of it, was the most magnificent spider web ever devised, shining in the spotlight. This wonder appeared perfectly circular and was about the size--and very much resembled-- a 33 rpm phono record, with very precisely placed circular strands close together with perfect symmetry. I still am not sure how this little master builder anchored this creation; must've been the hedge on one side and the chimney on the other, and maybe the deck; but all this stuff was a good ways off, and the masterpiece was hanging a good 8 feet over the deck. Another amazing thing is that we had a heavy rainstorm not 3 hours earlier, so this beauty was designed and built in less than 3 hours.
So here we have a creature, with a brain maybe the size of a grain of sand, and likely less than a year old, building something any civil engineer would show with great pride. I got up to pee around 3 a.m., looked out, and it was already gone.
-- Vic
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It is not the equivalent of a civil engineering project though, being much much simpler. All the spider needs to do is jump back and forth between anchor spots a few times and then walk around the perimeter with the prior strands to the same side of it's body.
Very simple rules can create the appearance of complexity, much the way language and the international monetary system exhibit complexity even though they have no master designer.
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Do you still look for clouds that remind you of various things like birds, your favorite deity, etc?
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Wonderful, but what does a nice spider web have to do with some people saying "there's no God"? Do you think spiders somehow resemble little gods?
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On Thu, 17 Aug 2006, Tough Tonto wrote:

He is making the point that spiders are superbly intelligent designers, despite their very tiny brains.
Sam Heywood -- Message handled by Pine, Version 4.62
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Samuel W. Heywood wrote:

... so the gods have tiny brains?
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On Thu, 17 Aug 2006, Chris H. Fleming wrote:

I just knew that some very smart people would draw that conclusion.
Sam Heywood -- Message handled by Pine, Version 4.62
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On Thu, 17 Aug 2006 11:33:50 -0400, "Samuel W. Heywood"

I just knew that one very stupid person would not answer the question.
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Hmmmm. It *is* amazing to see nature at work. In the case of a spider and it's web: seems pretty 'natural' to me. But then, some people would see the 'miracle' of the construction of a spider-web as proof that Jesus walked on water, raised people from the dead, and in another 'guise', created the universe. Now that's what I call a *leap* of faith.
Greywolf
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wrote:

Rather than a "leap of faith", I prefer to think of it as "jumping into the gaping bottomless chasm of superstion".
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On Sun, 20 Aug 2006 11:55:53 +0930, Michael Gray

I am not sure why non believers think people who are believers are superstitious.
Spirituality is a very subjective thing and means different things to different people. When I'm engaged in conversation and the subject of god comes up, I ask people what they mean by "god." I am always surprised to find out many people use the term as a metaphor and it actually means nothing.
My mother is always saying god watches out for her. If she wants to believe that, and it gives her some solace, I shut my mouth. I don't engage her in that discussion because I do not believe in god, or that someone is watching me who created me. It's still nice to allow for others to have their thoughts and sometimes it's really good to just shut my mouth.
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Jangchub wrote:

Because it's a tautology when you condsider that belief in (*) Miraculous and extraordinary events (*) Supernatural intervention (*) Angelic apparations (*) The efficacy of Charms: crucifix, pictures, saint candles (*) The efficacy of Prayers, Chants, and Ceremony (*) Biblical Prophecy (*) ... are all forms of superstition.
Of course Deists are completely immune to such criticism. Not all believers are superstitious by definition, just most of them.
It's like saying the story of Jesus the Christ shouldn't be considered Myth because a lot of people believe it. Strength and number of conviction is irrelevant.

Yes, some believers are very rational and lack an anthropomorphic deity.

That sounds like a grade A superstition to me. And I would probably bite my tongue to. But in a public forum where believers are preaching to nonbelievers, I think the rules are a bit different. You don't go out of your way to harrass your mother, and your mother isn't going out of her way to harrass nonbelievers.
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On 20 Aug 2006 09:50:57 -0700, "Chris H. Fleming"

FOLKS COULD YOU PLEASE TAKE THIS TO EMAIL! YOU'RE CLUTTERING UP A GARDEN GROUP WITH YOUR "SPIRITED" (pun intended) DEBATE!
Persephone
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On 20 Aug 2006 09:50:57 -0700, "Chris H. Fleming"

I have many images and statues and articles which are considered holy objects. They are motivating to me, and the sole reason why they are here. Then again, I'm a Buddhist who is aethiest. There is no creator god, but there are people who have purified their minds to the point they no longer need a body. This could be called superstitious. The whole of it suits me. I can live a spiritual life and not believe in god.

Well, that's kind! My mother is beyond superstition and deep into mental illness. I don't say this as a mean statement, but at my age I can no longer ignore it and she has no intention of doing anything about it at 72.
I do get annoyed within my thoughts when people either blame or give thanks to an invisible man in the sky. I shrivel up when I'm anywhere and people are discussing that.
As for believers who harrass non believers, I would ignore them. It's a problem IMO when someone has to or tends to defend a position as fact. When asked about reincarnation and if science disproved it, The Dalai Lama simply said, "Then we will get rid of it immediately!"
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Many little kiddies have an Invisible Friend that they either grow out of as childish & silly, or else their invisible friend turns into God for them. The tragedy is how so many people love their invisible friend more than they care about their children, friends, or humanity. And the invisible friend can be used to justify any harmful thing they want to do.
-paghat the ratgirl
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On Sun, 20 Aug 2006 20:16:57 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@netscape.net (paghat) wrote:

Good point. I don't deny there is a god, I simply don't care and personally don't believe in a god.
Another interesting thing I've noticed is how people go from one thing to the other and god becomes the drug of choice.
Your last sentence is why my husband and I don't have a flock of friends. There's no bullshit "fellowshipping" going on around here.
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Jangchub wrote:

snip
snip
The more relevant question would be why teach something for which there is no objective reason to believe is true?
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wrote:

If you are talking about reincarnation, there are extensive tests performed when a young Tulku or Rinpoche manifests in another body after they die. I'm not saying you should belive, I am saying I believe this to be true and it would take me far too much time to explain karma and rebirth in a forum like this. I don't find I have any authority to discuss, or defend the position.
However, there are many books written with Gelugpa traditions. His Holiness has a newish book, "The Universe In A Single Atom." I could be off on the title.
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Jangchub skrev:

There are no, objective, repeatable, peer-reviewed studies that provide any evidence at all for reincarnation. There really is nothing there but a belief based on nothing of substance.

See above.
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wrote:

There are no objective Or subjective, repeatable, peer-reviewed studies that provide any evidence that reincarnation does NOT exist. That's why with most religions confidence is underlying.
Not too different is suspension of disbelief when you see a movie which makes no sense.
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