Friday Question of the Day – Do You Believe in God?

Photo by PoPville flickr user thisisbossi

File this one under – I’m just curious. I’d say among my friends it’s nearly evenly split 50/50. So I’m curious about PoPville. Do you believe in God? Do you go to Church/Temple other house of prayer? If so where do you go?

Update: Maybe impossible because of the subject matter, I was honestly just curious, but anyway let me be very clear – if you feel one way or the other please don’t be rude to those who feel differently. You can make your point with being rude or insulting. Or better yet, just skip this post if the subject matter is too sensitive. Thanks.

146 Comment

  • You missed an option for those of us that are agnostics. “Haven’t decided yet,” assumes that we’re going to make up our minds someday. That’s not what agnostic means. An agnostic believes that the existence (or non-existence) of a deity is unknown and unknowable. Our minds *are* made up.

    • an agnostic category as correctly described above should absolutely be a category.

    • Gnosticism is a knowledge claim. Agnosticism is a claim of not having knowledge. Considering there is no proof of god or gods it is illogical to be a gnostic theist. The only possible answers should be an agnostic atheist (magical best friend could exist) or gnostic atheist (magical best friend does not exist).

    • If your mind is made up and you believe a deity’s existence is unknown and unknowable, then you don’t believe it exists. No additional category needed.

      • You are quite simply…incorrect. If you don’t believe a deity exists, then you’re an atheist. Being an agnostic is something altogether different, since it has to do with accepting that neither belief system, atheism or theism, has any basis in fact. Wikipedia has a decent explanation, if not a great definition.

        • +1,000,000

        • Whether you can prove the existence of or not does not negate whether one believes in or does not believe in the existence of a deity. As you not, being agnostic is something different altogether and so frankly the question posed here doesn’t apply to you. The question is posed for those who believe or do not believe.

          • ” The question is posed for those who believe or do not believe. ” A shame since it excludes some number of readers who have a valuable opinion and viewpoint. But atheists claiming agnostics as just some kind of sub-branch of their own belief system, and theists dismissing us as if we’re irrelevant, is nothing new.

            The original comment was directed toward the notion that there ought to be an option to cover the rest of us since “haven’t decided yet” clearly doesn’t cover it.

        • It’s you! The hero of Kvatch!

        • I am not incorrect. The question is “Do you believe in God”, i.e. are you a theist? For you, the answer to that is “no”. Believing a deity doesn’t exist (atheism) is not the same as not believing it does. I understand if you would like a more specifically worded question/answer but strictly speaking you are included as it is.

  • Gods claim to have powers that are impossible, therefore they are impossible.

  • 1)God does not exit
    2)God exist but does not manifest in reality and is indistinguishable from a god that does not exit.

  • Great topic! If you said “some kind of god,” you would accommodate people like me, who believe there is an organic connection among all things, a mysterious force that some might call God. But the word “God” just turns me off.

  • no. plain and simple, no. I find myself more and more unable to respect those who do.

    • Good thing for us we aren’t seeking your respect

    • Let me guess… You think the faithful tend to be closed minded and unwilling to consider points of view that differ from their own??

    • agree. for us non-religious people – it’s like religious people believe that the lord of the rings book is true (thats how weird it sounds).

    • +1. Faith is illogical. If you are pro-enlightenment you should not give believers respect. Similarly, you probably do not respect people that believe in aliens. Adhering to the status quo has gone on long enough, and it has allowed the evangicals to flourish.

      • I don’t really get this. I think people are deserving of respect if they do or don’t believe in god. That is just kind of a sh*tty attitude in general and one that unfortunately pervades much of our discourse. If you don’t agree with me, I don’t even have to tolerate you.

        • You really are saying that the majority of the world is not deserving of your respect. That’s very divisive and is polarizing. I have friends and a husband who are not ‘believers’, but they get my respect although I do not agree with them. I expect the same in return.

        • Agreed with TG.
          I find militant atheists who are contemptuous of believers about as obnoxious as I find militant believers who are contemptuous of atheists (or anyone not of their religion/denomination).
          Same goes for proselytizing by both parties.

          • Atheist regimes (Soviet Union, China, Cuba, etc.) have murdered over 100 million people.

          • Oh this is a fun game. Let’s count the number of people murdered by religious regimes or in the name of religion, shall we?

      • I recommend “Skepticism and Animal Faith” by George Santayana, who is a very clear writer. Paraphrasing: (1) How can you be *sure* of anything, even your own senses or existence? (2) Belief in your own senses or existence requires an “animal faith” that they are true. (3) Belief in more abstract things like logic, mathematical truth, or the existence of God requires faith. (4) A pragmatic principle is to keep your faith to what is useful.

        From this perspective “Faith is illogical” is twisted, and “logic is faith” is correct. But if you want your animal faith to extend as far as your senses, your existence, logic, and mathematical truth — but not as far as the existence of God — that is your right and your choice about how to live. For me, I’m going to rewatch The Matrix.

  • The militant anti-god team got up early today!

    This chip on the shoulder god hating is just as distasteful as proselytizing.

    I say this as someone who is extremely skeptical of organized religion.

    • Atheists don’t hate gods, although they may find extremely distasteful the effects of belief in gods.

    • I don’t think it is God that many militant atheists hate. I think it is the way those who believe in God tend to act toward others. Atheists aren’t exactly burning down the houses of worship. They are just asking that they be able to live freely without the restraints imposed on them by a theologically driven society.

  • justinbc

    No, I don’t, but I totally understand those that do or want to. I don’t really care what others believe, as long as they don’t try to push it on me or other people. Keep your faith in your head, home, and in your place of worship, and not government, schools, and so on, and we’re all good.

    • Why do you understand these people? Why should we give them any respect? I find this viewpoint appalling–how can society advance if nobody pushes back against the believers?

      • justinbc

        Because I understand the desire to believe things out of faith, even without scientific evidence. It’s somewhat built into man as a species, ever since we discovered the stars and assumed there must be something more out there. I don’t fault them for wanting to believe there is some bigger purpose to our being, even if I don’t share that belief. A lot of good can come out of believing there is a reward for “being a good person” here on Earth, unfortunately it so often interferes with others because of how people distort the original intentions.

        • +1 I wish I could believe, but I don’t. It’s comforting to know there’s something above us, distinguishing the right and wrong, and evening it all out. Everything is part of a grand plan and when I die I will live in heaven with my loved ones. I don’t accept those beliefs, but I understand why people would.

        • well said

      • jim_ed

        I know, right!? How dare anyone practice tolerance of people’s beliefs when they differ from their own? Even a cursory look at history shows that the most successful and happy societies are where the populaces beliefs are trampled on by others!

        • +1,000,000! Intolerance is more or less the safety valve of human civilization that prevents us from ever advancing to far.

      • If it were not for religion, my uncle would probably killed himself decades ago (he had PTSD from Vietnam, religion helped him cope). If not for religion, George W. Bush and many others would probably still be struggling with their substance abuse problems.

        I can’t speak for Justin, but I understand the need/urge/desire to have an explanation for a lot of the mysteries in life.

        Religion in moderation can be a very useful, productive thing. Just like most things in life.

        And I say that as an athiest.

        • Accountering

          So what your saying is without religion, GWB wouldn’t have been elected, and we could have avoided that whole mess, as well as two choice wars in far flung lands? Sign me up.

      • Seriously? How can society advance? I suppose you think that no believer has ever contributed to anything that has advanced society. I also suppose that you believe yourself to be immensely more capable than any believer could ever be. You sound like an asshat.

        Nobody needs to justify their beliefs or non-beliefs to you nor anyone else. So long as people don’t try to push their beliefs on others, they’re alright in my book.

      • I think everyone deserves some respect. I was raised as a Catholic and my parents are very active in the church. My Dad claims he hasn’t missed Mass since 1967 or something like that. However, my sister and her husband are Presbyterians and my brother identifies with Islam and belongs to a Mosque.

        I haven’t been to Mass in almost twenty years but I still identify with the Catholic church on many levels as it makes me feel closer to my parents (who live abroad) and closer to my cultural roots. When I was growing up I was surrounded by a lot of sectarian undertones – religion dictated which soccer team you followed, which pubs you drank at and, to a certain extent, who your closest friends were.

        I’m glad I am no longer surrounded by that level of societal division and would never judge anyone by their religion (or race, gender, sexual orientation etc.) but I would never deny that this was part of my upbringing and contributed to shaping who I am today.

        When I was in Rome I was surprised at how emotional I felt about visiting the Vatican (and many other important Catholic sites). However, in Israel I was much more moved by the Western Wall and the Dome of the Rock than I was by the Holy Sepulcher or the Church of the Nativity.

        Equally, I found that visiting Morocco helped me better understand Islam and answered many of the questions I had about that faith and the issues I had with my brother’s beliefs.

        Religion is hugely complicated and goes well beyond simply a belief system – it is ingrained in families, cultures, history and lifestyle.

    • That’s pretty much my position.

    • I feel the same way. I don’t believe and I don’t push that on others, and I expect that same respect.

      • justinbc

        I don’t have an account to login and read that article, not that it matters much. The Supreme Court disagrees with my beliefs on several things (like the fact that corporations are people), but that doesn’t change my belief on them. Fortunately humans are capable of thought above what we’re told by bodies of government.

        • Oh, I agree with you, I was pretty disheartened to hear of the Supreme Court decision. There’s nothing weirder and more uncomfortable for me than prayers in a 500 people auditorium in a federal government building, in an event I was instructed to attend, celebrating diversity. Happens all the time in my agency, and I’m finally used to it.

    • I agree with this. People often talk about how their faith is tested, but I can assure you, when you’re an atheist, you faith that nothing exists is often tested just as much. I lost my father recently and without a doubt, I can say it was incredibly difficult to accept that he was gone and I believe I will never see or speak to him again. But I see my mother and siblings cling to their faith in this experience and it helps them get through the day. I get it. It isn’t for me, but it isn’t easy either.

      That said, when I’m on a very bumpy plane ride, I find myself praying to no one in particular that the plane doesn’t crash. It’s hard to break the programming I guess.

      • On the other hand, I find my lack of belief helps me appreciate the life I’m living now more. I don’t think so much about what comes next and let it direct my behavior here.

  • Also missed an option for those who are not atheist or agnostic, but do not believe in the judeo-christian “God”.

  • Agreed

  • I’m not sure. Here’s an interesting story though… my 10 year old had a unit of study on religion a few months ago. They were taken to a church, mosque, sikh temple, hindu temple, synagogue, and buddhist temple. She and several of her friends decided they’re atheist. They didn’t think anybody’s story made sense.

  • Man is the universe being conscious of itself.

  • I’m not a religious person, but to paraphrase Louie C.K., it doesn’t make sense to say you absolutely believe something doesn’t exist. Do you believe aliens might exist? There is always the possibility, and it’s not like god’s (or gods) existence has been disproved.

    • True but many of the claims in religious texts have been disproved.

      If religious texts were in court testifying all their claims would be subject to scrutiny because of their history of spreading lies.

    • mathematically aliens do exist. theres way to many stars and planets out there for it now too

      • But you haven’t seen them. No one has seem them. What if aliens aren’t carbon-based at all? What if carbon doesn’t exists on other planets, and so they’re something else?

        To say flatly that something doesn’t exist is short sighted.

  • I also find this an interesting question. I do believe in God and go to church whenever possible, although not every Sunday. Although I do think that a majority of people who read this blog will call themselves non-religious or agnostic, I think DC as a whole is probably has one of the highest churchgoing populations of any location in the country, percentage-wise at least.

    As for missing the agnostic category, just my opinion, but I would place it under the doesn’t believe in God category. There is a difference between believing in a deity of some kind and believing in God. When God is capitalized, I take it to mean a Christian/Jewish/Muslim God, whereas lower case god signifies a deity that is non-specific.

  • I don’t really believe in god but I pray with my kids. Not sure what to make of that. I had a bad health scare and I think I am superstitious/covering my bases, which is silly because god would know that, right?

  • Oh how I miss Hitchens:
    “Religion is a totalitarian belief. It is the wish to be a slave. It is the desire that there be an unalterable, unchallengeable, tyrannical authority who can convict you of thought crime while you are asleep, who can subject you to total surveillance around the clock every waking and sleeping minute of your life, before you’re born and, even worse and where the real fun begins, after you’re dead. A celestial North Korea. Who wants this to be true? Who but a slave desires such a ghastly fate? I’ve been to North Korea. It has a dead man as its president, Kim Jong-Il is only head of the party and head of the army. He’s not head of the state. That office belongs to his deceased father, Kim Il-Sung. It’s a necrocracy, a thanatocracy. It’s one short of a trinity I might add. The son is the reincarnation of the father. It is the most revolting and utter and absolute and heartless tyranny the human species has ever evolved. But at least you can fucking die and leave North Korea!”

  • Although I am an atheist, I prefer the term apatheist: I find the whole discussion pointless.

  • I don’t believe in God and I believe in God. I am an evertythingist and a nothingist.

  • dcgator

    Gosh, this topic is so trollable and so ripe for the comments above. It’s definitely an interesting poll, though.

  • I grew up Jewish and went to Hebrew school and had a bar mitzvah. I drifted from my religion, but identify as a Jew culturally. I’m pretty much agnostic now. I can’t prove that god doesn’t exist and you can’t prove to me that god does exist. I used to be almost a militant atheist. I despised anyone who was religious. That changed when I became friends with some fundamentalist Christians and discovered they were very easy going, nice and tolerant people.

  • jim_ed

    I do believe in God, but my personal views of God run closer to Deism than mainstream Christianity. I had a falling out with organized religion in my teens, and had been pretty set in my Atheism. But I found I missed having any spirituality in my life. It took me a few years to find a church I felt comfortable attending, because I had no interest in a church pushing dogma or beating me over the head with the same tenets repeatedly. We finally found one here in DC, and we love it. I find that church service fills an intellectual void that leads to quiet self reflection, philosophical wonderment, and a renewed big picture view of whats important in life that I often miss in the myopia of day-to-day issues. I don’t begrudge anyone for having different views, whether antitheist or fundamentalist, just don’t be a dick about it either way.

  • I am a nihilist. We believe in nothing, Lebowski. Nothing.

  • I am agnostic but like church (Unitarian). When I logged in to post my comment my iPhone autocorrected my email address to “Sinner yet” LOL

  • pablo .raw

    Little known fact about me: I used to be a fundamentalist christian. Reason won.

  • The results of this poll are not surprising, given the education level of PoP’s readership. The more educated and privileged a group is, the less likely they are to believe in god.

    • When I worked in the chemical industry, I knew PHD chemists who were devout Christians.

    • Accountering

      Privileged eh? I agree with the educated, but not sure about the privileged bit.

      • To be educated, well paid, and have a damn internet connection to post on a silly blog for the first 3 hours of your work day is privileged!

        • Accountering

          Hmm, fair enough 🙂

          With that said, I only got into the office an hour ago, but will very likely not accomplish anything of note for the next 2 hours, so your point is well taken.

  • I think it’s really sad what organized religion has done to Christianity – I mention it specifically because I am a Christian. For me it’s not big religion, it’s a personal relationship with God. I don’t adhere to any religious rules about what I can and can’t do, who I can and can’t love, what I can and can’t say, etc. For me, my relationship with God is a place from where I draw strength, peace, courage, love, determination, and my eternal optimism. There is a verse that gives me the most hope in life: Jeremiah 29:11 ‘For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future’. I have hope and a future and a God who loves me. That is so comforting and motivating. If this is not for you, that’s fine – you do you and I’ll do me. We live in a country where we are free to believe as we choose, and that is a great thing.

    • I agree with you. I was brought up in the Episcopal church – my grandfather was a priest, I had uncles that were/are priests, aunts that married priests – but I don’t believe in “God” and I think that organized religion had a lot to do with that. Growing up, my father and brothers served as acolytes, but my church at the time did not allow female acolytes or priests. I didn’t understand why I was seen as unworthy to serve for my God, and decided that I couldn’t believe in a God or system who saw me as “less than” men. Times have changed in the church, but those experiences from my childhood shaped my disbelief. And FWIW, my father still won’t receive communion from a female priest, but we’ll save the “father issues” for another thread…

  • Spirituality exists because people tried to understand things in their environment that they didn’t have the ability to understand (why does the sun rise, where do we come from) and organized religion has always been about control, Christianity and Judaism being the worst offenders.

    As humans evolve, we thankfully require the crutch of religion less and less. Look at the results of this poll. Most folks who read this blog are young, and educated and half don’t believe or practice any religion, a reality that spans the western societies of the world. In another century or so, the US will have all but relegated religion to its rightful place on the book shelf in the “fantasy” section.

    • I think that’s extremely sad.

    • I don’t agree. As long as senseless evil exists in the world, there will always be religion. We need something to tell us everything will be okay. Otherwise, the darkness is just too overwhelming.

      • I think many of us have the capability to take comfort in the beauty of the physical world (art, nature, human kindness, etc.) while others needs to turn to spirtuality. My girlfriend suffers from depression, so she has trouble deriving joy from eathly things, and her belief in God is therefore very important.

        • Agree about appreciating the beauty. But where religion finds its niche is in confronting the horror. Terrible things happen everyday. It’s hard on he human psyche to think that such horrors occur for no reason at all; that it isn’t somehow part of some larger benevolent plan. The universe can become such a cold and lonely place, that it can literally drive you to your knees. No one is immune from it. And I say this as a non-believer.

  • People whatever they like so long as it doesn’t affect other people’s lives. As soon as your beliefs start impacting me (e.g. states where you can’t buy liquor on Sundays “because of Jesus”), then we have a problem.

    I think it is pretty arrogant to claim to *know* that God doesn’t exist. As a scientist, I think there is A LOT that we don’t know. There is zero evidence to this point in history that points to the existence of God. But that does not preclude his/her/its existence.

    • Is it also arrogant to “know” that unicorns do not exist? Lots of things have great stories surrounding them but non evidence to back them up. These are things that people commonly do not believe in. Gods and spirits are in this category.

      As a scientist, is it arrogant to “know” that there is no link between vaccines and autism? There are plenty of people who will tell you that it is the height of arrogance, but like belief in gods, the it is unsubstantiated, and therefore it is reasonable to disbelieve.

      • last line should be: “the link is unsubstantiated”

        Also, untransubstantiated, for that matter.

      • It is easy to study the link between autism and vaccines and conclude that there is none. These are two known things between which we can evaluate both correlations and causations related to biological processes. However, even then you are concluding with some level of statistical confidence (e.g. 95% confidence interval) that there is not link.

        Please explain to me how you would conduct a statistically valid study to conclude that something (which we don’t even really know what it would look like, sound like, act like, be composed of) doesn’t exist.

        To riff on you unicorn example slightly, how about Sasquatch? Could Sasquatch exist/have existed? It is possible. Do we have any concrete evidence to suggest that it did? No.

        • I don’t have to conduct a scientific study of whether a god exists, just like I don’t have to test whether unicorns exist, or flying spaghetti monster exists. As I’m sure you know, attempting to prove negatives is not how science or logic work, anyway. But to go from “it is not 100% impossible that the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob exists” to believing that it does just because a book says so is an extraordinary leap. Why not believe in Papa Legba, or Zeus, or Vishnu, or Huitzilopochtli? There is just as much evidence for any of these, which is to say, none–just as with the link between vaccines and autism. In these cases, complete lack of evidence for each of a plethora of competing claims is sufficient for reasonable belief that none of them is valid. That’s how we decide, with reasonable degree of certainty, that things don’t exist. To believe regardless of the lack of evidence is the unreasonable position.

          • What you seem to be describing is faith that god does not exist.

            If you saw data that suggested otherwise, would you hold to this faith, or would you re-evalute your conclusions based on new data? If your answer to that question is the former then you are just as bad as the close minded religous types who think the early is 6000 years old. If your answer if the latter, then you are mis-representing your beliefs.

            I am 99.99% sure there is no god. But I am willing to analyze new data as it becomes available.

          • No, this is not “faith that god does not exist.” This is a reasonable belief based on the absence of evidence–what we call knowledge. We know things contingent upon evidence, and our knowledge changes based on that evidence. Of course, if Odin were to descend from the heavens with his eight-legged horses. I would believe that evidence, but that in no way means that I am misrepresenting my beliefs. I know–AS FAR AS IT IS POSSIBLE TO KNOW, AND BASED ON THE AVAILABLE EVIDENCE–that there is no such thing as gods. Also, unicorns, fairies, the force, flying spaghetti monster. I also have good reason to suspect that evidence for these things will not suddenly appear, just as I have good reason to suspect that the sun will rise tomorrow.

            There is a world of difference–literally!–between saying that I am reasonably sure there are no gods, because the claims to their existence are without evidence, and saying that the world is 6000 years old, contrary to all the evidence we have, and to suggest that the two are equivalent is disingenuous at best.

          • Well said, my Anonymous Pastafarian friend. Doc, did you mean to say you’re a scientist or Scientologist?

  • Told my folks when I was 15 after 3yrs of Catholic school and going to church every weekend, I didn’t believe in God and didn’t want to go to church anymore. They were totally cool with it. Went to church for the first time in years a week ago for a niece’s first communion and remembered just how bizarre the whole thing was.

  • I’m an agnostic, dyslexic insomniac. I stay awake all night wondering if there really is a dog.

  • Accountering

    Went to church quite a bit growing up, but have certainly formed my own thoughts.

    I do believe in some form of higher power, and certainly believe in Karma. I try and do well, and believe in what goes around comes around for sure. With that said, the word god makes me a bit uncomfortable, so I suppose I am still in the trying to figure it out bit.

  • I do not believe in God, but envy people who do have faith. I would love to be able to believe in a heaven and that I would see my lost loved ones there, but I just cannot rationally find a way to believe

  • I’m an atheist agnostic, and attend Unitarian services regularly. I don’t believe in God, don’t think it is possible to be certain, and I think it’s important to be nice to other people anyway.

    “We create gods and struggle with them, and they bless us.”
    — Herman Hesse, Demian

  • I am a Catholic and go to Mass at St. Matthew’s downtown.

  • Not that I condone fascism, or any -ism for that matter. -Ism’s in my opinion are not good. A person should not believe in an -ism, he should believe in himself. I quote John Lennon, “I don’t believe in Beatles, I just believe in me.” Good point there. After all, he was the walrus. I could be the walrus. I’d still have to bum rides off people.

  • Wait, so this is really about parking on Sundays, right?

  • Do you believe in love, hope, justice, mercy, forgiveness, charity, peace? Are you faithful to that belief? Do you maybe act as if those things exist, or could exist among people, one day?

    Oops. You believe in god.

    Of course, this has nothing to do with many religious organizations that cash in on other ideas, like greed and ignorance. Some institutions, however, do worship those good things.

    • This isn’t really true unless one already presumes an individual’s belief in god/gods, and that it is somehow only through their presence and wisdom that we can achieve or understand the value of these concepts. There is nothing intrinsic in these qualities that derives only from a god, much less a traditional judeo-Christian god.

      • Exactly. I think it’s sad that one has such little faith in mankind that they feel that love, hope, justice, mercy, forgiveness, charity, and peace cannot exist within the human experience.

    • Do you believe in gold, rainbows, and marshmallows? Than you believe in leprechauns.

  • I don’t believe in any god, nor do I attend church. No problem with anyone who does unless it leads them to do creepy, society-damaging stuff like not vaccinating their kids, treating gay people like garbage, etc. But of course, I am just an anonymous dog.

  • Good thing you opened this can of worms on a rainy day 🙂

  • People think they are so progressive in their beliefs but 90% are a product of where you were born (some may say sheep). If you were born in India you would probably be Hindu, in Saudi Arabia- Muslim, Thailand – Buddhist, etc… Many of you “believers” are Christian because you were born and raised it.

    If one religion is the right one does that make the others incorrect?

    • jim_ed

      Shoutout for calling people sheep(passive aggressively no less!) for religious beliefs followed by regurgitating the most basic and cliche atheism talking points that have been repeated ad nauseum on the internet since usenet groups without the slightest awareness to the irony of it.

      • Honestly, this line of thinking was the seed that led to my questioning of my Christian upbringing, and my eight-year-old self was not connected to the internet or any athiests/agnostics. It might be cliched but it’s a very common-sense way of thinking about it, and it’s something that anyone who has a shred of compassion for other people must have contemplated at some point.

  • alphatango

    Without expressing my believe one way or another, a fascinating read on the subject matter is Amir Aczel’s “Why Science Does Not Disprove God”.

  • alphatango

    Also I believe the “It’s complicated” option is missing as well.

  • An interesting blog.

    “Killing the Buddha” is an online magazine of religion, culture, and politics. It began on November 13, 2000, when Peter Manseau and Jeff Sharlet invited readers who are both hostile and drawn to talk of God to join them in building an electronic Tower of Babel, a Talmudic cathedral of stories about faith lost and found.

  • Human belief in “god” or “connectedness” or “spirituality” as a result of his own self-awareness is how it started. Humans are social creatures and formed groups to share these ideas. Humans are also competitive beings and ultimately formed businesses or “religions” to better organize their beliefs in the pursuit of power and influence. The premise of the business is great in that it ultimately stems from man’s unexplainable self-awareness. The businesses/religions that will continue to thrive will be those that can best adapt to changing norms and markets.

  • I only believe in Facebook God.

  • I was raised as a Catholic and still do believe in God, but no longer go to church. I’ve never felt comfortable at any of the Catholic churches here in DC, St. Matthew’s in particular.

  • The question was “Do you believe in God?” there are an infinite number of answers to that question, but they mostly boil down to “yes” or “no”, but it seems that quite a few people decided to answer the question “is there a God?” and a subset of those folks decided to be quite belittling to those who had faith that there is.

    Thats the exact same way of believing and stridency in your righteousness thats led to all the hate and violence throughout history that you seem to blame on religion.

    The only truly objective answer to the question “is there a God?” is “I don’t know”. The athiests cant prove a negative and to date the faithful cant provide tangible proof of God’s existence, so the only thing tangible we have is that the universe and all its objects and inhabitants are here and that something, that could be explained by science if we knew enough, created it.

    We know so little about the universe, space, and time that anyone who thinks that they have all the answers is hopelessly ignorant.

    Its so sad to hear people claim the mantle of rational and enlightened and be so closed-minded, illogical, and flat out ignorant.

    • Your logic makes the idea of “knowing” meaningless. Yes, very technically speaking, a truly objective answer to “Is there a god” would be “I don’t know,” but the same could be said of any unprovable conjecture, and where does that get us? Only to a place where any claim, no matter how outlandish, can only be met with, “Well, it’s not entirely impossible, so I guess it might exist.” Saying “as far as I can tell, there are no gods,” is not the same as claiming to have all the answers to life, the universe, and everything. Quite the contrary: it often comes with an acknowledgement that there is an infinite amount of unknown knowledge out there.

      • I find the statement “there is no god” about as meaningful as “there is a god”.

        Something created us and the universe and something came before what created us. Ultimately, there is some power that can create, is that a god or a coincidence we don’t know… But, something came first, and something came before that.

        Not everything can be explained by science, and I don’t begrudge those who look to faith, mythology, and allegories for explanations. Many in this thread seem to find some sense of superiority because they aren’t religious. Big whoopty do to those people.

  • I wish I could believe, but I know, honestly, deep down inside, that I truly can’t believe.

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