Why Do You Believe In God? (Assuming you DO!)

Epiphany/personal insight leads me to feel God is real

  • Religious Epiphany/Spoke to or experienced God firsthand
  • Missionary- someone compelling showed me the Way
  • Tradition- I was raised in my religion and see no reason to abandon it
  • Reason- the evidence dictates the Universe is the work of an Intelligent Creator
  • I don’t really know why I believe
  • I have a different reason (please explain)
0 voters

Why do you believe in God? Assuming you do, please explain how you came to your beliefs and why you think as you do.

This is aimed at those who do believe in God, so please- if you’re an atheist, don’t pile on. Or at the least, if you must attack them, at least let them say their peace first! :wink: I’m mainly curious about the views of those who worship a monotheistic creator god, but any religion you sincerely believe in interests me.

Can the question be: Why did you believe in god?

Because, I don’t know if I still believe in the god that my parents taught me to believe in. But I can explain why I did believe in the past. And my answer is: because my parents told me to believe in god. My elementary school told me to believe in god. The priest told me to believe in god.

Frankly, if I were given an option when I was born, I would have questioned the baptism, the communion, the confession (!)------“Bless me father for I have sinned.” For crying out loud! I was six. And they forced me to sit in the confession box and confess (!) my sin? So, I told the priest behind the screen------“I skinned the neighbor’s cat, hehe…”

So, the priest, said “Recite 5 Hail Marys, 3 Our Fathers, and do one round of rosary. You’d better do it because God is listening.”

Suffice it to say, I did what the priest said. :imp:

I completely rejected Christianity in my youth. The hypocrisy of the church (Catholic) was insulting and shocking; I decided that the whole thing was fake.
God, however, is what gives meaning and purpose to the world. Anything else is petty and leads to nihilism. While stricken by rather severe depression, a series of awesome “coincidences” proved to me that there was, in fact, a higher power at work. So after wrestling with it for a bit, I decided to pray. And not just “wishing for stuff” prayer either. My faith grew from there.
Since then, I’ve had quite a few far-out things happen. I won’t discuss them here, of course, because a sure way to make anyone think you’re crazy is to claim communication with God. However, I do feel better than I ever have before in my life. I’ve done things I would’ve thought impossible before.
I find it futile to convince people of God. One will only believe if they wish to. Often, as in my case, one will only believe if they need to.
I can reccomend, to anyone interested, the complete rejection of church doctrine. Figure it out yourself. Don’t have faith spoon-fed to you in increments.

nukebird, did you vote yes for nukising power?

I could give you a 100 meter long list on the purposes of life. If you say none of those things deserve to be recognised as a purpose, then I can just about say the same to yours.

What’s the point to serve God? What’s the point to endure the tests of God? What’s the point to mucking about in this world that God created for whatever his own reason?

Let me tell you what’s the point. So you can hide behind a shield in order to avoid the harsh truth of life; so you look at the cross and tell yourself that you always have a sanctury; so you feel having an edge over others.
Know what? We’re all the same, we all want the same shit, by going one way or another.

So to sum up the purpose of life: fulfilling want. You deny what I just said, I deny your human being; you accept with what I just said, I say you’re no hollier, no meaningfuller nor no safer.

What do they say- it’s fine to talk to God, but if he talks back you’re nuts? I certainly have wondered why God quit “talking” to “us” 2,000 years ago (if you’re Christian- obviously the Koran is much newer).

By personal contact I don’t even mean to imply God spoke to you from a burnig bush. Just a personal “feeling” or contact with the spirit; I’m not looking for a fight or to say anyone’s wrong. I’m honestly interested in the reasons we believe as we do.

I’ve only become aware of a large number of “bible believing Christians” who are devout but think the Catholic Church has perverted Christs teachings. I didn’t realize til recently just how far from the marker many feel it’s gone.

Thanks for your story, Nukebird. :slight_smile:

Purereasonist, I know I’m not the Mod or Admin here, but can you please not jump peoples shit over their beliefs here? There are many many threads you can use to question or redicule people for their faith- the problem is that if you do it in this thread, no one else if going to want to answer for fear of being attacked.

I want to hear peoples reasons for believing, not attack them for it. :confused:

common sense is the foundation of reason, and both reason and common sense have no method by which they can be examined, they can only be trusted on faith… At least, that is what I think is true… Gonigoff those beleifs, it is a part of my foundational common sense that “God” exists, thoguh exactly what God is, whether He is still in action in the world today, etc. is still being debated in my mind… So I suppose you could say my belief in God is reason-based, to an extent, but it’s also different… I think the basic building blocks of our reason and our existence are unprovable and need not be proven, they are things which we siimply must accept as they are on faith and use to build up the glass castles of our world views… My beleif in God is one of those foundational building blocks, it is neither provable nor disprovable yet it is foundational to my thinking andrequired for most of what I beleive in, like morality…

let’s put it this way, I don’t believe in the god of any religion.

I believe in the god of the number PHI. The number that is the foundation for everything in the universe.

so god is a fabric. we are the weave.

i probably fall into some mix of the options. I was raised Catholic and have gone through a fairly long period of questioning, but have remained basically true to Catholic belief in the end. Honestly, it makes sense to me, and the world makes sense to me within that framework. I can’t really say that I came to the belief through pure reason though, as in the end I don’t really believe it possible to come to any belief through pure reason. I suppose I made my leap of faith simply because everything in me says that God exists - I am sure many would claim that this is simply because I have been raised this way (obviously been here too long… immediately defensive about theistic thought) but it I feel that it has been much more of a personal struggle to come to where I am.
I can also relate to nuke’s story…and the feelings of not wanting to share too much for fear of being called crazy. But as I am imaginary here, what the hell, i’ll share a bit. Basically I had a nasty soul-searching sort of night and found many many things that I was unhappy about. I started to break down under the weight of not being the type of person that I thought I should be. After a while of this, I felt an uplifting presence that I can only describe as one of complete love and peace. It was so enormous that I felt I could barely breathe, I could barely handle the experience. But at some point I relaxed and simply rode with the feeling instead of trying to control it. I feel to this day that this presence of love and peace was the presence of God. Now, I am generally pretty cynical, and I tend to think that people claiming special relationships with God are crazy, but I was absolutely sure about what I experienced. Now I don’t claim that I received any special knowledge, that I am entrusted with any special plan, or that I am a better person than anyone else, just that for a brief instant I experienced something huge and outside of myself. I wouldn’t really say that this is why I believe though, as I believed before that.

In the end, for me, I guess it is some sort of mish-mash of heritage, reason, personal experience, and simply a general feeling about myself and the world.

the only reason i believe is because i want to see more than this. this universe, this series of effects has no cause. all experience would lead me to believe that all things have causes, since everything except ‘everything’ does have a cause. it is this logical flaw in the universe, coupled with the fact that i am such a rare and unique object in this universe that makes me believe that this thing was designed specifically for me to inhabit it, and it was designed by somebody who doesnt want me to know that he is there. thats a conclusion that you can certainly come to. “i dont know” is also a ‘conclusion’, but eternal death seems less desirable. tehres no conclusive evidence either way. eternal death=bad, eternal life=good.

Tradition here: I’ve always been a Christian, so my original reasons are completely irrational: Mommy told me and I believed her, or something like that. Due to philosophy, I’ve changed my opinions on a number of things within Christianity, and gained new reasons to affirm it’s truth, but never seen any argument or evidence compelling enough to drop Christianity altogether.

Phaedrus-

I didn’t realize til recently just how far from the marker many feel it’s gone.

That is what an increase in communication will get a bureaucracy. :slight_smile: That, and sexual abuse. :stuck_out_tongue: Sorry, I had to.

Scythekain-

[i]I believe in the god of the number PHI. The number that is the foundation for everything in the universe.

so god is a fabric. we are the weave.[/i]

Will you explain this for me?

Future Man-

the only reason i believe is because i want to see more than this.

It might seem like I am picking on you, but that is a terrible reason for believing in God.

Sincerely,

Floyd

but youre caught up in hurting the feelings of Mr Truth. it seems like thats the only reason why you ignore the potential benefits of believing in god. you just want to adhere to standards of truth who dont mind if you violate them. i like my irrationality better.

lets say the only thing you lose by believing in god is your flawless record of Truth-adhering, and you can potentially gain what i describe in the other thread, appreciating only your current life experience and not all others.

if you can trade truth adherence for a more beneficially effective belief, why wouldnt you? nobody is trying to tell you something that is clearly false. its just unknown.

I’m glad to see that 3 others besides me voted for Reasoning.

basically, not claiming actual communication with god, i have had a few things happen to me that i can’t claim are anything but miracles. mostly me not dying when i should have many times before. plus i’ve always felt that there had to be something bigger than this.

I don’t believe in God…I know God…on a personal level…crazy?? I think not, believing in something gives way for it to be taken down, and also gives way to protect yourself and your sight to what you believe. Nobody can change what you know unless you decide you want to change it. God is all around us, not the faith to believe in him but the Faith that we have that he ‘is’. And I agree totally with what nukebird says, and I also agree in everything Purasonist says that nobody as more hollier than anybody else…that’s why knowing God will make you humble and not anything else…:slight_smile:

You know, 730 has a point: The idea of saying “I believe in God” put Him at a sort of distance from us. Most people who believe in God probably don’t do it in the sense that they’ve built up a logical framework of previous beliefs and assumptions, which lead to “God exists” as a conclusion. If Christianity is true, and people experience God through prayer, there’s simply no need to do it that way, which is a big cause of the breakdown between theist and atheist dialogue.

I suppose it depends upon the person. But since language is the tool we have, that’s what we’ll have to use. “Believe in” is a pretty good compromise phrase since everyone knows what it means. Most other phrases you might use may not be so universal.

Hi Phaedrus,

I was one on those children who are said to be ‘impressionable’ and I had A’s in Art and English language, Religion and Geography. In everything else I didn’t care very much. Interpretation of poetry and texts always interested me. I wrote reems of paper, trying out thoughts and arguments, discussed much of it with my parents and friends but my life went off at a tangent and I ended up in the army, not really knowing what I was doing there.

My great Grandparents had been Methodist and my Great Aunt was the only one left who ‘held up the faith.’ She impressed me by being such a gentle person with a commitment, whereas others seemed lost. She claimed that I would one day be ‘something special for God’ and hooked me on that line. It was a thought that continually rose it’s head, despite my attempts to ignore it. Even as a soldier I couldn’t leave it alone.

I have already portrayed my experience on a small ferry in a storm, one of many existential experiences that deepened the awareness within me, some of them in strange circumstances. But it was deciding to stay in Germany with a vocabulary that expired after “Ein Bier, zwei Bier.” that made a great difference. I had to qualify for vocational training and that meant learning the language and passing an exam. During that time I began to discover the world as I had not yet done. The Universe expanded before my eyes and I suddenly understood.

What was missing though, was a direction. That was given me by ‘coincidence’ when I discovered a slender book amongst rubble, which was called “Ausländer auf Befehl” - “Foreigner by Order.” It struck me that I came to Germany on orders and I asked myself whether the book could be ‘for me.’ It was the story of Abraham, and a story that has held me fascinated ever since. Asit was told from a Christian perspective, I became Christian - a follower of a Child of Abraham.

I learnt a lot about the Bible and after about ten years I turned Mystic, realising that fundamentalism was destroying what I saw to be true Christianity. As a Mystic my awareness has grown and my direction has become clear. The Mystery is still the Mystery, but my assuredness is strong.

Shalom
Bob

Phaedrus,

It would have been nice if you had included E, none of the above. I’m one of those people who have carefully deliberated and come to the conclusion that I cannot, and therefore do not, know. I am aware that there is ‘something’, but simply being aware isn’t ‘knowing’ anything. Bob say’s I’m a mystic, and I do acknowledge the mystery, but my own understanding is that I am agnostic. Neither nor.

JT