God, Patterns, and Reality

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This topic contains 10 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  faeruss 1 month ago.

  • faeruss
    Participant
    • Type: TiSe
    • Development: llll
    • F Attitude: Directive

    “Is God real? Does God exist?”, you ask. “Is money real? Do numbers exist?”, I respond. What makes you think material things are the only real things—the only things that matter? Money governs our lives, it can make you starve to death, and yet it cannot be measured, seen, touched or felt. What if whatever God is was like that? Not a man in the sky, but a pattern of patterns, the information underlying all information, the incomprehensible from which all understanding flows, the abstraction that underlies everything concrete, indeed, the abstraction that makes everything concrete.

    Fae
    Participant
    • Type: NeFi
    • Development: ll--
    • F Attitude: Seelie

    The whole “man in the sky” concept is a ridiculous militant atheist slur designed to caricaturize believers as daft, simplistic, gullible folk who don’t think. The only people I’ve heard of in real life who conceptualize God this way are Mormons and some Jehovah’s Witnesses. I don’t think any other religion, denomination, spiritual system, culture etc conceptualizes God as a material resident of some portion of the universe. Everything I’ve read suggests most people, at the very least, conceptualize God  in either idealist or pantheistic terms. God is wholly “other” or “the whole”. For most human beings. This “man in the sky” Santa Clause figure exists only in the imaginations of militant atheists. 🙂

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by  Fae.
    Auburn
    Keymaster
    • Type: TiNe
    • Development: ll-l
    • F Attitude: Adaptive

    This “man in the sky” Santa Clause figure exists only in the imaginations of militant atheists.

    I find this to be a very clever inversion, nice. 😉

    But I think what most atheist mean to object to when they say “man in the sky” is not to a God with a literal, corporeal form and a white beard. It’s to the idea of a “personal God” generally speaking: to one that can hear your prayers, one that has a concern for whether or not you get the job you want, whether or not your child gets cured of cancer, etc. The “father please watch over Robert, and his son who’s going through a rough time right now” type of God. And this is not a minority view among those who believe in God, as far as I can tell.

    And the objections raised by atheist about it seem warranted, since it requires a lot more variables to justify a personal God’s existence; one that favors homo sapiens on planet earth. That takes many more assumptions than a deistic sort of entity that is an animated “whole” or a meta-pattern as @faeruss eloquently put it. I quite like those versions of God better.

    How would you define God @faerie ?

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by  Auburn.
    faeruss
    Participant
    • Type: TiSe
    • Development: llll
    • F Attitude: Directive

    Here is an evocation, an incantation by Jung in his Liber Novus:

    “But the supreme meaning is the path, the way and the bridge to what is to come. That is the God yet to come. It is not the coming God himself but his image which appears in the supreme meaning. God is an image, and those who worship him must worship him in the images of the supreme meaning.

    The supreme meaning is not a meaning and not an absurdity, it is image and force in one, magnificence and force together.

    The supreme meaning is the beginning and the end. It is the bridge of going across and fulfillment.

    The other Gods died of heir temporality, yet the supreme meaning never dies, it turns into meaning and then into absurdity, and out of the fire and blood of their collision the supreme meaning rises up rejuvenated anew.

    The image of God has a shadow. The supreme meaning is real and casts a shadow. For what can be actual and corporeal and have no shadow?

    The shadow is nonsense. It lacks force and has no continued existence through itself. But nonsense is the inseparable and undying brother of the supreme meaning.

    Like plants, so men also grow, some in the light, others in the shadows. There are many who need the shadows and not the light.

    The image of God throws a shadow that is just as great as itself.

    The supreme meaning is great and small, it is as wide as the space of the starry Heaven and as narrow as the cell of the living body.”

    Fae
    Participant
    • Type: NeFi
    • Development: ll--
    • F Attitude: Seelie

    It’s to the idea of a “personal God” generally speaking: to one that can hear your prayers, one that has a concern for whether or not you get the job you want, whether or not your child gets cured of cancer, etc. The “father please watch over Robert, and his son who’s going through a rough time right now” type of God. And this is not a minority view among those who believe in God, as far as I can tell.

    Yes, it’s the majority view, but why is it a problem? It’s fine if someone doesn’t prefer this conception, but if you’re gonna go further and mock something like militant atheists do, you’d better do it on the basis of reason, not preference. I like vanilla better than strawberry doesn’t justify mocking strawberry. There’s no logical reason I can find to insist that God must be impersonal. An infinite mind with an absolute freedom, why exactly can’t it be interested in whether I have lice in my hair or not? It created the lice, the hair, and me, after all, and is utterly aware of all three at every instance of their existence.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by  Fae.
    EpicKalypze
    Participant
    • Type: SeTi
    • Development: ll-l
    • F Attitude: Directive

    Preclude: I kind of strung this together; mostly from thought I was already having, while throwing in some of the concepts shared in this thread.

    Just started mature my thinking of deism and perhaps theism. I’m starting off with the “personal god” and I may or may not move on to a “whole god”. Seeing as the human brain must have physiological processing limitations, which even genius have at some extent. I think I am starting to realize that there is a natural consequence for when man is the possessor of himself; as well a natural consequence for when man let an “idea” possess himself. If both are decently understood one of these consequences maybe more preferred over the other. If a consciousness is the possessor of its own projected (thoughts) self-concept it will easily overload its processing resources (thought capacity) as it’s feedback-loops(feelings) overwhelming backfires into the self possessed consciousness. If a consciousness allows its projections to own its self-concept, the possessor projection might maximize processing resources and purity feedback-loop backfire; leading to a sensation of effortlessness within any and all circumstances including imminent death of said original yet non-self-possessed consciousness.

     

    PS: This does make me wonder about Einstein’s deism.

    EpicKalypze
    Participant
    • Type: SeTi
    • Development: ll-l
    • F Attitude: Directive

    Yes, it’s the majority view, but why is it a problem? It’s fine if someone doesn’t prefer this conception, but if you’re gonna go further and mock something like militant atheists do, you’d better do it on the basis of reason, not preference. I like vanilla better than strawberry doesn’t justify mocking strawberry. There’s no logical reason I can find to insist that God must be impersonal. An infinite mind with an absolute freedom, why exactly can’t it be interested in whether I have lice in my hair or not? It created the lice, the hair, and me, after all, and is utterly aware of all three at every instance of their existence.

    @fae Preclude: 1.This might be an Se vs Te struggle, which case we could devil’s advocate for each other. 2. This might be a Pe’s undesired rediscoverings into timeless discussion, which case we could make distinctions based on what we know now.

    This seems like a lot of appeal to reason. Yet there seem to be little to no appeal to application. From my years of life till today it seem like reason is better off serving application. Where as application would serve truth and meaning. Should you accept these thoughts and find them impactful I’d wonder how you would rephrase this quote. Now that I really think about it… I am extremely curious.

    If any wishes: http://cognitivetype.com/forums/topic/reason-application-meaning-truth/

    Tea
    Participant
    • Type: NeFi
    • Development: l--l
    • F Attitude: Seelie

    Faeruss, I like this topic. Toward the end of my Christian journey, I allowed myself to conceive God that way. It was a departure from perceiving those eternal patterns as emanating from Him. It was never clear to me if they were His creation, His essence (moving toward more Eastern thinking), or both.

    That conception of God is still the best, IMO. However I’m still personally wrestling against the, I don’t know, fatalism of it all. I mean, the Universe can be deterministic, but that doesn’t mean I have to bow. I still have a journey ahead of me, working through this.

    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by  Tea.
    Bera
    Participant
    • Type: SeFi
    • Development: l---
    • F Attitude: Seelie

    I don’t know if God exists or not.  So, this post will be about what I think about the theories/beliefs mentioned here and about other theories that might be true. This is a pretty long post, so I will try to organize it a bit. 🙂

    1. About a personal God

    I think there are some points against this theory to be considered.They are not really arguments, because in this particular case there will always be the counter argument – but we are humans, we can’t understand God’s will.

    But, anyway, there are some issues that make me doubt the existence of a personal God:

    – there is a lot of suffering in the world;

    – suffering is not equally or fairly distributed (unless you believe in reincarnation – that would make suffering fairly distributed, based on everyone’s deeds in their past lives… but most people who believe in a personal God don’t also believe in reincarnation, which is a pity, because it would support their belief in God’s fairness);

    there is a huge part of the Universe completely empty, unoccupied by any beings. (I think this is what Auburn also says and it is a problem indeed but I will get back at it).

    Of course a human could not understand God’s mind but these points suggest that if there is a God, he is not personal. If he was personal and cared about everyone’s lives, there would be no unjust suffering (for example a child dying or an animal being eaten by another animal).

    As I said before, this only applies if you don’t believe in karma & reincarnation. Or in any other theory that would somehow solve this issue. But I really can’t see any logical alternative to this one. Heaven and hell or Judgement Day theories don’t solve the huge issue that animals and plants are suffering horribly without being guilty of anything. Karma does, but it has other weak points, I guess.

    Also, if there was a personal God who created the Universe and got involved in our lives, I don’t understand why he would keep such a huge part of the Universe without any inhabitants. Of course, the abiotic could have some purpose but it’s so much of it… :)) It just doesn’t look like something a personal God who follows our lives and focuses on everyone’s deeds and moral development would do. Well…he could have side projects of course :p but…the Universe really doesn’t look like something an ethically inclined being would create. I fully admit this is not an argument cause I could find at least 5 reasons to make lots and lots of empty planets but it is an issue worth mentioning.

    2. God is the Pattern of Patterns (as faeruss said)

    @faeruss – you say that what we call God is the pattern of patterns. But I want to ask you something – are these patterns similar to Plato’s Ideas or are they similar to spiritual rules, like karma ? Or are they actually the physical rules by which the Universe works ? How do you see them? Can you give an example of a sub-pattern ?

    3. The Universe = God 

    This was mentioned by you guys and it is one of the theories I prefer.

    So, the theory is that the Universe is God and that there is some intelligence and some volition in matter, in the world itself.

    Everything is in this case a huge Being containing interconnected energy points (people, animals, plants, even stones/water/fire etc) – and this Being is just growing, expanding and experiencing all there is to experience. This Being does not have to follow what every energy point is doing and punish some or reward others because they are just parts of it, like our cells. There is suffering because the Being’s growth is taking place based on some general rules and is subject to limits. Not because this Being judges and punishes us for our evil deeds.

    Also, in this case the unoccupied space is just an…abiotic part of It, like a huge shell (I think shells are not abiotic, this is just a comparison to something I can think of 🙂 If God was the Universe, it could make sense for him to contain unoccupied space…because this could just be the way he developed. Oh, also this reminds me of the patterns idea, cause a snail has this part that is alive, biotic, whatever, and its shell, that is not really a living thing but still is part of the snail and it also grows according to a pattern, you know? So these two theories could be combined, I think.

    4. All is One but it doesn’t look like it 

    This one is different from the one in which God = the Universe. That one is pretty much Pantheism, right? And this one is closer to New Age ideas.

    So…in the beginning we were one (one ball of fire having one perspective). At some point there was a Fall and somehow this ball of fire got split and all spirits got separated…and remained separated until now.The split/Fall took place for the purpose of experiencing Everything that could be.

    At some point, we will all be One again and then split again and the experiences we have are somehow accessible to everyone or will be accessible when we are all One again.

    This could be mixed with Theory number 3 or it could be…I think the Fall could just be the loss of the feeling of everything being interconnected. They could both be true. 2, 3 and 4 could actually all be true if the patterns were like God’s…DNA? 🙂 and God was the Universe itself and the Fall just meant a state of mind in which you believe you are separate from everything else and becoming One again was the realization that actually everything is God.

     

    Oh, dear, so much woo rambling. :))

    Anyway, I think my potential beliefs (cause I just see them as possibly true) are pretty much what an Se lead would be likely to think about it all (God can’t really judge you for your sins, this doesn’t make any sense :)) ; He just wants to experience everything through you :)) 😉 ).

     

     

    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by  Bera.
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    faeruss
    Participant
    • Type: TiSe
    • Development: llll
    • F Attitude: Directive

    You say that what we call God is the pattern of patterns. But I want to ask you something – are these patterns similar to Plato’s Ideas or are they similar to spiritual rules, like karma ? Or are they actually the physical rules by which the Universe works ? How do you see them? Can you give an example of a sub-pattern ?

    @bera Both Plato’s Ideas and such spiritual rules would fall under the very broad idea of pattern I have in mind. The same goes for physical rules, which have often been conceived of as “cosmic habits” – cosmic patterns or regularities. I see patterns in a rather technical way, I suppose. As a mathematician, I think mathematics is the precise science of patterns. Giving a general definition of pattern seems elusive, however. But examples might help, and indeed you ask of an example of a sub-pattern. Here’s something that comes to mind: you count collections of objects and you notice a pattern: some of them have the same number of objects and some don’t. The idea of quantity emerges as this pattern over collections of objects. Then you start looking at these quantities and notice a pattern: some of them can be thought of as smaller than others, and you can make a general observation that the quantity A is smaller than the quantity B if the underlying objects of A can be thought of a properly smaller subcollection to those of B. You start developing a theory of quantity, patterns to the pattern of quantity. Let me know if that’s clear.

    faeruss
    Participant
    • Type: TiSe
    • Development: llll
    • F Attitude: Directive

    And this is where a notion such as Jung’s and mine coincide, if we posit that meaning arises from ever-increasingly complex patterns of patterns. Jung’s God-as-supreme-meaning becomes Faeruss’ God-as-pattern-of-patterns

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