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Invisibility of God

Invisibility of God
January 12, 2008, 09:27:07 AM
The Talmud tells the legend how Hadrian the Emperor asked Yehoshua b. Hananya (ca. 90 A.D.) : I would like to see your God. Yehoshua replied : You cannot see him. The Emperor said : Indeed, I must see him. Then the rabbi took Hadrian and placed him in the full blaze of the sun and said to him : Look into it. He answered : I cannot. Yehoshua replied : If of the sun you say : I cannot look at it, which is only one of the servants who stand in the presence of God, how much true is it of the Shekinah.

Babylonian Talmud; Hullin 59b

Any comments ?

Re: Invisibility of God
January 12, 2008, 10:50:22 AM
It is convenient to create a God which is above everything in world and space, it is even more comforting to imagine that God watches over us and cares about us, instead of dealing with divine matters which we couldn't possibly comprehend. Human beings like to think that they're so important that the omnipotent God cares what happens to them and wants to help them.

Aristotle has a great theory about God, in that God is only the builder, not the creator (which is the eternal universe).

He also defines God as the "noesis noeseos" (translated something like thought of the thought); he eternally thinks this thought (which is of the highest quality) and can never think anything beside this highest thought. God, in another words, knows only of himself and doesn't deal with the matters of man or the world which we live in. Aristotle didn't regard God as something to worship or pray to simply because God is interested only in his own business (which is wholly beyond our reach) and we should be interested in ours.

Since humans are programmed to create religions and concept of gods or God, why not look at the past where ancient religions worshiped nature (which, in all aspects. should be our God because we directly depend on it) instead of some external deity.


Re: Invisibility of God
January 12, 2008, 02:24:35 PM
reminded me of this :

"The concept of god falsified; the concept of morality falsified ;--but even here Jewish priest craft did not stop. The whole history of Israel ceased to be of any value: out with it!--These priests accomplished that miracle of falsification of which a great part of the Bible is the documentary evidence; with a degree of contempt unparalleled, and in the face of all tradition and all historical reality, they translated the past of their people into religious terms, which is to say, they converted it into an idiotic mechanism of salvation, whereby all offences against Jahveh were punished and all devotion to him was rewarded. We would regard this act of historical falsification as something far more shameful if familiarity with the ecclesiastical interpretation of history for thousands of years had not blunted our inclinations for uprightness in historicis. And the philosophers support the church: the lie about a "moral order of the world" runs through the whole of philosophy, even the newest. What is the meaning of a "moral order of the world"? That there is a thing called the will of God which, once and for all time, determines what man ought to do and what he ought not to do; that the worth of a people, or of an individual thereof, is to he measured by the extent to which they or he obey this will of God; that the destinies of a people or of an individual arecontrolled by this will of God, which rewards or punishes according to the degree of obedience manifested.--In place of all that pitiable lie reality has this to say: the priest, a parasitical variety of man who can exist only at the cost of every sound view of life, takes the name of God in vain: he calls that state of human society in which he himself determines the value of all things "the kingdom of God"; he calls the means whereby that state of affairs is attained "the will of God"; with cold-blooded cynicism he estimates all peoples, all ages and all individuals by the extent of their subservience or opposition to the power of the priestly order"

Nieztsche, Antichrist, para 26

Re: Invisibility of God
January 14, 2008, 10:53:50 PM
An intelligent post reveals a contemplation on one's tradition and it is received like this!?--first, the only (and I hope last) time that I've ever seen Aristotle interpreted as a fucking Deist!!!--and second, an excerpt from an imbalanced thinker, who, during his more intellectual moments spoke of the horrors of universal literacy for good reason: "That everyone may learn to read, in the long run, corrupts not only writing but also thinking." Behold, we have veritable evidence.

In any case, the original post reminded us of Krishna revealing himself in all his glory to Arjuna; to see God, however, one must have eyes.

Re: Invisibility of God
January 15, 2008, 06:40:54 AM
And what is, pray tell, your interpretation of Aristotle's ideas about God? Hasn't Aristotle clearly stated what he thinks about god, as an unmoved mover, which only thinks the perfect thought and nothing else? What is your opinion about Aristotle? Perhaps you should have stated it in the first place instead of your ego-drama crap.

Re: Invisibility of God
January 15, 2008, 08:30:13 AM
Aristotle applied logic and physics to create the most logical theory of the workings of the world possible at that point in time. However with the advances with technology we can gain more realistic estimates as to the real workings of the universe. Had you existed in the time of Aristotle and told him that there was once nothing, and the nothingness disturbed itself and so exploded pushing all matter outwards it would sound nor be anymore convincing then any religion already in place.

He states that all things are in a perpetual state of motion, but there cannot be all the things to be moved and all these new forces to move them for there is nothing to begin the chain, only an infinite sea of motion. We now now that there was once nothing, which was unstable and exploded and this was the great mover. He was stuck in a time where there needed to be a god, after all im sure there was a time when it would have seemed more logical if the sun was a living thing, not just a giant nuclear reactor.

His ideas on the workings of the world are horrible outdated when compared with the conclusions that can be drawn today, why bother bringing him up anymore when discussions about theology take place?

Re: Invisibility of God
January 15, 2008, 09:16:15 AM
It is obvious that when metaphysics or theology are concerned, time has not brought more insight, but rather clouded the insight which was already gained (or had from the beginning, for that matter).

It is said of a true king: that one cannot look into his eyes, because his gaze destroys those who meet it.
This phenomenon also exists in the realm of Eros, where the gaze of the Divine Love can have a similar effect.

Re: Invisibility of God
January 15, 2008, 10:49:43 AM
I brought up Aristotle's ideas simply because I find ridiculous the fact that God (or whatever people like to believe) is concerned with human matters; if I ever start believing in God, I would never believe that he would be interested in us.

I'm much more attracted to the idea that something (some force) exists which has created something out of nothing, not because of some coincidental collision of matters, but from some other reason, and that humans cannot begin to comprehend what that was.


I don't believe in cold science which says that universe was created by accidental collision of matter, nor do I believe in the religion that says that God created it and we know what he wants and how he wants to help us SIMPLY because humans CANNOT know of these things because of their limitations. Neither religion nor science can tell you how the universe was created (regardless of scientific "breakthrougs" and ridiculous assumptions about how old is space and how big it is).

I'm not against science, but science is not objective because humans are not objective, science comes from human perspective, it is useful to us in our world, but to use it to explain the universe in an "objective" way is ridiculous. Same goes for religion. I can only understand religion that is put in our natural environment, but religion that explains the universe is also ridiculous.

Re: Invisibility of God
January 15, 2008, 11:10:42 AM
You're getting very close to a post-modernist view of the world. All theories used to explain the world around us are all equally true and equally false, they may be true for you but not for me and so on. Such thinking, because of its very nature cannot be falsified, and it cannot be proved, it may be interesting, but it gets us nowhere.

Re: Invisibility of God
January 15, 2008, 12:10:11 PM
You misunderstood me; I was against human theories (religion or science) that try to explain the UNIVERSE in the context of our human concerns.

I'm not against a certain established set of values and theories that explain the world and serve as a reference how to act in accordance with our natural world. I realize that consensus must exist, and that everybody's opinion should not be taken into account (only the best ones, and we don't even have to invent them, just look in the past and apply them in our modern world).

The reason I reacted the way I did is because of the putting celestial bodies as servants to God who is concerned with humans (like in that Talmud legend), hence the Aristotle's theory about God who is in his own plane of thought, which is totally inaccessible to us. I think that the inconceivably enigmatic universe is wholly beyond our subjective capacities (religion), even when they're portrayed as objective facts (science). I'm against any explanations of the universe; in my opinion, it can only serve as something that inspires us for art, never as something as "just another thing to explain away", even though man is programmed to understand everything around, and beyond him, and he tries that with every means possible.

Re: Invisibility of God
January 15, 2008, 04:26:24 PM
Quote
You misunderstood me; I was against human theories (religion or science) that try to explain the UNIVERSE in the context of our human concerns.

I'm not against a certain established set of values and theories that explain the world and serve as a reference how to act in accordance with our natural world. I realize that consensus must exist, and that everybody's opinion should not be taken into account (only the best ones, and we don't even have to invent them, just look in the past and apply them in our modern world).

The reason I reacted the way I did is because of the putting celestial bodies as servants to God who is concerned with humans (like in that Talmud legend), hence the Aristotle's theory about God who is in his own plane of thought, which is totally inaccessible to us. I think that the inconceivably enigmatic universe is wholly beyond our subjective capacities (religion), even when they're portrayed as objective facts (science). I'm against any explanations of the universe; in my opinion, it can only serve as something that inspires us for art, never as something as "just another thing to explain away", even though man is programmed to understand everything around, and beyond him, and he tries that with every means possible.


Its becomes hard to dispute the big bang in the 21st century. Eisenstein's theories all indicate that matter was compressed into an extremely small amount of space (smaller then the smallest part of the atom). Everything we know and understand  about the universe only furthers our resolve in the correctness of the big bang theory because it rationally explains every problem about the formation of the universe. If one denies this one might as well deny the fact the space and time distort in the presence of matter or other unseeable truths. Its also this attitude that had people still believing the earth was flat until the first images of our planet from space arrived. I can understand if one remains undecided on a theological assertion of the premise adding was this big bang the result of intelligence? But to doubt the assertion of the big bang and remain completely agnostic about the process of the creation of the universe seems ridiculous. Who do you want to trust, the logic based on ancient cultures who lacked the means to acquire any real evidence of the universe, so filled in almost all of their information with guesses, or the modern scientific method backed up by the appropriate tools and appropriate minds who developed in the presence  of such tools (Einstein as an example)?

Also it can be clear because of science that if god like creatures do exist they doubtfully exist in our realm, most likely they exist outside our universe (since our universe does have edges that are expanding) or in some parallel universe. But if a god does exist in either of these two options they are are beyond human logic, because our mind is meant to function in the confines of this universe, our logic cannot be applied to creatures or ideas from another.

In another universe truth could be false and vice versa. The human mind just does not have the power to comprehend the logic and physics of another universe because the human mind is built on experience of this universe. Its the same idea as how does a person who has lived in a desert their entire life while never directly seeing water know what an ocean is? He would probably laugh if he heard you talk about rain. Therefore to me it seems equally as likely that there is a god who cares for humans as there is a god that does not.


Re: Invisibility of God
January 15, 2008, 09:30:51 PM
You speak of big bang, space and time but they could be only related to this part of Universe; how do we know what happens elsewhere in the Universe, does time and space have the same effect and essence, could it be that time and space as we know it are typical only for this part of the Universe, if it is indeed a part of it at all (in relation to our human perspective?) Then the theory that explains rationally (for us) every problem about the creation of the Universe is not true. Do you have evidence that the big bang theory is valid in the entire Universe? Do you think that the entire Universe is composed in the same way as our Milky Way galaxy? I haven't realized that humans explored the whole Universe, or that they regard that they think they know the entire Universe because they think they know something about the Milky Way?

When I talked about the Universe, I wasn't refering to Milky Way alone. It is strange you think that the entire Universe is like Milky Way. I'm not against making theories about Universe, but I'm adamant that we will never realize it (the whole thing, not just the Milky Way). We will always make theories (because we're like that) but that doesn't mean that we have the right to declare that with one theory that can be valid in one part of it (again from our perspective, which could be of no importance to it, except for us), we have the theory that explains it entirely.

How do you know that our (note the word "our", how typically humanly arrogant) universe has edges that are expanding? Because somebody said so? Where is the proof for that? Has it been tested on the entire Universe? How can we know that "our proof" isn't clouded by our way of thinking? Perhaps we perceive things differently then they really are? Perhaps we view the Universe in a certain way, that is completely different from the "real" way?

I never said that I completely agree with the logic of the Ancient world, but it certainly seems better to me when contrasted with putting objects in Universe in relation with "our god", although I do understand the human tendency (propelled with insecurity when confronted with the scary blackness of Universe) which puts themselves in the top place and views everything in relation to themselves.

Humans have always looked in the stars, and the high feelings that arose in them were always transfered in our world, the earth. We will always put everything we learn about our closest part of Universe in relation to our world (the earth) because we can't do otherwise, we're the product of this world, and everything we think and do is always related to it, never escaping it's boundaries. That's why we will never "realize" about Universe, because our mind cannot sever the links with our natural environment.

I say that we concentrate our efforts and minds into this world, there's so much to learn and see, so many things that we know nothing of. This is a frightening view, because limiting ourselves to our natural world cuts back our arrogant mind of reaching beyond ourselves. We can't even stop ourselves from self - destruction, so it seems, let alone make claims about the whole Universe.

Like I said, leave the space for inspiration, and use that inspiration in the only place where matters: earth. I know that this will never happen, however, people will research about it, but I will never agree that we realized something about the (whole) Universe simply because somebody made some assumptions that can only be relevant to humans, who knows how other beings (somewhere out there) perceive Universe? Would they be wrong in their assumptions if they were different from ours? Who would be right?

Re: Invisibility of God
January 15, 2008, 11:45:31 PM
God is Infinity: that which is absolutely unconditioned and indeterminate, and thereby without limitation. However, "that which has no limits is that to which one can deny nothing, hence is that which contains all, outside of which there is nothing."

Aristotle's Unmoved Mover can by conceived through analogy as an axle which remains motionless with respect to the wheel that turns about it. Without the axle, the wheel cannot turn. Similarly, there must be a Principle from which proceeds all manifestation. This relationship between Principle and manifestation is that which is symbolized by the swastika. Unfortunately, much of Aristotle's philosophy is an attempt at systematization of Platonic metaphysics, which, however, is a distortion of the very unlimited nature of metaphysic. Indeed, the greater part of the former's Metaphysics is no more than cosmology, while pure metaphysics is the doctrine of the uncreated, which is characteristically apophatic.

Quote
The Nothing is pure negation. It is nothing. The opposite of Being is Possibility.


Nothing is the opposite of possibility. That is, it is an impossibility, no-thing by definition; i.e., it is a metaphysical absurdity.

There is no distinction between Possibility and Infinity; these are merely passive or active modes of envisaging the Infinite.

Being encompasses all possibilities of manifestation, as well as Pure Being, which, as the principle of all manifestation, is not itself manifested. Outside and beyond Being is Non-Being, which comprises all possibilities of non-manifestation, and contains in principle Being itself. Universal Possibility thus is comprised of the combination of Being and Non-Being, which necessarily limit each other reciprocally.

Re: Invisibility of God
January 16, 2008, 02:18:05 AM
Quote
Y You speak of big bang, space and time but they could be only related to this part of Universe; how do we know what happens elsewhere in the Universe, does time and space have the same effect and essence, could it be that time and space as we know it are typical only for this part of the Universe, if it is indeed a part of it at all (in relation to our human perspective?) Then the theory that explains rationally (for us) every problem about the creation of the Universe is not true. Do you have evidence that the big bang theory is valid in the entire Universe? Do you think that the entire Universe is composed in the same way as our Milky Way galaxy? I haven't realized that humans explored the whole Universe, or that they regard that they think they know the entire Universe because they think they know something about the Milky Way?


Have human explored all of the seabed, what if gravity reverses in some of these undiscovered waters and what if fire is cold on another planet, or what if eating makes you hungry in space? As I said before the big bang explains more then any other theory created by man, and the big bang must apply to all of the universe, otherwise there is not an absence of matter and therefore there cannot be a an explosion from nothingness being unstable, because something is there. Therefore the big bang cannot happen in only part of the universe, it must create all the universe.

Saying humans have not traveled the entire universe so therefore cannot be sure of the nature of physics of the universe is like saying this man has not been shot by this gun before, maybe if we shoot him it creates chocolate.

And there is evidence of the universe expanding, people have seen it through telescopes, we also know the universe ha edges because we have images of the entire universe (not in the style of a camera but images non the less). If one uses logic and looks at the evidence presented the big bang is by far the most plausible theory, that may not make it the correct one but it makes it so likely that to outright doubt it and see it as equal to religion you must be mad.

You deny all the evidence because you cannot understand the numbers which lead to that conclusion, and are distrusting of all who can. If you choose to question them on this why not ask, are humans the first form of life on the planet? Was the universe created only a day before I was born? Was I even born since I have no memory of it? You might as well question everything beyond your immediate experience because you cannot read the numbers and no matter how many people do and confirm it you would not believe.

This argument sounds annoyingly similar to one with Atthegates1996 or something similar.

Edit:

I would also like to add that thousands of other galaxies are visable from earth all of which act in a conssit manner to our own.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Bang

While hardly the most prestiges site for such matters it does show why the big bang theory is so plausible.

Re: Invisibility of God
January 16, 2008, 06:08:03 AM
I talked about how humans percieve everything in Universe in regards to their life on earth; consider the constellations: even today arrangement of stars is perceived in the characters of lion, torrus(bull), warrior, etc., just like in the ancient past.

I will never believe that we have images (of whatever form) of the "entire" Universe, no matter how numbers or everything else looks like. How can we see through the telescope that the whole Universe is expanding?

Comparing earth's seabed with the Universe (again you assume that things on earth are like things on Universe) is ridiculous, and again you assume that all parts of the Universe are the same and are governed by the same laws (it may be on earth, but it is arrogant to presume that this is the case for the entire Universe).

All these evidence may look right TO US, but who knows how are they really like, I've been talking this whole time about the human perspective and objective world, just because something looks right to us, doesn't mean that our perspective is the correct one; if you think that humans can grasp the objective world, then we have opposite opinions.

You keep comparing the ways of explaining the universe from human perspective (which is connected to our natural world) by citing seabeds, and a man who has been shot or whatever, that's my point concerning human perspective.

I object to this incessant comparing the Universe with our experience here on earth, as well as trying to explain, by any means neccesary, the whole Universe, thus artificially taking away(unsuccessfully, though, scientific theories change all the time, they may be valid for earth, but for the Universe...) any mystery or beauty from it.

Also, don't compare my arguments with somebody else whom you don't like, if you expect that everybody should think the same, good luck with that. If you don't like me because I'm not die hard cold clinical scientist like you, I don't dislike you for having your "objective, full proof supported by facts" opinion, even though you called me mad several times (which I usually take as a compliment) ;D