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Featured Question for the religious: How do you determine which supernatural beliefs to believe?

Discussion in 'Science and Religion' started by Hubert Farnsworth, Jun 10, 2018.

  1. Hubert Farnsworth

    Hubert Farnsworth Well-Known Member

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    Nearly all religions involve supernatural claims, and thus adhering to them involves belief in the supernatural. For instance, Christians believe Jesus was born of a virgin, turned water into wine, walked on water, and rose from the dead, along with other "miracles," which seem to be indistinguishable from magic. These same individuals who believe that it is perfectly reasonable to believe that a virgin got pregnant, or that water can magically turn directly into wine, or that the laws of physics can be violated by walking on water, also reject all the supernatural claims of other religions, and dismiss them without even examining them. They also dismiss the supernatural claims made by believers in Santa Claus (to use a common example).

    Many Christians have told me that comparing the miraculous claims about Jesus made by the bible to the miraculous claims about Santa Claus made by those who believe in him is like comparing apples and oranges. They typically point to the claim that Jesus had eyewitnesses (even though the gospels are actually not eyewitness accounts). Even if the gospels were eyewitness accounts, this would of course not make them trustworthy, as studies have been done showing that eyewitness testimony is one of the least reliable forms of evidence available, and is rarely even accepted as evidence in a court of law.

    Consider the fact that your belief does not differ much from belief in the miracles of Santa Claus. Millions of people around the world (particularly young people, but some adults as well) believe that Santa Claus is capable of performing the miracle of descending a chimney even though he is too obese to fit inside of the chimney according to the laws of physics. They also believe that it is possible for him to travel to billions of homes around the world in a single night, by his miraculous powers. They also believe in miraculous reindeer who have the miraculous ability to fly by the miraculous power of Santa Claus. And their beliefs are not without evidence. Many people have had real, spiritual encounters, and eyewitness testimony of observing Santa Claus. For instance, check out these eyewitness testimonies of mystical experiences with Santa Claus. https://www.americaninno.com/boston...aim-paranormal-santa-claus-sightings-as-fact/

    So, as one can clearly see, there is a problematic double standard with religion. A Christian, for instance, readily accepts the supernatural claims of "miracles" (magic) found in the Bible, yet immediately dismisses the supernatural claims made by those who believe in Santa Claus, even when presented with eyewitness testimony of Santa Claus, mystical experiences of Santa Claus, and equally strong "evidence" of Santa Claus that they also used to legitimatize their own supernatural beliefs.
     
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  2. George-ananda

    George-ananda Advaita Vedanta and Spiritualist and Pantheist
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    I form my beliefs based on my best logical analysis that considers all evidence and argumentation pertinent to the question. Much like how a jury makes a decision in a murder trial.

    Using said methods I have come to believe the paranormal exists, miracles occur and Santa does not exist. Rational analysis is our friend.
     
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  3. ecco

    ecco Well-Known Member

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    I sure would not want to be involved in a trial, on either side, with you on the jury.

    If the defendant said the victim was killed by a ghost, you would give serious consideration to that defense.

    Please do not use the words "logical" or "rational" in conjunction with your beliefs. They are neither logical nor rational.
     
  4. Abdushakur

    Abdushakur Member

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    If supernatural includes belief in the unseen, such as angels, jinn, Paradise and Hell then yes we believe in this. We also believe that Mary was a virgin and that Allah said "Be!" and he was created by His Command. We also believe that sihr (sorcery/magic) and the 'Ayn (The Evil/Envious Eye) is a reality, as well as possession of humans by jinn. We believe that Allah's Messenger split the moon, as attested by his people, though, those who were against him claimed it to be magic. This is one of several examples of the miracles of Allah's Messenger, and we believe in all of them since mant of them are witnessed by his companions and enemies alike, and only those who believed in these signs that were by Allah's Will were guided. As for personalities like Santa Clause then we disbelieve in this and reject it. As this, from a historical perspective, has nothing to do with religion or Revelation, nor do we celebrate Christmas (as Muslims), as this is from the celebration of the Mushrikeen (polytheists/idolaters).

    Christians blindly follow their Book, which is known, with certainty, to have been altered by human hands. The Book is "perfect through faith", without any corroborating doctrine or text. In Islam, the Qur'an is corraborated by the Hadeeth (those who reject the authentic Hadeeth reject the Qur'an as well) as well as statements of the companions themselves and even the enemies of Islam during the time of the Revelation. Though, for the Western world, most of this is obscured by a discrepency in language, meaning, much of the Arabic has yet to be translated, although a sufficient amount can be found in English capturing the meaning.

    Why do people equate religiosity with Christianity alone? I have always been baffled by this. I wasn't born into a Muslim family, they are predominantly Catholic and some other sect of Christianity. I may be the only one in my immediate family that is actually Muslim, orthodox and practicing.

    But even before this, I was always curious as to why people assume religiosity is only among the Christians. Their sects are many and their ideologies clash among each other. They have no original doctrine to produce as actual proof, and they worship men, ouside of themselves and including themselves.

    Actually, this is an extremely narrow perception. Because you assume, based on everything else you wrote, that religiosity is akin to Christianity, exclusively. This leads me to believe you are or were a Christian and you either have doubts about your religion or you have abandoned it totally and have taken a path of either agnosticism or atheism due to the lack of knowledge among these people. The unfortunate thing with these people is that even though they lack knowledge of basic knowledge and common sense, they still feel the need to go out and preach with authority and conviction.

    Also, what is clear is that you must have had some experience with either someone who believes in Jesus and rejects Santa Claus, or that you are trying to reconcile internal conflicting beliefs, I don't know. But one thing is for sure:

    You didn't ask any questions. You just wrote a skeptical rant and answered yourself with your own writing whatever inquiry you may have had in your head.
     
  5. Thanda

    Thanda Well-Known Member

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    You are correct that we (christian believers) are too quick to dismiss the supernatural that occur in other religions or worse to accept it but ascribe it to the spirit of the devil.

    Personally my background and perspective allows to be fully open minded at the supernatural encounters people claim outside of the bible and christianity. The reason for this is simple - to believe there is a God and a devil is to believe in the supernatural. And once you believe in the supernatural world it is not for you to dictate to those of that world the what, where and how of what they can or cannot do.

    That said I do not believe it is the purpose of our life on Earth to accumulate all knowledge on all supernatural acts and encounters. This will not save us. What will save is listening to and following the voice of God within.

    So there is no shame for the Christian to know nothing and even to care nothing about the supernatural claims of the Muslim. Likewise there is no shame or harm for the Muslim to care nothing about the supernatural claims of the Jew. And lastly there is no shame in either of these three to care nothing about the supernatural claims of the Santa believer.

    Belief will not save us - action will.
     
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  6. Abdushakur

    Abdushakur Member

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    There should be shame in not making an attempt to know anything about the other Revelations. This is, in essence, ignorance. In other words, you find no shame in being ignorant. But, this is a blame worthy charecteristic, especially when you begin to discuss these matters without knowledge.

    I do agree though, that there is no shame in rejecting the belief in Santa Clause, but this belief is predominantly adhered to by children. Which adult today actually believes in a Santa Clause the way they believe in the Prophets of Allah?

    If we look at the Church of Latter-Day Saints, they believe in John Smith and gold tablets that have never been seen. No one has ever been able to exmine these alleged revelations he received in Upstate New York. I'm from the Tri-Boro Area in NYC. Also, why would the epicenter of Mormonism be in Utah and not Upstate New York? What about the 'magical' underwear that the Mormons wear, and their secret rituals.

    We have to have some knowledge of other faiths in order to find the truth. Otherwise, you ignorantly and blindly follow whatever you are told, only to be misguided.

    But we all believe what we want to believe anyway.

    And man is saved by the Mercy of Allah alone.
     
  7. George-ananda

    George-ananda Advaita Vedanta and Spiritualist and Pantheist
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    I will continue to use the words ‘logical’ and ‘rational’.

    One can be rational and logical and believe in the existence of the paranormal based on the quantity, quality and consistency of the evidence.
     
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  8. stvdv

    stvdv Well-Known Member

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    Many scriptures say "This scripture is the only way". Words may differ, but this is what the scripture teaches them, so brainwashes them.
    [So naturally the brainwashed people act/speak/think as they were taught]

    I found a great Indian scripture called Yoga Vasistha starting off claiming:
    "Only by this teaching alone you can reach human goal"
    But immediately after this it continued saying:
    "But if you have doubt in this scripture then take any other scripture dealing with the truth"

    I found this such a refreshing start of scripture.
    I don't even consider scriptures worth reading which claim "This is the only truth"
     
    #8 stvdv, Jun 10, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2018
  9. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Riboflavin
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    How did you come to the conclusion that Santa does not exist?
     
  10. George-ananda

    George-ananda Advaita Vedanta and Spiritualist and Pantheist
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    From my analysis of all argumentation and the quantity, quality and consistency of the evidence.
     
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  11. Thanda

    Thanda Well-Known Member

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    If truth, in order to be found, must be searched for high and low in all religions of the world then God is an unjust God. For those with the internet will have an advantage over those who do not. Those who can travel the world will have an advantage over those who do not. Those who can buy many books will have an advantage over those who do not.

    No I disagree...The truth that will save us lies within each of us. It speaks to all of us. We need only to open our hearts and receive it.

    Else how will it make me a better person to know that Mohammed split the more? Will it make me more kind? Will it give me greater self-control? If yes how? if not then why must I know?
     
  12. WalterTrull

    WalterTrull Godfella

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    There are no "supernatural" events. That said, walking on water, virgin birth, water to wine are natural events. Just more natural fig tree stuff.
     
  13. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Riboflavin
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    How can you think any “quantity, quality and consistency” of evidence is sufficient to reject the existence of a claim?

    I thought you considered the Mandela Effect a real thing. We can find a sizeable number of people who believe that Santa is real. Is there no room in your worldview for the idea that he is real now?
     
  14. George-ananda

    George-ananda Advaita Vedanta and Spiritualist and Pantheist
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    There is the room but not the reason for Santa belief in my judgment.

    My analysis finds ‘no’ on Easter Bunny but ‘yes’ on ghosts though.
     
  15. David T

    David T Well-Known Member
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    Totally random. Isn't it!!!! Since random is God according to many in science apparently religion has it correct!!!! I see no conflict just agreement dressed in different clothes is all.
     
  16. Shushersbedamned

    Shushersbedamned Well-Known Member

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    I am not aware of having ever come across a Christian who believes all those things. And there is nothng supernatural about the Christian religion.
     
  17. magid

    magid Member

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    Very excellent thread.
    As per Islam one answer is this important verse in noble Quran

    Sahih International
    Is He [not best] who begins creation and then repeats it and who provides for you from the heaven and earth? Is there a deity with Allah ? Say, "Produce your proof, if you should be truthful."
    Chapter An-Naml (Ants) 27:64
    In the other hand almost all my threads are about evidences of truth in Islam.
     
  18. Hockeycowboy

    Hockeycowboy Well-Known Member
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    I have read many of your posts, and I find them fascinating. I would really enjoy talking with you.... I believe you have genuinely experienced these things coming from other entities.

    Are you open to discussing them?
     
  19. Hockeycowboy

    Hockeycowboy Well-Known Member
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    He just uses a lot of lard! He slides right down.
     
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  20. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist Veteran Member

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    I base my belief on personal and subjective experience. I dont see why spiritually needs to be proven by evidence, testimony, hearsay, and studies. Unles you dont trust your experiences. "Im inheritedly sinful; so, I dont trust my feelings to guide me."

    Other than that, evidence comes, I check point it, say, hmm, interesting, and I let it be.
     
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