Born with belief?

Discussion in 'Belief and Spirituality' started by iBrian, May 20, 2004.

  1. iBrian

    iBrian Peace, Love and Unity Admin

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2003
    Messages:
    6,532
    Likes Received:
    12
    We are all born with an awareness of God - of "something else" we cannot fathom or understand.

    Religion attempts to explain this to us. Many will accept a particular religion's definitions and constructs of faith for explaining this "something else".

    However, it is also the case that other may judge religion itself and find it wanting. As religion teaches that there is God, then where religion is seen as deeply flawed, then so it is reasoned belief in God - even God itself - must also be flawed.

    Is this something you would agree with?

    Thanks to Samabudhi for actually bringing this up on another thread. :)
     
  2. louis

    louis Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Messages:
    148
    Likes Received:
    0
    born without

     
  3. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    Messages:
    3,915
    Likes Received:
    0
    belief and religion

     
  4. barefootgal9

    barefootgal9 Baha'i

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2004
    Messages:
    94
    Likes Received:
    0
    Wow, Lunamoth! A lot of sound, serious thought in that post. You go girl!

    :)
     
  5. mcedgy

    mcedgy Active Member

    Joined:
    May 8, 2004
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hello I, Brian. Good question and as you might suppose, I have an opinion. :)

    When religion fails to promote understanding it exposes the frailty of human conception or human comprehension and not necessarily a flawed god. I also feel we are born with curiosity and later develop a belief in a particular doctrine based upon our environment and training. I do not think people are born with a particular awareness of something greater and, as contradictory as it may seem, I feel the vast majority of people seldom searches for or even chooses their religion. Their religion chooses them. They most often are born into a family or a society (sometimes they may join a society) that participates in a customary and usually regional faith. Unlike individuals that participate in these forums most people never bother to question or investigate the validity of their religion or, for that matter, any religion. They become accustomed to their comfort in congregational fellowship. They become comfortable being a part of the group. IMHO mcedgy
     
  6. samabudhi

    samabudhi Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2004
    Messages:
    417
    Likes Received:
    1
    I don't think you were. I think you learned about your self from interacting with your environment. I think you are born thinking you are part of your mother. It's true, you have been for the last 9 months. Why would you suddenly think differently. The more time you spend apart, the more you realise that you are separate and that you have an identity of your own.
     
  7. louis

    louis Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Messages:
    148
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think I was

    From Louis...
    Thank you for your comments, but I do remember how I felt from a
    very early age. That's typical of any child born with a touch of "Autism".
    Thrust out of the only world I knew for my first 9 months, I at first refused
    to acknowledge my new surroundings. That came gradually, first the
    awareness that my mother was a person, not just part of the background.
    Then a grudging awareness of other people and eventualy the "group" social order. AWARE of it, but never wanting to "belong" to it - just exploit it .
    An awareness of God is something that hasn't quite happened yet.
     
  8. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    Messages:
    3,915
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi Louis,

    Thank you for sharing your unique perspective with us. I imagine that in some ways your touch of autistic syndrome presents challenges for you, but it also gives you your valuable outlook. I suspect that persons who have the opposite challenge, in that they are either overwhelmed with emotion responses, find it hard to be objective, or feel too connected to other people also have their own set of challenges, as do we all.

    Best wishes in your quest!
     
  9. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    Messages:
    3,915
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks, bfg!
     
  10. Blessed87

    Blessed87 A restored soul

    Joined:
    May 13, 2005
    Messages:
    55
    Likes Received:
    0
    I can see how it can be true that maybe some people aren't as spiritually "attuned" as others. I have trouble agreeing that people don't choose their religion, but their circumstances and environment do, because that doesn't explain early people's beliefs in a higher power. I don't believe I've ever heard of an early civilization that did not worship some Deity or Dieties. This leads me to conclude that there is something within everyone that seeks God. Whether we supress it or do something about it is up to us, because we are given choices for how we live our lives. Of course environment and circumstances affect this, that's basic psycology.
     
  11. path_of_one

    path_of_one Embracing the Mystery

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2005
    Messages:
    2,906
    Likes Received:
    0
    Just want to say thanks, Lunamoth. That was a beautiful post, and very much how I feel about it.
     
  12. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    Messages:
    3,915
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks, path of one! :)

    lunamoth
     
  13. ISFP

    ISFP Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2004
    Messages:
    242
    Likes Received:
    0
    i'm not sure if we're born with belief... belief in what, or in whom?

    what kind of assumptions would an infant make about the world? :confused:

    we may be born with an ability to feel awe or seek spiritual well-being, though. in this regard i don't see children as a blank slate. most if not all children respond to language, beautiful things (in some form), and human affection. maybe tehrein are the seeds for religious faith down the road!
     
  14. Faithfulservant

    Faithfulservant Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2004
    Messages:
    2,792
    Likes Received:
    0
    I believe that some children at least are born with an awareness.. I have a friend who tells a story of her 3 year old daughter talking to someone in her bedroom at night she walks in to tell her daughter to go to sleep and ask who she is talking to and she says shes talking to that big man and points behind the mother.. the mother turns around and sees what she describes as an angel 7 foot tall seeming to be floating in the air.. she was overcome. Later in talking to her daughter.. The daughter had been having conversations with him nightly for as long as she could remember.. She had not been a believer... I might mention that the same woman had a son a few years later who was diagnosed with terminal cancer with no chance of recovery at the age of 8 who received full healing and has been in remission for 9 years .

    I would also like to add that I have always loved Jesus my whole life..as long as I remember.. Now my son who is 2 1/2 loves Blue from Blues Clues but he doesnt go around having conversations with him like I did Jesus .. I remember telling my mom how I would have conversations with Jesus and was able to go into detail about what we talked about. Stuff thats way beyond the 2 or 3 year old mind. You can teach a 2 and 3 year old basic things..and they will believe anything you say and repeat the same thing back to you.. but for that child to tell you things that you never taught them is a bit more than the normal toddler behavior.
     
  15. THUNK

    THUNK Member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2005
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    My first ever posting to such a forum:

    You say 'there is something within everyone that seeks God'.

    I say there is something within me that seeks answers to help me make sense of my life.

    I dont belong to any organised religion but I consider myself very spirtual and of good moral fibre.

    Too often I find those that belong to a religion are consumed by thier desire to get close to God and 'book thier place in Heaven'.
    Such behaviour seems to me, selfish and self absorbed. Monks seek positive emmotional well - being as thier currency in the same way as a businessman derives money for his life inputs. Whats the difference?

    People that dedicate much time to prayer hope to be rewarded and fulfilled by God. Surely a just God would rather all this time and energy were spent on helping the needy or the Planet?

    Surely God would not be so insecure as to need hours of adulation and demonstrations of faith?

    Richard.
     
  16. InLove

    InLove at peace

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2005
    Messages:
    3,267
    Likes Received:
    4
    So I guess that Mother Theresa and Gandhi were just wasting time?

    InPeace,
    InLove
     
  17. path_of_one

    path_of_one Embracing the Mystery

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2005
    Messages:
    2,906
    Likes Received:
    0
    Welcome!

    In my opinion these are two separate motivations. It is one thing to be consumed by a desire to become closer to God, and quite another to desire to "book their place in heaven." The former is not selfish nor self-absorbed, because in my experience you must detach from self and be willing to be transformed in order to grow spiritually. In so doing, you are not necessarily seeking happiness or contentment. In fact, such spiritual growth can be confusing, tumultuous, and quite difficult, but one persists because one knows that growing closer to God will transform them into a better person, one that is more loving and forgiving, patient and kind. One seeks to transcend the mundane and free themselves from as many of one's petty desires and faults as possible, freeing one's spirit to join God.

    This desire of joining with the Big Divine Something that I call God is not the same as desiring some sort of pseudo-earthly paradise that most people think of as Heaven. Some people are focused on entering such a place, but that is not necessarily involved in a person's worship of the Divine. It just depends on the person. Personally, I did find my own desires for such a paradise to be self-absorbed, and have since detached from them. But to each his/her own, and I would not want to take away what for some gives them the hope to get through each day. I believe we do not all need to be the same in our spirituality, and our needs are different, so it naturally follows that our foci will be as well. What is selfish to one person may not be for another.

    Actually, that is not always the case. Prayer/meditation/worship are profoundly personal actions, and people have diverse reasons for doing such activities. People that dedicate a great deal of time to prayer may hope to be rewarded by God, or they may not. I do not. I am not focused on reward, and the mere act of living and having a connection to the Divine is fulfillment enough for me to feel that worship is appropriate. I worship because I feel God deserves worship, if for no other reason than the sheer joy of life, of Creation, of my opportunity to experience spirituality.

    Worship/prayer/meditation is for me: first, a celebration (literally, sometimes with music and dance) of God/the Divine and life. Secondly, it is a time for introspection, to honestly assess myself and my thoughts and feelings, to be still and try to listen to my inner voice about things that concern me. Thirdly, it is a time to gain rest and energy to take out into my job and research (which focuses on conservation and environmental justice). One cannot run on empty all the time. Just as the physical body needs rest, so does the spirit. Prayer and meditation are times for me to bring my weariness, my cares, my anxieties before the Divine and rest in the stillness of God's Presence. This is necessary for me to continue slogging on in my attempt to change the world. Perhaps stronger people than I need no such rest, but I acknowledge that I need rejuvenation spiritually, and I don't feel this is a bad or selfish thing. I'm only one little human, after all. Finally, for many (including me) prayer/meditation is a way to change the world and help our planet. Many Druids, for example, have peace rituals about once a month, in which we meditate on and visualize peace. Many Christians pray for people and events all over the world, asking God to intercede. Perhaps you don't believe such things matter, but many of us firmly believe that positive thought and/or appealing to the Divine matter.

    I do not believe God needs anything, really. I think we have spiritual needs, and these may be met by worship, prayer, and/or meditation. It is not that God needs our worship, but rather that there is great joy in the dissolution of the self and its embrace by the Divine. In my experience, the union of created being with Creative Being yields the greatest potential for the self to become of less importance as well as the distinction between self and other to evaporate, leaving one with a deep sense of humility and yet also confidence, of love of all God's creation, and a commitment to reflect the divine love in this world.
     
  18. InLove

    InLove at peace

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2005
    Messages:
    3,267
    Likes Received:
    4
    Thanks, path_of_one--I was having a little trouble wording my thoughts. This is beautifully stated.

    And by the way, Thunk--I overlooked saying "Welcome to CR".

    InPeace,
    InLove
     
  19. Blessed87

    Blessed87 A restored soul

    Joined:
    May 13, 2005
    Messages:
    55
    Likes Received:
    0
    You're right, I should've worded that better!:) What I mean to say it that there is something in us that seeks spirituality.

    You're right, God doesn't need our demonstrations of faith, but He certainly deserves it. Psalm 24:1 says, "The earth is the Lord's and everything in it, the world and all who live in it."

    It's not by our goodness that we have this privilege to come to Him and offer our lives, it's only through His mercy in allowing us to come. Psalm 5:7 says, "But I, by Your great mercy, will come into your house; in reverence I will bow down toward Your holy temple."
     
  20. Bandit

    Bandit Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    No I don't agree.:) It appears to me that others would see this but I don't. However, I came out of a church that does not heed to all the man made traditions, religious beliefs & things that keep getting passed down to generations & I honestly find no flaws in the teaching I got, except for may be 1%. On the other hand I can see where others would go out searching for something different leaving there religions. After visiting & searching several of the man made religions & there churches, which were honestly quite dead, with vain repitions & lacking...(where baseball games have more energy) I can say with an honest heart, I would not trade the love & what I got in the Bible from my church for any of it.

    I recieved the Holy Ghost at a very young age & I am very aware there is one true God. So there again, I would not agree that God is flawed, neither has the BIble ever failed me or any part of my life. I consider myself fortunate & blessed beyond measure by the Lord:) .

    I think I do agree that religions are very flawed, stuck on certain issues & fail to expound into new dimensions with the Lord & understanding & quick understanding in the written Word.

    Do I understand it all? No, but I am trying by seeking His will.
     

Share This Page