Re: atheism vs theism

From: Moorad Alexanian (
Date: Fri Sep 15 2000 - 10:43:24 EDT

  • Next message: George Andrews Jr.: "Re: The mind/brain and revelation"

    The best definition of genius I have heard is that which say that "a genius
    is someone with an uncommon amount of common sense." I think the question of
    the existence of a creator or God is a gut feeling, a sort of common sense,
    that is knowledge perfect enough for you but imperfect enough to convince
    someone else. This is the issue of self-evidentness. What is self-evident
    to one is not self-evident to someone else. I think a strong degree of
    honesty is required for someone not to fool oneself. At times I think we
    are like birds who do excellently in flight but know nothing, and will never
    know, about aerodynamics. Moorad

    -----Original Message-----
    From: Steve Petermann <>
    To: Adrian Teo <>; <>
    Date: Friday, September 15, 2000 9:53 AM
    Subject: Re: atheism vs theism

    >Hello Adrian,
    >This raises an interesting question about why we adhere to the
    >presuppositions that we have and not others. If it is a matter of faith,
    >then what is it that makes a person choose one set of presuppositions over
    >another? I even wonder if we really make conscious decisions over the
    >presuppositions that we have, or were these so subtly instilled in us
    >through our upbringing that we (in general) are not aware of the influences
    >that led to where we are today?
    >This is a complex question because it strikes at the heart of the free will
    >issue. As one who does not believe in free will, I believe we adopt
    >positions because of the enormous complex of factors: genetic,
    >environmental, life experience, chance, and through God's freedom. When I
    >say that belief in God is through faith, I include it as being effected by
    >these other determinative factors. Faith as a psychological function is
    >effected by our genetic makeup and personal history. This type of faith is
    >an epistemological function of determining the reliability of something in
    >our belief framework. Faith as a metaphysical principal relates to our
    >unity in being part of the divine life. It is a relational term that leads
    >to epistemology but is not knowledge, per se. I would stipulate that both
    >atheists and theists adopt their positions primarily because of prior
    >conditions related to personality archetype, psychological development,
    >As an example, if a person is an introverted, thinking archetype as Jung
    >describes, they may have difficulty relating to other people. Their
    >individuation may overwhelm any sense of participation with others.
    >this type of person has difficulty with subject-subject dynamics, they may
    >also have difficulty relating to a personal God concept. They just flat
    >don't get it. This is not a volitional failing on their part but a feature
    >of their makeup. I suspect that many atheists also have problems relating
    >to other people. Then there are developmental aspects where a person may
    >have had a very bad experience in their youth with religious concepts
    >from a parent or a militant believer. A factor of that sort could also
    >create a resistance to any form of religion. What I am trying to stress is
    >that the adoption of a belief system is not volitional, it is the creation
    >of many factors that even today continue to modify that position. While we
    >may critique an atheist's position, it should not be done from a condemning
    >framework but one of agape. Agape not only loves unconditionally, it also
    >desires the best for the other. This seeking of change, however, should be
    >done in all humility. After all in the final analysis, *we* may be the
    >in need of change.
    >All the Best,
    >Steve Petermann

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Fri Sep 15 2000 - 10:44:43 EDT