Deism. A not-new but very intelligent approach to GOD.

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posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 09:30 AM
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Hi, team,

I have recently discovered a new-to-me tangent for study of the phenomenon of religious thought, and wondered if anyone would like to explore it with me. Here's one of several online descriptions of the idea of Deism as a theology: Deism: About the God who created the universe, set it going, left, & hasn't been seen since.

Thomas Paine was a philosopher during the founding of our nation, and I have written before about his essay The Age of Reason.

In it, he discusses his distaste for the Abrahamic, and especially the "Christian" anthropomorphism of God (as a "person" vs as Creation itself). For more info, you can access the ongoing thread God is Not a Person

The Age of Reason is a brief essay (one-sitting read) on the history behind the Bible and Christianity. Keep in mind that to Paine, the "Bible" was the OT only; and "Christianity" is the NT.

While Paine's ideas are still as valid (in my opinion) as Plato's, Aristotle's, and other past thinkers, they are not as well-known. And it has come to my attention that not all colleges teach Western Civilization like they used to, so many younger members may not know much about any of these guys or their thinking.

I just received yesterday a book order; one is the Complete Works of Thomas Paine, and the other is DEISM; A Revolution in Religion, a Revolution in You by a bloke name of Bob Johnson, copyright 2009.
Blurb:

Book Description
Publication Date: March 11, 2009
Deism is a natural and rational bridge that unites our reason to our belief in God. It propels us from the false and destructive ancient myths to a space-age belief system that is in line with our God-given reason. This book, written in a concise and cogent style, introduces the reader to Deism, a way of life that is free of the old conflicts between reason and religion. The removal of these conflicts allows us to enjoy and appreciate a much more profound and satisfying belief in Nature's God while helping us to live a more productive and meaningful life.

I'm wondering if there is anyone on board here who'd like to explore it with me in a sort of "study group"...
and would like to know members' reactions to this POV; those who reject it out of hand, and those who think it might be worth looking into as we move ever-so-slowly forward toward a healthy humanity.....

If so, I look forward to discussing!
~wild




posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 10:27 AM
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I've been tumbling something to this extent through my mind for some time...

It's definitely time for the revamping of our global perspective on the religions and begin to focus on each of our own personal connection to the creative force present in the universe, and how we interact with it, through a simpler but ultimately more beneficial manner.

I think if each of ous we're to follow our own personal path to "God" eventually we'd all realize that we have all ended up on the same mental wavelength with almost identical perspectives on our spiritual connection to everything that exists, which is the TRUEST connection that we can attain!

Our tendency is to try and push off as much responsibility as we can in an effort to
lighten the load", but when it comes to our relationship with the higher power(s?) it is illogical, in my opinion, to look to someone else or someone else's teaching or ideas for answers to our own spiritual struggles...

What works for one man's spiritual nature is relative to him, and thus will surely not work with another? Whom lives a completely different vibration of existance?

The real answers come from within the core being of each individual, when they are sought willfully. Each day all the answers and truths are fed into us from the ever flowing intelligence of the universe itself, but we unknowingly choose to lay a deaf ear to it and continue unhelped (but still seeking help
) through our lives.

All you have to do is believe, in YOURSELF, and in YOUR connection with YOUR God (the Universe), which is really YOU! Each of us is the God of our own perspective, of our own reality, and our own destiny!



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 10:38 AM
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reply to post by MidnightBlue2565
 


I agree, every person will find their unique way to the Truth. Have you read William James' The Varieties of Religious Experience ?

Written around 1900, he was a psychologist and did a series of lectures on the study of human nature and religiosity. He uses case studies of many different "religious" beliefs, and determined that no ONE way is adequate for EVERYONE....

Highly recommend it for a classic view of why everyone doesn't have the same beliefs, and don't need to have the same beliefs.



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 10:45 AM
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Can this deism also support a certain degree of pantheism, so far as that "God" became everything we see today?
edit on 8-12-2012 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 10:47 AM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 


I don't know yet, but I don't get that impression. It de-personifies GOD entirely. So, there's no hierarchy of various "people-like" deities in it, but I'm only just beginning.

I'm going to check out the site I linked to learn more.



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 10:49 AM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 


That's not what I meant. Everything that exists is a tiny piece of "God", so the entirety of the universe is "God" itself. Every tree and every breeze, every person and every rock, is all part of it. That's what I'm asking. Does deism go into this at all?

I'll go look at that link.
edit on 8-12-2012 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 10:49 AM
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Here's what the site has to say as its introduction:


Deism is a natural religion. Deists believe in the existence of God, on purely rational grounds, without any reliance on revealed religion or religious authority or holy text. Because of this, Deism is quite different from religions like Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The latter are based on revelations from God to prophet(s) who then taught it to humans. We like to call natural religions by the title "bottom-up" faiths and revealed religions as "top-down."

The opposite of Deism is Atheism -- the lack of a belief in god(s).


I like that: a "bottom-up" religion rather than a "revealed, or top-down" religion.



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 10:58 AM
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Public opinion polls on religion typically rely on each person to define their religious affiliation. Thus they all greatly underestimate the number of believers in Deism. However, there have been two exceptions:

2005/2006: The Baylor University religion survey was conducted during the winter of 2005/2006. They concluded that most American adults hold one of four views of God as defined by their understanding of:
The degree of God's engagement with humans and the rest of the world, and
The degree of God's wrath -- how angry he is towards human sin and how willing he is to punish transgressors.
The Baylor study found that those Americans who believed in God had four very different understandings about his nature. The researchers found that Americans are divided among believing in a

Type A (Authoritarian) God,
Type B: (Benevolent) God,
Type C: (Critical) God, and
Type D: (Distant) God:
The study found that 24.4% of the population believed in a Type D or Distant God who exhibited both low engagement and low anger. They typically view God as a cosmic force who created the universe and the natural laws by which it runs. He does not interact much with the world and does not judge or punish humans. This is close to a definition of the God of Deism that many Deists could agree with.

A larger percentage of west coasters, Roman Catholics, mainline Protestants, Jews, men, persons with higher educational attainment, and persons with higher income believe in this type of God than does the average American. More details. This would imply that over 50 million American adults are Deists, even though the vast majority of them haven't the foggiest idea what "Deism" means.

2008: The ARIS study was repeated. This time, they asked for people's belief about God. They found that:
Only 70% of Americans believe in a personal God. This contrasts with the over 90% values that are often mis-reported by the media.
12% are either Atheists (do not believe in God's existence) or Agnostics (do not know whether a personal God exists).
12% are Deists (believe in a higher power but not a personal God) even though the vast majority have never heard of the term. 2
Apparently, between 12 and 24% of the adult population of the U.S. believe in the principles of Deism.

Up to 50 million Americans would say "Yes, that's what I believe", most of them haven't heard the term.

What do you think of the 4 types of "God" listed above?"

Authoritarian - Type A
Benevolent -Type B
Critical -Type C
Distant -Type D

Would any of you agree that you have one of those "Types" of "God" in your belief system?



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 10:59 AM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 


Yes, that's exactly what it is.
Everything represents GOD. Yeah, check it out!



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 11:15 AM
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In my opinion god is not separate from our universe, god IS the universe and everything within it, including us. Exodus 3:14 points toward this. God tells Moses to tell the Israelites that "I Am" sent him. Who is "I Am"? We are all the "I Am" and we are all the living image of god. We are created in God's image by having sight.


Romans 1:20
For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities--his eternal power and divine nature--has been clearly seen, being understood by what has been made, so that men are without excuse.


God's invisible qualities work through me, making his presence known by what is made through sight. Who is the one making the image you are seeing? You are and you know this by the things that are being made within your image, yet you are invisible to yourself. These invisible qualities are you and your thoughts. Sure you can see yourself in a mirror but what I'm saying has an even deeper meaning than that.

God never left the universe in my opinion, he has never left us. God is always with us because he IS us.
edit on 8-12-2012 by 3NL1GHT3N3D1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 11:25 AM
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reply to post by 3NL1GHT3N3D1
 


God's invisible qualities work through me, making his presence known by what is made through sight. Who is the one making the image you are seeing? You are and you know this by the things that are being made within your image, yet you are invisible to yourself. These invisible qualities are you and your thoughts. Sure you can see yourself in a mirror but what I'm saying has an even deeper meaning than that.

God never left the universe in my opinion, he has never left us. God is always with us because he IS us.


I agree with you. Are you going to check out the links?



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 11:48 AM
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I'm posting a couple more links for the education of those unfamiliar with deism.

en.wikipedia.org...

moderndeism.com...'

An excerpt from the second link that I feel should be brought to everyone's attention:


It must be noted that Deism has been defined as the religion in which God abandoned the creation. This was rarely the case. During the Second Great Awakening, Deism was attacked by the revivalists who wanted to degrade its influence. They created the notion that Deists believed that God had created and then abandoned his creation in favor of greater things. No Deists truly believed this. Some believed that God was no longer active in creation but had not abandoned it but watched to observe.
edit on 8-12-2012 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 03:01 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 


I checked out the first link but the second link is asking for a username and password? Are those required to read or am I missing something?

I really like the explanation from the first link you posted, it seems to fit in with what I think for the most part. The only part I'd have to disagree with is the point about god not revealing himself to prophets. I do believe he revealed himself otherwise we wouldn't have books like the bible around. While I think a lot of the information in the bible has been distorted to fit certain powerful people's desires, I also believe there is a lot of truth in it.

I had never heard of this theology before, thanks for bringing it forward. Now off I go for a little research.
S&F
edit on 8-12-2012 by 3NL1GHT3N3D1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 03:10 PM
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reply to post by 3NL1GHT3N3D1
 



I do believe he revealed himself otherwise we wouldn't have books like the bible around. While I think a lot of the information in the bible has been distorted to fit certain powerful people's desires, I also believe there is a lot of truth in it.


That's the point.
Deism concludes that the Bible is more man-made than god-made, and therefore an unreliable source of spirituality, especially when it conveniently appeals to every dark aspect of the human's character.



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 03:44 PM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 


I agree with you 100%, but just because a few guys took the story and corrupted it doesn't mean there isn't any truth in it. There is a lot of truth which was inspired by "god" but others distorted this truth throughout history. I'd say that 85% was inspired by man and 15% by god, but that's my opinion.



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 03:59 PM
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reply to post by 3NL1GHT3N3D1
 


Yeah, I'll agree with that, but you have to know where to find it. My belief is that it's based, interestingly enough, in the source of paganism. One of the most persecuted religions in the history of our country. Do you know why? Because it was power. And the Catholics slaughtered it, using the pieces to build their own religion with which to rule the minds of men.

But a question that sticks in my mind is: why did they do it? Was it simply ambition, or righteousness, or greed? Maybe there's a secret we were never told, a reason that demanded that paganism be buried. Maybe we weren't ready for that kind of power yet.

And that leads me to another possibility - at that point, we were intellectually undeveloped, but our spirit was strong. At this point, we're intellectually developed, but our spirit is weak. And so, in this day and age, we're spiritually poisoned so that we'll never claim our right as gods. Or perhaps we're about to become spiritually developed. Maybe this hell is meant to teach us appreciation so we don't abuse it.

Either way, we're spiritually poisoned. And a lot of it comes from the Bible, which was written poorly and designed to tempt us in such a manner that all of our good intentions only burn the world, while we sit and wait for a dead man to come back to life and heal the world, cast the wicked into a fiery lake, and proclaim lordship over the earth in one day, and we can be saved just by giving him our soul. The same thing the bad guy has always asked for.

And here's a thought - "God" has had plenty of say. Why can't "Satan" speak? Why can't he argue for his side? If he is the polar opposite, he should be able to make a defending argument, if only to prove to us his nature. What is "God" afraid this "Satan" guy would say? What secrets is he afraid the devil would spill?

There's a question for you.



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 04:07 PM
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reply to post by 3NL1GHT3N3D1
 

Yes, to read that page's version of it you have to sign up (it's free). I'm sure if you do a google search, though, you'll find other sites that have it freely accessible. I just joined that particular site because it was the Thomas Paine National Historical Whatever.......




posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 04:28 PM
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Originally posted by 3NL1GHT3N3D1
In my opinion god is not separate from our universe, god IS the universe and everything within it, including us. Exodus 3:14 points toward this. God tells Moses to tell the Israelites that "I Am" sent him. Who is "I Am"? We are all the "I Am" and we are all the living image of god. We are created in God's image by having sight.


Romans 1:20
For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities--his eternal power and divine nature--has been clearly seen, being understood by what has been made, so that men are without excuse.


God's invisible qualities work through me, making his presence known by what is made through sight. Who is the one making the image you are seeing? You are and you know this by the things that are being made within your image, yet you are invisible to yourself. These invisible qualities are you and your thoughts. Sure you can see yourself in a mirror but what I'm saying has an even deeper meaning than that.

God never left the universe in my opinion, he has never left us. God is always with us because he IS us.
edit on 8-12-2012 by 3NL1GHT3N3D1 because: (no reason given)


God is from my point a view a plural Oneness that is part of everything. When you create an ego you disconnect from your surrounding and god to an extent. It is the soul and god who have to decide what kind of relationship they will experiance.

From my point of view Jesus said he was his soulbrothers and soulsisters that was nice to soulbrothers and soulsisters.



Matthew 25:31-46

New International Version (NIV)
The Sheep and the Goats

31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.

34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’

44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’

45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’


Genesis 1:26
And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

I have a hard time understanding people who cannot see that both Buddism, Hinduism, native american and Jesus teaching points to the exact same source.

All spiritual growth is the same and god (the blessed teachers) will find you on any place when you are ready and communicate with you in the way that is most effeciant for you.



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 04:40 PM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 


I think you have it backwards, pagans are the ones who infiltrated Christianity from its inception. The Romans first killed all of Jesus' earliest followers then once paganism started to decline they legalized Christianity, but not before inserting pagan themes into the story to make the transition a bit easier for the common folk of Rome. Is it just a coincidence that the man who legalized Christianity (Constantine) was pagan?

Paganism substituted natural phenomena with human-like gods which is exactly what they did with Jesus. They turned Jesus into a symbol for the sun by putting the miracles, resurrection, and virgin birth into the story. In my opinion none of those things actually happened, they just put them into the story so pagans would feel comfortable with their conversion to Christianity.

Catholicism didn't slaughter paganism because pagans are the ones who set the church up. It's called the ROMAN Catholic Church, Romans were strictly pagan for much of their history.

Satan has spoken, religion is his language. Peter and Paul were the ones who first turned Jesus' death into a faith-based sacrifice, they were the Satan of the time. If you want to see Satan speak, all you need to do is read Paul's epistles.
edit on 8-12-2012 by 3NL1GHT3N3D1 because: (no reason given)
edit on 8-12-2012 by 3NL1GHT3N3D1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 8 2012 @ 05:24 PM
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reply to post by 3NL1GHT3N3D1
 



I think you have it backwards, pagans are the ones who infiltrated Christianity from its inception. The Romans first killed all of Jesus' earliest followers then once paganism started to decline they legalized Christianity, but not before inserting pagan themes into the story to make the transition a bit easier for the common folk of Rome. Is it just a coincidence that the man who legalized Christianity (Constantine) was pagan?


Not coincidence at all. He was a very good businessman. He could see that Christianity was becoming widely supported, so he substituted pagan traditions so as to preserve them. Perhaps that's why Christianity lasted so long, because perhaps he confided in his closest friends and they kept the beast alive to carry the cure, through all these years.

No, pagan traditions existed even in Sumerian times, long before Jesus was ever born.


Paganism substituted natural phenomena with human-like gods which is exactly what they did with Jesus. They turned Jesus into a symbol for the sun by putting the miracles, resurrection, and virgin birth into the story. In my opinion none of those things actually happened, they just put them into the story so pagans would feel comfortable with their conversion to Christianity.


Some of them, not all of them. There's a good many that used such stories as an allegory. Again, Jesus came after these stories, so perhaps you should do a little more research.


Catholicism didn't slaughter paganism because pagans are the ones who set the church up. It's called the ROMAN Catholic Church, Romans were strictly pagan for much of their history.


And then Christianity took over. Why, I don't know. I don't. But paganism came before Christianity, and the Catholics shredded it for material to build their own religion.


Satan has spoken, religion is his language. Peter and Paul were the ones who first turned Jesus' death into a faith-based sacrifice, they were the Satan of the time. If you want to see Satan speak, all you need to do is read Paul's epistles.


What evidence do you have of this?

edit on 8-12-2012 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)





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