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September 30, 2015

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For an important application of Pascal's wager, see "What's the Worst That Could Happen?" Book and many good YouTube videos, all by a very clever Oregon HS science teacher,

walker, yes, I blogged about what that book said about Pascal's wager. The link is in the second "here" in this post.

http://hinessight.blogs.com/church_of_the_churchless/2010/05/great-logical-argument-for-not-believing-in-god.html

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Other hells actually near you Brian

https://www.google.fr/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=ssri%2Bschool%2Bshootings&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&gfe_rd=cr&ei=2MsNVvWZEovf8gf1g6HIDw

Shouldn't you -with your talents on keyboard, convince your state Oregon, or your Land or the world
prevent the next co-pilot or president TOTALLY without empathy

777


What are you talking about, 777? You often don't make any sense. You really don't make any sense now.

I've been advocating for gun control legislation for a long time. So don't give me any crap on that front. This is a sad day in Oregon. You shouldn't be using the tragedy to say...

Actually I have no idea what you're saying, or trying to say. So I'd like to suggest that if you can't say something reasonable and compassionate about the killings, don't say anything.

"Pascal's basic idea was that it makes sense to believe in God, because if you're right the benefits are eternal and unlimited, while if you're wrong you lose nothing"

--From the above it would seem that belief is a choice. Speaking personally, I can't force myself to believe that, for example, Jesus is my lord and savior. I could pretend to believe I love Jesus but is that good enough for God, to pretend? And since the Christian God knows what is sincerely in our hearts I can't fake this God out. He knows if I'm a phony believer. So, Pascal's wager does nothing for me. I'm either a believer or I'm not. It's not something I can calculate or strategize to hedge my bet.

Now, if the religion or way to salvation and bliss is entirely dependent on behavior rather than heartfelt belief, then someone might consider hedging their bet by adhering to certain rites and rituals or whatever the particular religion or way of believing in God required. Nothing to lose except the price of adhering to tenets and behaviors which could be especially OK if you enjoy the rites, rituals and/or behaviors.

also: "Gutting's distinction between atheism and agnosticism, which seems to basically line up with denying and doubting -- atheists deny, agnostics doubt -- is spurious."

--This really gets into hair-splitting but there is another type of agnosticism than doubting existence of God rather than denying it altogether. It is simply not knowing. This type of "agnostic", although they may not call themselves anything, just simply says that they don't know enough to deny or doubt. There is no evidence to them of God but there is also no evidence of no God. Nothing for them to go on at all. They just shrug their shoulders.

If you go into a room and there is nothing in it, it would be reasonable to say there is nothing there. But the room we are in is full of phenomena and perceived objects. It appears there is something here. We just don't know what it is.

I clicked on the link i gave above
and there were almost or over 100 results, even CNN Dr Gupta
ALL advocating that SSRI medications
are or might be responsible
NOT ARMS
but the nastiness about how using them
and 10

This reaction of you equals your "deleting" when I argued against vaccination
on your Salem Blog on yr request
and you could not believe that they create autism much more than when Pasteur started with it
hence you delete

777


Brian and Sant Mat Exers and Skeptics, consider your options: choose your own Medicine, or poison.

choose between three theoretic alternatives: Annihilation, Absorption, and The individuality of the soul before and after death. It is to this last belief that we are led by reason; and it is this belief that has constituted the basis of all religions in all the ages of the world.
I choose to believe in the Combination of Allan Kardec's Spiritist Philosophy and Sant Mat.
Following taken from Kardec's book, Heaven and Hell.
"1. It is certain that we live, think, and act; it is no less certain that we shall die. But, on quitting the earth, whither shall we go? What will become of us? Shall we be better off, or shall we be worse off? Shall we continue to exist, or shall we cease to exist? “To be, or not to be,” is the alternative presented to us; it will be for always, or not at all; it will be everything, or nothing; we shall live on eternally, or we shall cease to live, once and forever. The alternative is well worth the consideration.
Every one feels the need of living, of loving, of being happy. Announce, to one who believes himself to be at the point of death, that his life is to be prolonged, that the hour of death is delayed—announce to him, moreover, that he is going to be happier than he has ever been—and his heart will beat high with joy and hope. But to what end does the human heart thus instinctively aspire after happiness, if a breath suffices to scatter its aspirations?
Can anything be more agonizing that the idea that we are doomed to utter and absolute destruction, that our dearest affections, our intelligence, our knowledge so laboriously acquired, are all to be dissolved, thrown away, and lost forever? Why should we strive to become wiser or better? Why should we lay any restraint on our passions? Why should we weary ourselves with effort and study, if our exertions are to bear no fruit? If, erelong, perhaps tomorrow, all that we have done is to be of no further use to us? Were such really our doom, the lot of mankind would be a thousand times worse than that of the brutes; for the brute lives thoroughly in the present, in the gratification of its bodily appetites, with no torturing anxiety, no tormenting aspiration, to impair its enjoyment of the passing hour. But a secret and invincible intuition tells us that such cannot be our destiny.
2. The belief in annihilation necessarily leads a man to concentrate all his thoughts on his present life; for what, in fact, could be more illogical than to trouble ourselves about a future which we do not believe will have any existence? And as he whose attention is thus exclusively directed to his present life naturally places his own interest above that of others, this belief is the most powerful stimulant to selfishness, and he who holds it is perfectly consistent with himself in saying: “Let us get the greatest possible amount of enjoyment out of this world while we are in it; let us secure all the pleasures which the present can offer, seeing that, after death, everything will be over with us; and let us hasten to make sure of our own enjoyment, for we know not how long our life may last.” Such as one is, moreover, equally consistent in arriving at this further conclusion—most dangerous to the well being of society—“Let us make sure of our enjoyment, no matter by what means; let our motto be: ‘Each for himself;’ the good things of life are the prize of the most adroit.”
If some few are restrained, by respect for public opinion, from carrying out this program to its full extent, what restraint is there for those who stand in no such awe of their neighbors? Who regard human law as a tyranny that is exercised only over those who are sufficiently wanting in cleverness to bring themselves within its reach, and who consequently apply all their ingenuity to evading alike its requirements and its penalties? If any doctrine merits the qualifications of pernicious and anti-social, it is assuredly that of annihilation, because it destroys the sentiments of solidarity and fraternity, sole basis of the social relations.
3. Let us suppose an entire nation to have acquired, in some way or other, the certainty that, at the end of a week, a month, or a year, it will be utterly destroyed, that not a single individual of its people will be left alive, that they will all be utterly annihilated, and that not a trace of their existence will remain; what, in such a case, would be the line of conduct adopted, by the people thus doomed to a certain and foreseen destruction, during the short time which they would still have to exist? Would they labor for their moral improvement, or for their instruction? Would they continue to work for their living? Would they scrupulously respect the rights, the property, and the life, of their neighbors? Would they submit to the laws of their country, or to any ascendancy, even to that parental authority, the most legitimate of all? Would they recognize the existence of any duty? Assuredly not. Well, —the social ruin which we have imagined, by the way of illustration, as overtaking an entire nation, is being effected, individually, from day to day, by the doctrine of annihilation. If the practical
consequences of this doctrine are not so disastrous to society as they might be, it is because, in the first place, there is, among the greater number of those whose vanity is flattered by the title of “free-thinker,” more of braggadocio than of absolute unbelief, more doubt than conviction, and more dread of annihilation than they care to show; and, in the second place, because those who really believe in annihilation are a very small minority, and are consequently influenced, in spite of themselves, by the contrary opinion, and held in check by the resistant forces of society and of the State: but, should absolute disbelief in a future existence ever be arrived at by the majority of mankind, the dissolution of society would necessarily follow. The propagation of the doctrine of annihilation would lead, inevitably, to this result.2
But whatever may be the consequences of the doctrine of annihilation, if that doctrine were true, it would have to be accepted; for, if annihilation were our destiny, neither opposing systems of philosophy, nor the moral and social ills that would result from our knowledge that such a destiny was awaiting us, could prevent our being annihilated. And it is useless to attempt to disguise from ourselves that skepticism, doubt, indifference, are gaining ground every day, notwithstanding the efforts of the various religious bodies to the contrary. But if the religious systems of the day are powerless against skepticism, it is because they lack the weapons necessary for combating the enemy; so that, if their teaching were allowed to remain in a state of immobility, they would, erelong, be inevitably worsted in the struggle. What is lacking to those systems—in this age of positivism, when men demand to understand before believing—is the confirmation of their doctrines by facts and by their concordance with the discoveries of Positive Science. If theoretic systems say white where facts say black, we must choose between an enlightened appreciation of evidence and a blind acceptance of arbitrary statements.
4. It is in this state of things that the phenomena of Spiritism are spontaneously developed in the order of Providence, and oppose a barrier against the invasion of skepticism, not only by argument, or by the prospect of the dangers which it reveals, but also by the production of physical facts which render the existence of the soul, and the reality of a future life, both palpable and visible.
Each human being is, undoubtedly, free to believe anything, or to believe nothing; but those who employ the ascendancy of their knowledge and position in propagating, among the masses, and especially among the rising generation, the negation of a future life, are sowing broadcast the seeds of social confusion and dissolution, and are incurring a heavy responsibility by doing so.
5. There is another doctrine that repudiates the qualification of “Materialist,” because it admits the existence of a principle distinct from matter; we allude to that which asserts that each individual soul is to be absorbed in the Universal Whole. According to this doctrine, each human being assimilates, at birth, a particle of this principle, which constitutes his soul and gives him life, intelligence and sentiment. At death, this soul returns to the common source, and is merged in infinity as a drop of water is merged in the ocean.
This doctrine is, undoubtedly, an advance upon that of pure and simple Materialism, inasmuch as it admits something more than matter; but its consequences are precisely the same. Whether a man, after death, is dissolved into nothingness, or plunged into a general reservoir, is all one, as far as he himself is concerned; "..................

Brian, If Ishwar Puri is correct about our Astral Body living 1-3 thousand years, depending on Karma, and our Causal body living another million years or more, then to me, Sach Khand most likely happens on other less dense, higher Spiritual plants that Earth, and if we do have to reincarnate, it will be on higher Spiritual Planets as taught by Khrishna in The Bhagavad Gita. It all lines up perfectly. You can have your individuality, and KEEP it, not loosing all the positive things and knowledge you have done in this life and past lives.

Don't give up, and throw out the baby with the bad karma bath water.

Jim provided a quote from Kardec:

"Can anything be more agonizing that the idea that we are doomed to utter and absolute destruction, that our dearest affections, our intelligence, our knowledge so laboriously acquired, are all to be dissolved, thrown away, and lost forever?"

--This of course is the motivation for much religious/spiritual belief. Even if the religion is irrational and without tangible, objective, empirical evidence of its veracity, people still choose to believe in order to assuage their fears which can amount to terror, even panic, in realizing their eventual eternal annihilation.

Kardec says: "Why should we strive to become wiser or better? Why should we lay any restraint on our passions? Why should we weary ourselves with effort and study, if our exertions are to bear no fruit? If, erelong, perhaps tomorrow, all that we have done is to be of no further use to us?"

--Certainty of annihilation does not mean that a person will succumb to moral depravity or give up striving and living. We are here now and we do have this life to live however long it will last. Some people may not believe in a spiritual or eternal meaning to life but they do manage to find meaning in the here and now via their vocations, pursuits and relationships which can provide enjoyment and/or benefit to others even if they know one day they may be really, really old and definitely really, really dead.

Most people, believers in God or not, also find that behaving justly towards others makes for a better life for themselves than being ruthless, selfish and unkind. Religion does not necessarily confer good character and being without it does not necessitate a descent into barbarity and a meaningless life. Good, ethical values can be taught as a functional way of life in lieu of religion or superstition.

Kardec writes: "There is another doctrine that repudiates the qualification of “Materialist,” because it admits the existence of a principle distinct from matter; we allude to that which asserts that each individual soul is to be absorbed in the Universal Whole. According to this doctrine, each human being assimilates, at birth, a particle of this principle, which constitutes his soul and gives him life, intelligence and sentiment. At death, this soul returns to the common source, and is merged in infinity as a drop of water is merged in the ocean. barbarity and a meaningless life."

--He is assuming that the "soul" is not already absorbed into the "Universal Whole". It may be that our sense of "I-ness" is merely a temporary condition, an illusion of our minds, but that our underlying essence was prior to, during, and after our present existence always absorbed in the Universal Whole.

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