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Passions in Poetry

When did God begin?

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LeeJ
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0 posted 09-19-2005 11:07 AM       View Profile for LeeJ   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for LeeJ

Where was God from?  When did he begin?

Was there something before him?  

Is he one of many Gods?  

Thinking perhaps he and we are very young compared to the ancients?


Huan Yi
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1 posted 09-19-2005 11:22 AM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

Well, there was this chicken . . .
Larry C
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2 posted 09-19-2005 11:26 AM       View Profile for Larry C   Email Larry C   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Larry C's Home Page   View IP for Larry C

The Bible says he had no beginning and that He'll have no end. Careful, you'll sprain somthing just trying to think about it.

If tears could build a stairway and memories a lane, I'd walk right up to heaven and bring you home again.

Ron
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3 posted 09-19-2005 04:54 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

It's really not all that difficult.

Beginnings and Endings only have meaning within the boundaries of Time. Remove the constraints of Time and there are no Beginnings, no Endings, no Entropy, no movement, no change, ever, at all. Of course, it's hard for us to imagine a universe without time, just as it's hard for us to imagine a universe with less or more than the three physical dimensions of height, width and depth. We are forever limited by our own senses and experiences.

Mathematics, however, is not as limited by perception. Whether one believes in an eternal God who created the universe or a less personal Big Bang of explosive creation, both necessarily share a common ground.

At one time, there was no time.
Stephanos
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4 posted 09-19-2005 06:14 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Mortality is a unique vantage point, from which anything else just sounds impossible ... even strange or improper.  But from God's perspective, to be born and then to die is the strange path (except that he partook of that too, in the incarnation).  We would do well to remember that the fact that we die and experience futility, is an abnormal fact. It's not what we were meant for, finally.  

So, if we are the exception rather than the rule, maybe this very question is (in reality) even more strange than the concept of immortality is to us.


Have you never caught yourself glancing (almost like you stepped off the planet for a moment, and peered back over your shoulder) at the strange and bittersweet tragedy of living and dying as if it were the strangest arrangement ever?   Feeling more like it's a mystery to be solved ... even a wrong to be righted, rather than the true nature of existence?  That feeling, is probably as close as I've come to relating to the Hindu / Buddhist.  It just seems like their idea of a solution is to escape the whole thing, while the Christian one is to recover what was lost.  I accept the latter, because to me the Hindu solution is stranger and more offensive than the problem... kind of like Jumping out of the frying pan into the fire.



Lee J,

If God is young compared to "the ancients" then what do we mean by "god", other than imaginitive fiction?  


Design demands a designer who predates his art.  A story demands an author who predates his book.  We are the design, and life on earth is the story.  


Stephen.  
Larry C
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5 posted 09-19-2005 06:18 PM       View Profile for Larry C   Email Larry C   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Larry C's Home Page   View IP for Larry C

Since we were created to live forever and that's the way our brains were wired it makes sense that at 85 years of age or any other age we deem old we still think of ourselves as young or 18. Only our bodies seems to concede age.

If tears could build a stairway and memories a lane, I'd walk right up to heaven and bring you home again.

LeeJ
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6 posted 09-20-2005 07:03 AM       View Profile for LeeJ   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for LeeJ

well, then, do any of you or can any of you consider that there is more then one God?
Meaning, the ancients believed so...where did the Romans conjur up that concept...do you believe there was a factual city called Atlantis?  

Ron, your explaination of time and dimension helps...it is what I to believe...but I believe God goes much deeper then many Christains believe.  

So so many Christians pray for things to happen and that's a good thing, but so many of them believe that God will intervein and wave a magic wand, to make things better.  

I don't believe he does that..and then sometimes I do? Meaning, theoretically I believe that God created life, we're born, but with that life, he grants us choice...so many people blame so much on others, that they forget where the original decission came from....which is self.  Any idea or bad behavior, bad choice comes from within.  We choose, not God...and we can make it better.  

I don't know if I've clearly explained what I'm trying to project here, but I'll do my best.  

I believe God leaves us on our own, so to speak, once he grants us life...it's all up to us, to project our souls, awareness into a much deeper moral stability which best attributes our individual journey...I suppose what I'm trying to say, and if any of you can help me out, I'd surely appreciate.  What I mean to say, is God, is much bigger then Christains believe Him to be...and their religion is not that simple as they perceive it...like dieing for instance...I believe in those plains, dimensions...and dieing to me, would be like walking through a door, into and onto another plain/dimension...I believe there's more to outer space then most people think it to be...but its greater and deeper with so so much knowledge and other beings...and I don't believe it's about space travel, but traveling back and forth thru the dimensions...yanno?

It amazes me, how so much more capable we are to conceive this, and yet, our country, our world is so still uneducated...we should be much further along, I think?  But fear within the Christain Communities stagnates this growth...and I say again...I believe the Bible is a good book to live life by, but I don't believe it is accurate, due to man's greed and desire for material wealth, power, postion.  

A clear example of that would be...and gosh, I wish I could remember the exact words and text to direct you to, but I read in the Bible, where someone is in Hell, and the son/or relative of that person asks if he can give water to that person...and either God or Jesus says, No, neither can he cross over into this world, nor can you cross over there...Now this passage was pointed out to me in Bible Stude when I inquired about ghosts.  And yet, so so many people have seen ghosts, talked to them, been scared by them...spirits lingering...and how bout the mothman proficies...?  The warnings before the Chernoble accident...and the collapse of that bridge in Point Plesant, Virginia?

What I'm saying is this, do I believe in Jesus, Yes...but stories can surely get blown out of porportion...why are so so many Christians afraid to ask questions...and so adament that every single word in the Bible is authentically expressed?  Not to mention, it is so metaphorically written, whose to say that interpritations are correct.  

I still would very much like to believe that Jesus, being 1/2 man would have been given the great gift of knowing and experiencing love and intimacy with a woman.  What in the world is so ironic about that?  Its very possible...and yet, Christains seem to reject that fact?  Why, b/c they think of physical intimacy of a stigma/weakness or perhaps even unacceptable behavior.  It is not, it is complete spiritual love...a treasure and gift, if thought of in the right way and not to be shared with everyone who we believe we love.  And I believe that's where most folks mistake the love they feel for someone as a physical love, but it's not always the case?  

I'm getting off track here and going deeper then I wanted to, sorry.

A mind is like a home, furnished by its owner, so if one's life is cold and bare he can blame none but himself.
Louis L'Amour, 'Bendigo Shafter'

"

Ron
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7 posted 09-20-2005 11:59 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
I believe the Bible is a good book to live life by, but I don't believe it is accurate, due to man's greed and desire for material wealth, power, postion.

The authors of the Bible stopped demonstrating greed and desire a few thousand years past, Lee. The authors of much more recent texts that you cite, here and elsewhere, are still collecting their royalties.

It's good to be cynical. It's good to question, and equally important to remain open to new truths. Honest exploration, however, would demand that our cynicism be applied across the board. Yet, clearly, I think that remains remarkably rare for most people. When push comes to shove, we believe what we want to believe, looking less for explanations of what is than for justifications of what we think should be.
Stephanos
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8 posted 09-20-2005 01:17 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

quote:
Jesus, being 1/2 man would have been given the great gift of knowing and experiencing love and intimacy with a woman.  What in the world is so ironic about that?  Its very possible...and yet, Christains seem to reject that fact?



LeeJ,

I've never met a half of a man.  That would be an interesting meeting.  LOL.  Seriously, though, Jesus was a whole man.  And the Church (except for the docetists) has not denied the full humanity of Jesus.  I for one believe that Jesus had the capacity and desire to love a woman romantically, just as any healthy man would.  So it would not be "ironic", at all.  We just don't believe it fits the data that we have.  I'll explain:  


For one, arguing that a messianic figure was married would be along the lines of arguing that a Catholic Priest is married.  It's not that it never happens, but for the most part it doesn't.  Full time itinerant ministry, controversial doctrine, unparalleled charisma, are not the most compatible things with family life.  The ascetic tendency to recognize that God sometimes called men for higher purposes (even than family life) was not unknown to the Jews.  Other figures who probably weren't married were John the Baptist, and leaders of ascetic groups like the Essenes.  That's why the Bible mentions some being "Eunichs for the Kingdom of God".  My point in mentioning these things, is to show you that the concept was really present, known, and practiced.  We know that historically.  It's not just speculation.  


Secondly, the most reliable documents (closest to the events and people in question) don't describe Jesus as being married.  They don't even hint at it.  Documents that do, were written much later, and have largely been deemed by scholars as pseudo-historical, their authorship being at least second-generation or later.  They were not written by people who were close to the events at hand, and often their claims to apostolic authorship are known to be false.


So, while some Christians may be "afraid" of such questions, I know many who are not, and are quite confident that evidence is in favor of the orthodox view.  Since, as I mentioned above ... 1) Messianic figures and religious zealots were often celibate and 2) The best documents we have report that Jesus was celibate, it seems the burden of proof is more upon those who say that Jesus wasn't celibate.  Lee, what historical documents can you lead me to, that should make me seriously question what the Gospels say about Jesus?  I think that's what you have to do next, to establish your thoughts here as more than just a hunch.  



The Christian view, is not that Jesus was celibate because there was something wrong with marriage.  Remember that Jesus was fully Jewish.  What was the Jewish understanding of marriage?  That it was "good that man should not be alone".  God created and blessed the marriage union early on, as related in the book of Genesis.  The reason that Jesus did not partake of marriage, is more like a man abstaining from a good thing for a higher thing.  It is not a man abstaining from a bad thing.  This is actually one of the things that makes Jesus sacrifice more meaningful ... that he could have had marital union, conjugal pleasure, and biological children and grandchildren.  A man refusing to eat a handful of corn, for the reason of planting that corn for others, cannot serve as an argument against the goodness of corn.  The more nourishing the corn, the more virtuous the man's act of sacrifice.  See what I mean?  The orthodox view of Christ, and Christianity is not, and has never been, anti-marriage.  It has only said so, in it's more heritical moments.  


Stephen.  

                    
LeeJ
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9 posted 09-20-2005 01:46 PM       View Profile for LeeJ   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for LeeJ

Quote:  "How can Jesus be both God and Son of God?"  One should be reminded that Jesus referred to Himself as "Son of God" and "Son of man."   The designation "Son of God" refers to the deity of Christ and "Son of man" refers to the humanity of Christ, therefore he was 1/2 Man, 1/2 divine...
Not A Poet
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10 posted 09-20-2005 02:25 PM       View Profile for Not A Poet   Email Not A Poet   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Not A Poet's Home Page   View IP for Not A Poet

Lee, I think that must be one of those "equations" that can't be solved with ordinary arithmetic
Stephanos
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11 posted 09-20-2005 04:02 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Lee,

In the creeds, it has been said that Jesus Christ is all God, and all man. 100 / 100.  But, I think I agree with Not-A-Poet, that this transcends mathematics.  


Anyway, I knew what you meant.  I just wanted you to know that Christians have seldom thought that Jesus was less than human, though they have thought him to be more.


Stephen.      

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12 posted 09-20-2005 05:37 PM       View Profile for Midnitesun   Email Midnitesun   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Midnitesun

well, maybe that's part of the problem, that so many refer to God as a MAN?

Lee? I fight every day with my own beliefs
sometimes it's NO GOD, sometimes its a SHE GOD, sometimes it's MANY GODS..
(or maybe TOO MANY?)

but goddamit,  the NO GOD thought seems to be winning first place lately
  
Huan Yi
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13 posted 09-20-2005 09:10 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi


Would anyone be unhappy to discover
that God was a Vulcan?
LeeJ
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14 posted 09-21-2005 08:42 AM       View Profile for LeeJ   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for LeeJ

All of your comments have added text to my thoughts   especially you Stephanos, as you love to bust on me...but, isn't that what life is about...heck, God has a great sense of humor as well.

Not A Poet...yeah, I definately believe, your right on the money with that one....

Midnitesun..

Guess we've all been there, and it's human nature to want to blame something, someone?  So I know the feeling, but regardless, God is there whether we like it or not...

Johh, well, you may have something there, since He is from another time, another space...?  hehe but the point being...He IS!  

Ron, always love to read your ideas, theories, input....and perhaps I'll go to hell for this one...although I love the Bible, I don't believe everything as stated in there is absolute...wish I did, kinda...but I'd like to believe as well, the God couldn't count on all men to place down His words correctly...and with all the different religions...I just cannot buy the fact that the Bible are all God's true words...I do believe that it is possible, that before the Bible was open to the public, the priests changed things around a bit, to serve their own personal gains and not Gods.

Man is led by greed, and even though God may have set forth the scriptures through chosen men...I do believe that there are those who always interfer, change, interpret things their own way.  God forgive me if I'm wrong, but honestly, I don't believe I am.  

I'm not suggesting that people should turn away from the Bible, I'm simply suggesting that maybe it would be well, to be more open minded?

Hugs to you all, always a pleasure and learning experience.

P.S.  No one answered my question on spirits crossing over?  Does anyone know the scripture I was referring to?  Stephanos?


Stephanos
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15 posted 09-21-2005 06:16 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Lee,

If I didn't like you, I wouldn't "bust" on you so much.  Does that make you feel better?


Stephen.
Huan Yi
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16 posted 09-21-2005 08:07 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

I personally wouldn’t be all that happy
to find God to be no more than ET;
some technologically more advanced Bart Simpson
from another planet.  Our current notion of God
goes beyond the ability to make thunder and lightning.

Stephanos
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17 posted 09-21-2005 09:36 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

John,

"Aliens" have always been portrayed as another part of the universe or creation, not as the transcendent Creator.  How could we ever confuse one for the other?  Wouldn't it be like comparing apples and apple trees?  


Stephen.  
Stephanos
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18 posted 09-22-2005 12:06 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Midnitesun:  
quote:
well, maybe that's part of the problem, that so many refer to God as a MAN?



Do you mean Christians speaking of the incarnation of God, in the person of Jesus Christ?


Lee:
quote:
even though God may have set forth the scriptures through chosen men...I do believe that there are those who always interfer, change, interpret things their own way.  God forgive me if I'm wrong, but honestly, I don't believe I am.



But if God was able to choose men, and actually get the ball rolling, why couldn't he at the very least maintain a pure record?  Is he God, or is he not?  Even if you don't want to believe in the divine hand guiding this process, it's easy to get an accurate account of what a teacher said and did, especially a popular one like Jesus ... even if people want to twist the message for their own ends, the earliest documents remain for our reference.  (remember that the New Testament has better manuscript attestation than any ancient work in classical literature!).
  

However, I do think you're right about the interpretive part.  Though it's not impossible (for those who actually read and study the Bible) to see where and why such interpretations are off.  That's why the heretics then (and now), tended to write new "gospels" to support their interpretive antics.  Things like that weren't so easy to support from the earliest texts alone.  It's much easier to deceive someone, if you provide them with a "supplemental" text to read alongside.  They had to do that, because there was no way to change what was already recorded, copied, and spread like wildfire.  


So as to the part about men changing the text ... there's just not that much evidence of it.  The copying and proliferation of the earliest documents was so explosive, that any intentionally altered versions would stand out like black on white.  There are some changes, indeed, but whether intentional or not, they are insignificant in regard to any of the central Christian beliefs.  Most of them are mere grammatical differences, or dropped and added words here and there.  They just don't amount to anything that would cause someone to come away from them with a radically different message.  It's really the same way with a lot of other ancient manuscripts too.  Shakespearian manuscripts differ one from another, but the plots remain essentially the same.  


There were documents that told a radically different story of Jesus, however ... the pseudepigraphal writings (commonly known as apocryphal gospels).  But these are known to be written much later than the people and places they describe.  Their authorship is more than doubted by the experts (and no, the experts aren't all Catholics and Christians).  In short, the canonization of certain books of the Bible, and the rejection of others, has a real basis and grounds.  It wasn't done out of political conniving and conspiratorial plotting.


I'm not attacking you for your view, I'm encouraging you also to be open minded, and do more research into this.  Because, that view, I believe is becoming a popularized myth, and urban legend, fed by films and books like "The DaVinci Code".  But the historical scholarship behind such things, is fringe and sensationalistic at best.  I can recommend some further reading for you if you're interested ... if you can think the best of me, that I'm not trying to deceive you for my own ends.                 



Stephen.
LeeJ
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19 posted 09-22-2005 08:11 AM       View Profile for LeeJ   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for LeeJ

Stephano, you can bust on me anytime, challenge my thoughts, joke around, grow serious and passionate about your beliefs, and certainly suggest any reading you'd like.  With Winter on it's way, well, for me, it's a great time to read.

Stphano, I understand your point of views and welcome them as a great learning tool, along with any other theories...
Here's mine and an example...
Last night on the news, they are finally trying to make the priests accountable for sexual abuse, or at least it seems as they are, and they should!  But that's another subject...anyway, I thought of you during an interview with a parrishoner...His statement was nonchalant, saying, perhaps this is God's way of cleaning the Church.  People seem to think God is magical...and I believe it's a cop out for many Christains, (and I consider myself a Christian) if they don't have an answer, or are afraid of standing up for their belief...due to fear of rejection, they say...God will take care of it...
Yeah, there is a possiblity He might, but...the greater factor is this...God gave us the gift of life, free will...we get ourselves into these fixes, and it's up to us to get ourselves out...you may sit there waiting all your life for God to make things right, when actually, we are the ones that need to make the changes, make mistakes, learn...turn things around.  We don't control everything, but certainly do control our thoughts words and deeds, impulses, desires, dreams and making them come true.  Now I'm on the fence here, cuz I have most certainly had some very significant spiritual encounters which I'm not going to go into.  So I know God does exist and does intervien...but I believe he also wants man to get off his lazy duff and think for himself, making the necessary choices.  
When you look at the movies or research history...look at how many thousands of men were surpressed by powers, like the Jews, going back much further, when the Roman's enslaved so so many men/women and children.  They outnumbered the Roman's greatly, and yet, never fought back...they could have overpowered the Roman's...yet, they waited for years and years, praying for freedom, then, Moses came.  It baffles me sometimes, why didn't the Jews fight back...why did they allow themselves to be hearded onto those trains like cattle?  It's beyond my comprehension?  

So, yes, God does intervien, but for the most part, I believe that a lot of Christains are as folks on welfare, they become lazy and if things don't happen, instead of working very hard to accomplish, they rely on God?????

John...I have always felt, that if God made this solar system, and we certainly know there are other solar systems and dimensions...why then, would it be difficult to believe that perhaps the star which lead the wise men to baby Jesus, was in fact, a flying metal object?  What about Angles, spirits, etc...there are things, we cannot even begin to concieve that exists and happens...but fear, desire for power, wealth always leads man back to a destructive mental relaps...we should be much further along.

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20 posted 09-22-2005 10:14 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Lee,


What you speak of now, is a different matter entirely ... what responsibility has God given to us?  And how does that coincide with the "trust him" part?  A deep question and worthy of an entirely different thread.


But short of tackling that one, I found a great article by historian N.T. Wright, about the phenomenon of "The Davinci Code", as it relates to the person of Jesus Christ.  It expresses much of what I wanted to say to you, and has lots of little nuggets of thought, and rabbit trails to follow.  

http://www.spu.edu/depts/uc/response/summer2k5/features/davincicode.asp


Stephen.
LeeJ
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21 posted 09-23-2005 08:55 AM       View Profile for LeeJ   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for LeeJ

thanks so much for the insight Stephanos, I will definately explore...wishing you a fine weekend, joining hands in prayer for those in Rita's path.  Anyway, enjoy you and Ron's attempt to help clarify...

Ron, I was thinking of your comment yesterday, and in all honesty wondered, who collects royalties everytime a Bible is sold?  And I don't mean that sarcastically, but the thought entered my mind?

Hugs and many thanks
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22 posted 10-19-2005 06:06 PM       View Profile for JesusChristPose   Email JesusChristPose   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JesusChristPose

"Where was God from? When did he begin?
Was there something before him?  
Is he one of many Gods?


~ No human being has the answer to those questions... and maybe for a reason that is so... any human being who claims to know the answers to those questions, claims so only because of what their mind was programmed to believe. Think of it, the "proof" of knowing those answers falls on to those who think they know the answers, not on those who claim not to know.

  

"If this grand panaorama before me is what you call God... then God is not dead."

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