Ozy And Millie: People of faith

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  32 comments for “Ozy And Millie: People of faith

  1. Dana, if you keep trying to talk theology, you won’t come off looking good. But I guess it was impossible for you to resist taking potshots at Christians.

    • Woo, ve’s back! Missed you, and now I wonder if you didn’t get all the good jokes against your precious issues.

    • “Christians?” I don’t see “Christians” mentioned at all in the comic, above; Ms. Simpson simply mentions “faith.” Such could indeed apply to those particular Christians who prefer to turn to faith for their answers as opposed to empirical evidence, logic, and simple sensibility, and can as easily apply to Muslims, Buddhists, Jews, and even Breatharians who do the same.

      As Thomas points out, though, it’s good to see you are still responding to these works ten years after the fact with the same knee-jerk reactions you’ve already displayed, Bellomy; you re-affirm my own faith in humanity.

      • Yeah Dana isn’t attacking religious people in general, but people who seem to think religion or faith justify doing things that are morally wrong like stealing in this case.

  2. I am a Christian and a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, more commonly known as Mormons, and I live by faith. Now, I know that saying that will probably have people disregard what I say, and to those of you who fall into that category, I’m not talking to you, and I hope we can just agree that our beliefs are different.

    I live by faith yes, but that’s not to say that I don’t watch for confirmation on my faith. I was born and raised a Mormon, and I am preparing to serve a mission to spread my religion, and yes, if you’ve heard that Mormon’s pay their for their own missions, it is true. Why am I doing this? Well, two reasons, the leader of my church has asked that every able young man should serve one. The other is that I believe that living according to the teachings of Jesus Christ, who we proclaim as our Savior and Redeemer, will enrich and bless the lives of any who so choose to believe on his name and follow him. However, in preparing for this mission I’m aware that going out to teach people my beliefs solely on the fact that I was born into these beliefs is rather irresponsible, so I determined to find out for myself if what I have been taught is true.

    I believe that God exists. I believe that the rotation of the planets and the stars, the very creation of the earth with its (approximately) 80% nitrogen 16% oxygen atmosphere and high amounts of water was not happen chance but the design of a grand and wonderful creator. Some people will say that I cannot prove that a God exists, and I’d reply that they similarly cannot prove that He does not. No, that doesn’t do for those who do not believe in faith, and those who choose not to believe I have no reply to them. There may those who seek to disprove Him by shouting to the heavens to see some sign, to perhaps be struck down if He exists, and I’d say that that’s only evidence if you believe God to be the type that would be so easily provoked as that. I find it much more likely that He would show signs to those who believe in him, not to those that ask for signs, doubting even as they open their mouths to speak.

    That said, and back onto the topic of faith, if you have access, I would direct you to the story of the Mormon pioneers, who were led by Brigham Young, who we profess to be a prophet, to the state of Utah. History agrees with this, minus the part about being a prophet, that the pioneers in hand carts and ox carts traveled across the unsettled portion of America, stopped in Utah, a desert, to build their home. Utah grew to the point to even host the Olympics. Those pioneers walked and lived on faith, following a prophet and trusted him when they chose to settle in the middle of a desert. After the fact, it may seem quite likely that such an endeavor would work, but those men and women had to have faith that they would live and endure in what likely looked like a barren wasteland. Some people would quite logically call that idiocy, and I’d reply that faith is often laying aside your worries, doubts, and trusting in a loving God.

    Those who read my words and respond that they’ve met Mormons and they were jerks, hypocrites, or insufferably self-righteous, I’m sorry, but I’d also ask that you not judge the teachings and organization of God by the imperfection of those who are trying. We have a beliefs, and we do our best to live by them, but we fall short day by day, which is why we believe that we need a Savior.

    For those who didn’t want to be reading their comics to find small sermon, I won’t apologize for standing for my beliefs.

    I believe in Christ, and when I work to bring other to Him, I feel His Holy Spirit, like some people describe as “a burning in the bosom” and I know that that is a feeling I cannot replicate on my own. I checked. If you wish to learn more about the peculiar people known as the “Mormons” feel free to visit lds.org, or if you’d like to know more from me, just email me at robertefy@gmail.com. Those who disagree with my beliefs, I’d ask that you tell me what you believe in so I may study it rather than calling me stupid, which probably doesn’t do anyone any good.

    • I live by faith yes, but that’s not to say that I don’t watch for confirmation on my faith.

      Most people do that. What very few people are willing to do is watch for things that would refute their beliefs; instead, they exercise confirmation bias, ignoring contrary facts and focusing ones that support what they already think.

      • That is very true. For example, evolutionists continue to disregard the fact that evolution from the basic form of DNA commonly accepted by scientists today has mathematically been proven impossible, as to develop the human brain, it would take (at the currently accepted rate of positive, permanent mutations) more time than the universe has been in existence. Yes, it is important to keep an open mind, for the Lord works best with a contrite heart and a clean, unbiased spirit. For a more verbose answer, see http://www.ldolphin.org/wmwilliams.html (I recommend sections 1, 2, 7, and 8) or http://www.newgeology.us/presentation32.html which is just a good all-around statement. Warning: These explanations of why we choose to believe our unsubstantiated (except to us) claims as opposed to others’ unsubstantiated claims (except, presumably, to them) are very long. To finish my reply, I will leave you with a quote from Psalm 20. It doesn’t have much to do with anything discussed here, but I just wanted to spread some love.
        May the Lord answer you when you are in distress;
        may the name of the God of Jacob protect you.
        2 May he send you help from the sanctuary
        and grant you support from Zion.
        3 May he remember all your sacrifices
        and accept your burnt offerings.
        4 May he give you the desire of your heart
        and make all your plans succeed.
        5 May we shout for joy over your victory
        and lift up our banners in the name of our God.
        May the Lord grant all your requests.
        Blessings of Christ,

        • For example, evolutionists continue to disregard the fact that evolution from the basic form of DNA commonly accepted by scientists today has mathematically been proven impossible,

          This claim is far too vague to refute as-is, but I will say I’m suspicious because most similar claims I’ve seen came from a fundamental misunderstanding of evolution (it isn’t random) or a fundamental misunderstanding of statistics and probability.

          Setting that aside, it seems to me an all-powerful god is even more mathematically improbable. What are the odds of such a powerful being appearing out of nowhere, spontaneously?

          • Sorry about the vagueness, I sometimes assume that everyone in the world but me is a mind reader. Anyhow, my thought process was roughly similar to that expressed by the University of North Carolina’s Computer Science department in http://www.cs.unc.edu/~plaisted/ce/rates.html. I especially agree with the final statement, that “I believe that the burden of proof should be on the evolutionist to show how these problems could be overcome and how evolution could have occurred and did occur, and not on the creationist in proving rigorously that evolution could not have occurred or did not occur.”
            In reply to your second statement, I would have personally quoted “The Sound of Music”, that is, “Nothing comes from nothing, nothing ever could.” (yes, I just wanted an excuse to quote The Sound of Music.) This applies to however you think that the universe came into being, that something had to be spontaneously generated. Science currently thinks that that was a point which subsequently exploded, creating everything else.
            I think that it was, and still is, God who has always been, and who subsequently created everything else.
            Sorry for the late post, I don’t troll my old posts as much as I used to or as much as I should. Anyhow, thanks for your consideration and intelligent reply, as opposed to most people’s simple insult of anybody who does not hold their views.
            Yours in Christ,
            P.S. bonus points to anybody who can think of Mark Twain’s idea of this set of statistics without needing Google.

          • Evolutionists have shown quite a bit of evidence of how evolution occurred and did occur. They have demonstrated a mechanism that explains the complexity of life around us, and shown evidence of this mechanism in action.

            On the other hand, there is no hard evidence that an all-knowing, all-powerful god created the universe. Just like the burden shouldn’t fall on the creationist to disprove evolution, the burden shouldn’t fall on the evolutionist to disprove god’s existence. That a being that complex and powerful exists, and has always existed, is an extraordinary claim that should require extraordinary evidence.

          • I have seen some arguments put forth that the particular values of various cosmological constants are so unlikely in their specifics that those values are in fact the extraordinary evidence demanded.

            Please note that I am not saying those arguments are valid; I just wish to point out that among religion’s apologists are quite a few talented thinkers who are quite well educated, and that these respectable people do find — for reasons they consider valid and for which they can offer support — the answers propounded by the faithful to be worthy.

            To my mind, the burden of acceptance is more important than the burden of proof. After all, these great questions really won’t impact the daily course of ones life very much regardless of how they are answered. What’s more important? How the Universe came to be? Or, the simple fact that it exists, here, now, with us as part of it? That is the burden of acceptance, and it is for each individual to rise to that burden in the manner he or she deems fittest for his or her own life. And to respect how others do likewise.

          • That’s an interesting point. To me it’s a bit of a tautology; naturally all the constants are “tuned” to the right values for us, because we developed and evolved in this environment. There might be other variations that would foster very different, very alien forms of life…who would doubtless also be amazed at how perfectly arranged everything seemed to be.

          • Could you kindly point me towards some of those proofs? I seem to be unable to find any (Google displays results related to past searches first, and I don’t want to search through five pages of results to find this seemingly common evidence.) Also, yes, us humans’ odd situation could indeed be “common”. I am reminded of an xkcd, http://xkcd.com/638/, which could be applicable as an example of our point by either side here. It seems ironic in this case. In my side, it is such a jump in comprehension from human to divine that we cannot rationalize it, and thus try to reason it away. On your side, it shows how different criteria of life (the pheromones) could lead to certainty of divine intervention to create us. And I agree with Bitflipper, the burden of acceptance comes first. The world is here, I believe that God is here, and I choose to do something about it. In conclusion, we have differing views, and each believes the other to be erroneous. I suppose that that is how it will be. May God be with you.

          • It is precisely the hand-waving explanation that proof is not needed because we simply can’t comprehend God that I find so distressing. Every advance in human civilization has come from assuming that the world works in ways that are possible to investigate and understand. I’m both unwilling and unable to throw that away in order to accept something illogical, whether it be God or Russell’s teapot.

          • I agree that for you to believe, proof is necsessary. Likewise, if said teapot had been put into orbit by one particular person, in secret, he would need to give proof of its orbit to the world for it to be accepted. If he did not have proof, or if he declined to give any, his claim would be unjustifiable from all points of view other than his own. That would not disprove that he had launched his teapot, it would merely mean that people other than him had no idea that said teapot had been launched. Likewise, I have been given proof of God’s existence, but I cannnot share that proof with you. The Lord comes unto each as He wills. So, if you do become able to comprehend God, tell me. If you remain human, I pray that you will see His love; but not my will, but His be done. DeColores,

  3. orv, I have a challenge for you if you’re willing to accept it. Find a copy of the Book of Mormon, and read it. An easily accessible one is on lds.org, though any of our missionaries throughout the world would gladly give you a copy, English or otherwise if preferred. At the top of the page is “Scriptures”, which if you mouse over will give a drop down menu, with Book of Mormon as one of the options. There you can read it.

    After reading it, there is a challenge that is given to every member of my faith, and anyone who is investigating my faith. It is in the last book in the Book of Mormon, the book of Moroni. In Moroni chapter 10, verses 4 and 5, it challenges all who read the book to ponder what they have read, to ask God, in the name of Christ, with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, then the truth of if will be manifest unto you by the power of the Holy Spirit. And that by the power of the Holy Ghost, you may know the truth of all things.

    I have taken this challenge, and what I got was not like anything I expected. Nor was the first time I prayed in earnest. The first time I really prayed was on a camp out. We had hiked out, and that night I could not sleep at all, thanks to a noisy tent mate. So I decided to get up and go fishing in the nearby lake. After maybe half an hour of no luck, I started to get cold and decided to head back into the trees to the camp. I realized that I had no reliable sense of direction about the time I ended up back at the lake. So I prayed. And what I did after praying was climb a small hill to sit down on the top. And waited. I had been going out on a limb following the thought to climb the hill, and I didn’t have any idea as to what to do next. So I waited. And waited. And the sun came up, and I found my campsite easily. You could call this coincidence, but to me it was an answer to my prayer, and a lesson as well. Because the thought to simply wait out the night is not one I would have come up with. My shoes were wet from crossing a stream earlier that day, I was in a light jacket, and I was cold. My only thoughts were to get back to my tent, so the idea of simply waiting was a strange one. Since then I have concluded that I could have been given a variety of answers, simply being able to walk back, they could have woken and found me, or I simply could have thought to shout very very loudly. However, I would not have learned the fourfold lesson I did by having the faith to patiently wait. First, one I would have learned anyway, was that God answers prayers. Second, I learned that God cared about me. Third, if I had the faith, God would give me harder challenges with greater rewards. This is because of the fourth, and that is that while sitting up on that hill in the mountains, I saw the stars move across the sky, and I learned that in all of the vastness of creation I was not only a speck, but an idiotic one that wandered away from camp. And yet He still knew me and loved me enough to bring me safely home.

    You may recognize this method of thinking from Nick Fury in the movie The Avengers, but I will believe in God and an afterlife. When I die, and if I were to discover that there is no life after death, then I suppose you were right. If I’m right though, the result is considerably different. Logically makes sense to plan as if there were an afterlife. That’s not why I believe in God, but it certainly supports a reason as to why.

    I can give other analogies and stories, but faith is best experienced rather than discussed in a vacuum. I have a limited time on this discussion as I will be taking a two year hiatus to serve an LDS mission to New Zealand at the end of February. If you wish to reasonably refute my challenge, by taking it to its full, better read quickly.

    • I would like to add that this type of thing must be done with an open mind. I myself have found this much more difficult than it sounds, but we must put aside preconceptions such as belief in what you grew up with or assumptions of ignorance when encountering new ideas. It is through considering all ideas, and asking one higher than us to show us which is right, that truth is found. (I honestly don’t know how that would work for an atheist, but “In Christ, all things are possible.”) Oh, and show God’s love in New Zealand, Dux.

    • Sorry, no. I put 20 years into the religion thing; no one can say I didn’t give it a good shot. Besides, there is no version of me that would ever be accepted into the Mormon church.

      • orv, why are you attempting to pick apart and disprove my testimony by selecting one or two points that you can argue against while ignoring the rest? The very first comment you made in this long thread focused the attention of any reader from anything good or worthwhile I might have said to your point in the conversation. That you don’t believe in faith… because you don’t believe in faith. Faith is not to have a perfect knowledge of things, it is to have a hope, a belief in things that are not seen, which are true. If you’re asking me to unequivocally and undeniably prove the value of faith, then I hope you recognize the contradiction there.

        Giving you hard evidence of anything, be it God or Taiwan, by words alone is similarly a contradiction. At least in the United States, five, ten years ago, you could look on the tag of a shirt, and there would be a very good chance that it would say “Made in Taiwan.” Now, I have never seen Taiwan, but I’m pretty sure Taiwan isn’t some elaborate hoax. What are you looking for, some label on the bottom of the foot of a newborn that says “Made by God” in Courier New? Okay, those last two examples were a bit goofy, but do you get my point?

        • Well, if God wanted to do that he certainly could have. Doesn’t it strike you as odd that he demands we accept him as real, but then refuses to provide us hard evidence, even allowing evidence to exist that contradicts what he’s told us in the past? To me Occam’s Razor suggests the nonexistence of God is more likely than the existence of a God that’s so obtuse and deceptive as to plant false evidence to lead us astray.

          You may, of course, believe what you like. I’m sorry you don’t like the way I’ve pursued this discussion.

          • Well, it seems that this discusion is drawing to a close, with nobody closer to God than we started. I would just like to say that it’s about love, not religion. Believe what you will, God loves you and I pray for you.
            Kytsuine, over and possibly out. I don’t know whether God will call me here again.

          • BTW, off topic, but thanks for mentioning Occam’s Razor. I just got a great idea for a sermon: The Armor of God vs. The Shaving Kit of Science(Occam’s Razor, Hanlon’s Razor, Hitchen’s Razor, and Newton’s Flaming Laser Sword(which has an awesome name)).
            Anywho, thanks again. You have given me, through trial, a clearer view of God’s love.

          • The big issue is that, when it’s all said and done, it’s a Catch-22 for religion. As you stated, you would think God would present us with hard evidence that he exists to give us a good reason to put our faith in him. But in that case, it wouldn’t be faith at all. By definition, faith is “strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.” I can’t speak for the Book of Mormon, but I can say that the Bible says that God wants us to walk by faith, not by sight.

  4. Reading these comments makes me even more terrified and distrusting of the blindly pious than I already was.

  5. People, the history of the Apostles being put to death for Christ shows that Christ actually rose from the dead and hence is God. He founded a Church on Peter, with the promise that Church would last till His return. That Church is still here, and is mine, the Roman Catholic Church.

  6. Food for thought: I’ve downloaded a King James bible (archaic language intact) and searched in MS Word for “big church” and “bureaucratic church”. Word came up empty. If Christ never said “you need a big bureaucratic church to bring you to God”, where did Roman Catholic Church officials get the sinful pride to claim they have the only righteous path?

    My problem with faith is when it becomes blind, and I apply that both to religion and science. Science should always be sceptical, always seeking proof.

  7. Re science: not quite. Nothing in science is ever “proven”; the best we can say about an hypothesis is that it is the “most likely” one (the Earth is very unlikely to be flat, other than very locally). And the job of scientists is to *disprove* hypotheses (especially their own) but also to be skeptical of the “disproofs” of others, especially those with vested interests. For example, I have yet to see an idea that supposedly disproves the hypothesis of earthly evolution that I couldn’t find the fault in immediately.

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