Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

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Miles
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Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

Post #1

Post by Miles »

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Assuming choice is possible, how does a person go about freely choosing to believe in god?

Is such a thing even possible? Doesn't there have to be an overwhelmingly convincing element that comes into play before such a belief can take place? And why would we settle on that particular element rather than some other element, which might not be convincing at all? Wouldn't picking that convincing element because that's what it is, be stacking the deck? And how would we become aware of such an element?



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Re: Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

Post #21

Post by Ionian_Tradition »

Miles wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 4:46 am
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 1:52 am
Miles wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 3:21 pm
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 2:33 am
Miles wrote: Thu Oct 14, 2021 2:28 pm
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Thu Oct 14, 2021 2:33 am
Miles wrote: Sat Aug 14, 2021 4:11 pm .


Assuming choice is possible, how does a person go about freely choosing to believe in god?

Is such a thing even possible? Doesn't there have to be an overwhelmingly convincing element that comes into play before such a belief can take place? And why would we settle on that particular element rather than some other element, which might not be convincing at all? Wouldn't picking that convincing element because that's what it is, be stacking the deck? And how would we become aware of such an element?



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It seems to me that belief is, at bottom, a disposition.
And I disagree. I consider belief to be a conscious acceptance of something that lacks evidence enough to be considered a fact.


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Genuine mental assent is not a choice. If you doubt this, you need only refer to your own inability to choose (in this very moment) to genuinely accept as true any belief you sincerely hold to be false.
Never said choice was involved. The acceptance is wholly determined.


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Then your disagreement with me (if indeed there is one) would seem rather trivial given that my aim was to show that belief is non-volitional (i.e. deterministic).
Not trivial at all. You said that it seems to you that belief is, at bottom, a disposition, and I don't consider belief to be a disposition at all, but rather an acceptance.


Disposition being a person's inherent qualities of mind and character.
[source: Oxford Languages]


Acceptance being agreement with or belief in an idea, opinion, or explanation.
[source: Oxford Languages]






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The state of "being in agreement" is an inherent quality (i.e. characteristic attribute) of the mind at the moment an individual assents to a particular idea, opinion, or explanation. Ergo, acceptance (belief) is a disposition by definition.

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Re: Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

Post #22

Post by Miles »

Ionian_Tradition wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 12:49 pm
Miles wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 4:46 am
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 1:52 am
Miles wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 3:21 pm
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 2:33 am
Miles wrote: Thu Oct 14, 2021 2:28 pm
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Thu Oct 14, 2021 2:33 am
Miles wrote: Sat Aug 14, 2021 4:11 pm .


Assuming choice is possible, how does a person go about freely choosing to believe in god?

Is such a thing even possible? Doesn't there have to be an overwhelmingly convincing element that comes into play before such a belief can take place? And why would we settle on that particular element rather than some other element, which might not be convincing at all? Wouldn't picking that convincing element because that's what it is, be stacking the deck? And how would we become aware of such an element?



.
It seems to me that belief is, at bottom, a disposition.
And I disagree. I consider belief to be a conscious acceptance of something that lacks evidence enough to be considered a fact.


.
Genuine mental assent is not a choice. If you doubt this, you need only refer to your own inability to choose (in this very moment) to genuinely accept as true any belief you sincerely hold to be false.
Never said choice was involved. The acceptance is wholly determined.


.
Then your disagreement with me (if indeed there is one) would seem rather trivial given that my aim was to show that belief is non-volitional (i.e. deterministic).
Not trivial at all. You said that it seems to you that belief is, at bottom, a disposition, and I don't consider belief to be a disposition at all, but rather an acceptance.


Disposition being a person's inherent qualities of mind and character.
[source: Oxford Languages]


Acceptance being agreement with or belief in an idea, opinion, or explanation.
[source: Oxford Languages]






.
The state of "being in agreement" is an inherent quality (i.e. characteristic attribute) of the mind at the moment an individual assents to a particular idea, opinion, or explanation. Ergo, acceptance (belief) is a disposition by definition.
What a strain (particularly the "inherent" part). How about divulging your objective source. ... I await.


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Re: Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

Post #23

Post by Ionian_Tradition »

Miles wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 3:13 pm
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 12:49 pm
Miles wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 4:46 am
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 1:52 am
Miles wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 3:21 pm
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 2:33 am
Miles wrote: Thu Oct 14, 2021 2:28 pm
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Thu Oct 14, 2021 2:33 am
Miles wrote: Sat Aug 14, 2021 4:11 pm .


Assuming choice is possible, how does a person go about freely choosing to believe in god?

Is such a thing even possible? Doesn't there have to be an overwhelmingly convincing element that comes into play before such a belief can take place? And why would we settle on that particular element rather than some other element, which might not be convincing at all? Wouldn't picking that convincing element because that's what it is, be stacking the deck? And how would we become aware of such an element?



.
It seems to me that belief is, at bottom, a disposition.
And I disagree. I consider belief to be a conscious acceptance of something that lacks evidence enough to be considered a fact.


.
Genuine mental assent is not a choice. If you doubt this, you need only refer to your own inability to choose (in this very moment) to genuinely accept as true any belief you sincerely hold to be false.
Never said choice was involved. The acceptance is wholly determined.


.
Then your disagreement with me (if indeed there is one) would seem rather trivial given that my aim was to show that belief is non-volitional (i.e. deterministic).
Not trivial at all. You said that it seems to you that belief is, at bottom, a disposition, and I don't consider belief to be a disposition at all, but rather an acceptance.


Disposition being a person's inherent qualities of mind and character.
[source: Oxford Languages]


Acceptance being agreement with or belief in an idea, opinion, or explanation.
[source: Oxford Languages]






.
The state of "being in agreement" is an inherent quality (i.e. characteristic attribute) of the mind at the moment an individual assents to a particular idea, opinion, or explanation. Ergo, acceptance (belief) is a disposition by definition.
What a strain (particularly the "inherent" part). How about divulging your objective source. ... I await.


.
I appeal only to logic and the self evident. Never the less, if you can show that "acceptance" cannot be reasonably defined as a characteristic attribute of the mind at the moment an individual assents to a proposition, then I shall happily recant.

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Re: Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

Post #24

Post by Miles »

Ionian_Tradition wrote: Tue Oct 19, 2021 2:16 am
Miles wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 3:13 pm
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 12:49 pm
Miles wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 4:46 am
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 1:52 am
Miles wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 3:21 pm
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 2:33 am
Miles wrote: Thu Oct 14, 2021 2:28 pm
Ionian_Tradition wrote: Thu Oct 14, 2021 2:33 am
Miles wrote: Sat Aug 14, 2021 4:11 pm .


Assuming choice is possible, how does a person go about freely choosing to believe in god?

Is such a thing even possible? Doesn't there have to be an overwhelmingly convincing element that comes into play before such a belief can take place? And why would we settle on that particular element rather than some other element, which might not be convincing at all? Wouldn't picking that convincing element because that's what it is, be stacking the deck? And how would we become aware of such an element?



.
It seems to me that belief is, at bottom, a disposition.
And I disagree. I consider belief to be a conscious acceptance of something that lacks evidence enough to be considered a fact.


.
Genuine mental assent is not a choice. If you doubt this, you need only refer to your own inability to choose (in this very moment) to genuinely accept as true any belief you sincerely hold to be false.
Never said choice was involved. The acceptance is wholly determined.


.
Then your disagreement with me (if indeed there is one) would seem rather trivial given that my aim was to show that belief is non-volitional (i.e. deterministic).
Not trivial at all. You said that it seems to you that belief is, at bottom, a disposition, and I don't consider belief to be a disposition at all, but rather an acceptance.


Disposition being a person's inherent qualities of mind and character.
[source: Oxford Languages]


Acceptance being agreement with or belief in an idea, opinion, or explanation.
[source: Oxford Languages]






.
The state of "being in agreement" is an inherent quality (i.e. characteristic attribute) of the mind at the moment an individual assents to a particular idea, opinion, or explanation. Ergo, acceptance (belief) is a disposition by definition.
What a strain (particularly the "inherent" part). How about divulging your objective source. ... I await.


.
I appeal only to logic and the self evident. Never the less, if you can show that "acceptance" cannot be reasonably defined as a characteristic attribute of the mind at the moment an individual assents to a proposition, then I shall happily recant.
I don't engage in trying to confirm negatives.

Have a good day.


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Re: Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

Post #25

Post by Sheila D »

[Replying to Miles in post #1]

Some choose to believe
Some choose not to believe
Some were pre-selected to believe
If there wasn't such a thing as choice - why are there two different opposite point of views.
If there was no such thing as choice - someone has to be controlling all the actions of all humans. Who could that someone be and what would the purpose be?

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Re: Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

Post #26

Post by Miles »

Sheila D wrote: Mon Dec 20, 2021 5:15 pm [Replying to Miles in post #1]

Some choose to believe
Some choose not to believe
Some were pre-selected to believe
If there wasn't such a thing as choice- why are there two different opposite point of views.
Because some people were caused to form the first point of view, and others were caused to form the second.

If there was no such thing as choice - someone has to be controlling all the actions of all humans. Who could that someone be and what would the purpose be?
Why a "someone"? How about plain old determinism?

de·ter·min·ism
/dəˈtərməˌnizəm/
noun Philosophy

the doctrine that all events, including human action, are ultimately determined by causes external to the will.
Source: Oxford Languages Dictionary

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Re: Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

Post #27

Post by Sheila D »

Determinism : Determined by causes external to the will - it seems that doctrine makes sense to some people but not to me.
What causes could be external to the will and determine the choices, the outcome?
Seems to me for that to apply there has to be an outside force of some sort. And that force would have to be a Thinking Force - otherwise how could it *cause* https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cause (take action, or change the action that will determine the outcome any situation) _ therefore no one is responsible for their actions _ seems there has to be control of some sort by an outside living Force.
When the mind itself thinks and calculates https://www.britannica.com/topic/mind
And upon those calculations, demonstrates awareness. Now if the mind doesn't think and calculate of its own accord, then one might as well say we are in a matrix, which is a falseness, nor is what is perceived as reality real.
Seems to me for Determinism to be fact - there has to be a living, thinking, calculating, force behind it. But what do I know!

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Re: Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

Post #28

Post by Purple Knight »

Miles wrote: Sat Aug 14, 2021 4:11 pmDoesn't there have to be an overwhelmingly convincing element
Not if you're not sane anymore.

I'm not accusing religious people of insanity, mainly because in most cases belief in God is taught, and none of us is insane for believing what is taught to us anymore than all atheists are insane if we happen to be wrong.

Neither false information from a trusted source, nor a deficit of information equal insanity. Believing there are invisible purple mice crawling up your rear end without any evidence equals insanity, and likewise not believing mice exist at all while having seen and held many equals insanity.

I'm simply saying if you want to believe something you're not convinced of, there is always the option to practice selective insanity. I believe many people do it for social reasons.

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Re: Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

Post #29

Post by Miles »

Sheila D wrote: Thu Dec 23, 2021 8:36 am Determinism : Determined by causes external to the will - it seems that doctrine makes sense to some people but not to me.
What causes could be external to the will and determine the choices, the outcome?
Seems to me for that to apply there has to be an outside force of some sort. And that force would have to be a Thinking Force - otherwise how could it *cause* https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cause (take action, or change the action that will determine the outcome any situation) _ therefore no one is responsible for their actions _ seems there has to be control of some sort by an outside living Force.
When the mind itself thinks and calculates https://www.britannica.com/topic/mind
And upon those calculations, demonstrates awareness. Now if the mind doesn't think and calculate of its own accord, then one might as well say we are in a matrix, which is a falseness, nor is what is perceived as reality real.
Seems to me for Determinism to be fact - there has to be a living, thinking, calculating, force behind it. But what do I know!
Consider: (from a post I made some time ago)

No one has yet shown how thinking of something, both consciously and unconsciously, can take place without being caused---in which case it would be working utterly at random. And because causes are not random events each is dependent on something that brought them into existence. "A" arose because the preceding effects; a,f ,d, i, c, and n determined it would arise rather than not. Free will asserts that, in effect, the will of the mind operates all on its own. That is, nothing pushes it one way or the other. It simply chooses, out of thin air (in effect, utterly randomly), to do A rather than B. Now if this makes sense to you go right ahead and believe free will exists, but personally, it makes absolutely no sense to me. The will of the mind operates as it does because it has no choice to do any differently. It is not free.

An example

On Going Left Or Right

Your "decision" to go one way rather than the other is determined by all those cause/effect events that led up to the moment of going left or right. Whatever these cause/effect events were that would make you go one particular way, they materialized, whereas those that would make you go the other way could not have. It's as if going right required a sum of four numbers that equaled 31 and going left required a sum that equaled 32, AND the determining numbers happened to be 1+ 5 +22 + 3 (31). With such a sum there is no way you would ever have been able to go left. Heck even if the determining numbers were 3 + 3 + 15 + 10 (again 31) you would still have to go right rather than left. Of course this doesn't rule out other possible actions at the consequential moment. Perhaps a whole other set of numbers were coming into play at that time, like 5 + 9 + 24 + 17 (55), which made you pick your nose rather than go left or right. We do what we do because we simply cannot do otherwise. To do so would require different set of antecedent causes/effects (numbers, as it were), but there weren't so we didn't.

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Re: Can We Choose To Believe In God?.

Post #30

Post by mgb »

Purple Knight wrote: Thu Dec 23, 2021 9:51 pm
I'm not accusing religious people of insanity, mainly because in most cases belief in God is taught,
The externals and particulars are taught but religious people often have an intuitive sense of God

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