Author Topic: do you believe in God?  (Read 12718 times)

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Offline jesse james

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #20 on: October 11, 2011, 10:50:43 AM »
Pawan 89, I think you're right in suggesting that god has been invented to obliterate the 'void' or the bleakness of existentialism. You're also correct in that God is an attempt to answer unanswerable questions, of course he doesn't, he is yet another-more profoundly unanswerable question, and ironically one that prevents other more answerable ones being asked.

I'll try to answer your question 'does it matter' if people believe in god.
It's important to remember god isn't merely a kind of emotional crutch, something that makes the unhappy feel happy, religions are also controlling mechanisms-for behaviour and thought, and that's the problem.
If people want to go away and believe whatever they want, that's fine as long as it isn't oppressive to others and non-believers like myself, but religions tend not to be like that.
If you look at Christianity from it's early days when it became ideologically useful to Constantine through to the 20th century and the Vatican's tacit complicity and encouragement of fascism, it's often been a brutal and repressive force.
Look at the oppression of women, apostates, homosexuals etc in many Muslim societies today-religion isn't merely a placebo but a grotesque force that suppresses human will, and a desire to understand the universe.
« Last Edit: October 11, 2011, 10:52:44 AM by jesse james »
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Offline pawan89

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #21 on: October 11, 2011, 07:50:31 PM »
Pawan 89, I think you're right in suggesting that god has been invented to obliterate the 'void' or the bleakness of existentialism. You're also correct in that God is an attempt to answer unanswerable questions, of course he doesn't, he is yet another-more profoundly unanswerable question, and ironically one that prevents other more answerable ones being asked.

I'll try to answer your question 'does it matter' if people believe in god.
It's important to remember god isn't merely a kind of emotional crutch, something that makes the unhappy feel happy, religions are also controlling mechanisms-for behaviour and thought, and that's the problem.
If people want to go away and believe whatever they want, that's fine as long as it isn't oppressive to others and non-believers like myself, but religions tend not to be like that.
If you look at Christianity from it's early days when it became ideologically useful to Constantine through to the 20th century and the Vatican's tacit complicity and encouragement of fascism, it's often been a brutal and repressive force.
Look at the oppression of women, apostates, homosexuals etc in many Muslim societies today-religion isn't merely a placebo but a grotesque force that suppresses human will, and a desire to understand the universe.

spot on. it matters to those who can put it to good use by manipulating those who can get manipulated. so on a personal level, when we choose to believe in god, i think it's really important to make sure we are doing it because it matters to us, because we feel the "rules" of the god we choose to follow will aid us in living a better life - it's much easier to convince ourselves of this super-power that monitors our life than to make a laundry list of the same good things you want to do and pin it on your refrigerator.  It's equally important then to acknowledge the real-world consequences of the god delusion, as you mentioned, and stand firm against it.

here's another question. i am sure there are people out there who do believe in god, religion and are indeed genuine and nice people. However they are blinded by the religion and come to accept things like you mentioned - oppresion of certain humans, using it as a reason to force your views on others etc. now if and when confronted about this clear parity between what they believe to be a good and healthy religion, and the obvious harm its causing to a lot of people - what should one do? Denounce religion altogether? Denounce GOD altogether? Or turn a blind eye to the atrocities in the name of said god and religion and move on, continuing to believe in the good side of it knowing that as long as you personally aren't the one causing harm to others in the name of your god then you're in safe hands.


Offline jesse james

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #22 on: October 12, 2011, 05:11:28 AM »
Because religions can be dangerous to those within and without, it's important to establish an intellectual resistance to their hostility. Stating ones position and drawing attention to the shortcomings of religion, and setting up social and political systems which mitigate the harm they can do.
 I'm not particularly optimistic about the extent to which non believers can curtail the malignant excesses of religion, if you look around the world at the belligerence of many religions and those who claim to act in the name of religion, things don't look that great.  But to turn a blind eye to religions most destructive elements is to be complicit with them 'bad things happen when good people do nothing'
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Offline huntingyou

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #23 on: October 24, 2011, 10:57:22 PM »
Because religions can be dangerous to those within and without, it's important to establish an intellectual resistance to their hostility. Stating ones position and drawing attention to the shortcomings of religion, and setting up social and political systems which mitigate the harm they can do.
 I'm not particularly optimistic about the extent to which non believers can curtail the malignant excesses of religion, if you look around the world at the belligerence of many religions and those who claim to act in the name of religion, things don't look that great.  But to turn a blind eye to religions most destructive elements is to be complicit with them 'bad things happen when good people do nothing'

Sir, it was a pleasure to read your take on this subject; have I ever talked to you on another tennis board?

I just wanted to say that, if you look around you will find that most people prefer to hide their head in the sand and ignore facts; this goes for political ideology as well as religion. It's more likely than all these gods that humanity has created through out millenniums; even before the Sumerian comes from direct contact with alien visitors than "divine" revelation. Having said that, there is a counter argument which tell us that we can't ruled out the existence of a "supreme being" by the mere fact that our human brains are unequipped to arrive to such conclusion from what we can observe in this reality. As such, a clear distinction between organized religion and pure spirituality must be made; one is a tool of control and oppression, another division imposed by the "elites" and the other could be accessable by those who choose to.

Offline Start da Game

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #24 on: October 25, 2011, 08:47:42 AM »
Because religions can be dangerous to those within and without, it's important to establish an intellectual resistance to their hostility. Stating ones position and drawing attention to the shortcomings of religion, and setting up social and political systems which mitigate the harm they can do.
 I'm not particularly optimistic about the extent to which non believers can curtail the malignant excesses of religion, if you look around the world at the belligerence of many religions and those who claim to act in the name of religion, things don't look that great.  But to turn a blind eye to religions most destructive elements is to be complicit with them 'bad things happen when good people do nothing'

Sir, it was a pleasure to read your take on this subject; have I ever talked to you on another tennis board?

I just wanted to say that, if you look around you will find that most people prefer to hide their head in the sand and ignore facts; this goes for political ideology as well as religion. It's more likely than all these gods that humanity has created through out millenniums; even before the Sumerian comes from direct contact with alien visitors than "divine" revelation. Having said that, there is a counter argument which tell us that we can't ruled out the existence of a "supreme being" by the mere fact that our human brains are unequipped to arrive to such conclusion from what we can observe in this reality. As such, a clear distinction between organized religion and pure spirituality must be made; one is a tool of control and oppression, another division imposed by the "elites" and the other could be accessable by those who choose to.

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Offline Gawdblessya

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #25 on: October 25, 2011, 11:14:51 AM »
...........Having said that, there is a counter argument which tell us that we can't ruled out the existence of a "supreme being" by the mere fact that our human brains are unequipped to arrive to such conclusion from what we can observe in this reality. As such, a clear distinction between organized religion and pure spirituality must be made; one is a tool of control and oppression, another division imposed by the "elites" and the other could be accessable by those who choose to.
HUNTINGYOU - I found your input most interesting. And I agree absolutely with your highlighted comment.
I also like & agree with your premise that those who "choose" to, can realise the Spiritual dimensions of Creation. In other words, that, as human beings, we are very capable of a concious progression towards our own Spiritual development.  I disagree that "our brains are unequipped" because to me, Spiritual knowledge & understanding is not about the measurable capacity of our brains, or any other physical aspect of our being.  Nor are we, as Spiritual entities, limited other than by our own ignorance. Hence, when Spiritual Masters achieve Realisation, they have overcome their ignorance, rather than developed their brains. 

Inevitably, these discussions become "proof" related. Materialism seems to be more compelling to most, and Spiritualism a matter of ridicule & derision. I'm not interested in persuading others of my views, but a discussion is always interesting.

As for Religion, it isn't news that it can be commandeered by self-serving interests. In my experience & observations of several cultures/religions over the years, and as history shows, the manipulation of others through religion has often been a very successful way of controlling them, and there is ample evidence that this continues today. However not all religious practices are exploitative.   Spiritual realisation requires a concious effort. Blind adherence to dogma/rituals requires only that one does as one is told, with conformity being synonymous with "goodness & virtue". The former allows for the Sublime to manifest in our lives, setting us free. The latter, can be a means of imprisoning others.  Like anything, what is meant to give freedom can be used to imprison.

Hence, Religion per se, isn't "negative". How it is used can be so. And in fact it the bigotry created by a "tribe" mentality, often fascist in its nature, that is the destructive thing.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2011, 11:59:47 AM by Gawdblessya »
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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #26 on: October 25, 2011, 02:16:43 PM »
My take is, some/many/most(?) people believe in God because they believe in magic, which they rely on to explain why good or bad things happened or will happen to them. I think this is a really awful upshot because it discourages both intellectual curiosity and personal accountability.

I'm an agnostic/secular humanist.
 ;-()
« Last Edit: October 25, 2011, 02:28:02 PM by Babblelot »
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Offline falcon

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #27 on: October 26, 2011, 12:23:09 PM »
My take is, some/many/most(?) people believe in God because they believe in magic, which they rely on to explain why good or bad things happened or will happen to them. I think this is a really awful upshot because it discourages both intellectual curiosity and personal accountability.

I'm an agnostic/secular humanist.
 ;-()

 :rofl_2: :rofl_2: :rofl_2:


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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #28 on: October 26, 2011, 03:49:30 PM »
 :rofl_2:  My question for some/many/most(?) religious people...

The Lovin' Spoonful - Do You Believe In Magic (1965)



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Offline falcon

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #29 on: October 26, 2011, 05:06:13 PM »
Uhh I was not laughing at your statement but the silliness of your statement  :innocent:  :rofl_2:


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Offline falcon

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #30 on: October 26, 2011, 05:15:40 PM »
Uhh I was not laughing at your statement but the silliness of your statement  :innocent:  :rofl_2:

What don't you understand? I'll clear it up for you. It'll be easy.  :)

It will make it sound even more silly  :rofl_2:


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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #31 on: October 26, 2011, 05:17:10 PM »
Uhh I was not laughing at your statement but the silliness of your statement  :innocent:  :rofl_2:

What don't you understand? I'll clear it up for you. It'll be easy.  :)

It will make it sound even more silly  :rofl_2:

Well, I thought you'd look for an out. If you don't think religions are based on magical thinking, you're silly.
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Offline falcon

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #32 on: October 26, 2011, 05:22:37 PM »
Uhh I was not laughing at your statement but the silliness of your statement  :innocent:  :rofl_2:

What don't you understand? I'll clear it up for you. It'll be easy.  :)

It will make it sound even more silly  :rofl_2:

Well, I thought you'd look for an out. If you don't think religions are based on magical thinking, you're silly.

I don't know if I am religious or not, but I certainly am spiritiual and my quest in spirituality is neither for having answers nor for the sake of seeing more 'magic'...I am spiritual because I need fulfilment which science and wordly things and attachments are unable to provide me. I certainly feel better by being spiritual and I don't think I am troubling anyone by being so. Its a personal thing....


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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #33 on: October 26, 2011, 05:31:03 PM »
Uhh I was not laughing at your statement but the silliness of your statement  :innocent:  :rofl_2:

What don't you understand? I'll clear it up for you. It'll be easy.  :)

It will make it sound even more silly  :rofl_2:

Well, I thought you'd look for an out. If you don't think religions are based on magical thinking, you're silly.

I don't know if I am religious or not, but I certainly am spiritiual and my quest in spirituality is neither for having answers nor for the sake of seeing more 'magic'...I am spiritual because I need fulfilment which science and wordly things and attachments are unable to provide me. I certainly feel better by being spiritual and I don't think I am troubling anyone by being so. Its a personal thing....

But when I read that, I read: "I don't believe in God." (See thread topic.) You're a very smart, thoughtful person (barf), and you very carefully worded your comment here so as to not mention God. That's because you don't believe in God. Well, religious people certainly believe in God, a God of magic.
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Offline falcon

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #34 on: October 26, 2011, 05:35:19 PM »
Uhh I was not laughing at your statement but the silliness of your statement  :innocent:  :rofl_2:

What don't you understand? I'll clear it up for you. It'll be easy.  :)

It will make it sound even more silly  :rofl_2:

Well, I thought you'd look for an out. If you don't think religions are based on magical thinking, you're silly.

I don't know if I am religious or not, but I certainly am spiritiual and my quest in spirituality is neither for having answers nor for the sake of seeing more 'magic'...I am spiritual because I need fulfilment which science and wordly things and attachments are unable to provide me. I certainly feel better by being spiritual and I don't think I am troubling anyone by being so. Its a personal thing....

But when I read that, I read: "I don't believe in God." (See thread topic.) You're a very smart, thoughtful person (barf), and you very carefully worded your comment here so as to not mention God. That's because you don't believe in God. Well, religious people certainly believe in God, a God of magic.

That coming from you should be weighed in gold  :)~ 

I am not an atheist....I don't believe in a separate entity called God that hands down judgements based on ur actions. I believe that god is me...u...everyone...everything and nothing infact...there is one awareness that binds all of us. Not a separate entity called 'god'
« Last Edit: October 26, 2011, 05:36:59 PM by falcon »


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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #35 on: October 26, 2011, 05:48:50 PM »
Uhh I was not laughing at your statement but the silliness of your statement  :innocent:  :rofl_2:

What don't you understand? I'll clear it up for you. It'll be easy.  :)

It will make it sound even more silly  :rofl_2:

Well, I thought you'd look for an out. If you don't think religions are based on magical thinking, you're silly.

I don't know if I am religious or not, but I certainly am spiritiual and my quest in spirituality is neither for having answers nor for the sake of seeing more 'magic'...I am spiritual because I need fulfilment which science and wordly things and attachments are unable to provide me. I certainly feel better by being spiritual and I don't think I am troubling anyone by being so. Its a personal thing....

But when I read that, I read: "I don't believe in God." (See thread topic.) You're a very smart, thoughtful person (barf), and you very carefully worded your comment here so as to not mention God. That's because you don't believe in God. Well, religious people certainly believe in God, a God of magic.

That coming from you should be weighed in gold  :)~ 

I am not an atheist....I don't believe in a separate entity called God that hands down judgements based on ur actions. I believe that god humanity, i.e., benevolence, is me...u...everyone...everything and nothing infact...there is one awareness that binds all of us. Not a separate entity called 'god'

And that describes me, a secular humanist, pretty succinctly.  :)   But keep in mind, I didn't make a blanket statement, I made a caveat that not everyone who believes in God believes in a magical God. I do, however, believe far more religious people believe in a magical God than do not.  :)

Wanna read an article I wrote on the subject?
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Offline falcon

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #36 on: October 26, 2011, 05:55:27 PM »
Uhh I was not laughing at your statement but the silliness of your statement  :innocent:  :rofl_2:

What don't you understand? I'll clear it up for you. It'll be easy.  :)

It will make it sound even more silly  :rofl_2:

Well, I thought you'd look for an out. If you don't think religions are based on magical thinking, you're silly.

I don't know if I am religious or not, but I certainly am spiritiual and my quest in spirituality is neither for having answers nor for the sake of seeing more 'magic'...I am spiritual because I need fulfilment which science and wordly things and attachments are unable to provide me. I certainly feel better by being spiritual and I don't think I am troubling anyone by being so. Its a personal thing....

But when I read that, I read: "I don't believe in God." (See thread topic.) You're a very smart, thoughtful person (barf), and you very carefully worded your comment here so as to not mention God. That's because you don't believe in God. Well, religious people certainly believe in God, a God of magic.

That coming from you should be weighed in gold  :)~ 

I am not an atheist....I don't believe in a separate entity called God that hands down judgements based on ur actions. I believe that god humanity, i.e., benevolence, is me...u...everyone...everything and nothing infact...there is one awareness that binds all of us. Not a separate entity called 'god'

And that describes me, a secular humanist, pretty succinctly.  :)   But keep in mind, I didn't make a blanket statement, I made a caveat that not everyone who believes in God believes in a magical God. I do, however, believe far more religious people believe in a magical God than do not.  :)

Wanna read an article I wrote on the subject?
No. I generally don't read on these things much especially those coming from people who are as confused as I am. I do however like your writing style. Feel free to send me general articles which you've written up.


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Offline Emma

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #37 on: November 09, 2011, 07:40:41 PM »
Because religions can be dangerous to those within and without, it's important to establish an intellectual resistance to their hostility. Stating ones position and drawing attention to the shortcomings of religion, and setting up social and political systems which mitigate the harm they can do.
 I'm not particularly optimistic about the extent to which non believers can curtail the malignant excesses of religion, if you look around the world at the belligerence of many religions and those who claim to act in the name of religion, things don't look that great.  But to turn a blind eye to religions most destructive elements is to be complicit with them 'bad things happen when good people do nothing'

Sir, it was a pleasure to read your take on this subject; have I ever talked to you on another tennis board?

I just wanted to say that, if you look around you will find that most people prefer to hide their head in the sand and ignore facts; this goes for political ideology as well as religion. It's more likely than all these gods that humanity has created through out millenniums; even before the Sumerian comes from direct contact with alien visitors than "divine" revelation. Having said that, there is a counter argument which tell us that we can't ruled out the existence of a "supreme being" by the mere fact that our human brains are unequipped to arrive to such conclusion from what we can observe in this reality. As such, a clear distinction between organized religion and pure spirituality must be made; one is a tool of control and oppression, another division imposed by the "elites" and the other could be accessable by those who choose to.

Hey, nice to see you here but why are you calling him "Sir"? Do yo know something we ordinary people don't know?

Sir Jesse James, where are you? Please grace us with your presence, kind sir. Your most kindest, Emma. 

I read a lot of posts here but you guys haven't proven even the slightest that a creator doesn't exist.

And magic does exist and people do believe in magic. The difference is, on the outside, to the normal regular people, it seems all magic while the magician knows that there's a perfectly good and scientific explanation behind all that. The universe presents us the same mystery. The difference is, we don't have all the explanation just yet and I am not sure if it ever will. But I know this, anything that is highly orderly and highly organized has to have a mastermind behind it.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2011, 07:42:12 PM by Emma »
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Offline jesse james

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #38 on: November 10, 2011, 02:41:49 PM »
i've no problem in allowing for the conceptual distinction between religion and spirituality, but what is spirituality?
it can't be demonstrated or known beyond an assertion of it's existence, and i've never heard a description of it that made any sense.
For me there's a more compelling subject that exists within the universe, which certainly defies scientific scrutiny and it's human consciousness. It is at heart a mystery, and i'm not suggesting it requires an intelligent designer to bring about it's existence, but the fact of it's existence is a source of profound wonder, certainly to me.


Because religions can be dangerous to those within and without, it's important to establish an intellectual resistance to their hostility. Stating ones position and drawing attention to the shortcomings of religion, and setting up social and political systems which mitigate the harm they can do.
 I'm not particularly optimistic about the extent to which non believers can curtail the malignant excesses of religion, if you look around the world at the belligerence of many religions and those who claim to act in the name of religion, things don't look that great.  But to turn a blind eye to religions most destructive elements is to be complicit with them 'bad things happen when good people do nothing'

Sir, it was a pleasure to read your take on this subject; have I ever talked to you on another tennis board?

I just wanted to say that, if you look around you will find that most people prefer to hide their head in the sand and ignore facts; this goes for political ideology as well as religion. It's more likely than all these gods that humanity has created through out millenniums; even before the Sumerian comes from direct contact with alien visitors than "divine" revelation. Having said that, there is a counter argument which tell us that we can't ruled out the existence of a "supreme being" by the mere fact that our human brains are unequipped to arrive to such conclusion from what we can observe in this reality. As such, a clear distinction between organized religion and pure spirituality must be made; one is a tool of control and oppression, another division imposed by the "elites" and the other could be accessable by those who choose to.
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Offline jesse james

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Re: do you believe in God?
« Reply #39 on: November 10, 2011, 02:54:05 PM »
you're making two points Emma, the latter is to do with the limitations of human understanding, which are of course profound. I agree we may never know what we want to know, on somethings we actually know very little ie consciousness.
I also think that the magic comes not merely from that which is yet unsolved, but that which is known.
Take a look at the pictures sent back from the Hubble telescope, imagine the distances-that's beauty and magic.

On your point about not having proved a creator doesn't exist, well that's not the aim of a discussion of this kind.
If god doesn't exist, i couldn't prove that he doesn't exist, just as if i construct an idea of a race of chocolate people inhabiting a distant galaxy in alternate dimension and then ask, how do you prove they don't exist? of course, you can't.
What can be shown are the inconsistencies and incoherences of religious thinking and the extent to which a belief makes sense.


Because religions can be dangerous to those within and without, it's important to establish an intellectual resistance to their hostility. Stating ones position and drawing attention to the shortcomings of religion, and setting up social and political systems which mitigate the harm they can do.
 I'm not particularly optimistic about the extent to which non believers can curtail the malignant excesses of religion, if you look around the world at the belligerence of many religions and those who claim to act in the name of religion, things don't look that great.  But to turn a blind eye to religions most destructive elements is to be complicit with them 'bad things happen when good people do nothing'

Sir, it was a pleasure to read your take on this subject; have I ever talked to you on another tennis board?

I just wanted to say that, if you look around you will find that most people prefer to hide their head in the sand and ignore facts; this goes for political ideology as well as religion. It's more likely than all these gods that humanity has created through out millenniums; even before the Sumerian comes from direct contact with alien visitors than "divine" revelation. Having said that, there is a counter argument which tell us that we can't ruled out the existence of a "supreme being" by the mere fact that our human brains are unequipped to arrive to such conclusion from what we can observe in this reality. As such, a clear distinction between organized religion and pure spirituality must be made; one is a tool of control and oppression, another division imposed by the "elites" and the other could be accessable by those who choose to.

Hey, nice to see you here but why are you calling him "Sir"? Do yo know something we ordinary people don't know?

Sir Jesse James, where are you? Please grace us with your presence, kind sir. Your most kindest, Emma. 

I read a lot of posts here but you guys haven't proven even the slightest that a creator doesn't exist.

And magic does exist and people do believe in magic. The difference is, on the outside, to the normal regular people, it seems all magic while the magician knows that there's a perfectly good and scientific explanation behind all that. The universe presents us the same mystery. The difference is, we don't have all the explanation just yet and I am not sure if it ever will. But I know this, anything that is highly orderly and highly organized has to have a mastermind behind it.
I am a lighthouse worn by the weather and the waves
And though I'm empty I still warn the sailors on their way