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The Ethics of God

  1. Yes

    4 vote(s)
  2. No

    4 vote(s)
  3. Don't know

    0 vote(s)
  1. Apr 17, 2004 #1
    I had a dream a little while ago. It was an amazing dream as sometimes dreams are.

    Here goes:

    Standing in front of me in a large stadium on a stage in front of the worlds TV cameras was a simple looking man that we have come to know as God.

    The world had known for sometime that this event was going to take place, the world’s media had been in a frenzy of headlines for about a month.

    There in front of the world stood a man who had become God, his story was well known and evidence to support his title was easy and clear to see.

    In other words there was absolutely no doubt about his achievement in becoming “God” not just for here on earth but the entire universe, every culture, every rock, every star.

    With out obvious reason the entire stadium fell into a hushed silence and people sat quietly with no sound.

    Slowly this man on stage moved to the microphones in the centre of the stage.

    With a air of supreme patience he apologised for having to use the microphone as he had a policy that conventional communications were more appropriate for the best part of his work. ( “when in Rome......”)

    This was the first time he had addressed the world using this medium.

    He said he had just one question that he wanted us all to ponder on.

    “As the reason for my success in achieving Godhood was due to my respect for the self determination and freewill of my people, my children, I ask you a question that you are fully free to find an answer to.”

    “The world as you know is a very violent place, fear of violence is constant. You have been praying for world peace and I have been listening.”

    “As you know I have the ability to remedy this situation, with out any restriction and with in 7 days the world could be free of offensive violence of any sort.”

    “The capacity to inflict intentional or insanely inspired harm can be removed from humanity. It will become impossible for any one to inflict violence on another simply because there will be no desire to do so.”

    “This being achieved by careful changes in the world energy dynamic”
    “There is no hidden agenda, and no negative impacts on other aspects of your humanity”

    “ I ask you, is this what you want?”

    “Or do you wish to continue in your struggle against war and violence on your own with out my intervention?”

    “By my grace I grant you full choice in this matter”

    “ One thing that is necessary to consider is that humanities participation in Universal affairs in the immediate future would be severely encumbered if you choose to decide to the negative.”

    “Another thing to consider is that once violence is removed...it can always be restored just as easily.” “Do you wish to be part of an experiment?’
    “Your answer is required within 30 days”

    “A future is now pending your decision”

    Upon which he moved away from the microphone an sat down, the audience slowly stood and noisily made their way out of the stadium.

    This dream or vision left me stunned by it’s simplistic ethical dilemma.

    How would you answer the question posed by God about violence?
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2004
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 18, 2004 #2


    User Avatar

    Sure. Go ahead.

    Putting on a theist hat for a moment: Isn't this exactly what things like conscience, moral education and so on are supposed to do, only taken further?
  4. Apr 18, 2004 #3
    You have some far out there dreams...I love war and violence, but it doesn't really make things better it seems, perhaps we make our own survival of the fittest and extreme conflict situations in a group thinking way or more like it's simply rampant stupidity although I wonder... if war and violence could be conducted in virtual reality type situations or games people would we be happier with that instead of doing it in real life, like the way the Olympics is a more freindly type competition that allows a venting of "us versus them" type aggression, so I would cast a vote for a peaceful world with violence as a virtual amusement or entertaining competition, possibly within these games people may grow to understand themselves better without doing any real harm to others in the learning process.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 18, 2004
  5. Apr 18, 2004 #4
    was that peyote, LSD or magic mushrooms, before bed time?

    next time ask god if we can have aggression without violence? as long as violence means 'harming another person or consciousness' then by all means let's go. if, however, we lose our natural agression, the world would be too placid.

    s/he/it always makes us 'think' by limiting the input. regardless of how i sound when i post, i'm rather satisfied with our world. it ain't perfect, but if it were, what the hell would we do?

    i vote for peace and agression.

    olde drunk
  6. Apr 18, 2004 #5
    The feeling I got was that this meant that only the desire to lash out to cause harm would be removed. That competitive aspects like aggression etc would remain.

    Virtual violence such as video games etc wouldn't be removed and only the physical reality of violence would be.....

    I also got the impression that humanity was about to move into a tremendous future, involving other than earth cultures and that the only real limiting factor was our propensity to "offensive" violence. But what stunned me was that a choice was being given.....even though the giving of the choice was not necessary.
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2004
  7. Apr 18, 2004 #6
    The question asked is; do we want Daddy, God, to make it all better or do we want to grow up and out of it, become truly civilized and mature beings on our own?
    By opting for God to do it we will miss the opportunity and the need to grow.
    Is this what we want? Do we really want to be as the cattle in the fields without predation to cull our herds? Or do we want to remain human and hopefully eventually grow out of it and be able to stand before any and every other race and God himself and be able to say that with God's help and guidance we made it, we grew up?
  8. Apr 18, 2004 #7
    Royce....spot on......except that possibly to move into the future we may have to sacrifice our desire for self determination a little....thus the question is being asked....

    He is asking us to "self determine" an answer to the opportunity that he is presenting......

    He is essentially asking if the world would agree to a positive form of "brain washing"
  9. Apr 18, 2004 #8
    I might add that the mere existance of God on earth in the flesh would have a profound impact on violence anyway and maybe this question is only entrenching this impact so that it is more permanent.....just a thought......
  10. Apr 18, 2004 #9

    If there was a real God and he appeared in the flesh, as it were, I would want to have him executed for failing to eliminate pointless suffering, of which there is an inexhaustible supply in this world. Unfortunately, his omnipotency would be a major barrier to this plan. Every second and everywhere on this planet of pain, multitudes of people are suffering ... brutally, abjectly, endlessly, needlessly. Only part of the reason for this suffering is due to some people inflicting violence on some other people. So if this cruelest of cruel beings offered to eliminate our violent impulses, I'd tell him something like:

    "F**k off, you and your offer! We don't need any more of your incompetant handiwork. We no longer want to be the subjects of your sick experiment. When we needed you, we were met with only your stony silence. For millenia upon millenia, people lived horrible lives and died terrible deaths, and you did nothing, you pitiless monster. I spit on your pathetic offer. If you have one atom of decency, you will grant us one wish. Our wish is that you never bother us in our affairs again. Leave us alone—forever and ever, amen!"
  11. Apr 19, 2004 #10
    Craigwolf, you fail to see that there was NO God ( in your context) prior to this man achieving Godhood....and now that someone has finially achieved this position after billions of years of evolution you are prepared to execute the very thing that could offer you a solution......This man is not responsible for your faulty beliefs in something that never existed....
    Maybe this is an important point to note:

    God has not become a man in the flesh....

    A man has become God in the flesh....there is a significant difference between these two POV's
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2004
  12. Apr 19, 2004 #11
    Oh, so this isn't a God who created us? He's only become a God immediately prior to introducing himself to us and proposing his offer? If so, sorry for the rant.
  13. Apr 19, 2004 #12
    Suffering and pleasure are the only important things in the world. Violence brings suffering. Let him take away the violence.
  14. Apr 19, 2004 #13
    An apology is unecessary but accepted any way.....you reacted as most would.......simpy because there is a belief system that says that God as a sentient single minded individual existed prior to humanity....of course you are not alone in thinking this.....
    Whether you are an athiest or a religious nutter we all suffer this conundrum of beliefs.

    But in this dream or vision.......a man has achieved a state that some would call that of "Godliness" but this is not a fair title to give this man as it is way too limiting...being limited by preconceptions of what being God is....
  15. Apr 19, 2004 #14
    I think that we must remember that the vast majority of people on earth are not violent by nature but are capable for violence when pushed or threatened too far. Most of us just want to be left alone and get on with living our lifes.
    Only the relative few violent people would need to be effected (or is it affected? I can never remember.) However would it mean that if attacked violently would we be unable to defend ourselves? What other side effects would there be? What would we be giving up other than the few with violent behavior? Too many questions.
    Remember the old adages:
    "Be careful what you wish for. You just might get it."
    "When the gods are angry with us they grant us our wishes."
  16. Apr 19, 2004 #15
    "there will be no desire to do so"

    He specifies..."offensive violence" whether premeditated of insanely inspired meaning I guess a "fit of rage" type violence.

    There are many forms of violence as you know....many of which could be considered normal practice... for example smacking a child for discipline or to satisfy a rage......a grey area for sure.....

    I think the capacity to be violent will remain but the ability due to desire will go......

    From what I understand about teh energies he refers to, violence has a place in the energy that provides movement....specifially andrenal hormonal inspired energies and pleasures.

    The thrill of jumping out of a plane with a parachute is part of the pleasure that violence achieves. Snowboarding and any thrill sport or activity relies on the fear of harm or potential harm to oneself or others.

    This energy is extremely important and needs to remain I would think.

    But in nearly all cases the thrill is derived from a potential and not an actual thus the thrill is paranoir based. And I can't see why that couldn't be retained....as a potential rather than an actual....virtual violence would change in it's impact....simmulated violence which is primarilly self competitive or competive in nature would stay etc....

    The desire to actually "hit" someone with the view to inflict harm would be removed and self defense would not be necessary but retained as a potential.

    A bit like having a nuclear bomb sitting in the back yard that will never go off...but the potential remains.

    Royce, When you say only a few persons will be "affected" ( not sure that it aint "effected" either) is on the surface quite true but every violent person needs a victim so therfore every victim of the past and every possible victim of the furure needs to change as well but in a way that is less obvious.

    Personally I think the whole thing would be quite liberating....the ability to walk the streets at night, no more rapes or gang violence. No guns except for target practice.....
    No more domestic assaults. No more acts of terrorism......and so on....

    Only a temporary need for a defensive posture until the outcome is fully known.

    Beacause of his mention of "an experiment" he is admiting that he himself can
    not fully predict the outcome in all it's infinite ramifications but goes on to state that violence can be restored if necessary......hmmmmm
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2004
  17. Apr 21, 2004 #16
    Yeah, Scott, it would be great, wonderful and all of the other superlatives.
    It is just that I am by nature a cynic and hold that there is no such thing as a free lunch; anything free is worth what we pay for it; and, I always beware of Greeks (or Gods) bearing gifts. I do think that it would be worth the try as an experiment; however, I also know that we could never go back to the way we were. This alone is enough to make me suspicious, God or not.
  18. Apr 21, 2004 #17

    i'd like to throw a small monkey wrench into this topic.

    i view the past, present and future as an active probablity thread. meaning that all probable realities are out there, simply not actualized or experienced.

    SO, if, somehow, we work together, we don't need no stinkin god to remove violence. First we must activate our personal thread of desiring peace. this personal goal should blend with others and make the probabilty of a peaceful mass reality more likely.

    with the chaos in the middle east, do we need any more input that violence is always the final and poorest solution any problem. regardless of our motives, once we initiate a violent solution, we experience a violent reality.

    i maybe a left over 60's peacenik, but---

    preach peace!!!

    love & peace,
  19. Apr 21, 2004 #18
    olde drunk, no wrench, just a different view. My only reply is that peace and non-violence is not always a solution either and unlike violence peace does not always perpetuate its self where violence almost always does.
    While all of the darkness in the universe cannot extinguish one little candle, one act of violence can end the peace. I see no solution at hand. Only time for us to grow beyond it. There are those in the world who do not wish to leave the old ways behind and catch up with the rest of the world.
  20. Apr 21, 2004 #19
    i failed to include that to some degree we are meant to seek and accomplish a peaceful world. if god made it happen, wouldn't we miss the process and all it's implications? kinda like the process mabe more important than the goal.

    olde drunk
  21. Apr 21, 2004 #20


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    Staff Emeritus
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    We wouldn't miss something if God removed all awareness of its existence from our memories. You don't miss the color sloft, do you?
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