The Start of the Metaphysical Journey

HAPPY NEW YEAR/DECADE!!!! New Decade update for my readers: Just before Christmas, I scored a 300 note streak on Guitar Hero on medium. Yup, you can bet THAT went on my resume almost immediately. Who rocks? THIS guy!

For Christmas my beautiful wife got me an old-school View Master and 3 disks of Hawaii so I can take a tropical vacation whenever I want. I just put on the sound machine set to “ocean” and I am THERE. I got her the complete set of New Kids on the Block trading cards from the 1980’s and a Cabbage Patch lunch box. I am the king of romance.

To start the new year, I have decided that, as your Rent A Friend, it is my obligation to walk you through the often murky waters of Philosophy and Metaphysics. The best way to walk through anything, as I learned at the zoo a few days ago, is with a map. Otherwise you wind up standing at the Tiger cage saying, “Where is that Polar Bear?” and looking like a real tool. So I am going to draw you a metaphysical map of everything.

The very start of the metaphysical journey is God. Everyone has an opinion about God. There’s the atheist who says “I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that there is no God!” yet when asked for proof, they tend to argue that they don’t need to prove it. They just KNOW. It’s we silly Theists that need to prove that he’s there in the first place. Then when you give them Intelligent Design sciences, historical/legal proofs, logical philosophy and manuscript evidence for the Bible that outweighs all of antiquity combined, they tell you it’s all just propaganda. There’s no pleasing some people.

Then there are the agnostics. The thing that confuses me most about this group is the apathy. There is no religion anywhere that says, “God is real, but it really doesn’t matter. If he wants you to believe in him, he’ll stop by your house and give you a toaster oven or tote bag for signing up, so don’t worry about it too much.” In my mind, every agnostic should be SCRAMBLING for data, evidence, and comparison charts. They admit that God MIGHT be real. Which means heaven and hell MIGHT be real. Which means they MIGHT be able to, in some fashion, attain salvation and heaven eternal, OR they might be damning themselves and simply be too lazy to find out for sure. This is the way I am about my personal health, but for me, there is a certain somewhere in the future, weather I’m in good shape now or not. There are no ETERAL ramifications for my apathy. The stakes, I could argue, are a touch higher for the agnostics.

There are a hundred different religions in the world, most of which claim an exclusive hold on the true nature of God (Or Gods or goddess or whatever they are selling), and a few of which who come right out front and say, “We don’t know. He or she or they might be out there. And you’re welcome to believe. But we can’t say one way or another. We imagine that, one day, we’ll all find out or we’ll stop caring. We’re not sure about that either.” And again I am AMAZED that a church with THAT doctrine gets people to show up every week. I’m guessing that those churches must have an unusually high population of insomniacs. Sunday mornings they say to themselves, “Well, I don’t know about all of this spiritual business, but I’m already up. I might as well do SOMETHING between now and lunch.”

In America we have the very popular Oprah Winfrey philosophy of religion which says, “There CAN’T be only one way.” In short, everyone wins. No matter what you think, you’re right. I’d like to see Oprah sit down with a Muslim and an Atheist and explain it to them; “Look, for you there is an Allah watching you, judging you on your merit according to the Koran and the teachings of the Prophet Mohammad. You’ll face judgment day and the reward of your good and evil throughout your life. For you, on the other hand, I guess Allah will stay out of your way and after you die he’ll just turn out the lights and stay real quiet until you stop paying attention. Nobody’s wrong here.” I just don’t see an agreement on the panel that day.

When it comes to the question of WHY all religions can’t be true, Oprah actually serves as my best argument. She started this weird internet cult with a guy names Ekhart Tole, where they were trying to make a religion that said “ALL religions are the same, so buy my book.” During the cult-class, she asked him what happens when you die, and he said he did not know. This of course was the best time to draw a blank, because no matter what answer he picked, someone would be right and someone would be wrong.
The atheist says oblivion. We cease to exist.
Jews, Christians, and Muslims say heaven or hell.
Mormons say only heaven, but different layers of heaven (Like a big birthday cake), unless you were REALLY good, in which case you get to be a god and run your own planet. This, to me, explains the popularity of Mormonism.
Hindus and Buddhists say reincarnation. You come back as another biological life form. You can hope for “rich and powerful,” but you might get “goat.”
Shinto say you wander the earth as a shadowy ghost figure, occasionally stopping by your family’s kids to see how they’re doing and if they left you some tea or a snack.
And in the Robin Williams/Cuba Gooding Jr. film What Dreams May Come, you get heaven, unless you choose hell, and God still fails to show up wherever you go, and if you get bored with heaven, you can reincarnate and take another shot at it just for kicks.

In short, there is NO WAY everyone can be right. You can’t go to eternal heaven, oblivion, and reincarnate all at the same time. Oh, you can TRY, but you’ll fail. And I think we all know that even if you did succeed, it would ruin your credit rating and your insurance wouldn’t cover ANY of it.

I myself am a Christian, and so I will be defining God according to His personal self-revelation as recorded in the Bible. Eventually I will explain why this makes the most sense in all ways Theological, Logical, Metaphysical, Historical, Scientific, and Personal, but first I need to draw a Metaphysical map so you don’t get lost.

The very start of the metaphysical journey is God. Now, if it were possible to sum up God in a single paragraph, the Bible wouldn’t need to be so long, so this will be an overview. Feel free to ask questions. Most of these ideas are easy to find in Genesis, Psalms, the end of Job, the four gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John), and especially in the book of Romans where Paul gets deep with it all.
1. God is ETERNAL. He exists outside of time (Which he created) but can act inside of time. As Jesus Christ he existed inside of time like a normal man, but he was arguably smarter and more talented than the rest of us.
2. God is ALL POWERFUL. He can do anything that can be done (Which means, no, he can’t make a square circle, so don’t ask. It’s a silly question anyway).
3. He is the creator of all space, time, matter, energy, etc. He created it out of nothing. Modern science calls this The Big Bang, only when asked where all the matter, energy, time and space came from, they just shrug their shoulders and hope that “nowhere” is an acceptable answer.
4. God is ALL KNOWING. He knows all that is, was, or will be, and all that would be were things different. And because he is out of time, he doesn’t need to remember stuff or predict it, he sees it in an eternal NOW.
5. God is PERSONAL. Unlike the FORCE (TM Lucasfilms Ltd) he has thoughts, feelings, preferences, characteristics, and a will (Though Qui-Gon Jinn did imply once that the Force ™ also has a will, he may have been speaking metaphorically and certainly does not represent the majority of Jedi doctrine).
6. God made us to have a personal RELATIONSHIP with him. We exist for a purpose- to know and love God and to be known and loved by him.
7. Sin separated us from God, and sin CANNOT be removed with Good Works. (This is the idea that separates Christianity/Biblical Judaism from every other religion and philosophy that has ever existed)
8. Jesus (God incarnate) lived a perfect life and then was crucified and died as the payment for our sins. He was the final and perfect sacrifice that paid for all of our sins, giving us the ability to be made right with God.
9. Salvation is through Jesus, and all you have to do is accept it. Then, God will adopt you into his family and he will be your heavenly father forever.
10. God’s main motivation/Character trait is LOVE. While he is righteous and just, he loves us and therefore made a way for sin to be punished (satisfying his righteous justice) and yet save us to be adopted into his family.
11. I’ll explain the Trinity some other time. There is no way to make short work of that I promise you. Let’s sum it up with “God is more complicated than most.” It’s one of the reasons he is so fascinating.

OK, next time I’ll explain how this view of God is different in every way than the gods of other religions/Oprah. In the mean time, I’m gonna go try Guitar Hero on Hard and see how long I last.

Happy New Year from your Rent A Friend!

About rentafriend2000
Rocking my 40's with a heart full of love and muffins, science and technology. Jesus loves me and wants me to totally rock! And I am here to help.

4 Responses to The Start of the Metaphysical Journey

  1. Carolina Maine says:

    Good luck.
    I have a metaphysics blog for my notes-but it is private.
    Happy New Year.

  2. Pingback: Theists, Agnostics, and Atheists, OH MY! | Rent-A-Friend 2000's Biblical Thinking and Good Times!

  3. Pingback: Theists, Agnostics, and Atheists, OH MY! | A Bit of Orange

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