Knowledge of God in Islam

Discuss either theological doctrines, ideas about God, or Biblical criticism. I don't want any debates about creation vs evolution.

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Re: Knowledge of God in Islam

Postby Metacrock on Tue Sep 09, 2014 8:36 pm

met wrote:U SOLD twelve copies?!? :shock:

Man, that's a LOT! We dream of selling twelve copies! :o

. . . What are u doing RIGHT???


one of my old Profs said his first book has sold 12 copies a year for 30 years. It's still in print. So he said "you sold your fisrt 12." :mrgreen:
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Re: Knowledge of God in Islam

Postby QuantumTroll on Wed Sep 10, 2014 3:09 am

sgttomas wrote:The issue you are pointing to is how one interprets God. This spatial analogy has no coherence with God, because God is an arbitrary object and arbitrary space has no intentional structure. As for God I have arbitrarily assigned those exact properties so it isn't some huge coincidence. The intentional and meaningful associations that I have with God, are notGod. God is responsible for my intentional and meaningful associations that I have with God.

In terms of my analogy, you're saying that space (i.e. where the ramp leads) is God and the moon (i.e. where you choose to go) is the intentional and meaningful association with God. Hmm, I'll think about it, but I have a feeling that my response will be like "I don't agree, because my whole point is that the existence of a solution that satisfies your axioms doesn't imply there exists an intentional and meaningful relationship with that solution." I'll let you know if I change my mind...

QuantumTroll wrote:Please ignore where this analogy fails (e.g. the moon is visible from earth and provably exists, etc), it's only purpose is to convey how I feel about the current discussion. For me to continue to take it seriously, I need some more parameters on the launch ramp. Where to place it, when to shoot, etc, analogy-wise. In the actual discussion it makes no sense for the axiomatically defined unity to interact with peculiarly animated swirls on a planetary surface in a way that's meaningful to those swirls. Telling me that believing this is just a possible choice is... not helpful. I'd much more easily believe that the planet upon which we're swirling is interacting with us in a god-like manner.


Define god-like.

I think you know what I mean. It could be a subtly guiding hand, inspiration, transformational religious experiences, etc. Everything that people attribute to God. We're beings made out of carbon and water with electrical brains, if something larger than ourselves is interacting with us, the planet is a prime candidate for doing that. But that's science fiction and/or Gaianism...
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Re: Knowledge of God in Islam

Postby sgttomas on Wed Sep 10, 2014 11:33 am

**edited to fix typos

OK that's fine I won't pick apart your definition (right now ;-) ) but let's just pose something. You're right that my imagination can't make God real, but my imagination is all I need to make certain kinds of things real and those things are the expected correlates for God (edited to add linky to Quran recitation and this quote...).

Q59:22 wrote:22. God is He save Whom there is no deity; the Knower of the unseen (all that lies beyond sense-perception) and the witnessed (the corporeal realm). He is the All-Merciful, the All-Compassionate.
23. God is He save Whom there is no deity; the Sovereign, the All-Holy and All-Pure, the Supreme Author of peace and salvation and Supreme Author of safety and security Who bestows faith and removes all doubt, the All-Watchful Guardian, the All-Glorious with irresistible might, the All-Compelling of supreme majesty, the One Who has exclusive right to all greatness. All-Glorified is God in that He is absolutely exalted above what they associate with Him.
24. He is God, the Creator, the All-Holy Maker (Who creates without any defects), the All-Fashioning. To Him belong the All-Beautiful Names. Whatever is in the heavens and on the earth glorifies Him (declaring Him to be absolutely above having any defects). He is the All-Glorious with irresistible might, the All-Wise.



...On the other hand I have allowed for your version to be fully realized in the ontology I have on offer. Moreover it's still possible that your god-like nature is exactly like my God's Creation in any practical or existential way... Then what does that mean? It means the only way to take one path or another with rational warrant is to arbitrarily decide to.

You can only speak of God within the God-world semantics. I.e. you must speak correctly about God because God is a formal object. Without reference to God you can't lack belief in it, and it is *by definition* a null set in nonGod-world so you have to choose your words carefully to ensure you are preserving the literary structures of each world: what's possible and impossible, etc.

Peace,
-sgttomas
Prophet Muhammad (God send peace and blessings upon him) is reported to have said, "God says 'I am as My servant thinks I am' " ~ Sahih Al-Bukhari, Vol 9 #502 (Chapter 93, "Oneness of God")
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Re: Knowledge of God in Islam

Postby met on Sat Sep 20, 2014 9:27 am

ST, it seem like you've drawn a radical distinction between your God- and non-God-worlds & are insisting on a strictly dualistic approach. Yes/no. Black or white. "A or not-A." With his moon analogy, QT (I think) is objecting to that as maybe oversimplistic since there would seem to be whole continuums of possibilities between a universe strictly from nothing and creation by a very transcendent, very sovereign, omni- sort of God as proposed in your definition. Are you glossing over that - all those intermittent shades of grey - by constructing and insisting on a formal either/or here?

... Thusly is the gist of both of our questions. (I think)
The “One” is the space of the “world” of the tick, but also the “pinch” of the lobster, or that rendezvous in person to confirm online pictures (with a new lover or an old God). This is the machinery operative...as “onto-theology."
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Re: Knowledge of God in Islam

Postby Metacrock on Sat Sep 20, 2014 10:51 am

QuantumTroll wrote:
sgttomas wrote:The issue you are pointing to is how one interprets God. This spatial analogy has no coherence with God, because God is an arbitrary object and arbitrary space has no intentional structure. As for God I have arbitrarily assigned those exact properties so it isn't some huge coincidence. The intentional and meaningful associations that I have with God, are notGod. God is responsible for my intentional and meaningful associations that I have with God.

In terms of my analogy, you're saying that space (i.e. where the ramp leads) is God and the moon (i.e. where you choose to go) is the intentional and meaningful association with God. Hmm, I'll think about it, but I have a feeling that my response will be like "I don't agree, because my whole point is that the existence of a solution that satisfies your axioms doesn't imply there exists an intentional and meaningful relationship with that solution." I'll let you know if I change my mind...

QuantumTroll wrote:Please ignore where this analogy fails (e.g. the moon is visible from earth and provably exists, etc), it's only purpose is to convey how I feel about the current discussion. For me to continue to take it seriously, I need some more parameters on the launch ramp. Where to place it, when to shoot, etc, analogy-wise. In the actual discussion it makes no sense for the axiomatically defined unity to interact with peculiarly animated swirls on a planetary surface in a way that's meaningful to those swirls. Telling me that believing this is just a possible choice is... not helpful. I'd much more easily believe that the planet upon which we're swirling is interacting with us in a god-like manner.


Define god-like.

I think you know what I mean. It could be a subtly guiding hand, inspiration, transformational religious experiences, etc. Everything that people attribute to God. We're beings made out of carbon and water with electrical brains, if something larger than ourselves is interacting with us, the planet is a prime candidate for doing that. But that's science fiction and/or Gaianism...



I think you argument seems meaning to you because it satisfies the perimiters of our axioms but the existence of a solution that satisfies your axioms doesn't imply there exists an intentional and meaningful relationship with that solution." I'll let you know if I change my mind...
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Re: Knowledge of God in Islam

Postby sgttomas on Sat Sep 20, 2014 1:10 pm

edited for clarity....hopefully.

met wrote:ST, it seem like you've drawn a radical distinction between your God- and non-God-worlds & are insisting on a strictly dualistic approach. Yes/no. Black or white. "A or not-A." With his moon analogy, QT (I think) is objecting to that as maybe oversimplistic since there would seem to be whole continuums of possibilities between a universe strictly from nothing and creation by a very transcendent, very sovereign, omni- sort of God as proposed in your definition. Are you glossing over that - all those intermittent shades of grey - by constructing and insisting on a formal either/or here?

... Thusly is the gist of both of our questions. (I think)


First of all....what do you propose?

I don't insist that you do anything other than follow the rules of the game consistently *iff* you want to play this game and explore its features. If other "possibilities" exist then they are incommensurable *alternatives* and that's not the same thing. Right? :)

This game has a purpose and a style of gameplay that may or may not appeal to you, but it doesn't make it an oversimplistic game, it makes it an exclusive game. All games are exclusive. Any alternative game cannot allow for a "God" that would be recognizable within the terms of the game I laid out here. So from my point of view, the alternative is "deficient". Why are you glossing over that ;) 8-) Let me repeat; an alternative game cannot include the God-game as part of itself. The God-game comes in whole, not in part. There are sub-genres of the God-game, however; in infinite many.

Within the ontology I constructed here there are only the two possibilities to account for the fact of existence. But that's where it stops. I'm just accounting for the fact that there is something rather than nothing. So the black and white is only the ontological basis - the rules of the game - because all knowledge within the game is entirely grey through and through. Its possible that your shades of grey are actually in this category.

So we can ask to a play a different game, but it isn't appropriate to ask why I'm not trying to play all possible alternative games simultaneously. The rules of the God-game are sufficient for itself. Alternatives aren't possible considerations within the rules of the game. I didn't gloss over this, I chose not to address this because it is not a possibility within the God-game, and that's what I'm discussing; the God-game. If you are discussing alternatives, you aren't discussing the God-game - it cuts both ways.

But I'm curious what alternatives you think exist? There are certainly other games to play, but what characteristics does it have?

Peace,
-sgttomas
Last edited by sgttomas on Sat Sep 20, 2014 2:06 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Prophet Muhammad (God send peace and blessings upon him) is reported to have said, "God says 'I am as My servant thinks I am' " ~ Sahih Al-Bukhari, Vol 9 #502 (Chapter 93, "Oneness of God")
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Re: Knowledge of God in Islam

Postby sgttomas on Sat Sep 20, 2014 1:13 pm

Metacrock wrote:
QuantumTroll wrote:
sgttomas wrote:The issue you are pointing to is how one interprets God. This spatial analogy has no coherence with God, because God is an arbitrary object and arbitrary space has no intentional structure. As for God I have arbitrarily assigned those exact properties so it isn't some huge coincidence. The intentional and meaningful associations that I have with God, are notGod. God is responsible for my intentional and meaningful associations that I have with God.

In terms of my analogy, you're saying that space (i.e. where the ramp leads) is God and the moon (i.e. where you choose to go) is the intentional and meaningful association with God. Hmm, I'll think about it, but I have a feeling that my response will be like "I don't agree, because my whole point is that the existence of a solution that satisfies your axioms doesn't imply there exists an intentional and meaningful relationship with that solution." I'll let you know if I change my mind...




I think you argument seems meaning to you because it satisfies the perimiters of our axioms but the existence of a solution that satisfies your axioms doesn't imply there exists an intentional and meaningful relationship with that solution." I'll let you know if I change my mind...


Sorry...I'm not quite following you.
Prophet Muhammad (God send peace and blessings upon him) is reported to have said, "God says 'I am as My servant thinks I am' " ~ Sahih Al-Bukhari, Vol 9 #502 (Chapter 93, "Oneness of God")
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Re: Knowledge of God in Islam

Postby QuantumTroll on Thu Sep 25, 2014 7:16 am

I think Met gets the point I was trying to make, thanks Met!

Sgttomas, I think that you've been assuming that I spoke from a certain point of view, this "nonGod" world. I prefer to think that my perspective spans both God and nonGod worlds. Maybe that breaks against the rules of your game, and that's why you assume one has to adopt one world or the other. If so, I think that your rules are too limiting.

That said, I think the criticism you had may have some merit. Supposing that your original axioms are satisfied, and supposing that your experiences seem to correspond to what's written in the Quran, and that the God of the Quran satisfies the axioms, then it's not unreasonable to believe that your experiences are a relationship with God.

On the other hand, I would argue that it is at least as reasonable to believe something else. Suppose all the things in the previous paragraph. Also suppose that Joe's experiences correspond to what's written in the Bible, Xiao's experiences correspond to what's written about Buddha, and Kevin's experiences are explained purely by neuropsychological phenomena. The three religious beliefs are mutually exclusive. It is possible to argue that the scientific experience isn't in the same category as the others, and you may discount it if you wish. Is it still reasonable to believe in the Quran, or should one switch to another book? Believe in three or four mutually exclusive things? By restricting consideration to the experiences of one person and one religion, meaningful context is lost.
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Re: Knowledge of God in Islam

Postby sgttomas on Tue Oct 20, 2015 11:45 pm

QuantumTroll wrote:I think Met gets the point I was trying to make, thanks Met!

Sgttomas, I think that you've been assuming that I spoke from a certain point of view, this "nonGod" world. I prefer to think that my perspective spans both God and nonGod worlds. Maybe that breaks against the rules of your game, and that's why you assume one has to adopt one world or the other. If so, I think that your rules are too limiting.


Heh, well I think I said a few times that you might not like the rules of the game but to be consistent within the rules you are faced with this exclusive choice. The God world isn't really prescriptive though, so I don't think I'm really being limiting. I'll address that below...

QT wrote:That said, I think the criticism you had may have some merit. Supposing that your original axioms are satisfied, and supposing that your experiences seem to correspond to what's written in the Quran, and that the God of the Quran satisfies the axioms, then it's not unreasonable to believe that your experiences are a relationship with God.

On the other hand, I would argue that it is at least as reasonable to believe something else.


I agree.

....I even agreed back when I wrote this a year ago. :mrgreen:

Sorry for the delayed response. Again.

I agree. That was how I intended it to come across. The God world is expansive.

QT wrote:Suppose all the things in the previous paragraph. Also suppose that Joe's experiences correspond to what's written in the Bible, Xiao's experiences correspond to what's written about Buddha, and Kevin's experiences are explained purely by neuropsychological phenomena. The three religious beliefs are mutually exclusive. It is possible to argue that the scientific experience isn't in the same category as the others, and you may discount it if you wish.


Indeed I will....re-assign the scientific experience. Unless you want to call it a mystical experience with really lame imagery/prose used to describe it. :P

QT wrote:Is it still reasonable to believe in the Quran, or should one switch to another book? Believe in three or four mutually exclusive things? By restricting consideration to the experiences of one person and one religion, meaningful context is lost.


Why? I'm not saying that you are restricted to only interpresting God world through the lense of the Quran. I'm describing the rational path that leads to belief in a particular religion, but as for why *this* religion versus *that* one, it's a matter of persuation. I'm persuaded that Islam is more true than other religious expressions. But now we are going to move the conversation into a realm of comparative religion and other things like sociology, history of ideas, theology, ....stuff well beyond the scope of what I wanted to achieve here in our discussion.

I merely wanted to present a framework for how a metaphysic can be described in a self-consistent manner such that something "God"-like can be meaningfully associated with it, and in a manner that can describe physical reality with the same tools and accuracy that scientific materialism achieves. And I wanted to show how I made the leap from abstract metaphysic to specific religion...not the detailed personal experience and conviction aspect, but the identification of a type amongst a family of beliefs that can emanate from the metaphysical roots. The particulars of Islam come down to being persuaded that Prophet Muhammad was speaking from a place of privilege regarding knowledge of the reality of Godworld, and not merely as an intellectual exercise.

Peace,
-sgttomas
Prophet Muhammad (God send peace and blessings upon him) is reported to have said, "God says 'I am as My servant thinks I am' " ~ Sahih Al-Bukhari, Vol 9 #502 (Chapter 93, "Oneness of God")
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Re: Knowledge of God in Islam

Postby sgttomas on Tue Oct 20, 2015 11:49 pm

Metacrock wrote:I think you argument seems meaning to you because it satisfies the perimiters of our axioms but the existence of a solution that satisfies your axioms doesn't imply there exists an intentional and meaningful relationship with that solution." I'll let you know if I change my mind...


Ooooh, yeah I get what you are saying now. Yeah, you're right. The game is just the start of the path towards an intentional and meaningful relationship.

That outcome can be achieved by two means: direct knowledge (mystical experience) and inner conviction (for example, that a prophet was speaking on behalf of something Real, and acting upon this communication). The two aren't mutually exclusive.

Peace,
-sgttomas
Prophet Muhammad (God send peace and blessings upon him) is reported to have said, "God says 'I am as My servant thinks I am' " ~ Sahih Al-Bukhari, Vol 9 #502 (Chapter 93, "Oneness of God")
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