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27 Nov My Religious Beliefs

I believe in a God who created the universe or perhaps is the

universe, who is also the administrator of universal justice. I

also believe in reincarnation and the four noble truths of

Buddhism as well as karma. However, I certainly do NOT believe

in God in the traditional Judeo-Christian sense or in the Bible

or the Koran. Furthermore, I think my beliefs should be subject

to skeptical scrutiny. I also believe very strongly in

well-established scientific theories (including Darwin’s theory

of evolution by natural selection) as well as the scientific

method, and I think any system of religious belief must be

compatible with modern science.

In a nutshell, here are my religious beliefs:

1. There is a God who created the universe or else is the

universe itself. As the supreme intelligent entity, God created

the laws of physics. Furthermore, the evolution of life on earth,

including humanity, was an inevitable consequences of these laws.

Man was created in part in order to comprehend the universe

as well as the laws of physics governing it. Ultimately, man

will learn the purpose of his existence as well as the nature

of God.

2. Every human being has a soul, which is the essence of his or

her being. After we die, our souls leave our bodies and

eventually join up with the body of a newly-conceived human

being. Reincarnation generally proceeds forward in time, though

there may be rare exceptions.

3. God gives every person the free will to choose between good

and evil. (The existence of free will means that the universe

is not deterministic. Quantum mechanics may be the source of

free will.)

4. God maintains a record of everyone’s good and evil deeds

during their lifetime. After we die, who we become in our next

life is based in part on the overall score of how good or evil

we’ve been during our previous life.

5. We cannot conclude that someone’s suffering is a result of

their being punished for having been evil during a past life.

Only God can know the circumstances of someone’s past life.

Besides, unforseen circumstances which are not under God’s

control, such as natural disasters, may be responsible for

suffering. God wants us to help those in need regardless of

whether they’re being punished for their previous life.

6. I believe in the Four Noble Truths of Buddhism. (The fact

that life is suffering is in part due to social demands which

ultimately benefit civilization but go against our genetic

traits which we obtained through natural selection. For instance,

it is healthy to eat vegetables, but most children don’t like

them because they weren’t part of our diet before the advent

of agriculture, which had little bearing on our natural

selection. There are countless other examples like this.)

7. It is not necessary to believe in God in order to be good,

though it helps in general.



David Terr

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