People who have "seen" God

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confused_searching's picture
People who have "seen" God

From what I understand, aethism is the belief, or if not belief, the conclusion that God does not exist. But, for the sake of discussion, what about people who have claimed to have seen God? The entire mormon religion bases their belief on the account of Joseph Smith, who stated that he saw God and Jesus Christ when he was fourteen years old.

And yes, you've probably figured out my background in religion.

But I'm sure that there are other accounts of people who have seen God from many different religions- I do need to do the research.

But I'm just curious. What's the answer you would give for these claims? Are these people delusional? Are they making some sort of statement to garner power and followers? What would be the point of claiming to have seen God, the ultimate proof that He does in fact exist?

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Spewer's picture
That almost seems like a

That almost seems like a trick question. There are lots of reasons people might make such a claim. I'm sure many actually believe it. I'm equally sure others have claimed it to gather followers for whatever other purposes. In the book of Exodus, the author claims Moses was given permission to view god's "back parts" like a divine mooning.

For me, why people would claim to see god isn't the most pertinent question. The more important question is: Why would other people believe such claims, and only in certain cases? If I came on this board claiming that I had seen god and translated his word using a magic hat and some rocks, you would most likely think I was just trying to get a rise out of you, or that I ingested dangerous chemicals or needed treatment for psychosis. Yet Joseph Smith makes the same claim, and an entire religion gets started. Go figure.

Claiming to see god is nowhere near 'ultimate proof' of existence. If I claimed to actually see a unicorn, would you consider that ultimate proof? I certainly hope not. But if you do, then that says more about you than it does about me.

efpierce's picture
I think that was just their

I think that was just their minds giving them what they wanted at that particular time. I once played poker with the Most Interesting Man in the World and Bigfoot while we ate Loch Ness monster meatloaf. It was of course fueled by some very potent home made moonshine but it's the same principle nonetheless.

Zaphod's picture
The following is about the

The following is about the only person I know who claims to have seen God, and this is in a round about way is my opinion of them.

A long time ago I knew this guy people would call Preacher, he was not always a preacher though he used to be form I've been told one of the baddest kids around.. I've heard stories of the stuff he had done to others and thought it ironic that he was so dedicated to being a good christian literally he went non-stop.

I became friends with him as we were both involved in charities together and I talked to him about lots of things but at one point he told me his family were all atheist and this kind of caught me by surprise! Really the whole time I thought when he was younger he was rebelling against his his parent and that he grew up to become an a theist.

So I asked exactly him, " What made you believe?" and he told me it was during a large snow storm he had been driving home and there were trees down all over the roads. He came to a point in the road where he could not pass and tried to turn around only to find he was stranded while he stayed the night trying to stay warm and ran out of gas, he thought he was going to die. Then a bright light came and he felt warm and he felt this immense feeling of love and just somehow knew everything was going to OK he was no longer cold and from that moment on he he believed in God it changed his life and he wanted to spread the word of God and miracles he wanted to do good,

From what I have heard of him changing his life was very good thing not just for him but for all the people around him well except maybe his family who seemingly loathed hearing about it., Nonetheless, what ever happened to him that night it set him on a mission and made him a believer in God and Jesus without a religion he eventually found one he believed to be filled with miracles and brought me along one day to check it out actually seemed like a pretty cool thing they had going just not my cup of tea.

Throughout it all he did believe in God and he really never stopped talking about it years later I ran into him and it was the same thing. I don't know what to make of all this, all I can really say is this guy was changed and had unshakable faith. This Is all fine to me because he seemingly knew more about Christianity and exactly what it was to be christian than most people I have encountered.

He was a good person he had his own beliefs and they just happened to be Christian. I actually would not mind hanging out with him again. He believed in not only being a good person who did not do wrong, but also in making it his life mission to do good in the world. He believed people had to come to their belief on their own and would not try to change your beliefs, he believed when the time was right God would show himself to others, however he would when able tell someone how what they were doing made him feel uncomfortable and why which earned him much ridicule and the nickname preacher.

I could respect that he could respect that you believed differently than he did and he knew what he believed. I like that he felt that he should live a fulfilling life of doing good deeds and he did so in an impressive manner which would make people question why, when asked he would tell them.

SammyShazaam's picture
One of my mom's best friends

One of my mom's best friends has seen Jesus. After her encounter, she gave up her morally questionable ways, got a divorce so that her affair wouldn't be seen as adultery, and became a preacher.

Yes, she has a history of mental illness. And yeah, it was aggravated by a traumatic event, as I'm sure seeing Jesus would be.

In this particular woman's house, she suffered an unfortunate home invasion by a young man named Jesus, who talked to her for several hours while hiding out from the police. Apparently he was quite inspirational.

I myself have a really good friend named Jesus, and I should get around to seeing him more often. Haven't seen God yet so far as I know, though I often look at my dog in the mirror.

efpierce's picture
You're starting to worry me a

You're starting to worry me a little! I have a question about the guy named Jesus, any of them really. Was the name Jesus a common one back in historical biblical days or did the name start then and become popularized by him and why would people name their children Jesus and not something like Jehovah or God then?
I guess that was a lot of questions, maybe I will have to start a new thread about it.

SammyShazaam's picture
I always assumed it was as

I always assumed it was as common then as it is now, but I guess I never really thought about it that much...

Zaphod's picture
I would assume it was in

I would assume it was in terms of a percent of the population back then compared to now probably a more popular name back then as after he was called the son of God by Christians many Christians would not name thier child Jesus as they thought it would be sacrilegious. This did not carry over into all christian faith Spanish people who in many areas are notoriously Christian often use the name Jesus for example.

I would say though if it were looked at as a total number of people back then as compared to now with the name Jesus, I would not be surprised if there are more people named Jesus alive today than there were back then as there are simple way more people alive today then there were back then.

CyberLN's picture
The name Jesus is the Latin

The name Jesus is the Latin form of the Greek form of the Hebrew name Joshua or Jeshua.

LogicLover's picture
It is just what their minds

It is just what their minds want them to see.

SammyShazaam's picture
Yeah, I figure it's pretty

Yeah, I figure it's pretty much along the same lines as the "spirit animal" of Native American vision quests. Who you are determines what you see, and Christian people see Jesus.

mysticrose's picture
I think the people who have

I think the people who have seen god are just hallucinating or just a hoax.

Travis Hedglin's picture
Just like the people who have

Just like the people who have claimed to see Bigfoot or Nessie, I believe some of them are convinced that they did see it, but some are probably lying. The most common time for people to have such experiences is when they are dying, which is why some hospitals with a sense of humor put objects such as cards on top of the medical devices, an nobody claiming to have left their bodies or looked down on themselves ever seems to see those. Some few of these events happen when people are alive, they see angels or their god/prophet/saint of choice, you don't find many Catholics who see Zeus, or Buddhists that see Allah. All of that said, it is reasonable to assume that they occur in the brain, and that even if someone had a "supernatural" experience, we simply couldn't trust the human brain to accurately detail or assess it. That pretty much destroys any affirmation that such experiences could provide.

Jeff Vella Leone's picture
I do not think that Bigfoot

I do not think that Bigfoot is a lie, what they are describing is an upright walking ape, it could easily be a descendant of the Miocene apes that inhabited this planet 3.5 million years ago.
There is evidence that shows that they were upright walking primates. (Laetoli tracks)

Each one of them could easily take out 2 lions without breaking a sweat and they were everywhere, the kings of the jungle.

Up to this day there is no explanation of why they disappeared while other much weaker animals survived.

Travis Hedglin's picture
I used Bigfoot as an example,

I used Bigfoot as an example, an example that some people may be convinced that they saw something, while others are willfully lying or purposely creating a hoax. There have been verified hoaxes, people purposely planting false evidence, and I doubt you would disagree about that. So you believe in Bigfoot, good for you, but you still have all your work ahead of you if you want to claim that they exist, and more so if you want to prove that they are an existing primitive species of ape. I don't believe in Bigfoot, or Nessie, and anyone that wants to believe that they exist are welcome to it, but don't expect me to.

Jeff Vella Leone's picture
"There have been verified

"There have been verified hoaxes, people purposely planting false evidence, and I doubt you would disagree about that."

Out of the 1000's big foot martial that is analyzed every year only about a 50 or so are genuine or not hoax.

This includes eyewitnesses which give detailed information combined with accepted as real footprints etc...

So yes, there are a lot of people lying that want to get attention or rip off other people that use Bigfoot claims.

By the way Bigfoot is a silly name given to them, as I said it could be very easily an ape.

I was just giving my take on this matter, I do not wish to convince anyone of anything.

Just pointing out that if you make a claim that Bigfoot itself as a hoax, be prepared to back it up.

I do not believe in Bigfoot but I accepted the fact that apes existed and considered the possibility that they could still exist.

archca's picture
All those who claim to have

All those who claim to have seen god are liars. They're just making it up to try to get attention or they have some psychological problems they should seek help with.

silasmotionless's picture
I believe they are either

I believe they are either liars or it's just a figment of imagination. Just an illusion that their mind is displaying

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