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Corporate religious experiences such as the Toronto blessing tell us nothing about god. Discuss

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Introduction

Pippa Douglas Corporate religious experiences such as the Toronto blessing tell us nothing about god. Discuss Can religious experience tell us anything about god? In order to answer such a question weather experiences such as the Toronto blessing tell us anything at all about God I will need to look further into the different religious experiences and how they seem to tell us something about God, I will also need to look into revelation, different religions, and interpretation, to come to some answer. What is a religious experience as to oppose to an everyday experience? An everyday experience, which could be travelling on a train for the first time or a new job, where as a religious experience is where a believer would come onto contact with God somehow through prayer or near death experiences. Individual Religious or corporate experiences could be seen as coming in to contact with some think a presence of power i.e. God beyond themselves, the believer or person may come into contact with God, which they gain awareness of God and have a relationship with god, it could be seen as a way of communication with God. A religious experience could also be seen as an experience with an act of worship for example a religious building. ...read more.

Middle

Many of the experiences may help to strengthen the religion itself, C.S. Evans suggested that when believers are filled with the need for dependence on a higher being then they most probably will be categorised into the cosmological argument, but if they are moved by the concept of the universe then they will be categorised into the teleological argument. William James claimed that if there is any criticism of the faith or believer who has experienced such an experience will be completely against their criticism. As we can clearly see the is no clear answer as to weather an experience can prove the existence of God. Revelation would mean revealing of something in this case the revelation of God, who can be seen to conceal himself from his people. We could argue that God reveals himself through the world, God who could be believed to have been the creator of the world, could god be revealing himself through this world that we live in? In genesis it says that 'we are created in God's image', therefore many would argue that everything God created would be a revelation of God himself. Though some experiences of God like Toronto blessing go beyond the sense that God reveals himself through this world. ...read more.

Conclusion

Sigmund Freud would argue that they are nothing more than revealing a childish need of a father figure and a neurotic refusal to grow up. With the ever growing of technology with science and new everyday findings and explanations would science in years to come not prove that these experiences are nothing more than delusional, will science not prove these wrong? Like all other arguments that try to prove the existence of God, religious experience is by far the most powerful. Many of the worldwide religions Christians, Jews, Hindus or Muslims it is difficult to dismiss these as just subjective. William James came to the conclusion that if an experience was beyond words, and offered a new insight then it had to be accepted as objective and authentic. To conclude I would say that if a believer of any religion was to agree that experiences do prove the existence to God then it would be their own belief and understanding and interpretation of the religion, however if a person non believer of believer said that it does not prove anything for the existence of God then that would be their own decision. So I neither agree nor disagree, it purely depends on the strongest of the faith and interpretation. ...read more.

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