Do you believe in God

A section to discuss matters not related to Chess in particular.
PeterTurland
Posts: 541
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2007 10:03 pm
Location: Leicester
Contact:

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by PeterTurland » Mon Jun 20, 2011 9:18 pm

Religion is about emotion, once that is realised the whole debate gets far simpler. Emotion is neurotransmitter ratios. Love is oxytocin, dopamine is go get 'em, serotonin is ah that was nice, beta-endorphin is hey it don't hurt no more and a new one I learned of only the other day, octopamine apparently we are not sure what emotion it is part of yet, but it's in our cerebral fluid doing who knows what? Perhaps the Bond film 'Octopussy' will explain who knows?

John Moore
Posts: 1770
Joined: Wed May 14, 2008 6:33 pm

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by John Moore » Mon Jun 20, 2011 9:25 pm

What!? Octopussy!

David Lettington
Posts: 133
Joined: Fri Apr 06, 2007 10:37 pm
Contact:

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by David Lettington » Tue Jun 21, 2011 7:49 pm

I believe in God. Our local vicar plays chess at the same club as me, and I suppose he believes in God too.

I don't feel the need to have the existence or non-existence of God scientifically or logically proven to me, as I simply believe it to be true.

I came to this belief a few years ago after I walked along the Pilgrims' Way. When I reached Canterbury Cathedral, I felt the urge to pray at the site of St Thomas Becket's martyrdom. This experience opened my mind to the possibility of God's existence (I was an atheist up to this point) and I subsequently completed an Alpha course. I have been a Christian ever since.

PeterTurland
Posts: 541
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2007 10:03 pm
Location: Leicester
Contact:

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by PeterTurland » Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:46 pm

Happy Solstice everyone, thank god for shining on us and growing our food and causing our planet's chaotic behaviour, please keep us in our place, whilst spinning around your good self.

Today is the holiest day of the year.

Malcolm Clarke
Posts: 198
Joined: Thu Oct 14, 2010 5:53 pm

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by Malcolm Clarke » Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:53 pm

Like David Lettington, I am a regular churchgoer. I do not know of anyone in my current church who plays chess, but when in London I organised a team from the All Souls group I belonged to, to play a 5 board friendly match against the German YMCA.

George Szaszvari
Posts: 326
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2010 9:14 pm
Location: USA

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by George Szaszvari » Sun Jul 03, 2011 6:27 pm

Malcolm Clarke wrote:Like David Lettington, I am a regular churchgoer. I do not know of anyone in my current church who plays chess, but when in London I organised a team from the All Souls group I belonged to, to play a 5 board friendly match against the German YMCA.
Malcolm, you just triggered some special memories, and perhaps someone can recall the relevant name. When trying to
promote chess in local schools during the 90s I was referred to a chess playing teacher (whose name escapes me) in
a C of E school in SE London (St Johns perhaps?) who was keen to get contacts for friendly matches for his pupils. It was
quite a boon meeting this chap since he was also a campanologist at Wren's St Pauls Cathedral and invited me to witness
one of their sessions on Sunday for morning services. Those chiming bells had a real psychic effect and, having an
interest in liturgical music, it was both an eye and an ear opener. There was also the privilege of walking the deeply worn
steps through the old tunnels in the walls of the cathedral to get to the room with the bell ropes, areas inaccessible to
the general public. Back in the early 70s I went to the base of the cross on top of the St Pauls dome, only accessible via
a tightly spiralled and rather precarious single file skeleton iron staircase (not for those suffering from vertigo!), with room
enough for just one person, an extraordinary feeling of being alone, wind whistling with an all round panoramic view of the
city. Trying to gain access for some foreign visitors I was hosting in the 90s we found the top of the dome out of bounds
to the general public because the large number of visitors with the huge growth in tourism made it unsafe.

Malcolm Clarke
Posts: 198
Joined: Thu Oct 14, 2010 5:53 pm

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by Malcolm Clarke » Mon Jul 04, 2011 7:42 am

George - I am not sure I can help you with the name of the person, as the eraly 1990's was after I moved out of London. I did find my old London Central YMCA chess club address list which had a couple of names of people who lived in the part of London to which you refer.

I must admit that I did not know of many other chess players in London with a religious inclination, although I believe that James Lyon of London Central YMCA was one, and I came across a couple of others when I played for the DHSS. Of the All Souls team I assembled, I will be surprised if any have played competitive chess since the match to which I refer.

Geoff Chandler
Posts: 2005
Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 1:36 pm
Location: Under Cover
Contact:

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by Geoff Chandler » Mon Jul 04, 2011 11:21 am

"....but doesn't the game [chess] seem to attract a disproportionate number of
introverted types, even social misfits, if not yer actual complete fruitcakes.... "

And this is in a thread about believing in God?

The dead coming back to life, talking snakes....

I'll take the social misfits rather than any religion.
My social misfits don't go around killing people because they don't play chess.

And anyway of the hundreds of chess players I know only one
or two fit the introvert type. 99% of them are happy and harmless.

Millions of people have been killed over religion. Millions.
Believe in your mad God if you want to but don't drag chess players into it.

David Robertson
Posts: 2153
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2007 6:24 pm
Contact:

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by David Robertson » Mon Jul 04, 2011 12:27 pm

If you pray while you play, is that cheating?

I guess if it were, your prayers would necessarily go unanswered.

Hence those who believe in God don't pray during play, leaving the rest of us to seek divine intervention. :)

Simon Spivack
Posts: 600
Joined: Wed May 14, 2008 4:06 pm

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by Simon Spivack » Mon Jul 04, 2011 1:08 pm

Geoff Chandler wrote:
George Szaszvari pinned his Jobbik badge to his birthday suit and wrote:....but doesn't the game [chess] seem to attract a disproportionate number of introverted types, even social misfits, if not yer actual complete fruitcakes.... "
And this is in a thread about believing in God?

The dead coming back to life, talking snakes....

I'll take the social misfits rather than any religion.
My social misfits don't go around killing people because they don't play chess.

And anyway of the hundreds of chess players I know only one
or two fit the introvert type. 99% of them are happy and harmless.

Millions of people have been killed over religion. Millions.
Believe in your mad God if you want to but don't drag chess players into it.
Craziness is a relative term. On the subject of Bohatirchuk we were told that Waffen-SS members were somewhat heroic: thereby wrecking a good thread. Elsewhere, the English Defence League has been found to have a "mission statement" that is "perfectly reasonable". The same source also attests to the moronically ignorant belief that Hitler was part Jewish. No wonder he believes in little green men in their flying machines!

Those not bowled over by this are insane, apparently.

George Szaszvari
Posts: 326
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2010 9:14 pm
Location: USA

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by George Szaszvari » Mon Jul 04, 2011 3:36 pm

Malcolm Clarke wrote:George - I am not sure I can help you with the name of the person, as the eraly 1990's was after I moved out of London. I did find my old London Central YMCA chess club address list which had a couple of names of people who lived in the part of London to which you refer.

I must admit that I did not know of many other chess players in London with a religious inclination, although I believe that James Lyon of London Central YMCA was one, and I came across a couple of others when I played for the DHSS. Of the All Souls team I assembled, I will be surprised if any have played competitive chess since the match to which I refer.
Aha, now that you mention him, the quietly spoken bearded James Lyon, always very pleasant company,
was a good friend of Pierre Lunais and Sandys Dickinson and we engaged in some blitz chess sessions together.
I recall that he had a religious commitment, but to which group, etc, I don't recall. I'm sure there were/are many
chessplayers who simply kept quiet about their beliefs and commitments.

George Szaszvari
Posts: 326
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2010 9:14 pm
Location: USA

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by George Szaszvari » Mon Jul 04, 2011 5:07 pm

Geoff Chandler wrote:".....
Millions of people have been killed over religion. Millions.
Believe in your mad God if you want to but don't drag chess players into it.
You do have a very good point. There have, historically, as well as presently, been many more misfits
(not to say fruitcakes) spreading their death and suffering in the name of religion, besides various other
belief systems, political or otherwise. I recall Bill Hartston lamenting the 1990s Balkan War and wishing
that the Yugoslavs would play more chess (to which they've made such great contributions) instead
of engaging in hateful and destructive war, and who here does not empathize with Hartston's wish in
general concerning human conflict?

Just from my own experience of the chess world I feel that chess attracts more introverted types than
other games and sports, and that doesn't diminish chess or its players in any way. In a game played by
two seated people in a highly specialized abstract world of board, figures and rules, for hours on end, it
must clearly seem arcane and nerdish to non chess players. However, taking your comments to heart
it is questionable if there really are more social misfits in chess than other activities. It depends on who
one is and where one is perceiving things from, so, when compared to people trying to lead "normal" lives
chess players are often seen as oddballs, but when compared to zealots in religion, politics, business,
etc, chess players straight way seem much more "civilized" (until a celebrity chess player, like Fischer,
chooses a road of notoriety.) I guess this discussion could end up going around in circles forever and that
Robert Dale's suggestion:

Chess players are simply human beings with the same range of belief and nonbelief as the rest of mankind.

is ultimately right, with one or two caveats regarding the pecularities of any human activity.

User avatar
Carl Hibbard
Posts: 5728
Joined: Fri Dec 08, 2006 8:05 pm
Location: Evesham

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by Carl Hibbard » Mon Jul 04, 2011 7:10 pm

Simon Spivack wrote:No wonder he believes in little green men in their flying machines!
A touch personal?

I am not keen on a lot of what is being discussed in this Not Chess section as a great deal of it is sailing a little close to the mark on what should be considered acceptable?
Cheers
Carl Hibbard

PeterTurland
Posts: 541
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2007 10:03 pm
Location: Leicester
Contact:

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by PeterTurland » Mon Jul 04, 2011 7:37 pm

Simon Spivack wrote:
Nick Thomas wrote:Do you think that belief in god amongst chess players is correlated to playing strength (or lack of) :?:
Nick returns, like an Assyrian before Jerusalem, he seeks to lay waste to the strong points of the believers. ;)

In my unrepresentative sample the playing strength of the devout varied from an ECF grade of around 110 to about 200 (he is a former British U21 champion, although no names please, in case any have guessed his identity). I don't see any correlation between religious faith and aptitude at chess, just as I don't recognise any pattern between being good at chess and abilities in other fields. But then I am not persuaded that a high IQ demonstrates anything other than a facility to perform well in a particular type of test.

Chess is played in a tolerant environment. One shouldn't ask anyone to sell their right to their beliefs for a mess of pottage, not unless those beliefs go beyond commonly accepted bounds of sanity. I don't know of any chess playing Moloch worshippers.
Alistair Crowley played and I remember reading somewhere or other, that he was no patzer.

PeterTurland
Posts: 541
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2007 10:03 pm
Location: Leicester
Contact:

Re: Do you believe in God

Post by PeterTurland » Mon Jul 04, 2011 10:00 pm

Simon Spivack wrote:
Nick Thomas wrote:Do you think that belief in god amongst chess players is correlated to playing strength (or lack of) :?:
Nick returns, like an Assyrian before Jerusalem, he seeks to lay waste to the strong points of the believers. ;)

In my unrepresentative sample the playing strength of the devout varied from an ECF grade of around 110 to about 200 (he is a former British U21 champion, although no names please, in case any have guessed his identity). I don't see any correlation between religious faith and aptitude at chess, just as I don't recognise any pattern between being good at chess and abilities in other fields. But then I am not persuaded that a high IQ demonstrates anything other than a facility to perform well in a particular type of test.

Chess is played in a tolerant environment. One shouldn't ask anyone to sell their right to their beliefs for a mess of pottage, not unless those beliefs go beyond commonly accepted bounds of sanity. I don't know of any chess playing Moloch worshippers.
Alistair Crowley played and I remember reading somewhere or other, that he was no patzer.

Post Reply