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Passions in Poetry

semantics

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JP
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0 posted 05-25-2003 10:34 PM       View Profile for JP   Email JP   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit JP's Home Page   View IP for JP


LR you are arguing semantics.  You say burn in hell, someone else says conflagratein hades.  The words are different, but the meaning is the same.

BTW, You left out The Amplified Bible in your list of versions... it happens to be my personal favorite.

Yesterday is ash, tomorrow is smoke; only today does the fire burn.
Nil Desperandum, Fata viem invenient

Local Rebel
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1 posted 05-25-2003 11:08 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Ah but you miss the point JP -- I'm not arguing semantics -- I'm not arguing at all -- I'm challenging the idea that scriptures are protected by 'magic'.  

There are too many English versions of the Bible to list.  

Why?  Why do you need a choice?  You need to choose which truth fits the best?  

Certainly some versions are more easily understood than others -- but many Christians would argue there is none but the King James Version and that you will Oxidize eternally if you use any other.

Stephanos
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2 posted 05-25-2003 11:21 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

LR,

"but many Christians would argue there is none but the King James Version and that you will Oxidize eternally if you use any other."


By no means do a majority of Christians believe this, but I guess there is a pretty large group.  Still they like anyone else must give compelling reasons as to why this is the case.  I personally have investigated that whole claim, and found it to be quite false.  I love the KJV, but it is not the only accurate translation there is.  Again the manuscripts are there for checking such claims ... And even though I can't read greek or Hebrew or Chaldean, there are many who can, and have done a lot of comparisons.    

Stephen

Ron
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3 posted 05-26-2003 01:06 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
but many Christians would argue there is none but the King James Version ...

And many would argue that birth control is a sin. Let them. What a Christian says and what Christ says aren't always the same, and that should come as a surprise to absolutely nobody. Christians, after all, aren't perfect and mistakes are inevitable (and sometimes tragic). While the analogy falls far short, judging Christianity by those who try to practice it is a little like judging the American Constitution by the leaders we elect.
Brad
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4 posted 05-26-2003 12:48 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Enough is enough. You or anybody are welcome to discuss any Biblical quote, any chapter, any verse, in this forum. The point of philosphy is to ask questions, the point of religion is to answer them.

Let the religious argue, I say. Let them argue metaphysics forever.

Stephanos
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5 posted 05-26-2003 01:53 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Brad,

The religious aren't the only ones arguing are they? ... Even you argue metaphysics.  Your silence speaks pretty loudly.  And your view that such questions do not really matter is itself a metaphysical stance ... a metanarrative to use postmodern terminology.  But I think it's okay as long as we respect each other and argue in an honorable way.  Hey that's what a philosophy forum is for!


Stephen.
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6 posted 05-26-2003 08:37 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

since you left your post unaddressed Brad I must ask -- enough what is enough?

Ron,

Whatever any Christian has to say is what Christianity has to say -- but I agree -- most of what Christianity says today has very little to do with what Christ ever said.


Brad
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7 posted 05-27-2003 07:10 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Because it wasn't really addressed at anyone, LR. Just letting out a little frustration.

I have no argument to make, I just wish I did.

Stephen,

You may be right that we can never quite get the metaphysical bug out of our system, but I still see a difference between saying that there is no such things as metaphysics and asking whether the question is even worth talking about.

Again, just ignore me. I wanted to say something even though I have nothing to say here.
JP
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8 posted 05-27-2003 09:36 AM       View Profile for JP   Email JP   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit JP's Home Page   View IP for JP

Brad:
I'm a bit confused... I thought philosophy was metaphysical, and aren't religions considered philosophies in the academic world?

LR ~
quote:
Whatever any Christian has to say is what Christianity has to say -- but I agree -- most of what Christianity says today has very little to do with what Christ ever said.


This statement is so blatantly generalized and wrong I don't even know where to begin.  Unless you are trying to make some other point that I am missing entirely.  I suppose that going by this statement I could conclude that what one poet has to say every poet has to say, or that what one Democrat or Republican has to say every Democrat or Republican has to say.

I do hope that you were making a point that I missed.

Yesterday is ash, tomorrow is smoke; only today does the fire burn.
Nil Desperandum, Fata viem invenient

jbouder
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9 posted 05-27-2003 11:43 AM       View Profile for jbouder   Email jbouder   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for jbouder

Brad:

I understand your frustration, but I disagree with your suggestion that the philosophical and theological disciplines do not overlap.  Granted, I'm just not seeing much of it here, but I do think they overlap.  They did for Keirkegaard, Aquinas and Locke, right?

The rest:

Don't you think getting mired in minutia is futile?  

For example, arguing that Buddhism and Christianity teach the same thing by citing similar passages attributed to Buddha and Christ is pointless because, looking at the big picture, Buddhism and Christianity are different religions, with different practices and, largely, have differing doctrines of the natures of man and God. That's like saying a Ferrarri and '03 Corvette are the same because they both have sparkplugs.

Regarding translations of the Bible, any translation of any text from any other language is bound to loose some of the original emphasis or effect.  Koine Greek, grammatically, is much different from English and sometimes the original meaning, often obvious in the original language, gets obscured in the translation.  If this causes you a problem, then go learn Koine Greek and teach the others the errors of their ways.  This is what separates argumentation from objectionism.  Incidentally, the former requires more work.

Jim


Brad
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10 posted 05-28-2003 07:22 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Well, for what it's worth, I finally have something to say here:

JP says:

quote:
You say burn in hell, someone else says conflagratein hades.  The words are different, but the meaning is the same.


They could mean the same thing, they also could mean something quite different. We don't know. Why? Because it is a use/mention problem. These two examples are mentioned as examples to show that semantics are irrelevant, but they aren't used to mean anything. If we say,"'Cat' is a noun", we don't know if that noun is a domesticated mammal, a general term for a whole variety of species, or the name of a musician who says some rather strange things at times. They are all nouns.

We need to know how these phrases are used in sentences and sentences in contexts before we can talk about what they mean. If we're going to talk about different translations of the Bible, we have to look at how words are used in each and every translation. We can say that they mean something different or we can say that they mean different things, but these are assertions based on already held assumptions. In order to figure it out, we have to test those assumptions.  

Jim,

No doubt you are correct that philosophy and religion cannot be so easily separated. My bad. At the same time, we shouldn't overlook that science and religion as well aren't so easily separated.  When a scientist says something like "Mathematics is the language of Nature," we should probably take him (almost always him) more seriously than he thinks.

Ron
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11 posted 05-28-2003 07:51 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
We need to know how these phrases are used in sentences and sentences in contexts before we can talk about what they mean.

Yes!

And in many instances, we'll need to look at other works by the same author if we are to understand precisely what they meant by the phrases we are investigating. Sometimes, real understanding of the phrases will only come with a thorough study of the author's life. Of course, to really grasp the meaning of that life, we have to make very sure we know the culture in which the author was raised. Which probably requires a study of other cultures during that time period, certainly those that might have affected the author.

Ya know, suddenly, I don't really CARE what kind of blasted cat he meant!  

(My point is that, yes, context is important. But in every instance, we unconsciously make judgements about how much context is necessary. That complicates things, because different people invariably make different judgements. Can you tell I've missed your POV in here, Brad?   )
Brad
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12 posted 05-28-2003 09:03 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

I don't know if you've missed my point of view, Ron. I do know that you have a pretty good refutation of the Correspondance theory of truth. (It's right but empty). And while I have this sneaky feeling that you've been reading Derrida behind my back, the fact that you can give up, is more a sign that you don't care what 'cat' means than we can't talk about specific verses, compare different translations, and whatnot.

So, what happens, what do you do, when you do care?

Is there another way?

Ron
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13 posted 05-28-2003 10:19 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Absolutely. We agree on what context is necessary for full understanding. But the only way that usually happens is if we first agree that we need to agree. We have to recognize that "in context" might not mean the same thing to both of us.

That can be difficult in any discussion, even one about cats, but it is particularly difficult in a discussion revolving around the Bible. The "context" within which a Christian reads the Bible necessarily includes instruction and revelation by the Holy Spirit. Starting to see a problem yet?  

And who's Derrida? Never heard of him. (That's my story and I'm sticking to it.)
Local Rebel
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14 posted 05-29-2003 12:55 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Well Jim, I'm flattered I think, that this one blatantly generalized and wrong statement of mine, has elicited a response.  Does this mean you think my other statements are true and well reasoned?

heh...

yeah riiiiiiiiight.

but, in this particular instance you are correct sir -- and I wasn't trying to make a point -- I was spinning a web.  (quilty look)  it wasn't supposed to catch you --

[This message has been edited by Local Rebel (05-29-2003 12:56 AM).]

Stephanos
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15 posted 05-29-2003 01:04 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

LR,

"it wasn't supposed to catch you --


I think that was JP's point though ... It was much more like a drag net than a finely spun web.    


Stephen    

[This message has been edited by Stephanos (05-29-2003 01:06 AM).]

Local Rebel
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16 posted 05-29-2003 01:08 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

quote:

Don't you think getting mired in minutia is futile?  

For example, arguing that Buddhism and Christianity teach the same thing by citing similar passages attributed to Buddha and Christ is pointless because, looking at the big picture, Buddhism and Christianity are different religions, with different practices and, largely, have differing doctrines of the natures of man and God. That's like saying a Ferrarri and '03 Corvette are the same because they both have sparkplugs.



Many students with open minds who have explored the living faiths of the world express the commonality of the concern God has for humankind that God being "no respecter of persons' blesses all persons.

I would think people who want to prove the existence of God would welcome such an opportunity -- not try to shut it down because there are differnces in the interpretations.
Local Rebel
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17 posted 05-29-2003 01:18 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

What kan I say Stephan -- I'm on two fronts here -- I hardly have time to proofread!  
jbouder
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18 posted 05-29-2003 09:12 AM       View Profile for jbouder   Email jbouder   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for jbouder

quote:
Many students with open minds who have explored the living faiths of the world express the commonality of the concern God has for humankind that God being "no respecter of persons' blesses all persons.

I would think people who want to prove the existence of God would welcome such an opportunity -- not try to shut it down because there are differnces in the interpretations.


LR:

I think the Unitarians and Bahai would fit into this category.  I'm not suggesting that this cannot be a nobel pursuit.  What concerns me with these practices you describe is not the good intentions behind them, it is the consequences of adhering to such a belief system.  I'm concerned about what is lost by trying to shoehorn diverse faiths into an eclectic mold.

What do you do with beliefs that are central to Buddhism or Islam or Christianity that simply cannot be reconciled with one another?  Do you throw them out because of some subconscious fear of being "closed-minded," or do you do your homework and try to decide for yourself which is most likely true?  My guess is that you'd be more satisfied with a result you've thought through.

The notion that good things cannot come from adverse dialogue is simply not true.  Even if the dialogue is adverse, it is still dialogue.  We should certainly seek common ground, but a healthy respect for and recognition of our differences is at least equally important.  After all, if we keep talking, we might even learn something.

Jim

 
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