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Local Rebel
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75 posted 11-27-2003 11:29 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

quote:

But since I know that EVERYONE has presuppositions, and that first principles are unavoidable




a presupposition?  heh heh heh

Meg -- nice to see you waxing philisophical!  
Essorant
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76 posted 11-27-2003 12:44 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

If  Creationists and Evolutionists met in the midmost ground between both the myth and the theory, that would probably be more accurate than obstinant views from being too fond of one or the other.  They are both from the same substance just in different shapes of lore,  therefore either should work with other and join forces rather than be seperate-like camps or schools.  Either way, the Evolotionist and Creationist are both Imaginationists.  They use the best imagining thats seems to fill in the blank spaces most answerably.  The supposed evidence is too very vague and full of spaces, therefore the imagination must go by what seems most decent.  If you are not inclined to imagine something though, that certainly does not mean it may not be true.  But if you may not downsize it, that doesn't mean the smaller-looking imagination is false either.  

[This message has been edited by Essorant (11-27-2003 02:54 PM).]

Aenimal
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77 posted 11-28-2003 01:02 PM       View Profile for Aenimal   Email Aenimal   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Aenimal

I the late 1800's the church, besieged on all fronts, created the Catholic Modernist Movement. The goal was too create a learned group of young clerics who were armed with the education and resources to defend the church from all its growing army of critics and adversaries.

The plan was a total failure. Instead many clerics were lost as scrutiny of the bible and church they were chosen to defend revealed all its inconsistencies and descrepancies.

Works of these scholars were then, of course, banned under the a newly created Pontifical Biblical Commision and clerics suspected of having 'modernist' views were dismissed or punished.

So what I suggest, instead of posing questions to answers you really don't want answered, is that you put down the fiction and read books on the subjects that challenge and expand a mind instead.

MOST importantly I suggest you look into the origins, reformations and critiques by biblical scholars of the book and relgion you hold as law.

The biggest problem i have with biblethumpers is there inability to face truths and reason. How could anyone be true to there faith or beleive without honestly having challenged it themselves?

Do you hear the echo? It's the pointlessness of everything I just said ringing in the ears of the 'faithful'

[This message has been edited by Aenimal (11-28-2003 01:03 PM).]

Denise
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78 posted 11-29-2003 10:05 AM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Raph, you seem to be working under the assumption that people of faith believe what they believe blindly, without research, without using their reasoning capabilities, without logic. That's painting with quite a broad brush, wouldn't you say?

Also, your use of the pejorative term "biblethumpers" speaks volumes.

How can anyone be true to their own integrity and logic with such prejudice coloring their view?
Essorant
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79 posted 11-29-2003 01:19 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Who knows? We as humans may be the greatest intellectual center in the universe, have the highest hand and knowledge over nature and the swiftest line coming out of our kind.  It is just our imagination that usually always likes something "beyond" and "higher" --but we shouldn't get too fixed on attributing things to "beyond" and "higher" because in the meantime the truth may actually be that we humans have a much greater role to serve not just in the world, but in the universe.  It may be difficult to imagine, but I don't think it is completly impossible     

[This message has been edited by Essorant (11-29-2003 01:24 PM).]

Aenimal
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80 posted 11-29-2003 06:28 PM       View Profile for Aenimal   Email Aenimal   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Aenimal

You're mistaken Denise I wasn't speaking in broad terms, the fact that I used the term 'biblethumpers' states a select group and attitude of people and NOT all believers.

I found this discussion irresponsible and fruitless. To pose questions and then dismiss answers with the 'faith' angle is pure bible thumpin indoctrination.

Stephanos
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81 posted 11-29-2003 09:31 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Kaoru :  
quote:
Believe what you will.. Although some people will be closed-minded and you'll be persecuted despite WHAT you believe in.. it is your choice..
No matter how much proof is offered, you will go on believing in God.. Just like some will go on believing in Evolution.. and some will go on believing in nothing at all, denying that our existence is even real.
Fact is, whether you believe in a creator or not, you're here and you'll have a belief that belongs to you, and only you. Keep that, and get on with life.
...*end senseless rant*



I do appreciate your distaste for nasty argumentation, as you are obviously implying is likely to happen from such debate.  But your own position here doesn't really say much.  Let me give you an example ...I for one, believe there are certainties in the universe.  I am not agnostic.  I also believe that dialogue is good concerning these things, as I believe that it matters both temporally and eternally what we believe and how we think.  And from your above post, you are telling me to make no changes in my approach ...  "Believe what you will.. Although some people will be closed-minded and you'll be persecuted despite WHAT you believe in.. it is your choice..".  Then you go on to tell us to end this "senseless rant".  But my beliefs entail that the question of God/ presuppositions/ evolution/ etc.. is worthy of discussion.  It's a bit disrespectful to assume that all here feel this discussion is as senseless as you do.  Perhaps some do, but they are usually just silent.  (Hi, Brad.   )  I just wanted you to see that included in this "rant" is your view that such questions are irrelevant.  I disagree, but I don't want to call you senseless.


Toad:  
quote:
On the contrary, my suggestion was that the devices used do not necessarily make an argument valid - that recognising the methods used allows you a better chance of judging the arguments.


I can buy that.


LR:  
quote:
a presupposition?  heh heh heh


absolutely axiomatically.  


Aenimal:  
quote:
In the late 1800's the church, besieged on all fronts, created the Catholic Modernist Movement. The goal was too create a learned group of young clerics who were armed with the education and resources to defend the church from all its growing army of critics and adversaries.
The plan was a total failure.



Ah, So Christians didn't start trying to think or rationalize prior to the 1800's?  So they're just the unlearned imprisoned by myth kind of folk.  Interesting theory.  But it doesn't seem to coincide with History.  Have you forgotten about the host of scientists you studied about in school who were Christians?  And as far as Liberal Biblical criticism is concerned, it's not difficult to prove miracles as unhistorical if you rule them out a priori based upon your naturalistic view.  For quite an interesting challenge to the "higher criticism" of the Bible, you should do some reading of  N.T. Wright, one of the world's leading New Testament Scholars.

http://catalystresources.org/issues/271newman.html


http://home.hiwaay.net/~kbush/wrightpage.html


http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0800626796/qid=1070159099/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/103-8708671-6418256?v=glance&s=books  


quote:
You're mistaken Denise I wasn't speaking in broad terms, the fact that I used the term 'biblethumpers' states a select group and attitude of people and NOT all believers.



Your previous statements about the "Church" and all the alleged inconsistencies of the Bible belie your position.  This would imply all Christians who hold the Bible to be divinely inspired.  


Stephen.


[This message has been edited by Stephanos (11-29-2003 09:37 PM).]

Kaoru
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82 posted 11-30-2003 02:25 AM       View Profile for Kaoru   Email Kaoru   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Kaoru

Stephen,

I'm sorry I may have been a bit too broad. I don't want to be rude. I am an open-minded person, and I think people shouldn't feel forced to believe in something they don't feel is right.

Also, I did not mean to imply that this whole discussion is senseless.. I meant it to say that my contribution was senseless, and almost pointless.

Bringing my religious/philosophical/etc. beliefs in to this discussion, I felt was not neccesary. The fact being, that I do not want to walk blindly into this without knowing the answers to every question she's chosen to ask.

I find her questioning to be respectable, for a lot of people choose not to question at all.
The discussion seemed to be going in a rather crude direction, see, people disagree so much upon this particular subject.. I merely wanted to state the fact that none of us are fully correct, nor incorrect.

I am a nihilist. I believe in nothing, I deny my own existence..but where on earth would that fit in to this discussion?

I shouldn't have spoken at all, I suppose. I just think that tolerance is a more beautiful route to take.
Opeth
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83 posted 11-30-2003 09:33 AM       View Profile for Opeth   Email Opeth   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Opeth

At our base, ther was an interfaith get together to celebrate Thanksgiving. In attendance were mostly Christians, however the Muslim and a few other "miscellaneous" ( A Simpson Reverend Lovejoy quote btw) faiths were represented. I knew a few Christians who were to attend and I asked them if they were going to tell those of other faiths that their faith is wrong and if they don't accept Christ as their personal saviour, they are doomed for eternity in a lake of fire. They said, no.

What I didn't understand was this - why then have an interfaith celebration of Thanksgiving if those of faiths other than Christianity need to shed their faiths and become Christians? A respect for the other faith is no where to be found.

"If this grand panorama before me is what you call God...then God is not dead."

Aenimal
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84 posted 11-30-2003 01:51 PM       View Profile for Aenimal   Email Aenimal   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Aenimal

Stephen can you point out the phrase in my reply that claims they didn't start rationalizing until the 1800's? Aah wait it's not there. Interesting. hmmmmm Well anyway:

I started with this example because the 1800's were a tumultous time for the church. As luck would have it Darwin's theory was printed, and science, philosophy, and psychology were all beginning to challenge the church's authority.

The church armed itself with all the tools of modern thought and criticism and seeked to challenge reason with reason and as a result lost many,not all, but many of its clerics before scrapping the idea and banning all it's results and excommunicating its modernist adherents.

I also don't recall saying there were no christian scientists. There are christian scientists and many of them believe in evolutionism rather than creationalism because their beliefs aren't static as say a biblethumper would be.

  My goodness there's that word again and look it's seperated from other catholics and christians. So it must mean a select group yaddayaddablabla..we on the same page yet?

  Hmmm, alleged inconsistencies? LOL Alleged? Read the 4 gospels and tell me the inconsistencies are alleged. But let's stick with the original.
As for the Old testament being devinely inspired well. Biblical and historical analysis have found that many of the tales of the bible existed long before judaism.

The tale of the flood, for example, reaches as far back as ancient Sumeria. Some other tales and psalms were taken verbatim from other sources meant for other dieties of the region. Dieties that were amalgamated into a monotheistic god.

Now, for me at least, if those early books were transcribed directly from the word of God I'd be incredibly dissapointed in
A: his lack of originality and
B: his blatant plagiarism.
I'd like to think my god has a little more style and finesse.

  Lastly i'd like to say I've grown up catholic and therefore most of my family and friends are of catholic or christian denominations. So for you to say
I'm attacking all christians is ludicrous as in doing so I'd be condemning all of them as well.

  The attack was on the 'biblethumping' method of reason. That is to say those who can't dare face or challenge their beliefs but smugly dismiss logic, reason and any true analysis for the word. Unless you fall into this group I have no quarrel with you and if you do I still have no quarrel with you because it would be fruitless.

A person who believes in sprituality over religion, logic over dogma, can be just as close to a god as the those who follow religion. The difference is i've chosen not to follow a BOOK. A book which incidently has spawned so many other religions and factions who could rightfully claim the proper interpretation? If the book, the law, the tales of the bible are static why the different denominations and factions? Why the different versions translations and edits?

Sigh I didn't even want to get involved in this. I've discussed and argued these things too many times.

If you're still interested in this topic from whatever angle may I suggest the book:

Magic, science, religion, and the scope of rationality
by Stanley Jeyaraja Tambiah
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0521374863/qid=1070218173/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/002-0503111-2949614?v=glance&s=books#product-details

Ron
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85 posted 11-30-2003 04:18 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

But, Raph, you seem to be making pretty much the same mistakes you are accusing others of making. You are promoting, apparently without question or exploration, conclusions that have not been (and likely cannot be) proven.

For example, you are assuming that clerics given the opportunity to pursue secular knowledge will change their belief system because of the secular knowledge. One could argue just as reasonably that throwing a good apple into a barrel of bad apples will usually have a fairly predictable outcome. In both arguments, however, the tenuous link between cause and effect is an assumption based largely on preconceptions

Similarly, you are assuming inconsistencies represent a lack of credibility, where others might assume inconsistencies represent a lack of understanding. You are assuming history indicates the source of a religion, where others will see only a distorted reflection of truth that lies outside of time and history. You are assuming that diversity connotes pervasive error, where others will assume such diversity is the inevitable result of free will.

Euclid built an entire system of logic, based solely on five axioms he considered self-evident. Two thousand years later, his system yet stands, but NOT without serious competition. Lobachevsky-Bolyai-Gauss geometry and Riemannian geometry are both based on Euclid's first four postulates, but differ on their definition of the fifth. Whether you believe two parallel lines will never meet, will inevitably meet, or simply cannot exist, your belief must ultimately define your geometric truths. Each of these geometries is entirely self-consistent and (drum roll, please) entirely logical. The dang thing is, we still don't know for sure which one is "right."

Logic is a platform build on a foundation of preconception, Raph. A failure to understand or accept someone else's postulates doesn't belie their internal logic. The trick, I think, is to look under the platform, both theirs and our own, to see what's there. If we do that honestly, I suspect we'll always find ours just as crowded as theirs.
Opeth
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86 posted 11-30-2003 05:24 PM       View Profile for Opeth   Email Opeth   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Opeth

What it all comes down to is this...

Christianity claims itself to be the ONLY true religion - logic dictates that that statement cannot be proven. It cannot, unless a person returns from the dead and claims it to be true, and even then, that conclusion would not be certain. Why cannot it be proven? Because the claim is untrue. And there is ample evidence to support that claim.

It

"If this grand panorama before me is what you call God...then God is not dead."

Local Rebel
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87 posted 11-30-2003 07:28 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

quote:

Bringing my religious/philosophical/etc. beliefs in to this discussion, I felt was not neccesary.

I believe in nothing, I deny my own existence..but where on earth would that fit in to this discussion?



"Let no one be slow to seek wisdom when he is young nor weary in the search of it when he has grown old. For no age is too early or too late for the health of the soul. And to say that the season for studying philosophy has not yet come, or that it is past and gone, is like saying that the season for happiness is not yet or that it is now no more. Therefore, both old and young alike ought to seek wisdom, the former in order that, as age comes over him, he may be young in good things because of the grace of what has been, and the latter in order that, while he is young, he may at the same time be old, because he has no fear of the things which are to come. So we must exercise ourselves in the things which bring happiness, since, if that be present, we have everything, and, if that be absent, all our actions are directed towards attaining it." -- Epicurus, Letter to Menoeceus

I suppose Meg that the problem I see with this discussion is that all too often those who enthusiastically embrace a belief or enthusiastically reject one don't SEEM to find the happiness in either stance.

a funny bit on evolution... enjoy y'all   http://www.positiveatheism.org/writ/dilber.htm
Stephanos
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88 posted 11-30-2003 07:58 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Kaoru:  
quote:
I am a nihilist. I believe in nothing, I deny my own existence..but where on earth would that fit in to this discussion?



You're right, it wouldn't fit anywhere.  That's why I am skeptical about complete skepticism, and also nihilism.  I don't think you really have nothing to say.  If the choice comes down to either you or your philosophy, ditch the philosophy I say.    



quote:
I shouldn't have spoken at all, I suppose. I just think that tolerance is a more beautiful route to take.


Complete nihilism would call "beauty" completely subjective, or even illusory.  You are stating that there is a better route to take for everyone (of which I am in agreement), but this doesn't fit nihilism at all.  A more beautiful route for who?  For all?  Then you are stretching the bounds of your subjectivism.  Don't apologize for it ... I think you are closer to the truth when your tendency is to speak, not when you say that you have nothing to say, and really don't even exist.  



Aenimal:  
quote:
I started with this example because the 1800's were a tumultous time for the church. As luck would have it Darwin's theory was printed, and science, philosophy, and psychology were all beginning to challenge the church's authority.



Perhaps.  But my point is that there have been many "tumultuous times" for the Church ... even since its inception.  Gnosticism (which is basically Eastern Philosophy) was challenging Church dogma right from the beginning.  We read about it in Paul's letters.  Then, Arianism, Manicheism, Stoicism, Epicureanism,  Renaissance Humanism,  Scientism, Materialism, Skepticism, the French Enlightenment, etc ...  There have been thinkers throughout Church history who have responded to these philosophies.  And there have been those who have responded to those who claim that science has disproven the Bible, or that higher criticism has disproven the Bible, or that Darwin has disproven the Bible.  My point is, that the idea that some branches of human study, "began" to challenge the church in the 1800s is humorous.  Where have you been in your studies of the previous 1700 years?


quote:
The church armed itself with all the tools of modern thought and criticism and seeked to challenge reason with reason and as a result lost many,not all, but many of its clerics before scrapping the idea and banning all it's results and excommunicating its modernist adherents.



What is "modern thought and criticism"?  Are you equating this with reason?  If you are implying that the church was completely fiedistic until the 1800s, and didn't have reasoning apologists, then you are just plain wrong.  You can claim that their reason was faulty, but then we would have to hear your argumentation (on each particular case) before we should accept your conclusion.  Also, if you are saying that the Church realized that reason would make unbelievers of all her children, and so abandoned thinking as an apologetic for the Christian Faith, you are also mistaken.  You are assuming that all who believe do so violating reason, as if they were believing in Santa Clause, and choose ignorant loyalism over intellectual honesty.  Take a look at Augustine, Aquinas, Calvin, Pascal, Francis Bacon, Isaac Newton, to name a few ancients.  For more contemporary thinkers, consider Francis Schaeffer, C.S. Lewis, G.K. Chesterton and Alvin Plantiga.  I'm not trying to appeal to some intellectual prowess in order to prove that Christianity is true.  But it's kind of a false intellectualism on the side of a naturalist, to say that the Church out of desperation in the 1800s tried her hand at thinking, and had to lay it back down to save her mythology.  History just doesn't comport with that idea.  The church has always had scholars and still does.  


Now if you brought forth some particulars to be discussed / challenged, you might better make your case.  


quote:
Hmmm, alleged inconsistencies? LOL Alleged? Read the 4 gospels and tell me the inconsistencies are alleged.



I have read the gospels, have you?  Differences in the Gospels are minor, and they only prove to me that human descriptions of events will not be strictly uniform.  I appreciate the realism this provides.  In the gospels we have history, not mere theology.


quote:
As for the Old testament being devinely inspired well. Biblical and historical analysis have found that many of the tales of the bible existed long before judaism.



No.  Many ancient stories and myths have similar literary elements.  But it does not follow that the Biblical text was plaigarism, or even that it was influenced by these writings.  From everything I've looked at, I've only seen similarities, not conclusive evidence of borrowing.  


Consider this quote:


"It is all too easy to run eagerly after superficial parallels which cannot really be sustained under a closer scrutiny. Accordingly, the parallels must have similar ideas underlying them and, second, any suggestion of influence requires that the parallels be numerous, complex and detailed, with a similar conceptual usage and, ideally, that they should point to a specific myth or group of related myths in Mesopotamia. Finally, the parallels and their similar underlying ideas must involve central features in the material to be compared. Only then, it would seem, may any claim stronger than one of mere coincidence be worthy of serious consideration" Greek Myths and Mesopotamia: Parallels and Influence in the Homeric Hymns and Hesiod. Charles Penglase. Routledge:1994


quote:
The tale of the flood, for example, reaches as far back as ancient Sumeria.



You mean there were other ancient stories about floods?  How surprising.  I wonder if each was a copy of the previous one, or was there actually more than one flood?


quote:
Some other tales and psalms were taken verbatim from other sources meant for other dieties of the region.


Please remember that the Jews considered the worship of gods other than YHWH idolatry, and inherently felt that all their praises belonged to the one true God anyway.  An idols praise was misplaced in the mind of a Jew.  I wouldn't doubt that Jews rather enjoyed taking phrases that praised Baal, and turning it into praise for YHWH.  What's so strange concerning this?


quote:
Now, for me at least, if those early books were transcribed directly from the word of God I'd be incredibly dissapointed in
A: his lack of originality and
B: his blatant plagiarism.
I'd like to think my god has a little more style and finesse.



A ... If all things were created by God, even the literary imaginations and abilities of the Pagans, then how is God unoriginal?

B ... Give me examples of "Blatant Plaigiarism" and we'll discuss it.

Most would concede that the Bible is a stylistic masterpiece, and a profound literary work, even if they disbelieve it's theological content.  Is this what you were referring to by style, or were you referring to the fact that God didn't do it the way you would've done it?


quote:
The attack was on the 'biblethumping' method of reason. That is to say those who can't dare face or challenge their beliefs but smugly dismiss logic, reason and any true analysis for the word.


I agree that anyone should be willing to approach challenges to their belief system without simply ridiculing the other side.  That's true of ANYONE.  But your attempt to discredit scripture as a mere fault-ridden human work of not so good literature belies your real opinion.  This would naturally offend any Christian or Jew who considers scripture to be Divinely inspired, not just those who believe without thought or scoff at "reason".  


quote:
A person who believes in sprituality over religion, logic over dogma, can be just as close to a god as the those who follow religion. The difference is i've chosen not to follow a BOOK. A book which incidently has spawned so many other religions and factions who could rightfully claim the proper interpretation?



What does spirituality without religion mean?


What do you follow in lieu of a book?  


Is there something inherently wrong with following prescriptions that are written in a book?


Since the natural world has spawned so many different scientfic interpretations, I guess we should say the natural world is invalid of study?


quote:
If the book, the law, the tales of the bible are static why the different denominations and factions?


What do you mean exactly by static?  I think human imperfection, sin, human freedom, and individualism would be able to explain much of this variableness.  Some of the variation could be thought of as good and needed, while some may be thought of as divisive and unhealthy.


quote:
Why the different versions translations and edits?


As to different versions, different languages, different literary tastes and cultures, poetic honor and the joy of translation.  As to edits, what type of edits are you referring to?  Rejecting certain books as non-canonical?  Correcting textual variants such as grammar or omitted words and phrases?  Harmonization?  There are many types of scribal "editing" and each kind would have to be explained individually.  


Stephen.    
  


        

  


[This message has been edited by Stephanos (11-30-2003 08:06 PM).]

Stephanos
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89 posted 11-30-2003 08:33 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Aenimal,

Here's a link to a book dealing with the very same subject(s) from a different perspective.  I am actually reading this one right now.  You have to have a pretty good grasp of History to understand it though.  I'm getting it in flickering bursts as I read.

The Everlasting Man
by G.K. Chesterton
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0898704448/qid=1070242243/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/103-8708671-6418256?v=glance&s=books


Stephen
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90 posted 12-01-2003 02:06 AM       View Profile for PseudoPoet   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for PseudoPoet

...

[This message has been edited by PseudoPoet (12-01-2003 02:07 AM).]

Aenimal
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91 posted 12-01-2003 07:39 AM       View Profile for Aenimal   Email Aenimal   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Aenimal

Gentlemen I'm politely bowing out of this conversation. It's not that I wouldn't argue, in fact I'd written lengthy responses to both of your replies. I then erased them left the site then came back rewrote erased them again.

The problem is I haven't the time to invest in this topic. A topic like this better suited to a physical discussion maybe over dinner with a good bottle of spirits to maintain stamina. It's a sprawling conversation I feel doesn't lend itself well to a forum discussion.

The point counterpoint style,the length between replies and misunderstandings(I've already wasted replies just trying to explain the seperation between all christians and the attitudes of select group) means this conversation would go on for weeks, months, years.

To further this point Stephen is still harping on the fact I've started with a reference point from the 1800's and would rather start...well..."in the beginning" as it were.

The more important factor is that I simply haven't the will for this discussion anymore. I've had it too many times and quite frankly am sick of BOTH sides. Religion is not infallible NOR are science and reason. I simply feel science and reason better lend themselves and their followers to growth and evolution of thought than blind devotion.

You know the greeks had an entire pantheon of gods and were no less devoted to them as we are to ours. Yet they're now relegated to 'Mythology' but we cling to ours. I find it sad that cultures in the past had the sense to change, adapt and refine their gods and practices whereas we're mired in ours.

Bloody hell there I go again when I'm trying to leave..sigh

Stephen I'll leave you with this however. You asked what is spirituality without religion? Everything. I've been able to focus myself on the FEEL of god rather then an ideal of god.

I'm off, the conversation is in good hands and I simply can't afford to get sucked into this and all apologies for getting involved in the first place!

[This message has been edited by Aenimal (12-01-2003 07:45 AM).]

Kaoru
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92 posted 12-01-2003 06:40 PM       View Profile for Kaoru   Email Kaoru   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Kaoru

At this point, I'm going to ditto Raph..

It is true, that this is better left a discussion for face to face. Not only because you can better express your thoughts and opinions that way but, you can also smack eachother periodically.


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93 posted 12-01-2003 08:23 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

I feel that there are pros and cons to both face to face, and correspondence style communication.  Typed text does miss all the benefits of non-verbal communication, and is much less personal.  But there are some pluses too.  Some feel that such topics are so emotionally charged that they can't talk well about them without emotions getting in the way.  Misunderstanding and anger may be plentious with typing back and forth, but I think it is probably even moreso face to face.  Having the ability to respond slower, and to think things through is helpful.  In direct conversation, a person would walk off if we took as much time and thought as we do on a forum like this.  Also the ability to provide references, etc... is a whole lot easier in this type of exchange since such things aren't readily on the tips of our tongues.  You have time to research opposing claims, while clarifying your own.  All in all, I think I like this type of communication, even for touchy subjects, as long as we can remain civil and respectful.  Tolerance for me does not mean accepting all beliefs as equally valid, it means treating the other as a valuable individual and not being rude even in the face of disagreement.  I'm sure we all fail in this area, trying to understand each other.
  



Stephen.




    

[This message has been edited by Stephanos (12-01-2003 08:24 PM).]

Stephanos
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94 posted 12-01-2003 08:53 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Aenimal:  
quote:
To further this point Stephen is still harping on the fact I've started with a reference point from the 1800's and would rather start...well..."in the beginning"



Just to clarify, you did, by referring to the 1800s, imply there was a new approach by the Church.  You then described this as challenging "reason with reason".  I may have misunderstood you (help me if I'm wrong), but it seemed as if you were implying that the church had never really tried to "reason" before, and that when they did try it, it was an utter failure.  

If you did mean this, I was trying to protest that your demarcation of the 19th century was arbitary.  I'm not however denying that certain new challenges began to be faced at that time.  I was simply asking you to give evidence of the shift from absolute fiedism to "reason" that you say occurred ... because I've read a good deal and am not aware of such a clean cut line.  I was also asking you to give evidence of the "failure" and "abandon of reason" you mentioned.  Just some references beyond your own words would be enough to get me thinking and searching.  


I had no problem with your reference point, but rather with your claims of what that point signified.  If I'm wrong, I want to hear what you have to say.


Not angry,
enjoying the discussion,

Stephen.


  

[This message has been edited by Stephanos (12-01-2003 08:55 PM).]

Aenimal
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95 posted 12-02-2003 12:24 AM       View Profile for Aenimal   Email Aenimal   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Aenimal

The implications. I'd argue are yours. I fell I've been specific in stating the reasons why I chose the 1800's. First with regards to the Theory of evolution which is what began this conversation. Second the newfound stress and tools for critical thought and analysis which swept all aspects of life at the time (not simply religion). And lastly because it was an example of the horrible attitude many, NOT ALL, people have when faced with alternate views of their religion.

As for a reference here's a quick one don't make me search through my books to give you a bibliography lol
http://www.bartleby.com/65/mo/modernsm.html  will do I'm simply exhausted on the topic sorry maybe next time. I'm sure it will be revived.

By the way in reference to my flood story comment yes i agree other flood stories exist but the similarities between the bible and Sumerian versions includin details on building an ark are just too close..okay im off really this time

[This message has been edited by Aenimal (12-02-2003 12:32 AM).]

Kaoru
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96 posted 12-02-2003 08:13 PM       View Profile for Kaoru   Email Kaoru   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Kaoru

Well, face to face confrontation is more than likely to be better considering voice tone alone could change the way you decide to interpret the other's opinion.

Also, Stephen, I do believe you're right about my nihilism. I do believe in having morals, which is just about the only difference between myself and a nihilist. I guess you could say I'm more of an extreme athiest.

It's almost like comparing a communist with a socialist, I guess.


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97 posted 12-28-2003 03:53 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Kaoru:

quote:
Also, Stephen, I do believe you're right about my nihilism. I do believe in having morals, which is just about the only difference between myself and a nihilist. I guess you could say I'm more of an extreme athiest.



First of all,  I agree with you about the "ought" and "should" aspect of morals.  But I disagree that it can fit comfortably in an atheist system of thought.  Let me play the D's advocate ...


Nietzsche would surely have said that your "morals" are only a loitering ghost from a predominate Judeo-Christian Heritage which he said was fading, and predicted would completely vanish with time.  His reasoning was simple ... If "morals" are invented by groups in order to control others, or to make life seem more pleasant and meaningful, then there is no reason to take them as authoritative.  

He went on to say that since evolution described morals in terms of "survival of the fittest", we could easily deduce that the Christian ethic of "turning the other cheek" is a weak and deplorable thing in terms of what is better.  According to Nietzsche, it was not the meek who would inherit the earth, but the strong ... not the nice and anemic, but the  ruthless and vigorous.  His system of thought was what helped Hitler to justify his own actions in Nazi Germany.  (He was an admirer and avid reader of Nietzsche).


How would you answer Nietzsche to defend the "oughtness" of your morals within an atheistic view?  What is wrong with his assumption that anything goes, as long as it goes strong and brave, in a world of molecular machinery?  

I still believe that the only solid answer to repudiate Nietzsche comes from the very system he denies ... Christian theism.  All other answers amount to, Morals = absolute individual preference.  But then it's hard to keep the "oughtness" of morals when they become only subjective preferences.  

I'm just one to believe that if naturalism were true (though I don't believe it is), Nietzsche wasn't so far off.  And I'm always interested in the various atheistic answers given to his challenge.  


And isn't Robert Anton Wilson also all about the Crowleyan ethic "Do what thou wilt shall become the whole of the law"?  Do what you will, and the "ought to" imposed by morals becomes pretty meaningless.


Stephen.


[This message has been edited by Stephanos (12-28-2003 04:08 PM).]

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98 posted 02-05-2006 02:57 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel



Perhaps the real Ron would care to stand up?  

In which thread are you devil's advocate?
Essorant
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99 posted 02-05-2006 08:06 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Aren't people allowed to change their minds around here?


Translation for evolutionists:

Aren't our minds allowed to evolve around here?

[This message has been edited by Essorant (02-05-2006 09:10 PM).]

 
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