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Passions in Poetry

Jesus, Interrupted

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Grinch
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25 posted 05-24-2009 10:39 AM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

quote:
I hope Ron joins in to help me inform you that you are mistaken here


If he follows your logic Stephen he may find that a little difficult, in essence what you’re saying is that we cannot know anything.



I’m not sure if it's what you really meant to do but your argument is a little self defeating – in an attempt to shot down my argument you’re essentially shooting down your own.

quote:
Actually Grinch, unless you can tell me how we could ever know it didn't exist, then this too is accepted as axiomatic


The universe doesn’t exist because I can’t prove that it once didn’t?

I’m tempted to use my favourite word – Twaddle.

Answering the question “Does the universe exist” isn’t reliant on whether it once didn’t, you can answer the first question without even considering the second. If you want an example of a question that does have a secondary and dependent question you don’t need to look very far:

“Did god create the universe” is directly connected to the answer to the question “Does god exist”.

quote:
You don't believe the big bang happened?


I think a big bang happened, in fact I believe numerous big bangs have happened and will continue to happen in a natural cycle of expansion and contraction.

.
Stephanos
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26 posted 05-24-2009 01:06 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Karen:
quote:
Nice dodge of the issue, but Stephan, really, would you recommend an "ebonic" Bible?


Hmmmm, not sure if I would or I woundn't.  But either way, thinking that a good translation is possible is a far cry from having to like all translations.  I certainly don't think all translations are equal.  The "New World Translation" of the Bible is atrocious (as an example).  I could go into specifics, but this is not a rejection of translation in principle.  If I'm hearing you right, yours is.    

quote:
Lovie, I know that you are a scholar and a gentleman, and I know you know OT is Hebrew, Aramaic, Sanskrit, Greek--is there more?

And yet you recommend an Anglo-Saxon English simplified version of "the word"?


The Old Testament is comprised of Hebrew with a smattering of Chaldean and Aramaic.  The New Testament is in Greek with a smattering of Aramaic.  

Do you read in these original languages?  If not, then wouldn't you also be relying on a "simplified Anglo-Saxon Version"?  

Don't misunderstand me ... I know a Seminary Graduate who knows how to read Greek who tells me that reading the New Testament in Greek compared to a translation in English, is like watching TV in Color compared to Black and White.  Something IS lost indeed, but not the essence.  

If we take the stance that only the original languages represent a "good and faithful" text, then we've placed out of reach all ancient texts from modern readers who don't happen to be scholars who can read in the original tongues.  And while most scholarly translators and philologists will tell us that translation is never without its difficulties and problems ... they typically won't say that we can't get a rendering essentially faithful to the original.  If not, then the English world's appreciation of Dostoevsky is rooted in anything but the author's genius ... and I just can't buy that that is the case.

And just a brief Theological consideration on my part which coincides with this ... Christians believe in an incarnate word (think of something adapting for the purpose of reaching).  The implications of God becoming flesh, and Jesus universalizing the worship of Yaweh can be extended to the idea of translation as well.  Would God make language in such a way that it couldn't be faithfully communicated across the language/culture barrier, difficulties notwithstanding?  Incarnational theology and the whole missionary mandate informs me that good translation is possible.

That doesn't mean I approve of all translations, for sure.  

Yes, Parley.


And thanks Karen for the interesting discussion.


Stephen
Stephanos
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27 posted 05-24-2009 02:02 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Grinch:
quote:
If he follows your logic Stephen he may find that a little difficult, in essence what you’re saying is that we cannot know anything.

I’m not sure if it's what you really meant to do but your argument is a little self defeating – in an attempt to shot down my argument you’re essentially shooting down your own.


No Grinch, it should be obvious that I'm not saying that we "cannot know anything".  What I am saying is that the premise "We can know something" is tacitly accepted, a process very much like faith.  I'm also saying that we have knowledge which was not obtained by the scientific process, knowledge which itself is a prerequisite for science itself.  Such knowledge is the foundation, not the conclusion of the scientific endeavor.  

So, how would my saying this be "shooting down" my own argument?

quote:
Me: Actually Grinch, unless you can tell me how we could ever know it didn't exist, then this too is accepted as axiomatic


Grinch: The universe doesn’t exist because I can’t prove that it once didn’t?

I’m tempted to use my favourite word – Twaddle.


Before you needlessly waste the relish of using your favorite word, ask again whether you're understanding what I'm really saying.  (I may not be communicating it as well as I should).  

I certainly wasn't saying that universe doesn't exist because you can't prove that it once didn't.  I was making the point that the question of whether the universe exists is not apprehended or answered by scientific experiment.  If you're testing, tell me how one would even know if the universe didn't exist.  Isn't one definition of a non-empirical belief something that "can't be falsified"?

I'm not saying the universe doesn't exist.  I am saying that you didn't arrive at that knowledge as the conclusion of a test.

quote:
I think a big bang happened, in fact I believe numerous big bangs have happened and will continue to happen in a natural cycle of expansion and contraction.


Is this belief in multiple big bangs scientifically derived?


Stephen
Grinch
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28 posted 05-24-2009 08:04 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


quote:
I was making the point that the question of whether the universe exists is not apprehended or answered by scientific experiment.


Hmm.

Are you seriously trying to sell the idea that our belief that the universe exists cannot be obtained by applying the scientific method?  That our belief in it’s existence is, and can only be, based on faith?

Isn’t the universe observable, we can see it all around us, and isn’t the ability to observe it independently repeatable and verifiable, that is to say isn’t it provable by applying the scientific method.

quote:
I'm not saying the universe doesn't exist. I am saying that you didn't arrive at that knowledge as the conclusion of a test.


That’s just like saying I didn’t scientifically prove that the universe doesn’t exist, which sounds just plain daft given that the universe does exist. I presume you meant something else but for the life of me I can’t imagine what that might be.

Throw it by me one more time – I’m a little slow.

.
Essorant
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29 posted 05-25-2009 12:50 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Serenity

I am not sure what you are asking about regarding translations.  Are you asking if earlier English translates the bible accuratelier than later English?
 
serenity blaze
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30 posted 05-25-2009 04:43 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

I am not sure if I'm asking, anything.

It was (and is) that I came to understand your appreciation for etymology though, when I began utilizing a few of the concordances that my brother left to me.

For example, the vision of Ezekiel takes a new spin when one learns that in Sanskrit, the word "wheel" and "chakra" are directly linked. (There are others more articulate then I that could make the point better, but unfortunately my brother is deceased.)

And Stephan, I do defer to you as you are indeed the best scholar of canonized scripture. We part ways, as you already know, that I simply do not accept The Bible as the only source of knowledge. And I love you dearly Stephan. We just don't happen to agree, and we've disagreed many times on this same point, so it's pointless to repeat the disagreement here again.

I tend toward a more Gnostical view, as you've already surmised. But I will state one more time, for the record, that I do not believe that people, who are human and prone to error, ought to go around attempting to "convert" each other.

If one has total faith in an omnipotent, omnipresent deity, then why would such a deity need the fallible human being to "reach" other fallible human beings?

Here is the question that always annoys me (not necessarily from YOU, personally, but from others who feel a need to be a living testament) and that question is this:

"Do you have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ?"

If someone answers "no"--then there's some invisible green light for a sermon.

If someone answers "yes"--there's still a green light, to proceed with what amounts to a scriptual pop quiz, during which time, it seems that the human converter thinks it's not only okay, but a duty to dig further into what was already deemed a personal relationship, in an attempt to unravel and "correct" the person, with the only acceptable conclusion being that the person must join some "true" church that is being pitched by the well-meaning but human converter. (And even attendance isn't enough, I have learned. The people I have encountered don't find attendance acceptable; one must be saved at the altar of the human converters choice before they are considered truly "saved".)

No offense meant to you, either. I am not accusing you of such behavior--I am simply trying to make you understand why I find this stuff annoying.

So a long time ago, I decided that I do indeed love you my brother, but that perhaps we should discuss hotsauce, or poetry, music, or just say "Hi, how's the family?"

So...

Hi! How is the family?



serenity blaze
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31 posted 05-25-2009 04:45 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

And I came back to add something.

I convinced my son, the pragmatic atheist, that he should at least read The Bible before he discards it.



Faith, dear Stephen, faith.
Essorant
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32 posted 05-26-2009 02:05 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Serenity,

I don't know anyone that will disagree with you about such relationships between words oft being lost in the translation into a very different language. English man and earth don't have the connection that the hebrew words adam and adamah do.  To one well verst in Hebrew all the names from Hebrew names in the Bible have special meanings,  Noah meaning "comfort", Cain means "got"  Bethlehem "house of bread", etc. But all these meanings basically go to naught when on the one hand translators won't go out of the way to retain some words such as adamah alongside Adam, and on the other hand refuse actually to translate the names into their corresponding English words.  It is not usually a modern manner to call someone by a name such as Comfort or Got,  word whose meaning are known right away by English speakers, but that is the way people used to have names in antique days.  In any case the meaning of the name as a word is important to the name itself in the Hebrew.  It is a shame we ignore this by simply saying Noah instead of Comfort, Cain instead of Got, etc.  

But nevertheless I am still a lover of translations.   Whatever is lost in the process is still not worse than if the majority weren't able to experience them at all because they don't know the original tongue.


Stephanos
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33 posted 05-26-2009 09:08 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Karen:
quote:
But I will state one more time, for the record, that I do not believe that people, who are human and prone to error, ought to go around attempting to "convert" each other.


By saying so, and especially by using the word "ought", aren't you also trying to "convert" others to your view of the nature of God and fallible human beings?  I could try and show from a Biblical perspective how God has chosen to involve imperfect human beings in bringing about his purposes.  But before doing so, I would want to ask whether your view is also a kind of dogma which you feel compelled (at least on occasion) to communicate to others?

quote:
If one has total faith in an omnipotent, omnipresent deity, then why would such a deity need the fallible human being to "reach" other fallible human beings?


From a Christian perspective, God chooses or wills to involve us (and you must admit that there are many Biblical passages, such as the "Great Commission" in Matthew 28:16-20 which demonstrate this).  We could ask why, being omnipotent and omniscient, he would do such a thing.  I can think of reasons that relate to human nature.  For one, human beings are relational.  We need each other in a variety of ways.  I don't think the spiritual dimension should be any different, though our efforts are not "perfect", as you've pointed out.  Secondly, it is sometimes easier to listen to someone who has fallen themselves and is not above spiritual struggle.  Nothing demonstrates the mercy of God more than this.  And for some, seeing this in others gives them the feeling that they too may have good hope and reason to get closer to God.


quote:
No offense meant to you, either. I am not accusing you of such behavior--I am simply trying to make you understand why I find this stuff annoying.


Karen, there is much that is done and said that annoys me as much as you.  It annoyed me before I was a Christian and has not ceased to do so after.  So I understand more than you might think.  But my source of annoyance was different then than it is now.  Now I am annoyed that common courtesy is sometimes ignored, meaningful relationship is overlooked, and arrogance or just plain kookyness  (for lack of a better word) is displayed.  Back then (pre-conversion) I was of course annoyed by all these things too.  But there was also an annoyance at the possiblity and implications of those people being generally right about what they were saying.  There was good reason enough to be annoyed at the ineptitude, but I think I often amplified those reasons in my own mind to drown out the still small voice saying much the same thing (though of course without the questionable agendas sometimes 'attached' to the gospel) only better.  Honestly, I didn't want to face the fact that I was sinful enough that someone should have to die for me.  But eventually the love that I saw in the person of Christ drew me, and I was able to forgive and forget all the bumbling attempts of people who tried to show me.  I even came to feel that a person who shared "The Gospel" in an annoying way might be better off than myself who simply denied it.  There were, thankfully, other efforts too that seemed more reaching and sincere, that I am greatly appreciative of.  There were other writings too that helped me along as well.  Anyway for what its worth, that's my personal experience, which is not altogether foreign from yours (which is what I wanted to say).  

quote:
So a long time ago, I decided that I do indeed love you my brother, but that perhaps we should discuss hotsauce, or poetry, music, or just say "Hi, how's the family?"

So...

Hi! How is the family?


Karen, I appreciate your warmth.  The love is mutual.  The bottom line is that we can discuss whatever you wish.  The family is doing well, though they are growing up way too fast!  (And ... so am I!)  

Stephen  

[This message has been edited by Stephanos (05-26-2009 09:47 AM).]

Stephanos
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34 posted 05-26-2009 09:23 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Grinch:
quote:
Are you seriously trying to sell the idea that our belief that the universe exists cannot be obtained by applying the scientific method?  That our belief in it’s existence is, and can only be, based on faith?

Isn’t the universe observable, we can see it all around us, and isn’t the ability to observe it independently repeatable and verifiable, that is to say isn’t it provable by applying the scientific method.


I'm not saying that believing in the universe is unscientific.  I am saying that we don't (including scientists) approach it that way at all.  The existence of an intelligible Universe is the precondition, not the conclusion of science.  

quote:
Throw it by me one more time – I’m a little slow.


I'd keep throwing it by you.  But I want you to try answering a few of the questions I've asked as well.  You never did say whether your belief in multiple big bangs, or an eternal universe was scientific or not.

later,

Stephen
Stephanos
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35 posted 05-26-2009 09:27 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Ess:
quote:
But nevertheless I am still a lover of translations.   Whatever is lost in the process is still not worse than if the majority weren't able to experience them at all because they don't know the original tongue.


That's what I was trying to say too.  

Oh and about that name thing ... Something would be lost too if we translated the corresponding English words instead of the foreign proper names:  The feeling that these names are of another culture and time.  So I guess something is lost either way.  But, thankfully, a good concordance, lexicon, and Bible dictionary, will tell me what those mean.  We have the tools to grasp it if we wish.

later,

Stephen
Essorant
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36 posted 05-31-2009 01:25 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Good point, Stephanos.  

I used to wonder why the name "Jesus" never shows up in Old English literature.  He is always clept Hælend "Healend, healing one" or Hælend Crist. Then I found these words in "An Old English Martyrology:"

ond on þone eahteðan dæg menn sceopan Criste naman æfter ealdre wisan: se nama wæs on Iudisc Iesus ond on grecisc soter and on læden salvator ond on ure geþeode hælend.

"and on the eighth day (of Christ's life) men shaped for Christ a name after ancient tradition: the name in Judish [Hebrew] was Jesus, and in Greekish Soter and in Latin Salvator and in our language Healend.

It turns out that Healend itself really is the name "Jesus", but in the form of an English translation of the name.

 
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