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Old 04-04-2008, 10:44 AM   #51
roundshort
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Attila the Professor
Never been one to advocate elimination, but there's something to that, yeah. How can we have robust senses of identity, ideology, and so forth, and yet avoid the pitfalls of absolute certainty?


POST OF THE YEAR!
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Old 04-04-2008, 11:23 AM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Attila the Professor
Never been one to advocate elimination, but there's something to that, yeah. How can we have robust senses of identity, ideology, and so forth, and yet avoid the pitfalls of absolute certainty?
I believe there's always great danger when a cause or idea, be it religious or otherwise, becomes so important to some that it in itself entirely eclipses the humanity that said notion is meant to better or serve. Fanatics, whatever creed they adhere to, by definition have allowed human beings (or at least certain segments of humanity) to become far less important than what they are trying to achieve. Hence, you get people claiming to serve a loving God firebombing abortion clinics, stating that they are fighting to save lives by committing acts of violence on unsuspecting women and their families.

I can't help but think of Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov. In that novel, the Church imprisons Jesus after he returns to Earth and shortly thereafter, Christ is visited in his cell by the Grand Inquisitor. Addressing Jesus, the Grand Inquisitor extols the marvelous works done by the church and how, in taking so many decisions out of the hands of the common man, the Church has brought humanity to a happy, contented stupor. For that reason, the Grand Inquistor tells Jesus that he will be put to death the following day. Christ, he explains, came to liberate men from spiritual bondage and to provide them with a sense of value. Such teaching would undermine all the good the Church has done, so Jesus cannot be freed to spread subversion amongst men. The Grand Inquisitor has become so wrapped in the "good" he is accomplishing, he is willing to kill the God he claims to serve.

I guess what I'm struggling to verbalize is that narrowness, a viewpoint that only looks at one thing (or perhaps, in some cases, a single facet of something), to the exclusion of everything else, especially the impact of one's actions on others, leads to danger.
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Old 04-04-2008, 11:48 AM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paden
I believe there's always great danger when a cause or idea, be it religious or otherwise, becomes so important to some that it in itself entirely eclipses the humanity that said notion is meant to better or serve. Fanatics, whatever creed they adhere to, by definition have allowed human beings (or at least certain segments of humanity) to become far less important than what they are trying to achieve. Hence, you get people claiming to serve a loving God firebombing abortion clinics, stating that they are fighting to save lives by committing acts of violence on unsuspecting women and their families.

I can't help but think of Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov. In that novel, the Church imprisons Jesus after he returns to Earth and shortly thereafter, Christ is visited in his cell by the Grand Inquisitor. Addressing Jesus, the Grand Inquisitor extols the marvelous works done by the church and how, in taking so many decisions out of the hands of the common man, the Church has brought humanity to a happy, contented stupor. For that reason, the Grand Inquistor tells Jesus that he will be put to death the following day. Christ, he explains, came to liberate men from spiritual bondage and to provide them with a sense of value. Such teaching would undermine all the good the Church has done, so Jesus cannot be freed to spread subversion amongst men. The Grand Inquisitor has become so wrapped in the "good" he is accomplishing, he is willing to kill the God he claims to serve.

I guess what I'm struggling to verbalize is that narrowness, a viewpoint that only looks at one thing (or perhaps, in some cases, a single facet of something), to the exclusion of everything else, especially the impact of one's actions on others, leads to danger.


YEAH! What he said, only if she is really hot or if I have had a lot, and I mean a lot to drink (and my firends won't find out!



Opps sorry wrong thread, what I meant was, well said paden!
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Old 04-05-2008, 02:31 AM   #54
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To kill the man you must become the monster.
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Old 04-05-2008, 03:28 AM   #55
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Nice thoughts here. Really.
Wish I were not so tired, and write mine... well, maybe another day.
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Old 04-05-2008, 04:37 AM   #56
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I'm just too tired to really comment on anything here. I just wanted to be part of the conversation.

*sniffle*
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Old 04-05-2008, 10:51 AM   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AngieAki
For the record, I didn't post this to say "OMG all Christians are stupid" or anythingk like that. I posted it because I was shocked as to how stupid and evil people can be. I found it amusing and sad and thought I would share it. There are nut jobs of all religions Christianity, Islam, Wicca (fluffy bunnies lol), ect.

That's the thing to keep in mind, that we're dealing with an extreme and uneducated element within a religion that encompasses a couple of billion people. There's bound to be quite a few screws loose in the machine.

Unfortunately, and as we've already seen in this forum, there are non-Christians out there that, in an effort to push their own feeling of moral superiority, will take the words of men like Jerry Falwell and make them apply to all aspects of Christianity.

That's really the danger of threads like these. I applaud you for making the distinction.
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Old 04-05-2008, 10:53 AM   #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickiana
Isn't gravity interesting? It's a force that permeates the whole universe. Like the chicken and the egg, what came first, gravity or matter?

Matter. Gravity is a function of it. :P
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Old 04-05-2008, 12:45 PM   #59
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Raven is now the proud host of number 101:


http://raven.theraider.net/showpost....9&postcount=20
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Old 04-05-2008, 02:57 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by ResidentAlien
Raven is now the proud host of number 101
And another great moment in Fundamentalist Atheism:
http://raven.theraider.net/showpost.php?p=266083

You know what these two posts have in common? People working through grief they got in other forums. The Raven's qualified counselors are pleased to dispense therapy on the cheap. The next step is courteous real world human face time and physical contact. Try not to relapse. The sun's out. It's saturday!

Last edited by Moedred : 04-05-2008 at 03:07 PM.
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Old 04-05-2008, 03:32 PM   #61
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I got groceries at an overcrowded Wal*Mart with my family today. That's enough face time.
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Old 04-05-2008, 04:25 PM   #62
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Vance, I'll contend that matter came before gravity. How can matter come before gravity? Gravity is a force that acts on matter. I know that turns conventional perspective on its head and I'm not qualified in any way, but it seems to me that if either matter or gravity were to have been the first to appear on the scene, then it would have been the force of gravity (though I think they have always been simultaneous in this universe). So, I am suggesting gravity is not a function of matter but, instead, acts upon it. And what has this to do with religious fundamentalism? Well, doctrinal religious thought is often abstract and what I am trying to do is approach an understanding of the universe in a logical way, logic being the antidote to abstraction. To understand logic we must become logic. Wait until you hear what I think about the Big Bang...
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Old 04-07-2008, 07:59 PM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moedred
You know what these two posts have in common? People working through grief they got in other forums. The Raven's qualified counselors are pleased to dispense therapy on the cheap. The next step is courteous real world human face time and physical contact. Try not to relapse. The sun's out. It's saturday!
Good point.

However, I will defend Monkey. He did later say that he was wrong to be offensive and apologized. He wasn't an Atheist either, actually. He said he was a pagan, which he said was someone that worshipped the spirits that his ancestors worshipped. He wasn't a bad guy or really close-minded. I miss him. I wonder what happened to him.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickiana
Vance, I'll contend that matter came before gravity. How can matter come before gravity? Gravity is a force that acts on matter. I know that turns conventional perspective on its head and I'm not qualified in any way, but it seems to me that if either matter or gravity were to have been the first to appear on the scene, then it would have been the force of gravity (though I think they have always been simultaneous in this universe). So, I am suggesting gravity is not a function of matter but, instead, acts upon it. And what has this to do with religious fundamentalism? Well, doctrinal religious thought is often abstract and what I am trying to do is approach an understanding of the universe in a logical way, logic being the antidote to abstraction. To understand logic we must become logic. Wait until you hear what I think about the Big Bang...
Mickiana, you talk about logic all the time, but most of your posts (not necessarily this one) don't really use any logic. For instance, how Bathsheba wrote the Pentateuch that was already written by the time she was born. Anyway, religion may be though of as abstract, but the way that someone thinks of something is not neccessarily the way that that something is in reality. By the way, what do you think of the Big Bang?
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Old 04-07-2008, 11:37 PM   #64
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Willkillforfood, By attempting logic and failing is merely part of the process of working towards understanding. In a way, there is no 'failing', except in not trying to work towards the truth, which, by the way, I cannot claim to know. When I say religion is mostly abstract, I don't intend a personal attack on religion. The ethic that is the basis of all religions is "Do unto others as you would have done unto yourself." I see all religions, at least in their origins, as an attempt to understand the truth. All the prophets of the various religions saw it as their mission to help others gain this understanding. As institutions run by fallible humans, religions become something other than a vehicle for the truth. As for stating something that is factually wrong, if I have done so, I will be most happy for someone to point it out. The info about Bathsheba was obtained from Bloom's 'The Western Canon'. I trust Bloom to know what he is talking about, but you are right in that I should verify it for myself. I thoroughly agree with you when you say that the way someone thinks of something is not necessarily how it is in reality. From that statement it seems that to really know what we are talking about we have to know what reality is. I am not sure at all what reality is. For all I know this existence may not be reality. There was a time when I wasn't here and there will come a time when I will not be here again. What is this existence for? I don't know. Now, the Big Bang. This is just an idea, mind you, but I suspect that the universe was always here, without beginning or end, that it is infinitely large and that the Big Bang was just a local event, judging by the remnant evidence that we currently observe through our very large telescopes and so was not the beginning of the universe. That's pretty well it. Tell me what you think.
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Old 04-08-2008, 08:33 PM   #65
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I agree with most of your last post. But a few things I don't agree with:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickiana
The ethic that is the basis of all religions is "Do unto others as you would have done unto yourself." I see all religions, at least in their origins, as an attempt to understand the truth. All the prophets of the various religions saw it as their mission to help others gain this understanding. As institutions run by fallible humans, religions become something other than a vehicle for the truth.
I've always believed that the primary purpose of religion was to explain the afterlife.
Yes, most religions do follow the ethic you mentioned, but not all do.
Actually, let me rephrase that: most religions expect you to follow the ethic you mentioned.
Islam/Christianity/Judaisism all teach this ethic (the Golden Rule if you will), but that isn't the main purpose of the religion. Christians want to save others by converting them and getting them to allow Christ "into their heart". Muslims and Jews want to do the right thing and live a good life.
However, in practice, few followers of any of the three religions actually follow the Golden Rule. Jihads and Crusades come to mind.
But, the followers all share the "salvation" factor. All do what is neccessary to reach paradise in the way they are told.
In less organized religions, the faith seems to be a way of explaining the world, and not salvation. Again, the Golden Rule is rarely applied here and, unlike those above, is rarely taught. Tribal religions and mythological religions teach that fighting is neccessary and basically tells them to go screw their fellow men. After all, their life doesn't matter.
But, their religion tells them how the world was created, why certain animals are the way they are, etc. And usually, it tells them that their position in the Afterlife depends on their life here. In fact, Norse mythology told that the only way to reach the Warrior heaven of Valhalla was by dying in combat.
So, I believe that religion's main purpose is to explain life and the Afterlife.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickiana
Now, the Big Bang. This is just an idea, mind you, but I suspect that the universe was always here, without beginning or end, that it is infinitely large and that the Big Bang was just a local event, judging by the remnant evidence that we currently observe through our very large telescopes and so was not the beginning of the universe. That's pretty well it. Tell me what you think.
I have to disagree here.
To me, the Big Bang theory, which there is much evidence for, is one of the greatest proponents for any religion that believed there was a moment that God created the universe.
As a matter of fact, Einstein rejected the theory because he believed it was too religious.
But, I am no expert on the subject and I will just let this be a disagreement.
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Old 04-09-2008, 02:31 AM   #66
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No problem WillKill4Food, I suppose we will have to agree to disagree. I don't believe in an afterlfe that is remotely like this one, but by the same token, I suspect that this life is not all there is. I don't believe in an all-powerful, all-knowing male deity. I was raised in the Catholic tradition but rejected it in my late teens. I don't believe in the existence of any god, but 'god' as a concept is another thing and very interesting. I think the word 'god' refers to a state of fully realised consciousness and has nothing to do with the intellectual or emotional subscription to any religious doctrine. At least that sounds nice to me. I am yet to fully realise it! Believing a god made the universe begs the next and reasonable logical question, "Who made god?" I know faith is required here to believe in an unmade god, but my overwhelming doubt erodes any faith that I may try to prop up.
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Old 04-09-2008, 05:43 PM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickiana
No problem WillKill4Food, I suppose we will have to agree to disagree.
That would be my suggestion.
But, let me reply to a few things:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickiana
I don't believe in an afterlfe that is remotely like this one, but by the same token, I suspect that this life is not all there is.
Actually, I don't believe in a similar afterlife, either.
I'm not speaking for all Christians, but I've always thought of Paradise as a huge area where God, in his eternal glory, lives with the angels and his followers. I believe that He is a light and that we (Christians) will not be there in body-like forms, but instead just as souls in a freeform. I think that the descriptions of Heaven in the Bible are figurative, instead of literal. For example, the streets of Gold are probably not streets but instead streaks of light, or something. I don't know. That's just me, and as I said, I don't speak for all Christians, just myself.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickiana
I don't believe in the existence of any god, but 'god' as a concept is another thing and very interesting. I think the word 'god' refers to a state of fully realised consciousness and has nothing to do with the intellectual or emotional subscription to any religious doctrine. At least that sounds nice to me. I am yet to fully realise it!
That's interesting, but a point I don't want to argue.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickiana
Believing a god made the universe begs the next and reasonable logical question, "Who made god?" I know faith is required here to believe in an unmade god, but my overwhelming doubt erodes any faith that I may try to prop up.
I smile as I write this.
I had this same question before I became a Christian.
But, instead of trying and failing to answer it, let me ask you a question: If matter cannot naturally be created or destroyed (Law of Conservation of Mass), then what created this universe and the matter therein? It seems that a supernatural power (some deity, some God, some One) had to make the universe.
It is much more logical to conclude that God(s), being divine and beyond understanding, made this world. In the Book of Revelation, God proclaims that He is the alpha and omega, the beginning and the end.
He has always been here and always will be.
But, that's just my view.
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Old 04-10-2008, 05:14 AM   #68
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WillKill4Food, I do appreciate these discussions. It is good to know how others think. Often I remain in my head and succumb to my own thoughts with all their biases, prejudices, etc. I come from a Christian background and I think all the ethics that Jesus taught are universal. Regardless of what I may know in terms of facts and so on, I think it is these ethics which each individual needs to plumb for further understanding. Basically, we have to finds the fruit of these ethics within ourselves. Jesus preached poverty, compassion and charity to name a few. I am yet to find these fully within myself. I suspect we all have them deep down. To follow Jesus is not just to believe in him without knowing him - walk beside him by finding Jesus within yourself. This will be the same as finding the Buddha or the Mohammed or the Krishna or the Krishnamurti within yourself because they all preached the same thing: "Know Thy Self."
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