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Author Topic:   Choosing a faith
Theodoric
Member
Posts: 9353
From: Northwest, WI, USA
Joined: 08-15-2005
Member Rating: 2.7


(1)
Message 721 of 3812 (898744)
09-29-2022 11:33 AM
Reply to: Message 720 by AZPaul3
09-29-2022 10:47 AM


Re: What does God want of Us
GDR is over 200 posts in(on this topic alone) and is repeating the very same argument from the first day he was ever here. He is now well beyond troll territory.

What can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence. -Christopher Hitchens

Facts don't lie or have an agenda. Facts are just facts

"God did it" is not an argument. It is an excuse for intellectual laziness.

If your viewpoint has merits and facts to back it up why would you have to lie?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 720 by AZPaul3, posted 09-29-2022 10:47 AM AZPaul3 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 723 by AZPaul3, posted 09-29-2022 12:01 PM Theodoric has not replied

  
ringo
Member (Idle past 523 days)
Posts: 20940
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005


Message 722 of 3812 (898746)
09-29-2022 11:40 AM
Reply to: Message 718 by Phat
09-29-2022 7:45 AM


Re: Tales Told Around Campfires
Phat writes:
At this point, the Source (the author or authors of the scroll)becomes as important as Content (what the scroll says.)
How does that follow? If we don't even know what the Source was, how can it possibly have any importance?

"Oh no, They've gone and named my home St. Petersburg.
What's going on? Where are all the friends I had?
It's all wrong, I'm feeling lost like I just don't belong.
Give me back, give me back my Leningrad."
-- Leningrad Cowboys

This message is a reply to:
 Message 718 by Phat, posted 09-29-2022 7:45 AM Phat has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 740 by Phat, posted 09-29-2022 8:16 PM ringo has replied

  
AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 8613
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 2.3


Message 723 of 3812 (898748)
09-29-2022 12:01 PM
Reply to: Message 721 by Theodoric
09-29-2022 11:33 AM


Re: What does God want of Us
He is now well beyond troll territory.
You think my post is intended to dissuade him?
That sword cuts both ways.

Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 721 by Theodoric, posted 09-29-2022 11:33 AM Theodoric has not replied

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 6206
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005


Message 724 of 3812 (898750)
09-29-2022 1:03 PM
Reply to: Message 717 by Tangle
09-29-2022 4:26 AM


Re: What does God want of Us
Tangle writes:
​The bible is only evidence that some people wrote some stories.
OK, but that doesn't mean that they are false. The Gospels are clearly written to be believed. As I said, we can all form our own conclusions about whether to belive them or not.
Tangle writes:
Unknown men wrote those stories, not even the widest eyed believer claims that a god wrote those stories.
In some cases we do know, in some cases we have a good idea of who wrote them, and in others we have no idea.
Tangle writes:
Many of the stories in those books are fantastical but are not regarded as metaphor - they are foundational to the belief. But the Jews that were there at the time did not believe those stories, nor did those that later became Muslims. It seems that the majority at the time of the events were not persuaded by them.
The same point keeps coming up and so I give the same answer. First century Jews believed that a messiah, anointed by Yahweh, would raise up an army and kick out the Romans. Jesus had no army, no military conquest and was put to death by the Romans in a way that was extraordinarily cruel but more to the point here it was designed to humiliate and discredit the victim. Jesus was strung up stark naked and ridiculed. After initially come to the conclusion that they had backed the wrong horse and that Jesus was another failed messiah the disciples, without any discernible motive, started claiming that He had been resurrected, and began to spread the counter-cultural message of peace and love.
Tangle writes:
There are several other books that other religions believe to be true that you do not. You believe the Christian book - or at least those parts of it that you personally feel comfortable with - is true only because it was the book that your parents and culture believes. Had you been born in another place, you would not believe it.
Actually I left the faith and simply saw Jesus as a moral teacher for many years. I was actually visiting in your neck of the woods and was given a copy of Mere Christianity and started reconsidering my own position. About 20 years later I decided to reconsider my beliefs and started studying views pro and con and ultimately came to the conclusion that each book of the Bible has to be judged on its own merit. I read the debates between people like N T Wright and Dom Crossan and came to the conclusion the the resurrection was an historical event. THta is central to my Christian understanding.
AS far as the other books are concerned I'm not claiming that they don't have truth in them as well. The Book of Buddha for example has pretty much the same message as what Jesus taught.
Tangle writes:
We know that the stories were not created until many years after the main character's death by unknown people who did not witness any of them. We also know that they were edited, redacted and collated centuries later by the most powerful empire in the world for political reasons then promoted by another political organisation that grew to be even more powerful and also equally corrupt - the Catholic church.
We don't know that. I have read a fair bit on it and I came to the conclusion that Matthew was written by the apostle within 10 years of the resurrection. I realize that currently that is a minority opinion.
Here is an interesting quote from this site and largely based on the Dead Sea Scrolls making it based on recent information. New Testament Documents
quote:
"The most significant find, however, is a manuscript fragment from the book of Matthew (chapt.26) called the Magdalene Manuscript which has been analyzed by Dr. Carsten Thiede, and also written up in his book The Jesus Papyrus. Using a sophisticated analysis of the handwriting of the fragment by employing a special state-of-the-art microscope, he differentiated between 20 separate micrometer layers of the papyrus, measuring the height and depth of the ink as well as the angle of the stylus used by the scribe. After this analysis Thiede was able to compare it with other papyri from that period; notably manuscripts found at Qumran (dated to 58 AD), another at Herculaneum (dated prior to 79 AD), a further one from the fortress of Masada (dated to between 73/74 AD), and finally a papyrus from the Egyptian town of Oxyrynchus. The Magdalene Manuscript fragments matches all four, and in fact is almost a twin to the papyrus found in Oxyrynchus, which bears the date of 65/66 AD Thiede concludes that these papyrus fragments of St. Matthew's Gospel were written no later than this date and probably earlier. That suggests that we either have a portion of the original gospel of Matthew, or an immediate copy, which was written while Matthew and the other disciples, and eyewitnesses to the events were still alive. This would be the oldest manuscript portion of our Bible in existence today, one which co-exists with the original writers!
The NT was put together, not by the Romans but by the various churches at the time.
Tangle writes:
We know that the stories in the books are inconsistent, some are contradictory and its predictions of important future events failed to happen.
Of course there are contradictions. If people remember things differently. It does however show that that they aren't guilty of collusion.
For many years in western Christianity the prophesies were considered to be about end times. It is now clear that the prophesies of Jesus were not about end times but about what would happen if they went ahead with a military revolution. I am not saying that Jesus knew the future. It was part of His message promoting non-violent revolution.
Tangle writes:
In principle, the qualifier, “scientific” in that statement is redundant. Evidence is simply evidence and all evidence is observational. What makes it real evidence is that it is independent of the observer. It must be verifiable by others, particularly others that are skeptical of it. What you call “life experience and observation” only become evidence if others can replicate it. What you have is a belief which does not require evidence. What you call evidence is almost entirely confirmation bias.
I have gone over this several times. Scientific evidence is repeatable and can be confirmed, and yes it might start as observational. However the fact that we can experience beauty, love etc raises the question of why we have those expereinces. There is no testable answer but only are own individual conclusions.

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 717 by Tangle, posted 09-29-2022 4:26 AM Tangle has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 725 by ringo, posted 09-29-2022 1:11 PM GDR has replied
 Message 726 by Tangle, posted 09-29-2022 1:37 PM GDR has replied
 Message 727 by AZPaul3, posted 09-29-2022 1:41 PM GDR has replied
 Message 749 by nwr, posted 09-30-2022 12:27 AM GDR has replied

  
ringo
Member (Idle past 523 days)
Posts: 20940
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005


Message 725 of 3812 (898751)
09-29-2022 1:11 PM
Reply to: Message 724 by GDR
09-29-2022 1:03 PM


Re: What does God want of Us
GDR writes:
The Gospels are clearly written to be believed.
How is that clear?

"Oh no, They've gone and named my home St. Petersburg.
What's going on? Where are all the friends I had?
It's all wrong, I'm feeling lost like I just don't belong.
Give me back, give me back my Leningrad."
-- Leningrad Cowboys

This message is a reply to:
 Message 724 by GDR, posted 09-29-2022 1:03 PM GDR has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 731 by GDR, posted 09-29-2022 3:38 PM ringo has replied

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 9538
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.1


(2)
Message 726 of 3812 (898752)
09-29-2022 1:37 PM
Reply to: Message 724 by GDR
09-29-2022 1:03 PM


Re: What does God want of Us
GDR writes:
However the fact that we can experience beauty, love etc raises the question of why we have those expereinces. There is no testable answer but only are own individual conclusions.
I see no point in re-re-repeating what has been said above. I'd just ask you to consider the probabilities of what you've finally chosen to believe, given the objections raised here. Many of the statements you make have an unconscious bias towards a 50:50, 'my view is as good as your view' on any point raised and it's not correct. (Even if it was 50:50, probabilities compound very quickly into long odds)
For example, your response to me saying that the bible is only evidence that some people wrote some stories was "OK, but that doesn't mean that they are false." I am forced to agree with you but the odds of them being true, given all the evidence against and the total lack of supporting evidence is extremely remote.
The equivalence that you project simply is not there.
Even when you accept that your view is in the minority, you qualify it by saying that it is "currently" a minority position, because, of course, you know that you are right and the majority of scholars are wrong - but they'll come around in time.
So I'll leave it there. However, I think this is worthy of further work.
However the fact that we can experience beauty, love etc raises the question of why we have those expereinces. There is no testable answer but only are own individual conclusions.
Why do you pick those particular emotions as needing further explanation? Why not pick anger or hate or jealousy etc?

Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London. Olen Suomi Soy Barcelona. I am Ukraine.

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 724 by GDR, posted 09-29-2022 1:03 PM GDR has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 732 by GDR, posted 09-29-2022 4:10 PM Tangle has replied

  
AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 8613
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 2.3


Message 727 of 3812 (898753)
09-29-2022 1:41 PM
Reply to: Message 724 by GDR
09-29-2022 1:03 PM


Re: What does God want of Us
However the fact that we can experience beauty, love etc raises the question of why we have those expereinces. There is no testable answer but only are own individual conclusions.
Bull. We know exactly how and why those experiences happen. It's called being human. Emotion has known physicochemical pathways.
The fact that you can feel emotions, like love, hate, indifference, is a known result of the evolution of our social species. There is no reason to suppose some invisible, unknowable, force outside your cranium is any impetus responsible for what you feel. Emotions are not portals to other dimensions or pathways to knowledge. Emotions are not majik.

Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 724 by GDR, posted 09-29-2022 1:03 PM GDR has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 728 by Phat, posted 09-29-2022 2:28 PM AZPaul3 has replied
 Message 733 by GDR, posted 09-29-2022 4:24 PM AZPaul3 has replied

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 18443
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.0


Message 728 of 3812 (898759)
09-29-2022 2:28 PM
Reply to: Message 727 by AZPaul3
09-29-2022 1:41 PM


Re: What does God want of Us
Cleverbot is being programmed to become more human. The real question is what we are being "programmed" to do. The media is our teacher and we are but lemmings.

"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." ~Mark Twain "
***
“…far from science having buried God, not only do the results of science point towards his existence, but the scientific enterprise itself is validated by his existence.”- Dr.John Lennox

“A God without wrath brought men without sin into a Kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a Cross.”
H. Richard Niebuhr, The Kingdom of God in America

“The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of a doubt, what is laid before him.” — Leo Tolstoy, The Kingdom of God is Within You
(1894).


This message is a reply to:
 Message 727 by AZPaul3, posted 09-29-2022 1:41 PM AZPaul3 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 730 by AZPaul3, posted 09-29-2022 2:49 PM Phat has replied

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 22689
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.7


Message 729 of 3812 (898761)
09-29-2022 2:46 PM
Reply to: Message 715 by GDR
09-28-2022 6:28 PM


Re: What does God want of Us
GDR writes:
It doesn't seem to be a problem now, but what was happening was that I would take the time to answer a post and in the meantime there would be three more.
And giving each reply the time it deserves will slow the back-and-forth down, making things easier for you. There's nothing wrong with being a week or month behind in replying. There's no hurry. Take your time and do a good job.
OK I'll try again.
There is zero scientific evidence for anything beyond the physical.
This is disingenuous in the extreme. In the very message you're replying to I explained, and not for the first, second or third time, that there is no difference in character between everyday evidence and scientific evidence. They're both based on observation. Everything we know, from whether it's safe to proceed at an intersection to how to hit an asteroid with a spacecraft, the only difference is that science gathers its evidence more carefully and accurately. At one point I said that it's sort of like the difference between "It got hot" and "It reached a temperature of 63.9°C."
My question is why are you forcing me to repeat myself yet again. If you disagree with my characterization of the difference between ordinary and scientific evidence then raise your objections. Don't simply ignore what I said again and again. You are the cause of the frustration and anger you complain about.
The Bible is evidence. It is obviously written to be believed although not always literally. You argue that it isn't reliable and give reasons. However, it still remains that it in fact exists. It might contain truths or it might be a total lie, but it is evidence to be considered.
You're just stating your position again and not addressing a single thing I said, specifically, yet again, that accepting the Bible as evidence means you're accepting everything ever written and to be written as evidence, including the Bhagavad Gita, the Quran and the Book of Mormon. People can put down anything on paper that they like, from complete fiction and lies to accurate recountings of events.
You know what your response was the last time I said this? Something like, "If you say so. Other very bright people disagree." That is not a rebuttal. You haven't made any argument at all. That's deflection, not a response. You keep avoiding addressing the issues at the heart of the discussion.
The Quran says, "It does not befit the majesty of God that He should beget a son." (There are various translations.) It was obviously "written to be believed," so according to you this is evidence. Hitler wrote in Mein Kampf, "With satanic joy in his face, the black-haired Jewish youth lurks in wait for the unsuspecting girl whom he defiles with his blood, thus stealing her from her people." Written to be believed, is this, too, evidence? Rep. Andrew Clyde (R. Ga.) said that people looking at film from January 6th inside the capitol building would "think it was a normal tourist visit," and he expected it to be believed. Trump says the FBI planted evidence at Mar-a-Lago with the intent that it be believed? Is that evidence of FBI misbehavior? Or is Dearie doing the right thing by requesting that Trump's lawyers document precisely which materials they are alleging are on the FBI inventory that were not originally at Mar-a-Lago?
I don't think you've thought your position on evidence through, which is consistent with your reluctance to actually discuss it. Surprise me with an answer that goes beyond, "We just disagree on this."
Beyond that we apply our own rational form our own conclusions. If we decide that there is some level of accuracy we follow a path of faith which should be to live a life to one degree or another in coherence with Christ's message.
Why Christ's message? Why not Mohammed's message? Or Buddha's message? Or Ghandi's message? According to your criteria there's evidence of all their messages, yet you argue the evidence for only one. Why is that?
OK, so you reject all world religions. What then do you contend is the nature of this supernatural being and what should it mean to our lives.
Every observation that anyone who ever lived ever made was of the natural world. There's no evidence of a "supernatural being." There's no evidence of a "cosmic intelligence." That's your schtick.
Of course it has nothing to do with any religion. It is simply the question of what is the root cause of the evolutionarily process. It might be atheistic, deistic or theistic. My conclusion without any scientific evidence is that it is theistic. I don't even know what your conclusion would be.
You know exactly what my "conclusion would be," because I told you in the very message you're replying to. I said, "Replication is imperfect and changes are carried forward to the next generation when they result in production of offspring (or of more numerous offspring) being more likely. Again, nothing to do with religion."
Why do I have to keep repeating things I just said, sometimes a few messages ago, but often in the very message you're replying to. It's like you're filtering out from your conscious awareness any argument your subconscious judges effective.
I have no scientific evidence.
You are again ignoring for the umpteenth time what I've said about evidence. Again (I have to use that word a lot), there is no difference of substance between ordinary evidence and scientific evidence. You not only don't have scientific evidence, you have no evidence at all because you have no real world observations. All you have is a book containing the same style of fantastical claims typical of religion. You're falling all over yourself to be taken in by this obvious flim-flam.
We can however come to our conclusions based on life experience and observation but that can lead to atheism or theism and anything in between.
What is the matter with you? Again, "Life experience and observation" is what evidence is. What observations have you or anyone made of God or Jesus?
As an example of that we have just had a major hurricane in both the Canadian Maritimes as well as Florida. If we come to the conclusion that a loving God wouldn't allow that to happen we will likely hold to an atheistic belief. On the other hand if we marvel at home people come out in love to selflessly help those in distress we might tend to a theistic position.
There's a complete absence of observational evidence in this. You made no observation of God, loving or otherwise, as the hurricane rolled through. You have no evidence that God played any role in people's behavior in the aftermath. All you have is your own religiously biased speculations.
I had written this:
GDR writes:
We have all the evidence needed to confirm the evolutionary process. Then the question is WHY does the evolutionary process exist. If you reject the idea of an external intelligence then it obviously is there because of nothing but natural processes. If however, you accept the notion of an external intelligence then it makes sense to conclude that the evolutionary process has this intelligence as its first cause.
You then pull this out of that:
Percy writes:
...then it makes sense to conclude that the evolutionary process has this intelligence as its first cause.
How about using enough of the quote so that it doesn't distort what I was actually saying.
You're accusing me of distortion? What chutzpah!
I quoted and dissected almost everything in that entire paragraph sentence by sentence, even phrase by phrase, including the portion you bolded, and you accuse me of distortion? What is the matter with you? Why is it always Christians who behave in the most unChristian manner? Here's the actual sentence-by-sentence dissection, again, since you must not have read it the first time:
Percy:
We have all the evidence needed to confirm the evolutionary process.
Evolution has nothing to do with religious belief or non-belief.
Then the question is WHY does the evolutionary process exist.
Because replication is imperfect and changes are carried forward to the next generation when they result in production of offspring (or of more numerous offspring) being more likely. Again, nothing to do with religion.
If you reject the idea of an external intelligence...
We're no more rejecting the idea of an "external intelligence" (whatever that is) than we are of the idea of unicorns or oobleck. We're pointing out that you have no evidence that it's real.
If however, you accept the notion of an external intelligence...
Why should we accept "the notion of an external intelligence," when it has just as much evidence as the notion of unicorns or oobleck. This is usually the point where you again claim that you do too have evidence. Please, don't close that loop again. You do not have evidence. You haven't observed a single thing.
...then it makes sense to conclude that the evolutionary process has this intelligence as its first cause.
Holy cow! Had no idea you were going to end up here. I was literally just reading and responding one sentence at a time and this just blew my mind.
No, it does not make sense. I have no idea why this completely off-the-wall idea turns on the "makes sense" light in your brain, but it does not make sense.
See that? I quoted and commented on nearly every word of that paragraph. Again, what is the matter with you? How do you live with yourself doing stuff like this?
There is no scientific evidence.
There is no evidence of any kind. If you think you have evidence, something that's been observed no matter how unscientifically, then tell us what that evidence is.
We can all marvel at new life,...
Let's say we both look at a newborn calf. New life. I see natural processes, and while you also see natural processes you also claim to see something additional. What is it, observationally, that you see? Awareness of a internal subjective emotional state is not an observation of anything, except maybe in a psychological sense.
...the fact that we can see beauty in a flower,...
Again, what observation are you making, no matter how unscientific? What are you seeing of the supernatural that I'm not seeing? Isn't this just an internal emotional state?
...that we can experience joy or so, that we can experience empathy etc. We then can simply form our own conclusions, non-scientifically.
It's not only non-scientific, it's absent any observational evidence whatsoever.
Percy writes:
Your "subjective conclusions" have no evidence.
Sure, no scientific evidence at all.
I didn't say "scientific evidence." I said "evidence." I've expended many words explaining that all evidence, both ordinary and scientific, is based upon observation. But you're determined to ignore all that and just mindlessly parrot stuff like, "I have no scientific evidence." You do this over and over, and not just on the topic of evidence. Again, your manner of approaching the discussion leaves only yourself to blame for any animosity directed at you.
GDR writes:
Frankly I hear what some Christian preachers have to say and see myself with having more in common with many atheists.
Percy writes:
I don't think anyone here would agree with this self-assessment. Nothing you've ever said at EvC has ever been remotely like what an atheist might say.
When Christian preachers start rationalizing the stories of genocide and public stoning in the Bible then I have more common with Chris Hitchens that I do with such a preacher.
I think that's just a normal human reaction against hate. There's nothing specifically atheistic about it.
Percy writes:
No, we're not asking questions. We're telling you you have no evidence. And you agree. And then you change your mind and claim you have evidence again.
You keep saying that. This is not in a science forum.
You are correct, this is not a science forum, this is the Faith and Belief forum. You can't say you've got evidence and then argue that because this is the Faith and Belief forum that all claims of evidence must be accepted uncritically. Either back up your claims of evidence, or stop making these claims.
If you believe there are other kinds of evidence, which you tried to argue earlier in the discussion, then you have so far not successfully made that case.
Correct me if I'm wrong but in your view, and in the view of others, it appears to me that the only evidence that is allowed is scientific evidence. Observational conclusions are not based on evidence.
Do I have to say it yet again? All evidence is just observations. As you become more disciplined about making observations then you're moving in a scientific direction. This is exactly as I said before. If you grab a hot water pipe you might quickly pull your hand away and exclaim, "Wow, that's hot." That's an observation. You've just gathered evidence that the water pipe is hot. Now someone comes in with a temperature measuring device and says, "The temperature of this water pipe is 63.9°C." That's still just an observation, merely more accurate evidence that the water pipe is hot. That observation is no different in character than you grabbing the water pipe. It's just more accurate and definitive. But they're both just observations of the real world.
So, again, when I say you have no evidence, I do not mean you have no scientific evidence. I mean you have no evidence whatsoever. You have absolutely zero observations of the real world supporting your views. Capisce?
The Bible, the Qur'an, the Book of Buddah, the Book of Mormon etc physically exist. Why aren't they considered evidence.
I'm not aware of any Book of Buddha, but anyway, I'm surprised at your willingness to consider them evidence since they would be evidence against you.
But they're not evidence because they're just stuff people wrote, not observations. Many religious books do contain legitimate observations in passing, such as of cities and kings and so forth, and since massive amounts of observational evidence exists of Jerusalem and Mecca and Sennacherib and so forth we accept this evidence. But there's every reason to reject as observational evidence the writings that Jesus, Mohammed and Buddha all healed the sick. This is just the standard claims that all religions makes and that we're all familiar with.
Even today faith healers abound, and they're all charlatans. Why do you believe 2000-year-old faith healing was real, especially since it was a time when many more people than today were susceptible to such foolery.
Anyone who catches a virus can pray that it will go away and their prayers will be answered the vast majority of the time, if that's the way they'd like to see it, but make the medical issue a bit more serious and see how often prayers are answered. Isn't it strange that the effectiveness of prayer depends upon the seriousness of the medical problem. Prayer remedies a cold every time, but type 1 diabetes, cystic fibrosis and amputation never.
Nobody contests the belief that Plato, Socrates and others existed because of what we have written about them and they predate Jesus by 400 years.
The recorded observational evidence for Socrates is not strong, that for Plato extremely strong. I don't know why you mention that they predated Jesus because the reasons for considering Jesus a myth have nothing to do with how long ago it was and everything to do with the lack of evidence.
Percy writes:
You can't claim that any words a writer sets to paper are evidence because then you have to do that for everything, not just all the world's religions but even all the world's myths and fantasies.
So what. The first thing you have to do is consider the author's intent.
No, intent is not the first thing. Evidence is the first thing.
If you're reading a book by Agatha Christie then you know that it's not be taken literally.
But she spent a great deal of time in Istanbul, some of her books recording a snapshot of life there at the time and which can be considered with other accounts to judge it as evidence.
If you read Lewis' Narnia series you know that it's not meant to be understood as something that really happened but at the same time know that is also meant as metaphor.
I don't know anything about Narnian metaphor. Fiction about a fictional place contains no evidence, but book one begins with the Blitz in London, which is yet more information to consider about how Londoners experienced it. Fact and fiction between the same covers.
If you read Churchill's "History of the English Speaking People" then it is clear that he intends it as a factual account.
His intent doesn't matter. What matters is the evidence. I haven't read this particular Churchill book, but as with everything else, one should only accept what is supported by evidence. I expect it's very likely that much of the book is supported by evidence.
In the case of the Bible it is all 3.
You mean fact, fiction and metaphor? Sure. Jerusalem has excellent evidential support, Jesus doesn't, and a mustard seed is a metaphor for Heaven.
Of course though, that something that is written to be understood as an actual account of an occurrence isn't necessarily true or even close to true.
Yes, exactly what I've been saying. To judge an account you don't go to the author's intent or any of your other odd ideas. You go to the evidence. Not the scientific evidence, just the evidence, the kind that historians normally record.
Percy writes:
But you've driven some stakes in the ground, like that Jesus was real and there's evidence for it. There isn't.
..and you know that how. Numerous people have written about Jesus over the years and you simply reject what they all wrote.
What does "Numerous people have written about Jesus over the years" mean? Is this a reference to the Bible? Are you rehashing Polycarp and Tacitus and so forth yet again? Are you referring to all the other derivative writings about Jesus over the last 2000 years?
None of that matters. What's your observational evidence?
Percy writes:
Again, there is no difference in nature between everyday evidence and scientific evidence. It's all just observations. Science is just more detailed, instrumented, structured and controlled in gathering its evidence, sort of like the difference between "It got hot" and "It reached a temperature of 147.3°C."

Sadly here's the lead story from CNN today. "Hurricane Ian makes landfall in Florida". Is that evidence on its own that Ian hit Florida?
I meant to say °F above.
You provide no link, but if the article reports observations that can be verified by other reported observations, then yes, it is evidence. And of course anyone following the news knows that Hurricane Ian is all over the news with first hand witness reports, weather maps, weather measurements, radar, video of neighborhoods being flooded, etc., so there's tons of confirmatory observations. Any other stupid questions?
Can we move the discussion forward? You're just fighting a holding action.
--Percy

This message is a reply to:
 Message 715 by GDR, posted 09-28-2022 6:28 PM GDR has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 735 by GDR, posted 09-29-2022 6:59 PM Percy has replied
 Message 739 by Phat, posted 09-29-2022 8:00 PM Percy has seen this message but not replied

  
AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 8613
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 2.3


(1)
Message 730 of 3812 (898762)
09-29-2022 2:49 PM
Reply to: Message 728 by Phat
09-29-2022 2:28 PM


Re: What does God want of Us
You do realize the media is not a monolithic whole. It is as fragmented as the societies it inhabits. You can find a media outlet that will tell you anything you care to believe.
Your bot is not being trained to be more human, whatever the fuck that means. It is a toy to entertain the masses. The bots responses show nothing but rote regurgitation of inane responses to inane inquiries. There is no humanity to it.
Your bot shows nothing. It means nothing. But if your jollies come from conversing with a world-wide tape recorder, have at it.
This is the wrong thread for this.

Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 728 by Phat, posted 09-29-2022 2:28 PM Phat has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 741 by Phat, posted 09-29-2022 8:34 PM AZPaul3 has not replied

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 6206
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005


Message 731 of 3812 (898764)
09-29-2022 3:38 PM
Reply to: Message 725 by ringo
09-29-2022 1:11 PM


Re: What does God want of Us
GDR writes:
]​The Gospels are clearly written to be believed.
ringo writes:
How is that clear?
There are the foundational documents for a new movement. They are biographical accounts written by 4 different men. Many people gave them so much credence that they dedicated their lives to following them, and many died for the stories in them.
I say that not to give them authenticity, but simply to say that they were written in a manner with the intent that others would believe them. I'd also say that is pretty obvious and I have to wonder why you would ask the question.

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 725 by ringo, posted 09-29-2022 1:11 PM ringo has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 744 by Percy, posted 09-29-2022 9:09 PM GDR has replied
 Message 746 by ringo, posted 09-29-2022 9:53 PM GDR has replied
 Message 748 by Theodoric, posted 09-29-2022 10:42 PM GDR has not replied

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 6206
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005


Message 732 of 3812 (898767)
09-29-2022 4:10 PM
Reply to: Message 726 by Tangle
09-29-2022 1:37 PM


Re: What does God want of Us
Tangle writes:
I see no point in re-re-repeating what has been said above. I'd just ask you to consider the probabilities of what you've finally chosen to believe, given the objections raised here. Many of the statements you make have an unconscious bias towards a 50:50, 'my view is as good as your view' on any point raised and it's not correct. (Even if it was 50:50, probabilities compound very quickly into long odds)

For example, your response to me saying that the bible is only evidence that some people wrote some stories was "OK, but that doesn't mean that they are false." I am forced to agree with you but the odds of them being true, given all the evidence against and the total lack of supporting evidence is extremely remote.
The equivalence that you project simply is not there.
I don't see an equivalence here at all. The real debate is centred on the question of the resurrection. Is it historically true or isn't it? The whole NT hangs on that question. My conclusion from all that I have read that, in that IMHO, it is the only thing that actually makes sense of the rise of the early Christian church. I know that numerous very bright people such as Crossan and Borg, both scholars studying the issue, to be unconvincing. Everything opposed that I have read starts with the idea that it isn't possible, so any other explanation is preferable. As a theist I believe that it could very well be, but not necessarily, true.
Tangle writes:
Even when you accept that your view is in the minority, you qualify it by saying that it is "currently" a minority position, because, of course, you know that you are right and the majority of scholars are wrong - but they'll come around in time.
Good point, but as I showed you in that document I linked you to, there is new evidence available. The idea of Markan priority only emerged 200 years ago and it totally discounted all of the external evidence.
Tangle writes:
Why do you pick those particular emotions as needing further explanation? Why not pick anger or hate or jealousy etc?
They would have done fine too.

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 726 by Tangle, posted 09-29-2022 1:37 PM Tangle has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 734 by Tangle, posted 09-29-2022 6:19 PM GDR has replied

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 6206
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005


Message 733 of 3812 (898768)
09-29-2022 4:24 PM
Reply to: Message 727 by AZPaul3
09-29-2022 1:41 PM


Re: What does God want of Us
AZPaul3 writes:
Bull. We know exactly how and why those experiences happen. It's called being human. Emotion has known physicochemical pathways.
Emotional responses can be measured with a brain scan. Is it the brain and the pathways in the brain causing the emotions, or is it the emotions causing the response from the brain. How can you test for that?

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 727 by AZPaul3, posted 09-29-2022 1:41 PM AZPaul3 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 737 by AZPaul3, posted 09-29-2022 7:11 PM GDR has replied
 Message 745 by Percy, posted 09-29-2022 9:15 PM GDR has replied

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 9538
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 734 of 3812 (898770)
09-29-2022 6:19 PM
Reply to: Message 732 by GDR
09-29-2022 4:10 PM


Re: What does God want of Us
GDR writes:
They would have done fine too.
Show me how.

Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London. Olen Suomi Soy Barcelona. I am Ukraine.

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 732 by GDR, posted 09-29-2022 4:10 PM GDR has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 736 by GDR, posted 09-29-2022 7:03 PM Tangle has replied

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 6206
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005


Message 735 of 3812 (898771)
09-29-2022 6:59 PM
Reply to: Message 729 by Percy
09-29-2022 2:46 PM


Re: What does God want of Us
Percy writes:
This is disingenuous in the extreme. In the very message you're replying to I explained, and not for the first, second or third time, that there is no difference in character between everyday evidence and scientific evidence. They're both based on observation. Everything we know, from whether it's safe to proceed at an intersection to how to hit an asteroid with a spacecraft, the only difference is that science gathers its evidence more carefully and accurately. At one point I said that it's sort of like the difference between "It got hot" and "It reached a temperature of 63.9°C."

My question is why are you forcing me to repeat myself yet again. If you disagree with my characterization of the difference between ordinary and scientific evidence then raise your objections. Don't simply ignore what I said again and again. You are the cause of the frustration and anger you complain about.
I observe that I consciously experience emotions, can appreciate beauty and be empathetic and even altruistic. I am told that's not evidence even though I can observe those things happening. You guys keep moving the goal posts on what is considered to be evidence. I am quite happy to agree with you on whatever you consider to be evidence, then things can be discussed on that basis.
Percy writes:
My question is why are you forcing me to repeat myself yet again. If you disagree with my characterization of the difference between ordinary and scientific evidence then raise your objections. Don't simply ignore what I said again and again. You are the cause of the frustration and anger you complain about.
When I try to do that one of you will tell me it's wrong.
Percy writes:
You're just stating your position again and not addressing a single thing I said, specifically, yet again, that accepting the Bible as evidence means you're accepting everything ever written and to be written as evidence, including the Bhagavad Gita, the Quran and the Book of Mormon. People can put down anything on paper that they like, from complete fiction and lies to accurate recountings of events.
I agree and I've said that before. Can you please read my replies not addressed to you so that I don't have to keep repeating myself.
Percy writes:
The Quran says, "It does not befit the majesty of God that He should beget a son." (There are various translations.) It was obviously "written to be believed," so according to you this is evidence. Hitler wrote in Mein Kampf, "With satanic joy in his face, the black-haired Jewish youth lurks in wait for the unsuspecting girl whom he defiles with his blood, thus stealing her from her people." Written to be believed, is this, too, evidence? Rep. Andrew Clyde (R. Ga.) said that people looking at film from January 6th inside the capitol building would "think it was a normal tourist visit," and he expected it to be believed. Trump says the FBI planted evidence at Mar-a-Lago with the intent that it be believed? Is that evidence of FBI misbehavior? Or is Dearie doing the right thing by requesting that Trump's lawyers document precisely which materials they are alleging are on the FBI inventory that were not originally at Mar-a-Lago?
And again yes - and then we can come to our own conclusions about all of those things.
Percy writes:
Why Christ's message? Why not Mohammed's message? Or Buddha's message? Or Ghandi's message? According to your criteria there's evidence of all their messages, yet you argue the evidence for only one. Why is that?
Because that's the one I get asked about.
GDR writes:
Of course it has nothing to do with any religion. It is simply the question of what is the root cause of the evolutionarily process. It might be atheistic, deistic or theistic. My conclusion without any scientific evidence is that it is theistic. I don't even know what your conclusion would be.
Percy writes:
You know exactly what my "conclusion would be," because I told you in the very message you're replying to. I said, "Replication is imperfect and changes are carried forward to the next generation when they result in production of offspring (or of more numerous offspring) being more likely. Again, nothing to do with religion."

Why do I have to keep repeating things I just said, sometimes a few messages ago, but often in the very message you're replying to. It's like you're filtering out from your conscious awareness any argument your subconscious judges effective.
And again you don't address my point. It again, is like saying that a robotic assembly line is on its own responsible for the widget it produces.
Percy writes:
​You are again ignoring for the umpteenth time what I've said about evidence. Again (I have to use that word a lot), there is no difference of substance between ordinary evidence and scientific evidence. You not only don't have scientific evidence, you have no evidence at all because you have no real world observations. All you have is a book containing the same style of fantastical claims typical of religion. You're falling all over yourself to be taken in by this obvious flim-flam.
This does get old. You complain about me repeating myself. You keep asking the same question and I keep giving the same answer that you reject. We can both observe that we are conscious beings. You maintain that it evolved naturally without any external intelligence being responsible at any level. I maintain that I am ok with it evolving through natural processes but that ultimately there was an external intelligence involved, whether it was only at the beginning or with intervention. Yes I have no proof. It is belief.
Percy writes:
What is the matter with you? Again, "Life experience and observation" is what evidence is. What observations have you or anyone made of God or Jesus?
...and once again it is consciousness and all the things that go along with being conscious.
Percy writes:
I quoted and dissected almost everything in that entire paragraph sentence by sentence, even phrase by phrase, including the portion you bolded, and you accuse me of distortion? What is the matter with you? Why is it always Christians who behave in the most unChristian manner? Here's the actual sentence-by-sentence dissection, again, since you must not have read it the first time:
My problem was that I wrote this as a complete thought.
"If however, you accept the notion of an external intelligence then it makes sense to conclude that the evolutionary process has this intelligence as its first cause."
You split it into two sentences, separating the last part of the sentence from the first part which qualified it.
Percy writes:
Let's say we both look at a newborn calf. New life. I see natural processes, and while you also see natural processes you also claim to see something additional. What is it, observationally, that you see? Awareness of a internal subjective emotional state is not an observation of anything, except maybe in a psychological sense.
I see conscious life coming from a non-conscious sperm and egg. I know we can see the processes that make that happen but that doesn't IMHO answer the whole question.
Percy writes:
It's not only non-scientific, it's absent any observational evidence whatsoever.
My observation is that it brings me a sense of wonder and miracle; the sense of the beauty and joy in new life.
Percy writes:
There's a complete absence of observational evidence in this. You made no observation of God, loving or otherwise, as the hurricane rolled through. You have no evidence that God played any role in people's behavior in the aftermath. All you have is your own religiously biased speculations.
As we all do regardless of our religious or non-religious beliefs.
Percy writes:
Do I have to say it yet again? All evidence is just observations. As you become more disciplined about making observations then you're moving in a scientific direction. This is exactly as I said before. If you grab a hot water pipe you might quickly pull your hand away and exclaim, "Wow, that's hot." That's an observation. You've just gathered evidence that the water pipe is hot. Now someone comes in with a temperature measuring device and says, "The temperature of this water pipe is 63.9°C." That's still just an observation, merely more accurate evidence that the water pipe is hot. That observation is no different in character than you grabbing the water pipe. It's just more accurate and definitive. But they're both just observations of the real world.
OK, so all you have is the pipe, the experience and the measure of the temperature. Then you can ask the question why is it hot. Sure, realistically you can go into another room and understand that it's hot water but say you can't. All you have is a hot pipe, and you can only speculate as to why it's hot.
Percy writes:
His intent doesn't matter. What matters is the evidence. I haven't read this particular Churchill book, but as with everything else, one should only accept what is supported by evidence. I expect it's very likely that much of the book is supported by evidence.
Of course it matters. If you know someone is intending their work to be taken as fiction you wouldn't research it in the same light as someone who writes something that they contend is non-fiction.
Percy writes:
I didn't say "scientific evidence." I said "evidence." I've expended many words explaining that all evidence, both ordinary and scientific, is based upon observation. But you're determined to ignore all that and just mindlessly parrot stuff like, "I have no scientific evidence." You do this over and over, and not just on the topic of evidence. Again, your manner of approaching the discussion leaves only yourself to blame for any animosity directed at you.
I don't care about the animosity but I do care about being called a liar. I don't know why anyone would want to converse with someone they think is lying and I definitely am not interested in conversing with someone who calls me a liar.
Percy writes:
Can we move the discussion forward? You're just fighting a holding action.
I'd like that as we both keep trying to find new ways of saying the same thing. Maybe we can narrow the topic down to one point; maybe my original point of the thread which seems to have been forgotten about a zillion posts ago.

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 729 by Percy, posted 09-29-2022 2:46 PM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 753 by Percy, posted 09-30-2022 11:12 AM GDR has not replied

  
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