"Turn him loose as a theorist..."

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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Dr. Mobius » Thu May 17, 2012 5:25 am

Tiny, therein lies the problem with trying to quantify the unquantifiable, whether it be infinity or it's theological counterpart. Systems break down as they approach them. Light's apparent problems with infinity do not negate it's influence over the rest of the universe.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Thu May 17, 2012 8:10 am

Or the problem in trying to shell the unshellable.

From Monty Python:
Good evening.

The last scene was interesting from the point of view of a professional logician because it contained a number of logical fallacies; that is, invalid propositional constructions and syllogistic forms, of the type so often committed by my wife. "All wood burns," states Sir Bedevere. "Therefore," he concludes, "all that burns is wood." This is, of course, pure bullshit. Universal affirmatives can only be partially converted: all of Alma Cogan is dead, but only some of the class of dead people are Alma Cogan. "Oh yes," one would think.

However, my wife does not understand this necessary limitation of the conversion of a proposition; consequently, she does not understand me. For how can a woman expect to appreciate a professor of logic, if the simplest cloth-eared syllogism causes her to flounder.

For example, given the premise, "all fish live underwater" and "all mackerel are fish", my wife will conclude, not that "all mackerel live underwater", but that "if she buys kippers it will not rain", or that "trout live in trees", or even that "I do not love her any more." This she calls "using her intuition". I call it "crap", and it gets me very irritated because it is not logical.

"There will be no supper tonight," she will sometimes cry upon my return home. "Why not?" I will ask. "Because I have been screwing the milkman all day," she will say, quite oblivious of the howling error she has made. "But," I will wearily point out, "even given that the activities of screwing the milkman and getting supper are mutually exclusive, now that the screwing is over, surely then, supper may, logically, be got." " You don't love me any more," she will now often postulate. "If you did, you would give me one now and again, so that I would not have to rely on that rancid Pakistani for my orgasms." "I will give you one after you have got me my supper," I now usually scream, "but not before" -- as you understand, making her bang contingent on the arrival of my supper.

"God, you turn me on when you're angry, you ancient brute!" she now mysteriously deduces, forcing her sweetly throbbing tongue down my throat. "f*** supper!" I now invariably conclude, throwing logic somewhat joyously to the four winds, and so we thrash about on our milk-stained floor, transported by animal passion, until we sink back, exhausted, onto the cartons of yoghurt.

I'm afraid I seem to have strayed somewhat from my original brief. But in a nutshell:

Sex is more fun than logic -- one cannot prove this, but it "is" in the same sense that Mount Everest "is", or that Alma Cogan "isn't".

Goodnight.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Thu May 17, 2012 8:16 am

Space-time is infiniet? I found this once:

If space is infinite, the relative velocity of light is 0.
If light-speed = 0
and motion in space × motion in time = light-speed...
According to the nul factor law, one of these is 0.
Since we appear to be moving through space and time, space must be finite.

Feel free to correct as necessary.

I found your error.

First off, you are comparing distance to velocity.

If I'm walking at 3 mph, I'm still walking at 3mph whether I'm walking 10 feet, or thinking about walking 1000 miles.

But, given that; given the "relatively zero"....you can't then go and say that it IS zero. It's not. It's still 186,000 miles per second. But your first (implied) premise is invalid.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Thu May 17, 2012 8:26 am

Furthermore, you're entirely ignoring my point about infinite beings not needing a creator without offering any reason for doing so, giving me no reason to accept your point 4.
I have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. What is an "infinite being"? Give examples. How do we know that a being is infinite, other than a 5,000 year old book, that claims, "1. God is infinite," and "2. This book is telling the truth," and "3. Birds have four legs."? How do we test to determine that your God exists? How do we test to determine if your God, or any other object, is infinite? You just MAKE these claims, and you cannot support them. That's your "extra logic"

So...

1) Provide proof that your God exists (and no other God)

2) Provide proof that your God is infinite (other than a single, untestable source)
Last edited by Boothby on Sun May 20, 2012 10:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Bean_wannabe » Thu May 17, 2012 9:45 am

I wasn't providing proof, I was refuting your previous point that a creator god must, in all circumstances, have a creator. Moving the goalposts after the fact does not mean the logic is wrong.

The entire argument was based on IF there is a creator god, THEN.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Thu May 17, 2012 10:05 am

BWB,

You're proposing a creature unique in all the known and unknown universe(s): An eternal being.

There is no precedent for such a being.

There is no evidence of such a being.

There is no rational proof for such a being.

There is likely no system of tests that could be performed to verify either the existence of the "infinity-ness" of such a being.

And, except for the realm of mathematical theory, there isn't even any precedent, evidence, proof or test of "infinity-ness" (the property of being "infinite")


BTW, I mentioned the possibility of infinite (cyclic) universes as a straw man. I neither believe this to be true, nor do I "live my life by it."


All I'm asking you to do is what philosophers have been asking theologists to do for as long as there have been theologists:

1) Define what you mean by "God."

2) Prove that it exists.

I've been asking those questions for over 30 years. I've yet to see a good answer, whether from contemporaries, or from classical theologians. It all boils down to, "I want there to be a God (or I need for there to be a God), therefore there IS a Good. And I will make any argument I can, no matter how irrational, to prove it if I am pressed to."
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby neo-dragon » Thu May 17, 2012 12:29 pm

Once this discussion gets into the territory of "prove that God exists..." you know that it's pretty much reached its end.

We all know that the existence of God can't be proven. It can't even be proven that he might exist. Nor, for that matter, can it be proven that he doesn't exist. And yes, I realize that the burden of proof does not lie on those arguing the latter, but it's hopeless either way.

Steve, haven't you done this enough to know that it's going to lead nowhere?
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Thu May 17, 2012 12:43 pm

Oh, I know.

I'll come back later tonight and discuss the problems with "magical thinking" (and also how it relates to "Ender's game"), but for now, here's a link to a John Stossel article:

http://www.liberator.net/articles/StosselBelief2.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

(normally I don't like Mr, Stossel. This time, I agree with him)
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Bean_wannabe » Fri May 18, 2012 2:38 am

Interesting article. Seems to be more focussed on the supposed benefits gained by these theories than the existence or non-existence of a deity, though there are some interesting points in there. Though good grief, American TV has a lot of adverts!
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Fri May 18, 2012 10:40 am

Oh, I am definitely adding this to my library:

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the ... e-religion" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
The question of why economically developed countries turn to atheism has been batted around by anthropologists for about eighty years. Anthropologist James Fraser proposed that scientific prediction and control of nature supplants religion as a means of controlling uncertainty in our lives. This hunch is supported by data showing that the more educated countries have higher levels of non belief and there are strong correlations between atheism and intelligence (see my earlier post on this).


But back to "Magical Thinking." What's the downside of "Magical Thinking," you might ask? How about $85 Million!

http://www.randi.org/site/index.php/swi ... rmick.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
In a refreshing news item, the BBC and others are reporting that Jim McCormick, inventor of the ADE 561 Bomb Detection Device has been arrested and charged with fraud.

McCormick sold $85,000,000 worth of these devices that he claims work on the same principle as dowsing rods.....
So, some government paid $85 Million of their taxpayers' money, AND put untold numbers of LIVES at risk.



And back to the promised topic: "Ender's Game," and the problems of Magical Thinking:

Card goes out of his way to strip all vestiges of "Magical Thinking" from our favorite protagonist, Ender Wiggin. He makes sure that Ender doesn't think in terms of something or someone larger/smarter/better than he is coming in at the last minute to save the day.

Our very own Colonel Graff states:
"Obviously. But the connection is there. Ender Wiggin must believe that no matter what happens, no adult will ever, ever step in to help him in any way. He must believe, to the core of his soul, that he can only do what he and the other children work out for themselves. If he does not believe that, then he will never reach the peak of his abilities."
No God, no Superman to the rescue. No Magical Thinking. He must learn to rely on the REAL WORLD, and his own skills, to overcome problems. If he breaks the rules, he breaks the rules, but they are still rules of the REAL world, and can only be broken by other REAL world means (and, yes, it's a SCIENCE FICTION STORY, but neither God nor Graff comes in, in a machine at the end of the story to destroy the Bugger Homeworld).

Hmmm...maybe I should have written an essay on this for the "Ender's Game and Philosophy" book!
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby neo-dragon » Fri May 18, 2012 12:32 pm

And yet, as we all know, OSC is very much a theist.

In Xenocide, Qing Jao's entire character is practically an essay on the dangers of magical thinking, but in the same novel I recall that at least one character suggests that the miraculous discovery of a means of faster than light travel, which also happened to provide cures for the descolada and Miro may well have been an answer to the Lusitanian's prayers. That it may not have been possible until they asked and God made it so. So is OSC sending mixed messages?
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Fri May 18, 2012 2:08 pm

And, even though he is opposed to the homosexual lifestyle, he still includes gay characters in some of his books. He's just full of contradictions (like...one of his characters?!?)

In those books, all the deeply religious people were, in fact, delusional. Other than a character making the connection, the omniscient author (Card), I think, does NOT place Jane the the "Outside" way of travelling as gifts from God (except, of course, that they are a DEUS EX MACHINA, which roughly translates into "a cheap way out of a bind")

In "Homecoming." he doesn't even HAVE a God, even though he's retelling stories from the Book of Mormon! His "God" is, in fact, the ship's computer.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby locke » Sat May 19, 2012 7:20 pm

I am so tempted to go a half-cocked epic comparison of OSC's literary tendancy to give his most godlike/saintly characters planets to caretake (and have them have ways of 'scientifically' be able to live for millenia via sleep or relativity or whatever) which has been a common trope of his from Worthing to Pathfinder, but that'd be seriously OT.
So, Lone Star, now you see that evil will always triumph because good is dumb.

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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Tiny genius » Sat May 19, 2012 10:33 pm

Can I just back-track a little (I'm not going to address all topics in one post since reading and re-reading cause me such pain) and say that even if someone provided you with decent arguments to your questions, Steve, as you wish them to do you would reject them on the grounds that they came from a believer's mouth and are therefore based on "delusional" (I wish I had a way to type it as sarcastically as I think it) ideas. Secondly, how can anyone define what they mean by "God" since if they are trying to do that they're probably a believer and so believe also that God defies definition.

Also, I don't think much of arguing about the way we're all arguing about God. Then it gets messy and we need to talk about something else. I realise that we are doing this now with the comparisons with OSC books but... that's something else. It's not a contradiction to disapprove of homosexuals or their lifestyle and still include them in your books. I don't like the way sadists behave either but I try to understand their thinking because I've put them in my own book.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Sun May 20, 2012 10:54 pm

Locke,

No, actually, it's not, since Mormons believe just that...your reward in heaven is being given a planet to run, as a God.


TG,

I don't reject arguments "just because they come from a believer's mouth." I reject them, when I do reject them, because they're bad arguments. Things such as...they're based on magical thinking, have no connection to reality; premises are false or unproven, or contradictory; and the premises do NOT lead to the conclusions. If an atheist made similar claims, I'd challenge him or her just as hard. However, typically, they're far better at rational thought for the simple reason that they do NOT rely on magical thinking, or trying to convince themselves that Santa Claus is real.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Tiny genius » Mon May 21, 2012 2:31 am

I don't use magical thinking or try to convince myself of anything because I want to believe it.

I use logic just as much as anyone, atheist, agnostic or believer. Don't ask me to use logic to justify God's existence or my faith in it, you and others have been down that road and I didn't like the way it turned out. A lot of reading posts for something that appeared to go nowhere, or at least, nowhere that hadn't been visited many times before.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Taalcon » Mon May 21, 2012 1:18 pm

Locke,

No, actually, it's not, since Mormons believe just that...your reward in heaven is being given a planet to run, as a God
Some Mormons think that way. The crazy pervert Mormon home teaching companion in OSC's Lost Boys thought that way, as I remember, and was obsessed with it. Good luck finding a "Get your own planet" scripture, though, in the LDS Canon. (The Book of Mormon musical doesn't count ;) ) The idea of "Mormons believe they get their own planet" comes from an inaccurate oversimplification of speculative extrapolations of scriptural concepts of theosis.

Thoughts and worldviews among different Mormons, and opinions as to the meaning of ideas of apotheosis aren't as monolithic as one might think. And apart from some very core and basic concepts and principles, when a generalization is made "Mormons believe xyz", while there's a good chance that a bunch do believe that, there's also a bunch of equally devout individuals who think that idea's bunk.

To be fair, OSC is all over the spectrum with his LDS-inspired ideas in his fiction. Sometimes he's extrapolating things he actually does believe, other times he takes a cool popular theological model that he might not personally hold to, but runs with it, because it makes for nifty story possibilities. Other times, he takes a popular theological model, and logically DECIMATES it in his story, probably ticking off some, and throwing some Mormon fans who feel they are 'in on it' for a loop.

Sometimes he just throws in little wink-wink-nudge-nudges, such as having Achilles internally boast and threaten using phrases that are familiar to LDS as a boast and threat attributed to Satan in a piece of our liturgy.

This active, practicing Mormon doesn't believe a reward in heaven is "being given a planet to run", FWIW.

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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Mon May 21, 2012 2:39 pm

I thought "Homecoming" was rather daring of him!


Here's where I'm getting some of my Mormon concepts:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mormon_cosmology" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
After the resurrection all men and women except spirits that followed Lucifer and the sons of perdition would be assigned one of three degrees of glory. Within the highest degree, the Celestial Kingdom, there are three divisions, and those in the highest of these divisions would become gods and goddesses through a process called exaltation or "eternal progression". According to some Mormon sources,[who?] this would involve having spirit children and populating new worlds. The doctrine of eternal progression was succinctly summarized by Lorenzo Snow: “As man now is, God once was: As God now is, man may be.”[2]
http://mormonmatters.org/2008/01/10/pla ... edibility/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Q: Does the Mormon Church believe its followers can become “gods and goddesses” after death?

A: We believe that the apostle Peter’s biblical reference to partaking of the divine nature and the apostle Paul’s reference to being ‘joint heirs with Christ’ reflect the intent that children of God should strive to emulate their Heavenly Father in every way. Throughout the eternities, Mormons believe, they will reverence and worship God the Father and Jesus Christ. The goal is not to equal them or to achieve parity with them but to imitate and someday acquire their perfect goodness, love and other divine attributes.
Whachama-come again? This is a hefty dose of the medicine of de-emphasizing weird beliefs when speaking to non-Mormons. Can you argue that this bizarre answer is “not false”? Of course! And whenever anyone argues that any one of these medicinal answers is false, apologetic Mormons across the blogosphere will leap into heroic action in the answer’s defense.

And that is the problem! The problem is not whether the medicinal answers can be argued to be “not-false.” The problem is that these answers are not open and forthright, and that they thus lack credbility.

http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testam ... ang=eng#14" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
19 And again, verily I say unto you, if a man amarry a wife by my word, which is my law, and by the new and everlasting covenant, and it is sealed unto them by the Holy Spirit of promise, by him who is anointed, unto whom I have appointed this power and the keys of this priesthood; and it shall be said unto them—Ye shall come forth in the first resurrection; and if it be after the first resurrection, in the next resurrection; and shall inherit thrones, kingdoms, principalities, and powers, dominions, all heights and depths—then shall it be written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, that he shall commit no murder whereby to shed innocent blood, and if ye abide in my covenant, and commit no murder whereby to shed innocent blood, it shall be done unto them in all things whatsoever my servant hath put upon them, in time, and through all eternity; and shall be of full force when they are out of the world; and they shall pass by the angels, and the gods, which are set there, to their exaltation and glory in all things, as hath been sealed upon their heads, which glory shall be a fulness and a continuation of the seeds forever and ever.

20 Then shall they be gods, because they have no end; therefore shall they be from everlasting to everlasting, because they continue; then shall they be above all, because all things are subject unto them. Then shall they be gods, because they have all power, and the angels are subject unto them.

21 Verily, verily, I say unto you, except ye abide my alaw ye cannot attain to this glory.

22 For strait is the gate, and narrow the way that leadeth unto the exaltation and continuation of the lives, and few there be that find it, because ye receive me not in the world neither do ye know me.

http://www.lds.org/library/display/0,49 ... 59,00.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

http://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testam ... ang=eng#49" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Taalcon » Mon May 21, 2012 3:34 pm

I thought "Homecoming" was rather daring of him!
A lot of Mormons got mad at him for it! Heh. I think it's cool.
Here's where I'm getting some of my Mormon concepts:
I was in the process of writing out a long and detailed response to your links, but I didn't think it would be helpful.

I just ask that you take my word for it, a practicing, active Mormon, that our historical tradition, scripture, and accompanying theology - is not always easily placed into soundbyte form in a way that is true to the wide spectrum of beliefs of all its members. It's become a bit of an axiom among those who study LDS history, tradition, and theology (I'm one of 'em!) that determining settled LDS Doctrine is somewhat like nailing Jell-o to a wall. It ain't easy, and can be kind of messy!) - It's part of the fun of being part of a tradition with a perpetually open canon, and without a doctrine of scriptural or prophetic infallibility.

Again, while you will find there is a core trunk to most Mormons' beliefs, the branches are free to go all over the place. I just ask that you keep that in mind whenever you want to say, "Mormons believe xyz," it might be more accurate to say, "I understand many Mormons believe xyz" - it would get your point across, and be a lot more accurate and fair.

Still, I'm a Mormon who holds that God's plan doesn't necessarily "involve me getting my own planet", as Elder Price declared he believed ;)

Of course, I also acknowledge Evolution, The Big Bang, and Global Warning, and am in favor of Gay Marriage. So I'm sure there's some highly traditional/conservative Mormons who would call for my own burning at the stake as a heretic , too - OSC included! (on at least two of the four just listed!) ;)

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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Mon May 21, 2012 4:52 pm

Dave,

I realize that there is a world of difference between the theory and the practice of any and all religions.

Judaism would require not only the deaths of homosexuals (well, actually, I think they just declare them "an abomination." If I took them seriously on it, I might be able to find a section of the O/T involving death threats), but also sons who talk back to their parents. Jews don't typically DO that. They would also demand that women who are not virgins xshould be killed if they attempt to marry (except, of course, if they've been raped, then they need to marry their rapists).

Christians, of course, have NO such edicts against homosexuals. They are actually borrowing from the Old testament. But they still claim that their belief in Christ is their "New Testament" with God--this is why they do NOT have to get circumcised and they CAN eat bacon and lobster. Why they're so bothered by homosexuals is beyond me.

Mormons, though, I thought, believed that blacks were cursed by Elohim for not having taken sides between Jesus and Satan...until 1976, when they decided it wasn't really that bad, after all.

But we've all got to start somewhere.

And sooner or later, it does seem like everyone has their own particular set of beliefs that separates them from the main/center/average set of beliefs in their religion. Except for, perhaps, the American Christian Fundamentalists. But it is those deviations from the theological "norms" that tends to humanize and rationalize the followers of the various religious sects. What does that say about the core of those belief systems, though, if you're not a reasonable, sensible, compassionate person until and unless you depart from those core set of beliefs?

Still, I guess my fight is with the American Christian Fundamentalists, in large part because they are trying to impose their purely THEOLOGICAL BELIEFS upon a rather successful SECULAR nation.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Mon May 21, 2012 5:21 pm

I don't use magical thinking or try to convince myself of anything because I want to believe it.

I use logic just as much as anyone, atheist, agnostic or believer. Don't ask me to use logic to justify God's existence or my faith in it, you and others have been down that road and I didn't like the way it turned out. A lot of reading posts for something that appeared to go nowhere, or at least, nowhere that hadn't been visited many times before.
TG...

Then what does this mean:
Oh, and God doesn't "choose not to know the future". He exists outside time. For him there is no future he remembers the future as we see it (and the past and present) just as we remember the past and experience the present. To him it is a memory of what we did and so we are still free to make a decision because to remember a decision is not to decide it thus we can say that God knows our future decisions according to our own subjective future but we are still free to make them because he doesn't perceive time the same way.
Would you make such a claim for a creature if you didn't want for it to exist? Please apply similar logic to Unicorns, or wish-granting faeries.

I would not think of asking you to use logic to justify your faith in God. I imagine, as most believers, you were raised to believe in a God-like being, and given specifics as to what your particular Good-like being was supposed to be. What his primary and secondary traits are. Why you believed in (oh let's say) God[1,5,7,9,20:32], as opposed to God[2,4,6,8,20:5]. You also want to believe in it, or need to believe in it, and therefore...you do.

But, yet, you still believe in a thing that cannot be proven with logic. Or, at a minimum, you acknowledge defies logic (therefore, you will not use logic to justify your God's existence). As far as that goes, that approach works the world over.

But does your God grant wishes? Does he answer prayers? Do you pray to him for answers, or for aspects of the world to be changed? Do you want Him to take care of you and your loved ones when you (as must we all) shuttle off this mortal coil? If someone offers you a miracle cure, Lourdes water, Christ's tears, do you consider it? That is all "magical thinking."

Heck, I feel stupid when I say, "Knock on wood!"
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"The biggest cause of trouble in the world today is that the stupid people are so sure about things and the intelligent folks are so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell

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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Taalcon » Mon May 21, 2012 8:13 pm

What does that say about the core of those belief systems, though, if you're not a reasonable, sensible, compassionate person until and unless you depart from those core set of beliefs?
Frankly, most of the most frustrating or egregious tenets of faith systems generally are not "the core" of the beliefs, but aspects that have been extrapolated from the periferal or extreme ends of logical progression from ideas in the core, and then fore some reason are fixated on - Hence the term 'extremists' - those who fixate on the extremes and outliers of their faith system, and, in their practice, tend to make the wild branches overpower the trunk. The whole tree is often benefited from giving those branches a good trim every now and then, and let rotting ones go forever.

Then you have Westboro Baptist, where the core is hollow, and only a wild, ugly, rotten branch exists anymore.

I'm fine with recognizing that my own Church has had some pretty ugly branches in the past that, happily, have gotten sawed off. There's currently a pretty good trimming going on right now. Are there still some branches I'm not comfortable with? Sure. But what I do love is the actual core - the trunk. The parts that have said, since the founding of the Church, that "God invites...all to come unto him and partake of his goodness; and he denieth none that come unto him, black and white, male and female...and all are alike unto God" - the part that says, "Wisdom [is] that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God." - parts that serve a powerful practical organization purpose in helping to work together to express and give opportunities fulfill those things.

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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Tiny genius » Mon May 21, 2012 8:36 pm

Have to get off this computer soon so I'll reply to most recent posts later.
like nailing Jell-o to a wall. It ain't easy, and can be kind of messy!
I love analogies! This one is quite fun... I also like "as useless as a solar-powered vampire".

Someone also mentioned gay marriage. I just want to say that if there is this much controversy over gay marriage and so much media attention, imagine what things'll get like when someone suggests the legalisation of bisexual polygomy. Or, combining the attempted legalisation of limited necrophelia in Egypt and arranged marriages elsewhere... same sex dead infants soon to be married off to each other. Disturbing thought.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby neo-dragon » Mon May 21, 2012 8:53 pm

I don't think that those things logically follow from same-sex marriage... :?
"Deep in the human unconscious is a pervasive need for a logical universe that makes sense. But the real universe is always one step beyond logic."
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Mon May 21, 2012 9:15 pm

So, have we hit all five of "Boothby's five rules of theological debate," yet?
RULE 1: Presume the existence of God. More specifically, presume the existence of your particular God. Don't say things like "I believe that God does this...", simply say, "God does this..." After all, everybody knows that God exists. Atheists are just wrong, and deep down inside they realize that. Yes, it's OK to pity them (just not yet--see RULE 5).

RULE 2: Never actually define what it is you mean by "God" or "Heaven," etc. If you define it, then it can be refuted. After all, you've already established that He exists (see RULE 1). Also, if challenged, you can always say, "That's not what I meant," or "I never said that He could do that..."

RULE 3: Once your opponent starts using observation and logic in his foolish attempt to refute what everybody already knows to be true, you can deny that both observation and logic are valid approaches to understanding. Typical responses are, "How can we ever really know anything," and "God does not operate under the rules of logic and rationality--He is beyond them." Never, under any circumstances, attempt to explain just what the hell any of that means, because it really doesn't mean anything (that's the beauty of it). More importantly, do not try and understand it yourself, as your head may actually explode. Your opponent may respond to your first statement by asking, "then how do you know if anything is true?" To which you simply respond, "I just know."

Some other good responses under RULE 3 include "But is there really any difference between the earth and the concept of the earth?" and "If I have no way of knowing if there are monsters under my bed (short of looking) but if I genuinely believe they are there, the fear of them is no different than if they really are there."

One of the other advantages of invoking RULE 3 is that you are no longer constrained to actually have to make sense in what you say or write. By discrediting logic and reason, you are no longer bound by them yourself. If you can keep this up, many times your opponent will just walk away, shaking his head, thereby handing you the "win."

RULE 4: As things start to go downhill, you may have to use the old reliable notion that "God exists because people believe that He exists." There are deep theological problems with this approach, especially if other religions have more believers in their God than yours (except you know, of course, that they're totally wrong, anyhow). But still, it keeps you away from RULE 5.

RULE 5: If all else fails, you may just have to reveal your opponent for what he really is. An idiot. A Godless, liberal, democrat, communist, baby-eating, tree-hugging idiot.

(from: http://www.philoticweb.net/openbb/read.php?TID=6209" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;) <---Link no longer valid

To which I guess I should add #6: You know that thing we were discussing that was so important? It's not really that important after all. Why are you so hung up on it? It's like you're obsessing, or something.
--Boothby

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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Taalcon » Mon May 21, 2012 10:45 pm

Except that there are Christian religious sects that do NOT believe in "Good Works".

Do Jehovah's Witnesses do anything for their larger communities except for "spreading the word"

Do Mormons?
Look at this Steve. One of our 4 'mission statements' of the Church is to "Care for the Poor and Needy". http://www.mormonnewsroom.org/topic/hum ... n-services" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; expresses some of how this is done on a worldwide scale.

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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Mon May 21, 2012 11:03 pm

Excellent! Thank you! I am glad to be proven wrong on that statement!
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Bean_wannabe » Tue May 22, 2012 2:02 am

To answer your previous question, no, Christianity (or rather, the New Testament) does not say anything specifically against homosexuality. But it does state that sex outside of marriage is wrong, and defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Therefore, Christians believe that 'practising' homosexuality is wrong.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Tiny genius » Tue May 22, 2012 2:21 am

I don't think that those things logically follow from same-sex marriage... :?
They don't, not directly anyway. They're just related and somewhat tangential. Interesting and rather disturbing thoughts really... that were sparked by stuff in general. I'm a firm believer (like Dirk Gently) of the FIoAT, particularly when it comes to the human mind and things and thoughts happening in it.

Oh look, that's another tangent, caused by talking about tangents.

As for Boothby's five rules of theological discussion, "my turn to say puh-lease, I think."
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Tue May 22, 2012 6:17 am

BWB,

Oh, so that would explain all the Christian protests about heterosexual couples who decide to have civil unions!
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby neo-dragon » Tue May 22, 2012 8:04 am

I don't think that those things logically follow from same-sex marriage... :?
They don't, not directly anyway. They're just related and somewhat tangential. Interesting and rather disturbing thoughts really... that were sparked by stuff in general. I'm a firm believer (like Dirk Gently) of the FIoAT, particularly when it comes to the human mind and things and thoughts happening in it.
So, you actually believe that same-sex marriage will indirectly lead to those things? I wasn't really sure if you were joking or not. I'm still not sure, actually.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Tue May 22, 2012 10:27 am

Neo,

If T/G was an American, I'd simply chalk that up to his being a member of the idiot right-wing Christian Fundamentalist Theocratic wanna-be's. But since he's not from America, it must be something else.

Actually, one of the talking points that the idiot right-wing Christian Fundamentalist Theocratic wanna-be's in America use is, "What's next? Men marrying dogs? Women marrying horses? Men marrying boys? Priests having sex with young children?!?" which T/G notable did NOT refer to, so again it illustrates how T/G is definitely NOT one of those....
--Boothby

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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Bean_wannabe » Tue May 22, 2012 11:20 am

BWB,

Oh, so that would explain all the Christian protests about heterosexual couples who decide to have civil unions!
To be fair, from a strictly impartial standpoint it's the equivalent of passing a law condoning anything else the Bible states is wrong.
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby Boothby » Tue May 22, 2012 11:33 am

Not quite sure how to parse your statement. Can you re-phrase that, please?
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Re: "Turn him loose as a theorist..."

Postby neo-dragon » Tue May 22, 2012 12:00 pm

Yeah, I'm familiar with the "what next?" argument, but "same-sex dead infants" sounds like mockery, so I'm still not sure if Tiny Genius is actually taking that stance or making fun of it.

Also, I thought it was established in another thread that Tiny Genius is a girl.
"Deep in the human unconscious is a pervasive need for a logical universe that makes sense. But the real universe is always one step beyond logic."
- Frank Herbert's 'Dune'


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