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Source: (consider it) Thread: Why can't God ...
Martin60
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# 368

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... create transcendent, sublime beings by fiat?

You know, by-pass this crock of meaningless suffering?

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Love wins

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Marvin the Martian

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Good question. No idea. Sorry.

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Hail Gallaxhar

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Ohher
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# 18607

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Er . . . transcendent beings can only get that way by transcending something?

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From the Land of the Native American Brave and the Home of the Buy-One-Get-One-Free

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Martin60
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# 368

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[Smile] MtM. It's THE question for my son and many others.

I ask it rhetorically as we've gone through other formulations before. I think Boogie and others like rolyn and/or quetzalcoatl and no... et al have resonated with it. Rhetorically because He would if He could. So He can't. It can't be done. Not for any absurd free will 'moral' reason, it just can't be done. (Wot abart the sublime angels, in the workmanship of their tabrets and of their pipes, I hear you cry? What about them indeed!)

So this vale of meaningless tears has to be endured. This mere conception in which no lessons can be learned, for which there can be no condemnation. It just HAS to be this bad, AND with no touch from Him in the dark.

Except for Jesus it looks like we made Him up.

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Love wins

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Martin60
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# 368

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Ohher! That's EXACTLY what I say to my son. But transcending what? This is NOWT. We are to transcend nowt. I used to sit with Timmy on the floor when we visited my 99.99% non-verbal but highly expressive Down's sister-in-law. Timmy had random eye movements. That was it. Those crushed to death in India today. What have they to transcend? What experience? What sense? The most privileged of us go ga-ga if we live long enough, remembering what in the resurrection? Or we're given it all back? What's Timmy going to be given? What are the masses going to be given? To start transcending?

[ 29. September 2017, 11:57: Message edited by: Martin60 ]

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Love wins

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Boogie

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# 13538

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Angels?

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simontoad
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# 18096

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Father Jim Sutton: Why is it always the good ones? You BASTARD! (shakes fist to Heaven) He could've been Pope! No no no, he's dead Ted awww we'll never see him again!
Father Ted: We'll see him in the next world.
Father Jim Sutton: Oh yeah, sure!!

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The opinions expressed above are transitory emotional responses and do not necessarily reflect the considered views of the author.

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Martin60
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# 368

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Is that it simontoad? As threatened in another place? It's a good one. Up there with Dougal-now when Father Ted agrees with him on being dismissive of mere superstitions and the like unlike the great Roman distinctives which he lists to which Dougal-now nods and says, to the effect, 'Yeah! Like them.'.

I know Boogie. I know. Those sublime, pan-dimensional entities that pervade some of Jesus' rites of passage from conception to death and His divine recollection. More trouble than they're worth ...

[ 29. September 2017, 12:38: Message edited by: Martin60 ]

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Love wins

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fletcher christian

Mutinous Seadog
# 13919

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Would you have freedom and a will in such a set up? I think it's the only meaningful answer I can come up with.

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'God is love insaturable, love impossible to describe'
Staretz Silouan

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Martin60
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# 368

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Strangely eff cee that seems like a response to my sane minds in a mad universe point in the Kalam thread.

'choo mean?

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Love wins

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Amanda B. Reckondwythe

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# 5521

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quote:
Originally posted by fletcher christian:
Would you have freedom and a will in such a set up?

Like we'll have free will when we finally reach our "eternal reward." "Oh, heaven is so boring. I wish I could go somewhere else and really start living again!"

Personally I'd exchange a guarantee of eternal bliss for free will. I can't imagine being truly happy with any other arrangement.

Oh, wait, didn't Lucifer think he could do better? And look where that got him. And us, for that matter.

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"We're not in Wonderland anymore, Alice." – Charles Manson

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fletcher christian

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# 13919

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Wouldn't that be using an example of allegory to argue about reality? Not that there is anything wrong with that, but it seems to me that the allegory was established to try and explain what we are also attempting to pierce. In that set up it's not so much our struggle, as God's. For me it doesn't 'work' due to the dualism, but ultimately it would be using the allegory itself to assume a reality about eternity which I think is even more suspect.

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'God is love insaturable, love impossible to describe'
Staretz Silouan

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Nicolemr
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# 28

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Because it's more entertaining to watch the panoply of life.

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On pilgrimage in the endless realms of Cyberia, currently traveling by ship. Now with live journal!

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fletcher christian

Mutinous Seadog
# 13919

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Posted by Martin:
quote:

Strangely eff cee that seems like a response to my sane minds in a mad universe point in the Kalam thread.

Sort of, yes. There's a large degree of overlap to the threads which was in part why I responded to both. At the risk of inter-mingling the blood sacrifices of two threads.....the arguments of Ghazali and Avveroes to do with causality seem to be the same played out on both threads (this one perhaps to a somewhat lesser degree). I think Averroes uses the argument of the wool burning against a candle flame; the cause being the hand that holds it there and the fact that wool inherently burns in the flame. It's a question of inherent innate ability that I guess leaves room for the absence of God as much as his presence. Anyway, I'm not explaining this very well and I'm digressing....majorly!

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'God is love insaturable, love impossible to describe'
Staretz Silouan

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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# 76

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quote:
Originally posted by fletcher christian:
Would you have freedom and a will in such a set up? I think it's the only meaningful answer I can come up with.

But it's apparently the setup in heaven. If all the bullshit and crap of this world is what means it's "real", then the next must have it as well, or be "unreal".

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Might as well ask the bloody cat.

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Martin60
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# 368

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fletch

I need many lives, for all the digressions, and a Peter Rollins level IQ. Ah! I just have to die first.

Ohher

If we cannot be conceived in the sublime, the transcendent, but have to have had experience before death, then 'Timmy' is a non-starter. He was born that way. He doesn't exist. Like all the hundreds of billions up to now at least of the miscarried. Stillborn. I saw others battered on the way to that at a home at Much Hadham. Normal six month old babies have remarkable personalities but no narrative capability, that suffices obviously, gives something for the transcendent to work on, how far back can we go developmentally? And why go forward? Just for fecundity's sake? God wants trillions of us humans alone? But the moral 'weight' difference between a privileged adult and a barely burbling baby must be nothing surely? This existence is mere conception.

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Love wins

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W Hyatt
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# 14250

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quote:
Originally posted by Karl: Liberal Backslider:
quote:
Originally posted by fletcher christian:
Would you have freedom and a will in such a set up? I think it's the only meaningful answer I can come up with.

But it's apparently the setup in heaven. If all the bullshit and crap of this world is what means it's "real", then the next must have it as well, or be "unreal".
Unless the relationship between the two is such that the next world depends on the "real"-ness of this world.

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A new church and a new earth, with Spiritual Insights for Everyday Life.

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fletcher christian

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# 13919

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Posted by Karl:
quote:

If all the bullshit and crap of this world is what means it's "real", then the next must have it as well, or be "unreal".

Or 'more real'? I think that's how C S Lewis once attempted to talk of it.

Posted by Martin:

quote:

This existence is mere conception.

Can it all be fully known? I suspect we are perhaps just given enough, how could it be other than that in such a finite and infinitesimally small (and short) existence? That's uncomfortable for modern minds I guess, but then the wall of hubris is currently high. I keep coming back to Borges' short story about the two theologians who battle it out their entire lives. Aurelian decides the best way to win the contest is to undermine his opponent and eventually he has John declared a heretic through bitter rivalry and fierce argument. John dies and Aurelian rests in the knowledge that he was right and truth has won out. Then Aurelian dies and the tale ends as follows:

'The end of the story can only be told in metaphors, since it takes place in the kingdom of heaven, where time does not exist. One might say that Aurelian spoke with God and found that God takes so little interest in religious differences that He took him for John of Pannonia. That, however, would be to impute confusion to the divine intelligence. It is more correct to say that in paradise, Aurelian discovered that in the eyes of the unfathomable deity, he and John of Pannonia (the orthodox and the heretic, the abominator and the abominated, the accuser and the victim) were a single person.'


I tend to read that story a lot. I find it counters my hubris and reminds me that searching out all of the aspects of God will be forever beyond my reach. I find I'm living in a world of questions I feel I no longer need to know the answers to. Not sure if that helps at all, but it's where I'm at and the end of that story is delicious.

[ 29. September 2017, 17:22: Message edited by: fletcher christian ]

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'God is love insaturable, love impossible to describe'
Staretz Silouan

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mr cheesy
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# 3330

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I'm not sure I'm totally understanding the OP, but I had a thought which may be relevant recently: what if the reason all the shitty stuff happens is not because God won't do anything about it, but because he can't do anything about it..

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no prophet's flag is set so...

Proceed to see sea
# 15560

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If we understand the formation of the universe, the galaxies, stars and planets in their courses, the evolution of life from primordial ooze and the physical and biological laws which govern everything, I'd say God can't because this would leave evidence that God did. Which then destroys faith. Faith is belief without evidence. Hope without proof. We have the freedom to do what we will and it is real freedom. If we have proof from a Godly fiat, we lose freedom to not believe.

This said, I want to be a Q being from the Star Trek universe, at least for a while. Failing that, may I please have wings?

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Maybe I should stop to consider that I'm not worthy of an epiphany and just take what life has to offer
(formerly was just "no prophet") \_(ツ)_/

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Martin60
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# 368

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no... no. Or no, no... As in bollocks. What the .... what has faith got to do with it? Whatever that is. Apart from the gift that God has given me. I can't not talk to Him even though there's no rational reason to believe in Him (apart from Kalam). What about the 99.9..% of humanity to whom 'faith' is meaningless?

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Love wins

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Martin60
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# 368

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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
I'm not sure I'm totally understanding the OP, but I had a thought which may be relevant recently: what if the reason all the shitty stuff happens is not because God won't do anything about it, but because he can't do anything about it..

It's relevant as stuff has to happen before transcendence and it has to be shitty as for it not to be God would be having to intervene in our every other deed, word and thought on a good day and all of evolution before that: 'Oooh, carnivorous teeth, no we can't have that.'.

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Love wins

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Boogie

Boogie on down!
# 13538

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Kalam?

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Martin60
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# 368

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The only rational argument left for God.

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Love wins

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no prophet's flag is set so...

Proceed to see sea
# 15560

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No Martin. It isn't. We're at the level of debating turtles the world rides on through the ocean of space. We have to stop debating turtles, which is one step back from your argument on the billion step journey. As far removed from knowing as an ant is from knowing about jet aircraft and Shakespeare. Maybe read Don Quixote?

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Maybe I should stop to consider that I'm not worthy of an epiphany and just take what life has to offer
(formerly was just "no prophet") \_(ツ)_/

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mr cheesy
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# 3330

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quote:
Originally posted by no prophet's flag is set so...:
Maybe read Don Quixote?

One of my favourite books. I think there are lots of interesting things which can be said about Don Quixote, although none which immediately seem relevant to this thread.

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overheard on a Welsh bus-stop: Jesus don't care about you, he's only interested in your soul

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Martin60
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# 368

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I'm tilting at the windmills of materialist minds and/or theodicy?

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Love wins

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mr cheesy
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# 3330

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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
I'm tilting at the windmills of materialist minds and/or theodicy?

Don Quixote was bone-headed and delusional and strange and semi-coherent. But he was also loyal and noble and kind.

One can take the novel(s) as the story of a fool who went out into the world with some rusty armour and a sword which he couldn't take out of the scabbard - or one can take it as the story of a man who went to the edges of his mind in the search of himself, and who didn't give a monkeys about what anyone else thought of him.

There is a lot to admire in Don Quixote.

[ 30. September 2017, 16:04: Message edited by: mr cheesy ]

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overheard on a Welsh bus-stop: Jesus don't care about you, he's only interested in your soul

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Jengie jon

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# 273

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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
... create transcendent, sublime beings by fiat?

You know, by-pass this crock of meaningless suffering?

Sorry thought he did. They are called the heavenly host. We know them not to be humans.

Jengie

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mr cheesy
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# 3330

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quote:
Originally posted by Jengie jon:
Sorry thought he did. They are called the heavenly host. We know them not to be humans.

Jengie

Does this answer the question? If God created angels, why did he need to create humans?

The fact that other things exist doesn't seem to answer why the thing in question exists to me.

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Brenda Clough
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# 18061

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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
quote:
Originally posted by Jengie jon:
Sorry thought he did. They are called the heavenly host. We know them not to be humans.

Jengie

Does this answer the question? If God created angels, why did he need to create humans?

The fact that other things exist doesn't seem to answer why the thing in question exists to me.

That one, at least, is easy. God's true nature is that He's creative. It is the first thing we learn about Him, the chief thing He does. He made angels, fine. You think that's -enough-? No no. There's lots of other things to create. I forget which scientist it was, who said that from observing creation it could be deduced that God has an inordinate fondness for beetles. He's also crazy about ants, and has a collector's mania for single-celled organisms.

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mr cheesy
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# 3330

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quote:
Originally posted by Brenda Clough:
I forget which scientist it was, who said that from observing creation it could be deduced that God has an inordinate fondness for beetles.

I might be wrong, but that sounds very much like Terry Pratchett. Or possibly EO Wilson.

I don't know if your explanation is a good one, Brenda. I still can't really see why he created humans with inbuilt shittiness when it was possible to create angels without it.

OK one can just say it was because he was creative or because he could or because meh, he just did.

But that seems to me to sidetrack the question of why the whole vale-of-tears thing at all if it was possible to create beings in the spiritual realm.

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Brenda Clough
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# 18061

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I'm not sure there's a theological basis for this. But consider that you can't just make things. Your creations need to do stuff, interesting stuff. Conflict is essential, if you want the story to go. God isn't creating an endless set of beetles in glass topped display cabinets. He's getting them an environment, a life cycle, mating habits, irritating chemicals or stridulations or the ability to eat crops, all kinds of stuff.
To say it another way: why is there evil? Because otherwise there would be no plot. And it wouldn't be a good story without a plot.

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Uriel
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# 2248

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Perhaps God can make such beings, but the process by which they necessarily have to be made is not straightforward. Perhaps we are works in progress, but only through the pain, the suffering, the meaninglessness can we pull through to exhibit sympathy, compassion and find real meaning. If we were all perfectly self sufficient, self contained, self satisfying beings without any need for the other there would be no need for love, for solidarity or kindness. Perhaps a world with such higher order goods, which require such suffering to exist, which allow us to become more than we currently are, is a better world than a bland, beige, insulated world of self reliant, self dependent, self satisfied beings.
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mr cheesy
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# 3330

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quote:
Originally posted by Brenda Clough:

To say it another way: why is there evil? Because otherwise there would be no plot. And it wouldn't be a good story without a plot.

But that's saying that God purposely creates bad shit.

Personally I prefer the idea that he can't do anything about it to the idea that it was a deliberate design feature.

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Brenda Clough
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# 18061

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I'm writing a novel. In me the characters live and move and have their being, and without me there is nothing done. The characters are closer to me than my own children -- I have complete control over everything they do or say or that happens to them, past and future.

So: why do bad things happen to them? Why not only good things? Because it would be boring. The criterion is not their happiness or health. The first priority is outside their comprehension. It's the story.

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mr cheesy
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# 3330

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quote:
Originally posted by Brenda Clough:
I'm writing a novel. In me the characters live and move and have their being, and without me there is nothing done. The characters are closer to me than my own children -- I have complete control over everything they do or say or that happens to them, past and future.

So: why do bad things happen to them? Why not only good things? Because it would be boring. The criterion is not their happiness or health. The first priority is outside their comprehension. It's the story.

The difference is that people in life are real and alive. Characters in a book are not.

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overheard on a Welsh bus-stop: Jesus don't care about you, he's only interested in your soul

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Martin60
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# 368

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It was J.B.S. who also said "My own suspicion is that the Universe is not only queerer than we suppose, but queerer than we can suppose.", which applies more to the Kalam thread I know.

jj, mr c, BC; a good development, with mr c ahead on points BC, your points don't match his. The creative, writerly, plot metaphors. They don't justify suffering. And it's not just humans that are shit. Plesiosaurs scared the ink out of and ate ammonites. But Uriel stands on your shoulders. Not sufficient to kiss my arse mind you [Smile]

Couldn't resist. Meant only in jest.

A good showing Uriel, but for the vast majority of humanity, the half a trillion in a quarter of a million years, nothing has been learned, no meaning obtained, yearning at best, at most. Apart from for us staggeringly privileged few. Timmy never yearned. I came across a figure once upon a time that the life expectancy of humanity over our time as a species is five. Another is that the average woman has two miscarriages. And not just zygotes. As Hobbes said 400+ years ago, life in the main is nasty, brutish and short.

As the multiply benighted inhabitants of Mosul or Yemen would agree.

If there can be angels, then the only justification for there being humans is that angels can TRULY fall.

Plan B.

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Love wins

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Amanda B. Reckondwythe

Dressed for Church
# 5521

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quote:
Originally posted by Brenda Clough:
I'm writing a novel. In me the characters live . . . . The criterion is not their happiness or health.

But rather the entertainment of your public. Does God have a public who are entertained by the tragedies that befall mankind?

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"We're not in Wonderland anymore, Alice." – Charles Manson

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Martin60
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# 368

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HhhWoooh! The Unpleasant Profession of Jonathan Hoag comes to mind.

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Love wins

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Brenda Clough
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# 18061

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quote:
Originally posted by Amanda B. Reckondwythe:
quote:
Originally posted by Brenda Clough:
I'm writing a novel. In me the characters live . . . . The criterion is not their happiness or health.

But rather the entertainment of your public. Does God have a public who are entertained by the tragedies that befall mankind?
Another thought is, perhaps we are the audience as well as the players on the stage. It may look awful at a given moment, but we're not at the end of the play. It may only be Act Two Scene Four. We don't know the ending yet. (There's a fine plotting hand at work in some historical events. I wonder if God has a stable of assistants, like Dumas.)

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Science fiction and fantasy writer with a Patreon page

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Martin60
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# 368

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There IS no story. Stories are the shit me make up.

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Love wins

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agingjb
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# 16555

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Some say that there is only story.

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Refraction Villanelles

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no prophet's flag is set so...

Proceed to see sea
# 15560

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Don Quixote is everyone. Story is all there is. And song.

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Maybe I should stop to consider that I'm not worthy of an epiphany and just take what life has to offer
(formerly was just "no prophet") \_(ツ)_/

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rolyn
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# 16840

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We like stories. When we didn't understand the bizarre existence of ourselves or that of our surroundings, that time when our awareness switched on, we quickly made stories to make sense of it.

Now those 'stories' are generally dismissed in favour of the true story, as presented to us by people we hail as scientists with measuring instruments.
Trouble being these people can no more answer Martin's big questions than can the Scripture writers. All they can say is ----stuff happens due to ABC physics. No reason, no purpose, it just does,

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Change is the only certainty of existence

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agingjb
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# 16555

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"A tale told by an idiot" or "that most tremendous tale of all"?

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Refraction Villanelles

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Martin60
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# 368

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Both. So don't get me wrong. I love a good story. Proper Pan narrans me. So, I find myself going through another loop of neo-orthodoxy, invoking God as He tells me to through His Word. What else is there eh? Reinforced by a recent good strong neo-orthodox daily reading of Matthew 22 from Oasis.

That'll have to do I guess.

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Love wins

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rolyn
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# 16840

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I suppose if we want the shitty stuff to go away, be put in context or whatever then we have to cleave to the story which provides us with the maximum hope. Meaningful hope, hope in the meaningful.....? So it goes on

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Change is the only certainty of existence

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Amanda B. Reckondwythe

Dressed for Church
# 5521

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quote:
Originally posted by Brenda Clough:
We don't know the ending yet.

Those who believe the Bible to be the literal and unerrant Word of God would disagree.

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"We're not in Wonderland anymore, Alice." – Charles Manson

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mousethief

Ship's Thieving Rodent
# 953

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quote:
Originally posted by no prophet's flag is set so...:
Don Quixote is everyone. Story is all there is. And song.

Song is story set to glory.

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God has shown me that I should not call any man impure or unclean. --Acts 10:28

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