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Source: (consider it) Thread: jlg's despair and death
Chorister

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# 473

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Perhaps God is the universe. And we are within God. What then?

--------------------
Retired, sitting back and watching others for a change.

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Squibs
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quote:
Originally posted by Scot:
I dispute them when they don't stand up to a critical review by someone who does have an insider's understanding. I definitely dispute them when they don't explain the observed phenomena or produce the claimed outcomes.

Fine. But in doing so you fail to acknowledge that there are those on the inside who think that Christianity holds up to critical review. You also fail to acknowledge the possibility that there are those on the outside looking into to something they think might just make sense. Why?

Your view on God is informed by deep scepticism and dislike ("What do you hope that a silent, inactive, and possibly uncaring god will add..."), which is fine and all. But you present a loaded question when you put up your own understanding of God and ask people to defend this figment of your imagination. Next you'll be asking if we still beat our wives.

No amount of evidence will ever be good enough for you because you have decided that it's all impossible. Your position isn't unlike that of Lewis Walport (VP of the BHA) who recently appeared alongside Edgar Andrews on the Unbelievable? radio programme. He continually demanded evidence for God while also admitting that none would be good enough. You would probably like him.

quote:
Originally posted by Scot:
If you read carefully, however, you will see that my previous post did not dispute any truth claims.

Well you could have fooled me. Because it looks as if your raison d'etre for being on this thread is to dispute any claim that says God interacts in the world and that Christianity provides a reliable and coherent revelation of this God.

quote:
Originally posted by Scot:
Bwaahahahahaha! That is like saying that water never gets things wet! Religious leaders, creeds, denominational doctrines, pastors, individual believers, and posters on these boards and this thread never stop pretending to explain how sin (and everything else) works, not only in general, but in my life and yours.

Nope it's not like saying water never gets things wet.

Perhaps some people say they know the true nature of sin. But you'll notice that I wasn't talking about these people. That is an argument you smuggled into this discussion. What I actually said was two fold --

1) We have not been given a full understanding of the nature of sin 2) but that this does not mean we don't know or can't say anything about it.


quote:
Originally posted by Scot:

It's a good thing I didn't say that. Christianity produces a never ending string of opaque and often contradictory explanations.

Fair enough. I neglected to reproduce the rest of your words. Correction accepted.

quote:
Originally posted by Scot:

Please, point out where I did what you claim and I will retract the statement. Otherwise, you can do the retracting.

It's simple. If you can't know what everyone on the outside thinks, you can't speak for them. Yet you do. The only option you entertain is your own. Either you are correct or... you are correct. That is why I wont retract the statement.

quote:
Originally posted by Scot:
Again, I didn't say what you claim. Christianity, like all religions, has demonstrable power. I might argue about the source and effect of that power, but never over whether it exists.

Again, fair enough. I should have quoted you in full. However, this slip on my part does not invalidate my words. That Christianity is apparently powerless to explain the horror of it all without resorting to nonsense is just your opinion. You can assert away until you are red in the face but it remains an assertion nevertheless.

quote:
Originally posted by Scot:

Except for that which you so lightly dismiss, I have no hope for humankind.

We have the power to shape our own future for the better. Sometimes we suffer because shit happens and some people are assholes.

I'm not sure what I'm supposed to have lightly dismissed. Humanity? Coming off the back of the 20th century I might be forgiven for being pessimistic when it comes to our ability to usher in a bright future, let alone desire it for others outside our small circles.

quote:
Originally posted by Scot:

I don't see where any more explanation or any more hope is needed.

Really? Shit, arseholes and the power to shape our own future offer sufficient explanation and hope?

[ 19. January 2012, 20:09: Message edited by: Squibs ]

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Squibs
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quote:
Originally posted by Chorister:
Perhaps God is the universe. And we are within God. What then?

See pantheism.
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Lothiriel
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quote:
Originally posted by Squibs:
quote:
Originally posted by Chorister:
Perhaps God is the universe. And we are within God. What then?

See pantheism.
Or maybe panentheism - wherein God isn't everything, but everything is in God.

--------------------
If you want to build a ship, don't drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea. St-Exupery

my blog

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Porridge
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quote:
Originally posted by shamwari:
Poosted by Apocalypso

"Personally, I am much more comfortable accepting a universe in which suffering is simply an inevitable part of the larger picture, and accepting that my willy-nilly place in it is to suffer, too, while doing whatever I can to ameliorate the inevitable for myself and for others."

Question: Why cant you believe this and still be a Christian?

It's my understanding that, to be Christian, I must accept that Christ is both divine and human; I don't. It's my understanding that, to be Christian, I must believe in God (and for most Christians, a triple-threat one); I don't.

It's my understanding that, to be Christian, I must accept that I'm saved (although from what, precisely, is a matter of debate among Christians, AIUI); it's not at all obvious to me that Christians have been saved from anything, or, if they have, then apparently so have I (even though, having been saved from it, nobody seems able to identify what that is or might have been -- it's a little like the proverbial leopard repellent: Have you seen any leopards lately? No? See, it works!).

I could go on, but . . . why?

[ 20. January 2012, 01:18: Message edited by: Apocalypso ]

--------------------
Spiggott: Everything I've ever told you is a lie, including that.
Moon: Including what?
Spiggott: That everything I've ever told you is a lie.
Moon: That's not true!

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Huia
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Squibs your John Lennox link didn't work for me (and having been a recipient of the 9500 shakes in the last 500 days I feel a vested interest).

Can you give me any other hints how I might track it down please?

Huia

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Charity gives food from the table, Justice gives a place at the table.

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Martin60
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To be Christian is to know that you and every one, ever, are personally, eternally significant, healed, infinitely potentiated, immortal, loved.

[ 20. January 2012, 07:48: Message edited by: Martin PC not & Ship's Biohazard ]

--------------------
Love wins

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Squibs
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Hi Huia,

This should be a link to all the talks he gave in NZ. Look out for "Compass at St Pauls (28 Feb) ..." (that's the 3rd one down). The sound quality is poor but it's adequate for its purpose. I hope that it is of some help to you - even if it doesn't answer all your questions. Perhaps you could PM me you thoughts?

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Marvin the Martian

Interplanetary
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quote:
Originally posted by shamwari:
Poosted by Apocalypso

"Personally, I am much more comfortable accepting a universe in which suffering is simply an inevitable part of the larger picture, and accepting that my willy-nilly place in it is to suffer, too, while doing whatever I can to ameliorate the inevitable for myself and for others."

Question: Why cant you believe this and still be a Christian?

It's the difference between personal and impersonal. In the atheist worldview, shit just happens. There's no reason for it, and therefore there needs to be no justification for it. There's no "why?" - it just is.

With deism, it's not impersonal. It's the product of a creation that was deliberately and knowingly set up to work that way by its creator. And as such, the decision to set it up in such a manner requires justification. We can ask "why?", because there's actually someone to ask.

Furthermore, with Christianity the creator is supposedly loving and caring. As such, the way of the world requires even more justification, beyond that required from a God who is merely an uncaring creator.

Put bluntly: atheism is a branch randomly falling from a tree and hitting you on the head, deism is someone picking up a stick and hitting you round the head with it, and Christianity is someone picking up a stick, hitting you round the head with it, then saying they love you. The incident makes less sense the more personal it gets.

--------------------
Hail Gallaxhar

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Lucia

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I don't believe God is the one holding the stick, but YMMV.
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Marvin the Martian

Interplanetary
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quote:
Originally posted by Lucia:
I don't believe God is the one holding the stick, but YMMV.

It depends on what you think the stick is.

--------------------
Hail Gallaxhar

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Porridge
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Marvin: [Overused]

--------------------
Spiggott: Everything I've ever told you is a lie, including that.
Moon: Including what?
Spiggott: That everything I've ever told you is a lie.
Moon: That's not true!

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Martin60
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It's the ONLY way, either way.

--------------------
Love wins

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Porridge
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin PC not & Ship's Biohazard:
To be Christian is to know that you and every one, ever, are personally, eternally significant, healed, infinitely potentiated, immortal, loved.

Martin, I mean no disrespect, but what do you mean by "significant?"

At a fairly trivial level, of course I'm significant; each of us is. All sorts of inconvenience and perhaps even trouble will occur if I fail to turn up for my next shift at work. Those of us who don't "work," in the sense of paid employment, will deeply pain any number of individuals when we shuffle off this mortal coil.

But the effects of my absence from the next workshift will (barring some resulting disaster) be forgotten within a week. The effects of both my presence on this planet and my eventual departure from it will leave not so much as a faint ripple on human history 10 years after it happens.

What does it mean to be "healed," while I and my fellow-beings presently comprise, on the basis of the available evidence, the walking more-or-less wounded?

What does it mean to be "loved," except by those who'll miss us when our lives end?

Your beginning-point is your belief in God. From there, you find evidence everywhere to support your belief. I submit your belief predisposes you to "see" evidence.

My beginning-point is "show me." And I see no evidence -- no great significance, no healing, no "love" beyond the extraordinary-ordinary human kind -- that demonstrates the existence of God.

--------------------
Spiggott: Everything I've ever told you is a lie, including that.
Moon: Including what?
Spiggott: That everything I've ever told you is a lie.
Moon: That's not true!

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Chorister

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Sometimes the general populace has a more healthy attitude to dying and death than Christians who wring their hands over all the theological nuances. I love this observation from David Winter (Church Times, 25 Nov.):

'Has my husband gone to heaven, Vicar?' is not a question readily answered, but passing the responsibility on to God in his infinite wisdom may appear a cop-out to the anxious widow.
In any case, it does not seem to matter too much, because the funeral tributes and the conversations at the wake will all cheerfully assume that he is 'up there' and still following the football results.


--------------------
Retired, sitting back and watching others for a change.

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Martin60
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Of course Apocalypso. Of course you're right that is. So am I.

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Love wins

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Jamat
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quote:
Christianity is someone picking up a stick, hitting you round the head with it, then saying they love you.
Depends on your lens.

Another might be..

Humanity concedes power to savage predator who seeks to hit humanity with stick. Humanity unaware of predicament. Loving omnipresent being reveals humanity's parlous state and provides protection but humanity too arrogant to see its predicament or accept provided bolt hole.

[ 21. January 2012, 02:40: Message edited by: Jamat ]

--------------------
Jamat ..in utmost longditude, where Heaven
with Earth and ocean meets, the setting sun slowly descended, and with right aspect
Against the eastern gate of Paradise. (Milton Paradise Lost Bk iv)

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Martin60
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Marvin the Martian.

Absolutely brilliant. A keeper.

Do you see where Jesus ever beat people over the head ?

(That's me being disingenuous of course!)

Martin

--------------------
Love wins

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Martin60
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PS

Chorister: The ignorant are indeed rightly blissful as love wins and they are in tune with that. Even Evangelicals (your average vicar who isn't a raving liberal) want to be believe that. They nearly preach it like that, like Wesley. But have to believe like Calvin. Romans are a bit nicer about it: Purgatory is like flying business class - you don't know that you're not in first class!

Jamat: Neat. As far as it goes. Love wins regardless yeah? Jesus saves regardless.

--------------------
Love wins

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Martin60
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Sorry for the stutter.

--------------------
Love wins

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Marvin the Martian

Interplanetary
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quote:
Originally posted by Jamat:
Humanity concedes power to savage predator who seeks to hit humanity with stick. Humanity unaware of predicament. Loving omnipresent being reveals humanity's parlous state and provides protection but humanity too arrogant to see its predicament or accept provided bolt hole.

You missed out the part at the beginning where God creates the savage predator in the full knowledge that it will take up a position of power over humanity.

--------------------
Hail Gallaxhar

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Evensong
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Originally posted by Jamat:
Humanity concedes power to savage predator who seeks to hit humanity with stick. Humanity unaware of predicament. Loving omnipresent being reveals humanity's parlous state and provides protection but humanity too arrogant to see its predicament or accept provided bolt hole.

You missed out the part at the beginning where God creates the savage predator in the full knowledge that it will take up a position of power over humanity.
Well I don't know about you, but it hasn't taken up a position of power in my humanity.

Life is good.

--------------------
a theological scrapbook

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Martin60
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God did no such thing.

--------------------
Love wins

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Marvin the Martian

Interplanetary
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin PC not & Ship's Biohazard:
God did no such thing.

How many Creators do you think there are, exactly?

--------------------
Hail Gallaxhar

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Martin60
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I can't work out why you're asking that rhetorical question. Sorry.

--------------------
Love wins

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Porridge
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If Satan is not God's creation, where did it / he / she come from?

--------------------
Spiggott: Everything I've ever told you is a lie, including that.
Moon: Including what?
Spiggott: That everything I've ever told you is a lie.
Moon: That's not true!

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Martin60
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Er, WHAT ? You're biblically literate. Again so why do you, too, ask what HAS to be a rhetorical question ?

--------------------
Love wins

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Jamat
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quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Originally posted by Jamat:
Humanity concedes power to savage predator who seeks to hit humanity with stick. Humanity unaware of predicament. Loving omnipresent being reveals humanity's parlous state and provides protection but humanity too arrogant to see its predicament or accept provided bolt hole.

You missed out the part at the beginning where God creates the savage predator in the full knowledge that it will take up a position of power over humanity.
You really do have a big hole in your bucket over the area of free choice.

Can you not accept that a created being can become evil by choosing evil without being originally evil?

It would save you some grief.

Biblically there is mystery here. We are told by James God cannot author evil. Thisonly leaves the possibility that though it ccomes from a being he created, he is not responsible for that being's choices.

--------------------
Jamat ..in utmost longditude, where Heaven
with Earth and ocean meets, the setting sun slowly descended, and with right aspect
Against the eastern gate of Paradise. (Milton Paradise Lost Bk iv)

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Evensong
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quote:
Originally posted by Scot:
Words, words, words. You are left with a religion that is powerless to explain the horrors that overwhelm Jen and others without resorting to jargon and logical constructs that make no sense to anyone outside your own corner of christanity.

quote:
Originally posted by RuthW:
Does secular humanism explain those horrors?

quote:
Originally posted by Laura:
I believe that the secular humanist position is that it does not have to explain evil and disaster, because these are inherent in the world as it has evolved.

Secular humanists don't have to ask why evil exists and provide an explanation for it?

Why is that?

Talk about a cop out!

And I suspect, untrue. If a humanist has goals and ideals, a humanist will have an opposite of that.

Evil comes from a lapse in reason or education perhaps?

quote:
Originally posted by Laura:
Humans have the capacity for good and evil and can go either way (or for most, somewhere in the middle, depending on circumstances.

Religious people believe this too. It's called free will.

--------------------
a theological scrapbook

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George Spigot

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quote:
Originally posted by Martin PC not & Ship's Biohazard:
To be Christian is to know that you and every one, ever, are personally, eternally significant, healed, infinitely potentiated, immortal, loved.

Obviously we have very different definitions of the word healed.
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Pre-cambrian
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quote:
Originally posted by Evensong:
Secular humanists don't have to ask why evil exists and provide an explanation for it?

Why is that?

Talk about a cop out!

Theists are claiming an explanation for good in their omnipotent, omniscient, perfectly good God. Indeed it is suggested that God should be worshipped on those grounds. Given those attributes, and their claim that their God is also unique, theists are inevitably faced with the challenge of where does evil come from in that case.

Secular humanists on the other hand are not claiming to know why good exists or providing an explanation for it. They are not claiming an external foundation for an objective moral framework.

Put in another way, someone who is not involved in the promotional advertising for a product does not have to be in a position to justify why it went wrong.

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"We cannot leave the appointment of Bishops to the Holy Ghost, because no one is confident that the Holy Ghost would understand what makes a good Church of England bishop."

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Marvin the Martian

Interplanetary
# 4360

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quote:
Originally posted by Jamat:
Can you not accept that a created being can become evil by choosing evil without being originally evil?

No - it must have had at the very least the ability to become evil, and logically it must have been created with that ability.

If you lock someone in a room with two identical doors, one being the exit and one containing a hungry tiger, and they choose poorly and get eaten, then you can't deny all responsibility for their death on the grounds that it was their own free choice to open that door.

--------------------
Hail Gallaxhar

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The Great Gumby

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quote:
Originally posted by Martin PC not & Ship's Biohazard:
Er, WHAT ? You're biblically literate. Again so why do you, too, ask what HAS to be a rhetorical question ?

Probably because you're ducking the obvious conclusion of your arguments.

If you're blaming evil on Satan, you have two choices: either God created Satan (in which case, God remains culpable), or He didn't. If He didn't, He's either unable to do anything about it (not omnipotent) or He could, but chooses not to, so the existence or otherwise of the pantomime villain known as Satan is no explanation or excuse, unless you choose to roll back 2,000 years of Christian doctrine and claim that God isn't actually omnipotent after all.

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The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. - Richard Feynman

A letter to my son about death

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Chorister

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Sometimes Martin PC not sounds suspiciously like one of those bots which has ended up by mistake inside a theological college.

--------------------
Retired, sitting back and watching others for a change.

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Martin60
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# 368

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TGG - what, because God in His real omnipotence, i.e. over that which is actually possible (not absurdities about rocks and their equivalent), created a perfect entity, the most powerfully attributed entity it is possible to create, with the full knowledge that such an entity could and in fact would, given enough instances, go freely morally haywire, means God created evil ?

And let that evil loose over a more vulnerable perfect creation ?

OK. Fine. So ? Creation is obviously not possible without entailing evil and suffering. They are in fact as much evidence for God (the great and good) as they are against it if not more so.

Love hurts. Every one. Appallingly. As bad as it can possibly get. As for jlg. There is no choice if you create.

And Love makes it all better. Where it is wanted. jlg will want it. She's got it.

Failing the Turing test since 1998 - Martin

[ 24. January 2012, 12:04: Message edited by: Martin PC not & Ship's Biohazard ]

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Love wins

Posts: 16997 | From: Never Dobunni after all. Corieltauvi after all. Just moved to the capital. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Evensong
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# 14696

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quote:
Originally posted by Pre-cambrian:
Theists are claiming an explanation for good in their omnipotent, omniscient, perfectly good God. Indeed it is suggested that God should be worshipped on those grounds. Given those attributes, and their claim that their God is also unique, theists are inevitably faced with the challenge of where does evil come from in that case.

Quite so.

My first unit assignment in theology degree asked exactly this question.

We were presented with a number of alternatives and were told to make a case. I think I eventually settled on Richard Swindburne's "best of all possible worlds" in my essay but certainly didn't feel like I had The Answer. And I suspect most Christians don't feel like they have The Answer either.

Theodicy is indeed a very, very hard theological question.

quote:
Originally posted by Pre-cambrian:

Secular humanists on the other hand are not claiming to know why good exists or providing an explanation for it. They are not claiming an external foundation for an objective moral framework.

Put in another way, someone who is not involved in the promotional advertising for a product does not have to be in a position to justify why it went wrong.

I don't think you have this right. I think passionate and faithful secular humanists certainly do have a belief system and a metanarrative that they use to explain all sorts of things including what the end result and direction of humanity is and should lead to.

They have ideals and goals just like religious people do.

The only difference is that they don't necessarily rely on revelation.

If you reject Christianity on the basis that there is no adequate explanation for theodicy amongst all the myriad of them in Christian history, then fair enough.

If you go on to adopt secular humanism in it's place however and do not attempt to explain suffering or evil that is a present reality then it sounds to me like the philosophy is hollow and lacks depth.

But like I said earlier, I suspect they do have a theodicy. But I don't think Laura's answer covered it.

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a theological scrapbook

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Martin60
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# 368

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Theobot here, surely no explanation of suffering is necessary unless it's in order to try and alleviate it. Secularism doesn't have to do the impossible: it cannot possibly explain suffering or anything else ultimately. Secularism doesn't end in meaninglessness, it ends in nullness. It can't alleviate that. Neither, of course, can Christianity explain anything even in full dialogue with eternally ineffable God. Wittgenstein. Goedel. But Christianity - Love - alleviates it regardless.

Or are we really going to be unhappy about that in eternity ?

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Love wins

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The Great Gumby

Ship's Brain Surgeon
# 10989

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quote:
Originally posted by Martin PC not & Ship's Biohazard:
TGG - what, because God in His real omnipotence, i.e. over that which is actually possible (not absurdities about rocks and their equivalent), created a perfect entity, the most powerfully attributed entity it is possible to create, with the full knowledge that such an entity could and in fact would, given enough instances, go freely morally haywire, means God created evil ?

Yes.
quote:
And let that evil loose over a more vulnerable perfect creation ?
Yes.
quote:
OK. Fine. So ?
So your facile response to the problem of evil that "Satan done it" is just hot air when you believe that God created "Satan", and is both omniscient and omnipotent. You believe He knows all - even knew what would happen before He did it - and could destroy "Satan" whenever He wanted. But He doesn't.
quote:
Creation is obviously not possible without entailing evil and suffering.
Unless you deny the existence of heaven, our existence evidently is possible without entailing evil and suffering.

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The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. - Richard Feynman

A letter to my son about death

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Martin60
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# 368

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The 'facility' is entirely yours Sir. In the sub-sophomoric definition of omniscience and omnipotence for a start. Which is de rigueur round here I realise.

And I FULLY, demonstrably accepted that God is FULLY responsible for evil coming in to being, creating evil if you will, by creating.

Heaven is without evil eh?

Well it is NOW.

I'm ASTOUNDED at the biblical illiteracy around here.

[ 24. January 2012, 17:55: Message edited by: Martin PC not & Ship's Biohazard ]

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Love wins

Posts: 16997 | From: Never Dobunni after all. Corieltauvi after all. Just moved to the capital. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Martin60
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# 368

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Oh and George, why so ? Know anyone who isn't broken ?

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Love wins

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Lyda*Rose

Ship's broken porthole
# 4544

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Martin, do you personally know anyone who believes that the Godhead has the nature that you believe they have? I'm not being sarcastic. I'd like to know. The Ship has a pretty wide swath of views and yet most of the Ship doesn't seem to "get" your viewpoint, or if they do, agree with it.

Someday (maybe well past the honeymoon [Big Grin] ) you could start a thread that gives your very best effort to make clear the unclear to the rest of us. I, for one, would read it with great interest. I realize that this could open up a can of worms for you emotionally, since some people have very fierce feelings about the opinions you have revealed through the years. Not to mention it might burst your mystique [Biased] . But if you are up to it, I think many of us would find a clearer discussion fascinating.

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"Dear God, whose name I do not know - thank you for my life. I forgot how BIG... thank you. Thank you for my life." ~from Joe Vs the Volcano

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Jamat
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# 11621

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quote:
must have had at the very least the ability to become evil, and logically it must have been created with that ability.

Quite..Which is called a moral ability for which the chooser takes responsibility for the choice not the creator of the chooser.


The doors analagy might work only if the chooser was warned what was behind each door and chose to take on the tiger anyway.

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Jamat ..in utmost longditude, where Heaven
with Earth and ocean meets, the setting sun slowly descended, and with right aspect
Against the eastern gate of Paradise. (Milton Paradise Lost Bk iv)

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Porridge
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# 15405

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quote:
Originally posted by Martin PC not & Ship's Biohazard:
Er, WHAT ? You're biblically literate. Again so why do you, too, ask what HAS to be a rhetorical question ?

I don't think anyone has ever before accused me of being Biblically literate. While I'm not sure what that means, precisely, I'm fairly sure I don't actually deserve the possible compliment implied.

However, it appears to me that you are playing fast and loose with some terminology in order to avoid dealing with some basic contradictions. You seem to be claiming that the all-powerful God you believe in is constrained; that God is "all-powerful" only within the limits of "the possible," whatever that includes.

Does that mean there are no miracles, then? Water didn't turn to wine at Cana? Wine doesn't turn to the blood of Christ at Eucharist?

In other words, just as I cannot touch my right elbow with my right hand (at least without severe and painful damage), God cannot prevent or destroy evil, despite the fact that believers are instructed, as a matter of routine, to pray for deliverance from same. Why would God urge us to pray that he deliver us from evil when he can do no such thing?

Neither Christians nor anybody else, whether they pray for this outcome or not, get delivered from evil on request.

In Biblical terms (to the extent I have any fragile handle on same), evil turns up as a personified (or at least being-i-fied) independent force in two major OT scenarios: in the soon-to-turn-snake being which tempts Eve, and in the Book of Job (which something I read once suggested is the oldest book in the canon).

Satan, or evil, or Lucifer, or who-have-you, tortures Job for no better reason than to see what will make Job crack. He does this with God's knowledge and permission, as a wager. They converse about it.

Are you willing to say that what this story really tells us is that God has to take this bet? He couldn't say "no dice" to Satan? He couldn't say, no, that's my creature Job; if he stumbles, yes, he'll get hurt; but meantime I have more regard for him than to just sit by watching you wreck him just to see him writhe.

I wonder what this does to free will: God doesn't have any? In addition to your all-powerful God having no power over evil? For humanity to have free will, God had to surrender his?

Job loses everything -- health, wealth, his children. He doesn't crack, even at his wife's urging, even under his friends' horrible "comforting."

And what happens? Job gets more children . . . eventually . . . as though all these sons were interchangeable spare parts. God replaces the sons, and Job lives long and prospers.

Well, you and I are human too; we've had pain and losses of our own. Even though these have also sometimes been succeeded by recoveries or rewards, we're not left unmarked, and we're not "restored" by subsequent joys. Those pains and losses change us, sometimes break us down. It's what pain and loss do.

Upthread, you claimed that this is a God who "suffers with us." How could a God "suffer with us" or be "all-knowing" who doesn't know how deeply we form attachments to individuals, who doesn't realize that a lost loved one is not, never has been, and never will be, replaceable? We may form new attachments, yes; but that hardly addresses the grief we suffer, and which this "loving" God is either willing to have visited upon us as a species of experiment, or is helpless -- excuse me, all-powerful within the limits of the possible -- to do anything but watch. I find that a a most unconvincing definition of "all-powerful."

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Spiggott: Everything I've ever told you is a lie, including that.
Moon: Including what?
Spiggott: That everything I've ever told you is a lie.
Moon: That's not true!

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Evensong
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# 14696

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Ya'll seen this summary of theodicy across religions and the world?

It's kinda fun.

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a theological scrapbook

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Martin60
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# 368

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Apocalypso - lovely rhetoric, 11/10. But logic?!

Omnipotence: does God know the spin of the electrons he's currently thinking that the universe doesn't ? Does He know if it's going to rain tomorrow ?

I accept all the miracles of Christ and then some. How does God's rational, real, proper omnipotence prevent Him from performing any miracles ?

He has delivered and delivers and will deliver us from evil. Completely. It is finished. I am delivered constantly from and in evil. By requesting I am ALWAYS delivered from, in evil.

I have eternal life while I die.

Job: God's choice.

Free will ? Meaningless except as the 'choice' between autonomy and adoption.

Your penultimate para. 'Tell me about it.'

Your ultimate: this is the crux. Of course He knows. Realises. Feels. He can't not. He's thinking us. He's omnipathic.

The time is coming of the restitution of all things. All our inevitable loss will be more than compensated for.

THAT'S omnipotence.

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Love wins

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leo
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# 1458

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I suppose it is natural, when someone dies in tragic circumstances, for members of the family to ask 'Why?' but I find this discussion unsavoury, given that most here never knew her. It feels like masturbatory speculation.

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My Jewish-positive lectionary blog is at http://recognisingjewishrootsinthelectionary.wordpress.com/
My reviews at http://layreadersbookreviews.wordpress.com

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Scot
Deck hand
# 2095

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Not the whole thread, Leo. Some posts feel more like opportunistic sanctimony.

Martin, are you saying that you believe in divine power wherein it is possible to transform matter (water into wine) but not know the future (tomorrow's weather)? Fair enough if you do, but it seems like you are being oddly arbitrary about what is and isn't reasonable to expect from a god.

You assert that you are delivered from evil because you have life after death. If I threw that out as a Christian position and then explained all that is wrong with it, I would be accused of arguing against a straw man. Your position devalues this life and this world.

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“Here, we are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it.” - Thomas Jefferson

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QLib

Bad Example
# 43

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quote:
Originally posted by leo:
I suppose it is natural, when someone dies in tragic circumstances, for members of the family to ask 'Why?' but I find this discussion unsavoury, given that most here never knew her. It feels like masturbatory speculation.

Really? I'll have to take your word for it, because I don't know what masturbatory speculation feels like.

You don't have to know someone well, to ask the question 'why?' about a tragic and terrible death. I find the idea from a teacher that that's "unsavoury" quite mind boggling - and then there's the question of why you bother to read or post on this thread if it upsets you. But I feel disinclined to speculate about that, with or without masturbation.

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Tradition is the handing down of the flame, not the worship of the ashes Gustav Mahler.

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Martin60
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# 368

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Please explain away Scot. Or get off the pot.

And turning - thinking - water in to wine is in a completely different category to passively knowing the indeterminate future, which is meaninglessly impossible. There's nothing to know. No comparison whatsoever.

I'm delivered from evil as we all are. In Christ. Regardless of all the evil that I'm in the middle of. Nearer the end of actually. Thank God.

I'm surprised no one has mentioned that none of the challenging aspects of the Judeo-Christian narrative (aka 'The Bible'), like 95% of it, can be true if God is as nearly as nice as they are. God isn't jaw-droppingly pragmatic, He just allows us to evolve in our projection of our idealized selves on to Him.

Or some such.

And Qlib [Smile]

[ 25. January 2012, 21:54: Message edited by: Martin PC not & Ship's Biohazard ]

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Love wins

Posts: 16997 | From: Never Dobunni after all. Corieltauvi after all. Just moved to the capital. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Martin60
Shipmate
# 368

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And Scot, I'm not delivered from evil because I have eternal life, which I am, but I am delivered from evil in the midst of evil with worse to come and with horror and loss past that one just is moved on from, iteratively, as I die in eternal life.

[ 25. January 2012, 21:59: Message edited by: Martin PC not & Ship's Biohazard ]

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Love wins

Posts: 16997 | From: Never Dobunni after all. Corieltauvi after all. Just moved to the capital. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged



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