reply to post by junglejake
Thanks for your answer.
A few comments first: Being a grumpy extremist-critic as I am, I'm probably experienced as being intolerably intolerant. At least from a fanatic's
mindset, which can only operate on the grounds of: "If you're not for me, you're against me". This oversimplification of my position is convenient for
debate-tactical reasons, but far too narrow.
By putting social limits to the extent of extremist activities, this also PROTECT extremist minorities.
["Let me preface this by saying, my analogies aren't perfect -- if you hyper-analyze them, there will be holes. I make no claim to be able to
perfectly represent God through humanity's creation, or even His. So I ask that you take them as they are stated, and not beyond that"]
What you call 'analogies', I would call 'allegories' (but no matter...this was just for the record). As my initial comments tell, I'm not a very
'siding' active participant on the black/white ideological pushing market, except by saying "put your extremism, where the sun doesn't shine" to all
extremists who, directly or indirectly, appear to be suggesting monopoly.
There are more 'reality-checks' * on ideology, than the ideologers like to admit, ranging from a relatively mild-mannered academic approach, via more
or less heated pro/contra verbal forum exchanges to open violence. I try to position myself according to the situation. So I don't shoot mosquitos
Out of respect for your faith and with a certain amount of courtesy, I didn't expose you to much of a reality-check, but partly played by your rules.
But my own position is nonetheless, that your basic tale mainly (as presented on an average by the various christians here on ATS) is a fabulation,
presented as 'truth'.
The 'loving parent' allegory is rather common, and usually delievered in a form as sticky-sweet as candied fruit and with semantic shufflings to cover
up the gaps. I am really curious as to know, if christian believers REALLY think this way, or if it's just an old routine, which pops up from sheer
habit. For a non-believer like me, it's kind of embarrasing to read. So (on 'god's needs):
Quote: ["Ahh, but I never said "Need", I said it was what He desired. It was what He wanted."]
I can without qualms give you a semantic 'benefit of doubt' and change 'needs' to 'desire' ('desire' not as a 'need-derivate' which it sometimes can
mean, but as a choice) or to 'wanting'. So (disregarding reality-checking) this bible-character CHOOSE to put up a situation, (which as he is said to
be able to see all time also?) contains options of much suffering, FOR HIS OWN PURPOSES. How does that make it better?
Quote: ["A sociopath? One incapable of feeling emotion? I disagree. And yes, I do enjoy allegories"]
A sociopath is able to experience emotions. He/she is incapable of empathy. Seen from a non-believer position Jahveh has all the signs of a sociopath.
It's not an allegory for such as me. From your position it's possibly an allegory, self-contained as much of your position is.
Quote: [" If I make a television (CRT style), and give it to you with the warning not to play with its innards because it could kill you, that doesn't
make me a sociopath."]
I don't know what CRT style is, but I believe, I get the meaning.
Being able to see into the future, though without interfering; .... seeing an option of brutal suffering on your conditions, if your test of obedience
doesn't fall out to your satisfaction; ..... with creatures created without any understanding of morals put to a test only based on their
understanding of obedience; .....and they fail; ...and on YOUR pre-arranged conditions then they must suffer and die (it could have been arranged
differently, I have a suggestion); .....AND their descendants suffering the consequences; ...all this for your own egotistical purposes
Yes, then you are a sociopath.
Quote: ["If God created the world, and in such a way that certain actions (can you jump 20 stories and just aim for a bush to be fine?) lead to death,
then warns us about some of those actions that may not be intuitively obvious, does that make Him a sociopath?"]
THIS allegory semantically mixes two perspectives. One in which the 'natural laws' of visible existence are there observably and to be respected;
sofar without any answer on purpose/no-purpose behind these 'natural laws'. Another perspective where some postulated purpose exists on the hows and
whys on existence.
Are you confused on your own position on this by blending two incompatible perspectives into one allegory, or do you try to confuse me? It's my
impolite guess, that you possibly won't understand, what I just said, so I can clarify on request.
Quote: ["Going back to the television analogy, if you know a little about electricity, it wouldn't make sense that touching bare copper wire inside
the television while its unplugged could be dangerous, but there it is."]
Exactly. It's not about knowledge, it's about authority and obedience.
Quote: ["Believe it or not, I understand what you're saying. I struggled with this, too. It seems like we were given the world, then told to only play
in a 10' x 10' sandbox."]
Somewhat immodestly I can suggest, that the perspectives (etc) I have as my base and operate from are more extensive than the few black/white views in
a 10 by 10. I have e.g. never/seldom (?) out of desperation arrived at answers, before the 'facts' I possess are in order (I'm a philosophical
scepticist, but that's another more extensive subject).
Quote: ["We were given the world, and told by God how to live this life He created to the fullest based on His design."]
Seemingly you can't help it. Allegories supporting alleged absolutes, or alleged absolutes supporting allegories...depending on which fits best for
the situation. It's just another example of the big elaborate christian circle-argument attitude, which like the worm Ouroboros bites its own tail.
God did or decreed this or that..absolute, supportin allegories, which are supporting the absolutes, which are ........
I will not accuse you of discarding deductive logic (you appear to be intelligent), and as a philosophical scepticist I will not claim deductive logic
to be THE exclusive way. But some inclusion of it wouldn't be amiss, it does function rather well in many contexts. E.g. arguments.
Quote: ["So it is with life. When we turn from God and tell Him we can do this life thing without wasting our time on the manual, we continue to live
life, but we have no idea what living life to the fullest entails."]
Personally I'm not prone to be convinced, because the same argument is repeated several times (with just changing the packaging).
Quote: ["The manual shares the metaphysical rules for this universe just as a cellphone shares the programmatic rules for using the phone
There are several manuals for metaphysical existence (with- or without including the visible universe). I'm familiar with quite a few of them, and
yours is amongst those with least reality-check credibility.
Quote: ["Yes, because if you don't recognize the Bible as authoritative, there is the rest of the world to relate God to you. After all, He created
nature, science, and the tenants in scripture (like marriage) so, in their optimal form and understanding, they should point to Him."]
Very true. They SHOULD point to him...reality-check.
Quote: ["Since I cannot command all information in existence, I have to use what I have, which isn't complete, to try to help folks who don't believe
to relate and understand where I'm coming from."]
There's a big difference between presenting various 'facts', which have been reality-checked, and presenting subjective fabulations, fantasies, faiths
or fabrications AS 'facts'. The last is no help to anybody.
Quote: ["Allegories and illustrations are very effective at doing this"]
Sometimes. More often they are brainwashing indoctrination. To avoid being rude to you, I can mention the cold-war propaganda between stalinism and
McCarthy'ism as an example.
Quote: [" As to the Christian "moral" on sexuality... What the Bible says and what medieval Catholicism considered acceptable sexuality are radically
different. Being someone who sees the Bible as authoritative, I'm going to go with the Bible over culture."]
Another option for a broad side-stepping into relevant and parallel (but minor on this thread) topic. Homesexuality...laws on rape-situations in OT!!
Is the bible's authority on this superseding contemporary laws?
Quote: ["Now, now, I was using that as an analogy. Just as folks who smoke one cigarette can go the rest of their lives not smoking again, there are
folks that die because of that first cigarette. Would you respond to someone who, when talking about a friend who died from lung cancer after smoking
for 40 years, that says, "smoking killed them," with something along the lines of, "That's an embellished tale, let's be serious here"? After all,
smoking hasn't 100% been tied to cancer, it just seems pretty typical that one leads to the other. In this case, regarding the Jewish nation, porn led
to prostitution, so to speak. Not the way it always goes. The way it went in this case."]
I like your introduction of an element of deductive logic here. But I can't see how this recent addition to your initial allegory on marital sexuality
as a parallel to love between god and mankind says anything except that NOT being a christian/jew is spiritual prostitution. Sorry, it's YOUR
allegories, carried to your purposes. If you don't like my anylyzing of yout allegories find better ones or stop them.
Quote: ["Check out 1 Kings, 2 Kings, 1 Chronicles, and 2 Chronicles. That was the law of Israel, yeah, as God handed it down. Not as it was practiced,
and not as it was documented in the Bible."]
As to unbelievers being killed, I remember a massacre taking place, when Moses came down from the mountain. Don't cherry-pick me. People being killed
are people being killed, whether it's done by bigots in the NAME of religion or by bigots claiming religious LAWS as an excuse.
Quote: ["Desire. Have you ever courted after someone who didn't feel the same way? After you moved on, did you believe you were wrong for your having
Exactly. So I suggest that both christians and 'god' move on, and leave the rest of us in peace.
Quote: ["You're ok with an anarchistic survival of the fittest?"]
Is that how you read my words? I'm generally known on ATS to be an annoyingly supporter of egalitarian, liberal, secular society, strongly critisizing
extra-parliamentary activites (such as bible-law above secular law). Maybe my philophical scepticism confuses you to take a position of black/white
politics concerning me.
Quote: ["That if you can take something from someone, that very superiority gives you the right to it? That if someone bothers you, is better than
you, gets the girl you want, and you have the ability to kill them, you have the right to do so because you, in that moment, are stronger than them?
That's the kind of rebellion I speak of -- one against charity and order."]
That 'charity and order' is one of your postulated absolutes. Non-believers see the extremist-christian version of this 'charity and order' as fascist
ideology. Another option for a reality-check.... unencumbered by allegories.
Quote: ["Yes, or else. Just as a doctor who gives you antibiotics for your infection tells you to take them daily or else. Is the doctor wrong for
Allegorically.... non-believers see your 'god' as the disease. Not as the cure.
Quote: ["If we were designed to love God, God asks us to love Him, and we say no, why is God obliged to hang out with us?"]
Aren't we going in circles? This is back to square one; but for the fun of it, I'll momentarily accept the 'if'. Non-believers aren't asking 'god' to
hang out with us, we're actually asking him to get the heck away and leave us in peace. It's you guys wanting him.
Quote: ["If we reject God here on Earth, He rejects us -- we get what we wanted -- an eternity without Him."]
Fine with me. Besides I actually have several more attractive (and 'believable') options for eternity. You choose yours, I choose mine.
Quote: ["And, sadly, an increasing part of mankind has decided vaccinations are unhealthy, and it has caused some pretty nasty diseases to crop
Being a vegetarian myself, with strong, but not fanatic sympathies towards 'natural medicine', I can only agree. But I don't share your pre-occupation
with black/white positions. I find that a considered balance will do fine. Do you want us to live in caves to satisfy your religious zeal?
Quote: [" But as Ghandi didn't say, if the whole world believes what is right is wrong, it makes what was right now wrong and what was wrong now
right. Right? If we all agree on some new laws of aerodynamics, people will fly..."]
I AM familiar with epistemology, thank you.
Quote: [" However, I think we may still disagree, because I didn't state that very clearly. He cannot abide our rejection of Him, and, as a result,
chooses not to stay with us. Going back to the unrequited love, if someone you care for deeply spits on you every time they see you, yells at you,
tells you they never want to see you, that they hate you, how long would you be willing to hang out with them?"]
I understood it the first time. But I can repeat my own answer (again momentarily on bible premises): 'God' will do me a favour, if he stays away.
Then mankind will get a chance to clear up the mess he created and left us with.
Quote: [" Sure. Just because a plan doesn't work doesn't mean the planner intended it to fail."]
Aaaaah, finally did the 'mysterious ways' and 'ineffability' turn up openly. If 'absolutes' and allegories should fall short, a little bit of magic to
fill in the gaps should do it. But then, ....surely the flying spaghetti monster and his quirks are real also, because they are magical and
Quote (on the golden rule): ["Care to share?"]
The buddhist version is unconditional and it's more encompassing than the christian version.
Quote: [" I'm talking about what Christians are called to be, not what they are, just as Windows is called to be an effective operating system, it
just happens to be a bit buggy."]
And on my premises for liking/not-liking or accepting/not-accepting this is why I like christians who work in soup-kitchens without a price-tag of
sermons or preachings attached to the charity. And why I dislike christians who are all big words on 'faith' and full of endless christian
scholastics, or carrying around literal or verbal noisy manifestations of their monopoly seeking.
Quote: ["What idea is so powerful someone has no choice but to believe it?"]
Fortunately none (that's why I'm a philosophical scepticist). But this doesn't prevent evangelists from acting as if they ARE in possession of THE one
Quote: ["What idea is so dangerous it must be outlawed?"]
The idea, that anyone has any elitist privileges putting him/her above other peoples' individual rights or society's parliamentary functions.
Quote; ["And why?"]
If it isn't obvious to you, we can take it up under 'epistemology' later.
Quote: ["Is that dangerous idea so much more powerful than the truth that the truth cannot stand against it, and instead simply dies?"]
Yes, it is.
Human history is filled with extremist violence, performed by extremists who only care about propagating THEIR truth. Read some political philosophy
on the subject.
* With reality-check I don't mean anything so simplistic or one-eyed as e.g. reductionist materialistic science.
edit on 22-4-2011 by bogomil because: spelling