The End of God?: A Horizon Guide to Science and Religion

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The End of God?: A Horizon Guide to Science and Religion As the Pope ends his visit to Britain, historian Dr Thomas Dixon delves into the BBC's archive to explore the troubled relationship between religion and science. From the creationists of America to the physicists of the Large Hadron Collider, he traces the expansion of scientific knowledge and asks whether there is still room for God in the modern world.

The relationship between science and religion has been long and troubled: from the condemnation of Galileo by the Catholic Church in 17th century Italy, through the clashes between creationism and evolution in 20th century America, right up to recent claims that the universe does not need God.

Delving through the rich archive of programmes from Horizon and BBC Science, Thomas Dixon looks at what lies behind this difficult relationship. Using original footage from 1925, he tells the story of John Scopes, a Tennessee teacher who was tried for teaching evolution.

He sees the connections between religion and American politics in the story of a more recent court case -the trial of Intelligent Design. He looks at what happens when new scientific discoveries start to explain events that were once seen as the workings of God, and explains how some of our most famous scientists have seen God in the grandest laws of the universe. Finally, he finds intriguing evidence from brain science which hints that belief in God is here to stay.

Watch the full documentary now (non-English version)

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866 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Steve

    This doc should be named Science and Christianity. Anyone who doesn't believe in the FACT of evolution is either mentally r*tarded or hopelessly blind.

  2. Mad at the world

    Keep the Atheist/Evolution videos comin man! Matter a fact anything science/nature is appreciated as well, love the site keep up the good work.

  3. John

    This is a profound Documentary. Even with everything science has to offer for our knowledge, we can still no longer get past the God aspect. It REALLY got me when it was stated that religion is no more than meaning and purpose. Maybe one day science and religion will merge, but it wont be to explain one or the other, it will be more or less to define our purpose. In other words, science will drive us to a "new" religion. A scientific religion.

  4. Cool E Beans

    When God and science merge, then you will know the true identity of God. The Catholic Church knows the truth but can't reveal it. This is why they omitted and rewrote the original texts in 1612. Only with all of the dead sea scrolls and a re-release of a Gutenberg Bible could the reality possibly be known.

  5. egme

    all this things are created by man.... i think man is the true god..

  6. Avii

    Great Documentary, defiantly worth a watch

  7. Ozzy

    This hits the proverbial nail on its head nicely.

    It places the adversarial relationship between science and religion in a correct perspective where we can consider their differences to be essentially epistemological.

    Science and religion are in a battle of epistemologies.

    One examines, models and interprets reality as wholey natural. The other does likewise, selectively interpreting reality as holy magic.

  8. eKoms-Top.com

    Science can tell us how.... But it can't tell us why....

  9. DeathMetal

    Great doc!

  10. Ozzy

    eKoms,
    I agree with thinking that it is important to keep this in mind about the limits of scientific methodology as a means to knowing.
    I wonder though. Is there any way in which we can know why beyond thinking in terms of the simple causal why? Can there possibly be an ultimate reason why? It is often said that the most profound question in philosohy is, "Why is there something rather than nothing?"
    It seems that we can only reasonably respond with the assertion that we must accept the naked existential position that existence just is the default reality. The two possibilities are existence or nothingness. Given any kind of existense and the implication of existent reality being that it must necessarily be causily attributed to infinite regress, there cannot be nothingness. Likewise, if nothingness, then necessarily there could not be existence.
    We end up left with the unsatisfying but only reasonable answer to the ultimate question, "Why?" being, "Because."
    It seams we are here because we're here. Because we're here, we're here. We're here because... Just like in the song.

  11. Saturnine

    A brilliant doc, however with some idiotic conversation in the comments. Well what can you expect.

    The doc was particularly good in discussing the idea of neurotheology and the placebo-effect. What it boils down to is that there is this potentiality in the human being to respond to the essence of religion. And that's why it's not going away. So come on, learn the religions and become the f****** experts yourselves, if you want a more rational world. You "atheist/evolutionist" people are just not helping at all. (I doubt you even really understand the science of evolution better than the average Christian who lives outside the US.)

  12. phill

    I always new God was a monkey

  13. Achems Razor

    Ah! more argumentum ad hominems maybe?

  14. TJ

    This was great. Went beyond just the evolution argument to a comprehensive summary of our current understanding of God and the universe.

  15. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    I guess you haven't seen the study just a few months ago that showed Atheists as being the most knowledgeable about religion.

    The difference between science and religion is this:

    Science looks for answers where there are mysteries.
    Religion asserts answers where there are mysteries.

  16. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    Where's the study published? I'd like to see it.

    I don't accept that definition between science and religion. You've clearly been talking to the wrong people.

  17. Mad

    Its stupid that they banned the pledge of allegiance in schools but its better than teaching people about Noah's ark. sheesh even Muslim schools in Afghanistan teach Evolution right along side their Koran...

  18. kate

    I'd love to see a similar doc made about Science versus Islam. Of course, no filmmaker has the cojones to attack a religion whose adherents would probably kill him.

  19. jimmithelizard

    we could be like bacteria inside a stomach, unaware of the world outside, simply because we dont need to know as it has no importance to our survival

  20. alleycat43

    @Cool E Beans

    I hear ya, I also believe the catholic church knows a hell of a lot more than they are telling us but just was wondering why you say they CAN'T tell us as opposed to won't tell us?

    And....

    God? if you're out there? There IS a place for you in science, you'll just have to lose the attitude, OK!?

  21. Achems Razor

    @jimmithelizard:

    Could use that as an analogy perhaps.

    Taken into the perspective of the vastness and size of the universe, our Earth is hardly more than a pixel in comparison, where does that leave humans? almost invisible.

    And according to the time scale of the universe, the human race have been here as long as a neutrino colliding with an hydrogen atom, a insignificant flash. So definitely humans have no pipe line to any gods.

  22. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    Thanks! In fact I did hear of this study. It was referred to jokingly in a local paper when it came out. There is an ongoing joke in Europe about the knowledgeability of the average US citizen, and this fits right in there.

    But still, Mr. Chyrch, you missed my point completely. It's a very good thing that atheists know some trivial things about religions. (This study in fact concerns only completely trivial things, that should be regarded in the same category as "is the pope Catholic".) But my point is this: If you find out a decent amount about stuff about Christianity, you might become respectable 'religious experts' or at least smart Christians while retaining your critical insights. Believe me, we need you. It's perfectly ok to approach religion from a critical standpoint. However it is not ok just to create an anti-religious cult, which merely pretends to have cleansed itself from the particular stupidities that it sees in religions.

  23. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    While it's possible to be a critical thinker in some aspects as a religious person, religiosity is dependent on abandonment of critical thinking in regards to itself.

    When a problem comes along that no one has the answer to, critical thinkers will admit their ignorance. Some will try and find answers.
    On the other hand, there are people who will give an answer that has no evidence, and is only supported by popularity. That is not critical thinking.

    I agree that the questions in the study are trivial, but it's still telling.

  24. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    I see your point, but it should be obvious that you are generalizing rather strongly. You have probably seen some Christian people (possibly from the Intelligent Design movement) do that, namely trying to give God as the answer to the gaps in science. But hey, wasn't this doc precisely trying to show to people that that is not all? In fact the God of the gaps -approach is really not the most relevant issue in Christianity. Some people (me included) think it is complete nonsense. (I side fully with Kenneth Miller, for instance.) This is why it's clear from where I'm standing, that your definitions about the relation of science and religion are unacceptable.

    Concerning that above study it should be said that it seems to be a fact that people who are initiated into religions have more knowledge of them than even very senior adherents, people who have been devout practitioners all their lives and who are immersed in the "cultural language" of their religion. The seniors can be sometimes very ignorant of some facts, and the ones who have just arrived a week ago seem know a lot more of them. This is the flaw in a study of superficial religious knowledge. Maybe this is a bit of a red herring, though.

    It seems I have to agree, that the study is telling. However, I don't think that this study does not reveal much about how people actually understand religious concepts or how deeply or correctly atheists really understand Christianity.

  25. Saturnine

    Damn typo (double negative). "I don't think that this study reveals..." was what I tried to say. Well, anyway.

  26. Chyrch

    I know you're trying to play the middle ground and all, but I think that's just as bad as the very religious, in terms of intellectual honesty.

    Critical thinking, when applied to the topic at hand, leads to Atheism. There's no good reason to believe in a god, or anything of supernatural origins. There may be vast amounts of knowledge we haven't tapped into yet. In the future, a concept of a god may actually be justified. In the year 2011 however, it's not.

    We've tolerated religiosity long enough. It's been slowing down societal progress for centuries, and if we're to do justice to the beautiful progress we've made thus far, we can't afford to entertain childish beliefs any longer.

    I'm not saying this because we've gained scientific knowledge, which debases religious doctrine. I'm saying this because of the lack of knowledge coming from the religious. Until someone provides solid reasoning for believing in myths, I'd prefer they wouldn't teach others what they think they know. They have no credibility, and shouldn't be treated otherwise.

  27. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    Religion is not going anywhere, no matter how much you atheists try to scare people away from it. It is clear that you merely wish to claim lots of things about Christians without actually having to prove that your own notions about us are true. In fact everything you say seems to be mere prejudice or misunderstanding. Perhaps there are lots of these bad Christians in your neighbourhood. I'm happy that I'm not one of them.

  28. Mo

    these guys are a bunch of nerds.. lol.. God exists, so does evolution. They don't have to be mutually exclusive.

  29. squid

    Saturnine,

    Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. You tell Chyrch "it should be obvious that you are generalizing rather strongly" and then turn around to say "Religion is not going anywhere, no matter how much you atheists try to scare people away from it." As if all Atheists are trying to "scare" people away from religion. It's not a matter of scarring people, if there is anyone good @ that it's the "you are going to hell!" crowd.

    If there is anything that "scared the religion out of me" it was most certainly reading the brochures of religions (The bible and Koran). I didn't need anyone to tell me how bad any particular religion is, they do a fine job on their own.

    For me it was simply a fact of having to face the music. I never saw any tangible evidence for any religion. Going a step further, all of the arguments I have heard supporting religion are illogical. And last but not least, it just plain and simple doesn't make sense. I think Christopher Hitchens said it best

    "our species has been on the planet for at least 100,000 years. In order to be christian you have to believe that for 98,000 years our species suffered and died, most of it's children dying in child birth. Famine, war, misery all of that for 98,000 years heaven watches with complete indifference. Then 2,000 years ago god thinks "well, that's enough of that. It's time to intervene". The best way to do that would be by condemning someone to human sacrifice in the less literate part of the middle east."

  30. Cool E Beans

    @alleycat43

    IF you knew what the Catholic Church knows, then you wouldn't follow them anymore. Mo in comment #29 is close to right. I personally don't believe in evolution as presented. I prefer 'adaptation' as the more correct term. If there were a sudden climate change, you would have four possible outcomes:

    1. You could create the ability to survive in that new environment (if it is cold, wear lots of clothes and build a warm house) doing whatever you needed to do.

    2. You leave that area for one more suited to your current ability to survive.

    3. If you do #1 for long enough to allow 'adaptation' to occur in your children and childrens children, they could survive without as much effort as you had to put in to survive.

    4. You die.

    #1 is an option that man has but that animals really don't have. For wildlife, #3 is to adapt before becoming extinct (at least for the group caught within the changed area) or see #4.

    Every species that has gone extinct has not had the time to adapt to whatever specific changes occured in their environment that caused their extinction or the adaptation that was needed to occur was not a part of their DNA (think recessive genes) to enable them to survive.

  31. jack1952

    It's humorous to think that man has evolved to be religious. A person is religious because he evolved that way but that religion will not allow him to believe in that evolution.

    Dawkins didn't feel a presence when he put on the God helmet. I wonder if he had taken part in a meditation experiment if his brain wave pattern would have been affected.

    @ chyrch

    You say religions should no longer be tolerated. I don't think you can legislate religions away. People should have the right to believe what they wish even if it doesn't make any sense. The minute you try to force someone to believe something, you become that militant crusader that you abhor. Education without condescension or condemnation is the only fair and effective way to the understanding of science.

  32. jimmithelizard

    religion should be replaced with philosophy

  33. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    Precisely what notions have I brought forward that I need to prove are true?

    Jack1952,

    I'm not suggesting we outlaw religion. When I say it shouldn't be tolerated, I'm speaking from a social perspective. Honest discussions about one's religion is currently seen as taboo. I find that absurd. No other belief system has that privilege, so why should religion?

    Since there's already been one mention of Christopher Hitchens here, I'll mention an analogy I've heard him use:

    Religion is like a penis. You're free to enjoy it in the privacy of your own home, but please don't start whipping it out in public, and please don't try to shove it down my children's throat.

  34. Saturnine

    @squid,

    I have to say, that when atheists stop listening to reasonable arguments coming from this side, all that is left dishonest scare tactic.

    @Keith / @squid

    Critical thinking about religion does not lead to atheism, but to a correct positive understanding about religion. If that happens to the "you're going to hell -crowd", they stop being so silly. From what I've seen, atheism does not lead to such a critical thinking, but to a misunderstanding about religion. This does not help anyone. It's more likely your kind of atheism leads to there being more fundamentalists, because even they realize how misguided your interpretations of religious symbols in fact are. You make a great enemy for those people you should in fact be trying to enlighten.

    Christopher HItchens is one of the worst teachers of religion that I can think of.

  35. Abrahams Son

    The problem with Atheism is it always has to assume an individual has access to all truth over all time. If this is not the case then Aetheist like all mortals are forced to rely on scientifically based speculation which is just another form of religion. Sorry guys but you are not GODS with all knowledge. You cannot change this fact how ever much you would like to.

  36. Achems Razor

    Poor religee's, us big bad atheists are scaring them, how do you figure,? do we ever say that you will fry in hell for all eternity. If you do, nay! if you even think nefarious thoughts. Yes religee's live in fear but it ain't from us atheist's, if they do not worship and pay allegiance to their invisible gods every nano second then they are hell bound. I think they may have OCD.

    Not trying to scare them/religee's. but...

    "The cosmos is far to large to full comprehend all"..."Richard Feynman"

    "We are like the water vapor film on a glass, one swipe and we are gone"..."Carl Sagan"

    The sheer audacity, to even contemplate that humans have any pipelines to any types of gods in the vast cosmos is the epitome of
    nonsense!

    Religious type of people can not seem to think out of the box.

  37. Saturnine

    Achem's Razor,

    What's that about a pipeline? Can you please be more specific?

  38. Chyrch

    Abrahams Son,

    That's one of the silliest comments we've seen so far. Atheism does not assume any truth. It's simply a disbelief of the claims of the existence of a god.

    If person A says: "There is a god"
    and person B says: "I don't believe you"
    person B is an Atheist.
    No special knowledge necessary.

    Saturnine,

    Critical thinking absolutely leads to Atheism. There is not, nor has there ever been, valid reasons to believe in anything of a divine nature.

    I just saw my last comment is awaiting moderation for my use of a proper word. That's kind of funny. Videos on plastic surgery must drive the moderator(s) nuts.

  39. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    It seems you and I disagree on what 'divine nature' is. If you shared my concept of it, I'm sure you'd believe in it. And vice versa. For me (and for educated Christians) 'divine nature' is a symbolic notion, one of many that speak about love, beauty and truth in a shared language. And that's it. Nothing more to "discover" than that. The point is to just go deeper into those things and to learn to speak about them.

    Uncritical religious thought thinks in the wrong direction. It decides to treat these symbolic notions on the same plane with the nature that science investigates. This mistake is done both by naive Christians and, in fact, atheists. Evidence for this is abundant in atheistic talk about divine nature and the existence of God. Why is it so difficult to see, that religious symbols don't describe things of the world, but things that can (and should) become positive parts of human culture.

    (And don't start with the usual summary of the mistakes of other people, or continue parading high-school science in front of your f****** strawmen. I've already said, that I think the only way forward is to "do it better yourselves". You'll see, hopefully sooner than later.)

  40. squid

    @ Saturnine

    I never stopped listening to reasonable arguments coming from the religious side, I have yet to hear one. If you have one I am all ears. Also Christopher Hitchens is far from a "teacher of religion" as you described him. He does nothing to teach religion. He is however well versed in it and I was simply quoting something he said as a fine example of religion not making sense.

    There is something that I see you are having some issues with in this discussion is your confusion between facts, assertions and opinions. Here is a little primer that can help you.

    Fact- A real occurrence; an event; something demonstrated to exist or known to have existed. Example- The Rocky Mountains are a group of mountains in the United States.

    Assertion- Something declared or stated positively, often with no support or attempt at proof. Example- Atheists are trying to scare people away from religion.

    Opinion- A belief or conclusion held with confidence but not substantiated by positive knowledge or proof. Example- Critical thinking about religion does not lead to atheism.

    You are entitled to your opinion. You can even make assertions as long as you don't present them as facts and don't expect others to take them as facts. You are not however entitled to your own facts. I hope this helps because you seem to be having a hard time with them.

  41. Madskillz

    Here is a concept for you clever, new age Christians:

    If science were to conduct an official experiment, in which the control subjects are, from birth, exposed to reasonable science based education, religiously impartial parents who are nonetheless appropriately nurturing, and are then also to gain/be taught an impartial grasp of much of the worlds varying cultures and religious beleifs. The subjects are to associate with friends etc who are religious (and non), and of different cultures; they are to do so in as balanced a manner as possible. At age 18, all subjects who are of relativly stable condition are then asked if they would sign up with one of the ultimatum religions - as in it can only be that one and no others. Also, if an interest were expressed for any of the religions in particular, further religious teachings were then offered to them.

    What do you suppose would be the dominant outcome here?

    Personally I resent the 'my way or highway' religions, as they are extremly arrogant in this and are so full of hypocrosy and restricted thought that I see them more as parasites and unsavoury political tools; holding back the freedom of mind and spirit, and therfore humanity. Thats right, I wrote spirit. I'm pretty much with Dr Hawkins and his counterparts in most regards (they do all the boring number crunching for me you see), but there is still a small itch I suppose, and human interaction is a vastly complex and wonderful thing to me. Not to mention some odd occurences I have experienced, but I'll only adhere to what I myself conclude in all of these respects, and not from some Holy Hitler.

    Ultimatum religions stagnate human growth. I dont care if you have (or are) 'examples' of having both science and religion co-existing with eachother, as this is truly rubbish and not possible. All you are actually doing is twisting the original religious context to apply to your newfound reality, as does all 'modernised' religion (non fundementals). You cannot deny, alter or re-interperet your religions roots, no matter what it may be portrayed as today. To do so simply constitutes a whole new religion in itself, and this is what you now have - not Christianity (for example). Why not get rid of all the stupid bits that you struggle to justify to anyone with half a brain? (and is not a member of the choir). Be your own God and saviour, perhaps.

    Unless of course you would care to explain how ANY ultimatum religions bible, scripture or such can properly harmonise with modern science or even be credible at all? If you can, clever Christians, and it is not merely something that has been drummed into your psyche via parents, social pressure, desperation or a mental disorder (including simply being thick), then please enlighten me. No, really. I challenge you to have a go at it without the 'chicken and egg' crap - needing to have faith in God and/or Jesus before being able to understand - as this is truly a stupid answer. Having said that, it is also the best I have heard to date.

  42. Saturnine

    squid,

    Well, I'm afraid that when you remove all that condescending bull, what we are left with is only misrepresentations. Evidence for the assertion that atheists are trying to scare people away from religion is more than just a matter of an interpretation of facts. There are many situations where atheists try to bash Christians with critical notions that the Christians themselves are in fact very comfortable with, if they are given the time to think things over.

    I think this is at heart a scare tactic. I'm not saying "oh, I'm scared", but rather that people are beginning to be scared of speaking their religious language because they are afraid that some atheist will turn around and say these people are "illogical" right from the start. That is not the case at all. I've been trying to explain why in previous comments. Maybe I've forgotten something that is relevant?

    The important point is that people don't really believe in God in the way you think they do. I am not alone in claiming this. In fact you betray a great misunderstanging about Christians if you think they "have their own facts". We merely share a language (open for you to understand as well if you want to), that speaks symbolically about the important things in life. None of these things are invented, but everything is very really present in those emotions that the religious language describes. It is in that sense that Christianity is in fact based on 'real occurrences'.

    Get it?

  43. Madskillz

    Insert to my above post '@Saturine' - I spose. Anyone else is welcome for an '@' too if they like (:

  44. Achems Razor

    @Saturnine:

    There are whole websites on "a pipeline to god" google it.

    A pipeline, re: a channel, like a phone line, carrying info or product from one source to another, like DSL internet over the phone line.

    Except for religious people only done telepathically, to invisible gods!

  45. Saturnine

    Achems Razor,

    The moderation removed some other things I said before that question about your ridiculous "pipeline".

  46. Madskillz

    @Saturine

    C'mon Sat, throw me a bone here.

  47. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    There's nothing "New age" about this sort of Christianity, that I'm talking about. The only thing new is that some of you atheistic ****** are beginning to think about some relevant issues. I agree with, well, everything of what you say about religions that have these 'ultimatums', even if some of the other things you said and implied are a bit off the mark.

    There's no way for science and religion to coexist if religions claim that their sacred texts are textbooks of physics or biology. Te sacred texts speak of the same mysteries, but don't pretend to give physical answers. If you get that, you have achieved Level 2 in the understanding of the relation between religion and science.

    Level 2 in the understanding of the question why you too should be responsibly religious is that if you aren't, then the rest of us are left with the Simplicios.

    Level 7 in the understanding of the concept of religious 'ultimatums' is achieved when you see that the ultimatums "be true", "try to love", "don't be evil", "really love your family", ("If possible, love everyone else, too.") ("... In fact, love people rightly in the maximal way that is possible for you") are things that you personally <-- (this word is important) see as making perfect sense.

    I'm sorry if i sound condescending, it's just that I'm blindly pissed off at all of you. : D

  48. jack1952

    Christianity, Islam and Judaism are closed systems. They all grew, adding one text or philosophy on top of another until they reached a certain defining moment and then their growth stopped. There are no more prophets or holy men to guide us in the new realities we live in.
    The religious texts and books even warn us that any new prophets will be false prophets. This would imply that all spirituality has reached a summit of understanding. How can such an infinite God limit our understanding of his existence.

    Science has now become the open system. Ideas are submitted, observations made and conclusions are drawn to see if the ideas stand up to scrutiny. If the ideas are proved to be mistaken then new ideas are submitted. The process suggests that science is a living entity, growing and changing with no life span.

    I will not say to some one that there is no God. Everyone has a right to their own opinion. It would seem to me, however, that an enlightened believer would realize that science is revealing new truths about God and that their knowledge of him isn't limited to their texts. Suggesting this would make me the false prophet and the door closes again.

  49. jack1952

    p.s.
    Sorry to those who follow the other major religions. I just don't know enough about them to comment.

  50. Madskillz

    @Saturine

    Dont be sorry for being condecending.

    Be sorry for that answer though. I had to re-read it a few times because it makes my brain hurt.

    What book are you getting your Christianity from? Wikipedia? The ones I know of are pretty damn clear on alot of what is and isnt.

    There most certainly is no way for science and religion to co-exist if religions claim that their sacred texts are texbooks of physics or biology. Or fact. Even though it does all of these. I dont get it because I cant. I am doomed to level 2. The 'good' book lays down the law, and you tell me that it isnt doing that? How do you justify your bible not pretending to say how it is? Or perhaps you are being sneaky there, because you say it doesnt pretend to give 'physical' answers. Well, I'll accept spiritual ones to my questions if you actually have something to offer there? Please?! And feel free to explain the spiritual answer/concept to Genesis in relation to the physical one of biology, as you must have to do so in your own mind - for both to 'co-exist'. I'd pass out if I tried that, you are very brave.

    What on Earth do you mean by if someone were not being religiously responsilbe, we are all left with Simplicios? Stop speaking in tounges. What is religiously responsible, for that matter? Telling your children to stay away from it?

    As to level 7 - If I were to follow all of those conveniently cherry picked aspects of your bible, but did not beleive in God or Jeebus (as a divine being), would I still go to hell? I'll even promise to stop having sex with my neighbours wife. Okay okay, and killing people. So would I still go to hell?

    If you actually answer these questions, even though I prolly wont buy it, I'd have a million times more respect for you and your religion. To date I have only received circular answers that refer back unto the bible as proof of fact. You are proposing to do otherwise here, but what that otherwise is, infact, is what I was referring to above with 'new age Christianity' - you reinvent your religion to suit more modern, palatable concepts and are therefore not Christian at all. Where were your special brand of Christians back when us atheists were getting torn new ones (literally), not so long ago? Are you going to tell us that this more user friendly version of Christianity has been running as a secret sect this whole time? I'd actually somewhat accept that graciously (but I'm still gonna go to hell), however I'd need that elusive thing that we atheists refer to as proof. If the bible is your proof of that, you fail.

    I'm blindly pissed off too. With Christianity in particular, as it is the dominant religion in my parts (the others would be as nasty if it was their turf). They have been condecending, patronising and demonising me my entire life. Since I was born, infact. Your particular lot may be one of the more 'relaxed' jobbies, but thats even worse now that I'm not scared of going to hell. You guys just keep making it up as you go, really!

  51. TJ

    Let me throw this out there, for the sake of argument:

    God exists,
    He just isn't real.

    Who can agree with that? Eh?

  52. Madskillz

    @TJ

    How about:

    God hates religion, because it is gay.

  53. Achems Razor

    @Saturnine:

    Why do you call the pipeline to god ridiculous? how else do you converse with your invisible gods? Tell us.

    I am not exactly mentally challenged but do not have a clue as to what your steps on blog 51 represent, is that something like buddhism? 7th step is nirvana? That really sounds like new age, not like that old time religion.

    And no one needs to be religious to be responsible, a lot of examples of religee's that are hypocrites.

    No religious person that wrote on TDF has ever proved anything even remotely viable on an type of the thousands of religions, and millions of different gods. Period! I don't expect any Earth shattering developments from you either.

  54. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    Genesis treats several issues that very really concern human beings in a poetic story. That's it. You seem able to do the literary analysis yourself. Treat it as a story. If it helps, remember that it was written at a very different time. Imagine a smart critical person listening to the stories with you at that original context. You will find that it makes sense to him, not in a modern scientific way, but in a philosophical one. And when he leaves, he is not brainwashed, but actually thinking about meaningful things through the logic of the myths.

    It's the history of the human race, like it or not. One thing you can do is try and improve on what we're given from the past.

    Simplicio is a person in Galileo's Dialogue. Look it up.

  55. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    Oh, and belief in God is not about the rules. It's about becoming a good person. Any good atheist will go to heaven. I'm sure even many of you m*ronic atheists go there too, because it doesn't even matter whether you get it or not.

    I can't threathen you with hell, but I can say that you a******* will really achieve nothing in the sense of reforming (oops, that's the evil word) the Christianity that's around you.

  56. Saturnine

    Achem's Razor

    It's called prayer. Go and ask a non-idi*t priest how it makes sense, if you really don't get it.

  57. Saturnine

    @squid,

    It seems I didn't see your comment #19 until now. Sorry about that. My point is that Christianity needs the atheists to do a wiser job. Christians like K. Miller are doing a great job, you are not helping.

    @Chyrch,

    Similarly, you asked somewhere what I think you haven't given evidence of. What I meant was that there are many people who have wiser Christian notions than you give them credit for. There's lots of evidence about Christian stupidity, but it seemed that you claimed that that's the whole story.

    I hope that settles it, at least in part.

    It's been a good conversation for me. (Lots of laughs.) Yet it seems that I have to concede that there is really no way of confirming the wiser aspects of Christianity in a conversation like this. All that should happen between your ears first, and I have no access to that mysterious area.

  58. Epicurus

    @saturnine,

    what is your reason for believing a heaven and hell exist?

    also why are you so hostile towards atheists constantly calling them m*orons, or $tupid, or @$$holes?

    why do you believe there is a god? what is your reason for believing in a god? are those reasons logically consistent, and what if someone applied your reasons to other gods? does it still apply that those gods would exist?

  59. Madskillz

    Genesis is a story. Agreed. It was written in a differet time. Agreed. History of the human race? Have you consulted with the other cultures and religions on this one? Do their versions count as well?

    I derive that what you mean is that this is all we had back in the day and we can now build on it in the present. You say this as if it were a gift. If the powerhouse that was the Christian Church(s) were not such horrible bastards about progressive thinking, particularly whenever the bible was questioned, wouldnt we be further ahead now than we are? The Romans were light years ahead of what resulted from Christianity for the larger part. Why on earth would you subscribe to that? Do you also believe that Christianity gave us the concepts of decency and it's merits? That people hadnt or couldnt of figured this out without Christianity?

    If the bible is now merley philisophical stories, how can it be concieved as the basis for an existing religion, to which you claim membership? Also, if the bible is simply philosopy, why am I going to hell for not believing in God? Again, do you think that I am going to hell??? Answer???

    I'm taking an educated guess on your one and only bible being the New Testement. The loving, friendly aspect of Christianity that the majority of primary Churches also have alongside their other teachings and scripture, of which you likely disagree with. Now, when these Churches are accused by the new age 'loving' Christians as using Jesus' teachings out of context etc - wouldnt you say that the following is perhaps a little bit of an encouragement for these nasty Churches?

    - When I read The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Matthew 13:41-42

    - If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. Luke 14:26

    - And that servant (slave), which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. Luke 12:47

    Look, I could go on forever with this. You just have to flip through it and there is just more and more. It's bloody awful stuff that I just cant get my head around people defining as the ultimate book of love and whatnot. I just cant. Jesus beats his slaves for Christs sake!

    Grow up and accept that you are a member of a cult. By far one of the worst ever. Pure and simple.

  60. Madskillz

    Oh good, I'm not going to hell. Thank... um, you, for that.

    Unfortunately it's still a fail. Get some balls and conviction behind your cult and it's teachings, or just dont bother. How ironic that you claim that it is us who are reforming Christianity. You are making Jesus look stoopid, and he doesnt sound like the kinda guy you wanna anoy too much. Enjoy.

  61. Achems Razor

    @Saturnine:

    Ah! prayer, but then it is exactly what I was referring to as a pipeline to your invisible gods, but done telepathically, remember you called it ridiculous not I! You contradict yourself!

    If you are still around... google "problems with the bible" and then see if you can refute anything that it claims?

  62. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    It seems like your arguing for spirituality, which is broadly defined. I'm honestly not interested in your claims of trying to love one another. No one needs spirituality to do good.

    I'm not sure how you validate your Christianity in specific. To be Christian, you must at least believe in Christ. Why do you believe in him? If you don't, why do you call yourself a Christian?

  63. Saturnine

    You people have a ****load of questions.

  64. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    I did not say that you are not going to hell. At least try to read what I have said before you start blathering again. Did you not see that I meant that the logic of the myths has been an engine of human thought? And that human ancestry has very much to do with that sort of things? Of course other cultures count as well. Not everything about ancient heritage is contained in mythical language, though. But even myths are not a problem if people are conscious enough to know how to interpret them wisely. I think "wisely" is tantamount to "correctly" here. I'll try to explain.

    Epicurus,

    I call them names because they do not seem to have achieved any sort of religious sophistication. To achieve this, you people can very well do your own research. That's what I'd like to see, in fact. (If you've read my messages you already know why.)

    Heaven and hell are symbols that describe perfect states, the other being perfect happiness and the other its opposite. Have you ever been to a Christian service where the priest describes these? In my church it's always a matter of a _hope_ concerning life after death, never an affirmation. In fact I have been taught, that another person (even the pope) can never know whether the other guy is "going to heaven or hell". And how could he?

    I don't think the question whether heaven or hell exist is logical if you understand what the words mean. This is not radical a radical claim, but just plain common sense.

    Why do I believe in God? Because I understand what is meant by the words "believe in God" in a way that is all fine and reasonable (and, you know, very good for me at times). You atheists are trying to give me reasons to think that there's something wrong with my faith, but I find that these reasons never apply to what I actually mean by those three words. That is the reason why atheism is not working. The fault is in you, not us. Please read my previous posts, this is getting repetitive.

    The questino of "other gods" is theological. For me they ("gods") are all the same. There are merely better and worse theologies. Theologies should be judged by their fruits. (The fresh ones also, not only by the worm-ridden ones.)

    Madskillz,

    I can see your point about whether Europe would be better off without Christianity. That is in fact a good question. Too bad it's unanswerable. But seriously, man, your knowledge of the bible is just terrible! I'll have to get back to this one.

    Achems Razor,

    Sorry, I just could not take your crazy notions seriously at the time. Maybe I'll find some time to explain the albphabet to you as well.

  65. Robot Guru

    1. I definitely believe in evolution, the fact we came from a sperm...a single celled organism to what you are today is proof.

    2. I wont rule out the possiblity of a creator, how did the universe start? big bang... then where did the matter come from for that? string theory (dimensions)...mathematically can prove it but we don't have technology to prove it...but it all had to come from something, nothing can't create something

    3. As for "God", my personal opinion is that god could possibly just be your own consciousness. The self awareness...but then again, take away your sight, hearing, taste, touch, and feel...do you still exist?, your whole reality is a product of your mind...becoming one with your true self is what taoist/buddhist call enlightenment

    who really knows...only time will tell

  66. jolulipa

    @Saturnine
    I have heard your "different Christianity" from someone else. But it was way better explained by him. You are all over the place. Father George Coyne the former Director of the Vatican Observatory, a Theoretical Physicist, is a firm believer of the theory of evolution, the big bang, etc. he even does not goes away of believing in a multi-verse hypothesis of these days. He believe in god for cultural and traditional reasons. He was raised in the Judeo-Christian tradition and he believe in it. But totally disengaged himself with anything that has to mis religion with Science.

    Read about him and you might improve in your debating skills, he even received kudos from Richard Dawkins for his way of thinking. That is a real new age Christian, and a well educated for that.

    But I must warm you... He himself admits that there is no a single shred of evidence to suggest god exists. He just believes in it for traditional and cultural reasons.

    At hart, he is a Atheist with a deep love for Christians.

    I respect that, but for me... I prefer reason.

    New age science is way better than new age god... check it out! maybe your will be the next new age atheist of your block. :>)

  67. Tris

    science 1 - 0 religion

  68. Saturnine

    jolulipa,

    I agree that my last post was a bit convoluted. What's surprising to me, though, is that the grown up version of Chrisitianity is "different" to you as well. I'm with Coyne, but I don't think his Christianity is as impoverished as you imply when you say he believes "for trad. and cultural reasons".

    Chyrch,

    What do you think I think already? I've already said that the point of Christian language is to awaken and deepen the thinking about such things as love, the good and beauty. If you're not interested in these things, then (as Dawkins put it in a different context) you can just **** off. But if you do, it's a great loss to humanity, because that means another critical guy has left the world with the "geniuses" of the Intelligent Design movement. (In my view it's better to be an atheist than to be a childish Christian. Unless you are a child, of course.)

    It seems I have to repeat that Christian language is symbolic, and unless you realize that, you are going to make all sorts of errors. This kind of religion is difficult only to people who lack imagination or are somehow scared to admit that a religion of love makes deep sense.

    Also, before you start, I want to say again that it really is illogical for people who understand the concepts of heaven and hell (and I think you are some of them) to say that they exist. What sense does that make? What we're saying is that such a state of being as perfect happiness is a reasonable concept and worth hoping for. Hope, mr. Chyrch, seems to be a philosophical concept that you don't really understand. Take a look at squid's list in #44 and my reply, add hope in there and start to do some homework.

    Just planting seeds here.

    Madskillz,

    Your post #63 is a clear indication that you have been brainwashed in a fundamentalist culture. Or else you have had 0 lessons in religion with proper teachers. (Hitch is not one.)

    Luke 14 is a good example of a difficult passage not inteded for people on the 1st grade, who will certainly not get it. First of all, you should read the relevant passage is as a whole. Secondly, the whole threatening menace issue makes sense only if you first realize that Luke sees Jesus already as the risen Christ (he is writing decades after the crucifixion). This image is intended to scare the Christians of Luke's age into obedience. Luke's reasons are unkown. Symbolically the issue is simple, though. The thing that people should hate in one another and themselves is their sin. Remember, that we don't exactly see what kinds of sinners other people are. Secondly, remember that our own conscience is a place where we experience what kind of life we are living. If we have really sinned, our conscience will not let us live an emotionally open life. Think about it. Jesus was trying to teach a very simple thing, actually. That's merely that if you repent the bad stuff that is really there, you will become free. What is to be hated is the very thing that traps our conscience.

    You people are complete m*rons if you don't see that this is what the f***** book is saying.

    If you can follow me this far, you can figure the rest of it out for yourself.

  69. Saturnine

    By the way,

    Love occurs between people. Get into it.

  70. Achems Razor

    @Saturnine:

    Not trying to stoop to your level, but I think you are a L00ny-t00n, a physoclistous, give up with the psychoanalysis already, you are not qualified!

    You use m0r0n and the f-word in your ad hominem attacks, takes away all credibility, trying to overwhelm us with your new age cherry picking verbage from your blatant unconvincing pseudo-argument from your vague authority. I consider all your arguments "Moot"

    Learn some manners and respect then someone may listen to you!

  71. Saturnine

    Tris,

    Why does it have to be a battle? This is not the middle ages we're living in.

  72. Saturnine

    Achems Razor,

    Been there. Just trying out a diffrerent approach.

    Hope you guys realize that the verbal abuse is just a bit of entertainment on the side.

  73. Saturnine

    Oh dear, it seems I have to confess, that right now I'm feeling that the heaven really does exist somewhere inside us (or in between us). But the sense of it is hard to describe. It seems that the reason why it does not make sense to say it exists is that the experience is not 'assertoric'. Or something like that. Be as it may, all this seems like a very good thing. Nothing irrational about it.

    Sorry about that. (I know it's silly to start talking about such things after ranting online for 2 days.)

  74. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    I'm forced to agree with Achems Razor in his assertion of you being a "L00ny-T00n".

    Your pseudo-Christianity has been somewhat popular for several decades, when people started demanding more than blind assertion for their beliefs. Now, instead of hearing "It's true because the Bible says so" we hear: "It's true, but you don't possess the imagination to understand".

    It's arrogant, pretentious, and most of all, intellectually dishonest. It's a way to escape responsibility for your beliefs.

  75. Robot Guru

    @ Saturnine:

    I agree that not damaging your conscious is a good teaching and reasoning...but in that same book, they say god IS love...if that is true, how can something so pure even propose the idea of sacrificing an animal?

    respek

  76. Joe_nyc

    @jolulipa

    George Coyne video was extremely insightful.

    I think I'll warm up to catholics from now on. :)

    thanks

  77. North

    If man is here to find a supreme Truth, if s/he is to make sense of his/her life and existence in this world, then how or in what way this could happen at all? There is no other possibility for this to happen except in his/her own consciousness, through some so-called "inner" experience, simply said - in his psyche i.e. as a psychic phenomenon, as an Eureka!, an illumination. So Science and Religion, however odd to some may sound, take absolutely the same approach to finding such Truth. They are like Siamese twins. They deny the possibility for man to experience the Truth as an illumination. This is the seed of their conflict because they are different as long as they search for the ultimate Truth in different directions (outward for Science and inward for Religion) but they are the same just because their methods rely on this denial of a personal experience of that Truth. This way Science says the Truth is somewhere out there in the physical universe and that the laws of this Truth, reveal themselves only to some extraordinary people in history and not here and now, but one day in the future we will discover this Truth in some physical form, in some outward appearance to the senses and then Science will reach its eschatological purpose. Religion actually says the same thing with different words. It says that Truth is revealed only to some godsend individuals in the course of history and is denied by God to the rest of humankind. The rest can only study the Scriptures and interpret these according to their competence and experience. Human beings will be allowed to experience this Truth personally only at an eschatological moment when God will reveal Himself. Now these two methods are historical in that they flow through space and time in the historical development. Relying on a reasoning and "cause and effect" logic they are linear in substance. They stand between a starting point and an end. That way, they so to speak, postpone the Truth. The Truth is never here and now at this very moment but in some future moment which is promised by some past revelation about it.
    Science and Religion complement each other dialectically and they will reach a point where the Truth they seek will come in the form of the ultimate Revelation, point Zero, where all separations in all spheres of knowledge, from active/passive, through conservative/liberal, to science/religion, this is good/this is bad, that we create spiritually as ideas and suffer because of them, will be experienced in a single moment of supreme clarity, an illumination, as an infinite continuum of Consciousness and of Truth, our consciousness, because we are part of God's infinite spirit which is here and now. Until the reality and possibility of personal experience in the individual consciousness is recognized, the ultimate Truth will forever be only a distant mirage and a cause for conflict and suffering. This world of space-time, cause-effect is an illusion, beneath it lies just a single principle that repeat itself over and over through space and time. What humankind, each and everyone needs, is a transcendence of consciousness through revelation. That is the moment where you live Truth, not think of it.

    But as Ralph Emerson once said "Truth is too simple for us; we do not like those who unmask our illusions."

  78. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    I think you made a reasonable point there. The very thing I'm saying is basically that religious experiences consist of appearances that should be spoken of non-assertorically. That's exactly what the symbols are for. It seems clear that much of the problems that you seem to be having are philosophical and not scientific. We obviously need better concepts.

    But how is this intellectual dishonesty and lack of responsibility? I admit that it's a somewhat bad argument to say that you just don't get it. But up to a point it's just true. If you say to me that I should be able to explain Newton and Einstein, then I either am or am not up for that challenge. If I ask you to explain Christianity, you come up with utter falsehood. What should we to say to that?

  79. Saturnine

    Robot Guru,

    I think killing animals is a misguided act, and at heart a sin. One of the dramatic aspects of the Bible is that it shows how terrible people have been (and, in fact, still are.) Check out a documentary called Earthlings. I'm sure you will be touched by a truly ethical phenomenon right there.

    Humankind is developing, both biologically and culturally.

  80. Madskillz

    @Saturine

    I'm not sure if it were such a good idea coming back into this forum. I cant even laugh at your bizarre mental platform anymore. I actually find it not only appalling, offensive, shallow, patronising and contradictory - It actually frightens me. I am being serious.

    I have always had a general idea about your kind of mentality - it is the only way I can understand how you and so many others like you even exist - but this time around it has awoken something inside of me that truly fears. Although I have stated that science has killed your religion (inevitable decline), people such as yourself are still a large group, the majority infact, and many are even making significant decisions that will affect my life and those whom I care about no matter what.

    You are clearly an intelligent and articulate person, however, these very things are giving me a disturbingly clearer insight into how you think. I dont just mean in your attempts at justifying your religion (to yourself), I mean how you actually percieve others in here and how you are reading what they write to you. How you are 'able' to denounce so many things so easily (in your own mind), and how you can so comfortably contradict yourself so often without even picking up on the slightest hint of doing so. It is also more than frustrating that you quite obviously dodge the questions that you simply cannot answer and you have already played your 'you people just dont or cant get it' card too many times in that post already. I used to think that this was mosly due to the person being a little slow, but as I said, you clearly are not; You should not be capable of thinking the way you do. It is a form of delusion+insanity that goes beyond the bounds of your faith.

    What is also painful for me here is that I know many new age 'love' Christians, some are even imediate family, and I'm not comfortable having this insight alongside my love for them. They are far friendlier than you are, but I just didnt really 'go there' with them, intentionally, and now I know why that was the right thing to do. They too, for the most part, are also intelligent people you see. Now I have to tell myself that their being somewhat nicer than you makes all the difference. I was far better off just assuming that they had the usual 'gotta have faith to understand' silliness.

    I will respond to your above posts regarding myself, although I am truly feeling drained in this converation.

    In 68, you say that you never said that I wasnt going to hell. Now, technically this is true, but:

    Madskillz,

    Oh, and belief in God is not about the rules. It’s about becoming a good person. Any good atheist will go to heaven. I’m sure even many of you m*ronic atheists go there too, because it doesn’t even matter whether you get it or not.

    What was I supposed to derive from that Sat? I am not concerned if you are implying that I am NOT a good atheist, or even in your likely explanation being "I dont know you, so I cant say". What bothers me is that you are being intentionally misleading, and also intentionally leaving yourself openings for back tracking. You do this alot. This is some nasty manipulation and delusion here Sat. Most people are guilty of a bit of this from time to time sure, but we are not exactly talking about the weather here, are we?

    Now, this is where you are truly creepy:

    Madskillz,

    Your post #63 is a clear indication that you have been brainwashed in a fundamentalist culture. Or else you have had 0 lessons in religion with proper teachers. (Hitch is not one.)

    I cannot get my head around your statements like this. You are the peron in here who is vehemontly justifying Christianity and the bible, yet you actually feel that it is ME who has been brainwashed in a fundementalist culture? I. Just. Cant. Comprehend. You. Also, in 63, why didnt you answer the bible excerpts that are ABOVE and BELOW the one you did have a crack at answering? Why pick out the one in the middle? Is this just random, Sat?

    Furthermore, I spent 4 years in an Anglcan/Uniting private boarding school. Bible studies were a compulsory subject for an entire year of school, and I had to attend chappel nearly every damn Sunday for these years too, apart from school holidays. I do not profess to carry a great deal of knoweledge on bible study, as I didnt have a use for it then or in the 15 years since, and have simply forgotten most of it due to not practicing it. I can tell you though, Sat, I got a serious dose of it for several years, from several highly paid teachers and our very own chaplain. Conclusion: Archaic rubbish from an ancient cult that just wont go away.

  81. Ben Morales-Correa

    This documentary is not about the end of God but about the end of religion. It doesn't prove the nonexistence of a deity, rather that religious concepts of the divine are wrong as proved by science.

  82. Madskillz

    @Saturine

    Sorry to all for adding to my last post of epic proportions, I'll pass on the blog stick for a good while:

    How can you derive so MUCH from those bible readings and why dont they just bloody write it along YOUR lines in the first place? Sure it was a different age and language etc, but couldnt authors be just a LITTLE more elaborate? It should be called the rubix book.

    And I am still only able to read that Jesus has slaves who he beats when they dont perform up to scratch.

  83. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    It seems I've really pissed you off. Well, in fact now that it's this obvious, I do feel regret. But you really should just grow up and show what the things are that I've said that are contradictory. Then I can really answer.

    I'm just angered at people's lack of trying. I'm really sorry it leads to this kind of rant. (I know it's silly, and that I'm blindly just hacking away at almost everyone. Believe me this does not happen everyday. Maybe I should have gone to the gym or something.)

    What I meant in my other reply was that if you've read so far, you can do the other schoolwork yourself. I really thought that was a sufficient and proper reply. The passages are not really difficult.

    There are lots of poor Bible study classes. Why on earth did you go there? I mean, you can obviously think for yourself, can't you?

  84. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    The authors of the Bible did not explain. They left the hard work to others. Too bad the Church Fathers weren't modern. Why did they have to live at that time and not this one?

    Try Claude Romano.

  85. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    Romano won the Grand Prix M0@#$ 2010 in France. (Source: Wikipedia) I'm sorry, but this is just too hilarious. In spite of that, he's a really good philosopher as well.

  86. Chyrch

    Wow Madskillz. That was quite something. Very well done.

    Unfortunately the message won't get across to Saturnine. There's clearly far too much self-delusion. At this point, pride is likely getting in the way of a revelation. Hopefully it'll come in time, but it's not likely when we're pressing for one.

    Saturnine,

    How dare you insinuate that people aren't trying (post 88). Do you honestly think that if someone doesn't see things your way, it means they're not trying? That's one of the most childish things I've heard.

    I urge you to stop. You've made a complete fool out of yourself already, and have been insulting to others in doing so. If it's a display of how your version of Christianity is better than the literalist's, then I still have to say that my version of secular humanism is superior. I view rational discourse very highly. To see someone be so blatantly dishonest intellectually pains me.

  87. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    It seems i have to really concede that arrogance does not work. You are completely right, and I'm sorry. It seems anger feeds anger, and that's why I'm still going.

    Apart from that, though: You still have not shown in what rational way I'm being dishonest. What do you in fact want me to say here?

  88. Madskillz

    @Saturine

    Your latest contradiction will do yes? Here it is: You claim to feel regret in pissiing me off. It is disapointment/depressed that you actually make be feel, but if you truly regret doing this kind of thing, then why do you keep doing it over and over and over~

    But quite nicely, this also brings us to the crux of the whole that is sick about your cult: You are heavily conditioned through Christianity to not properly feel that which IS regret. This is the primary central theme for your religion; You are able to be selective about what you wish to regret, regardless of imorality or reality. This allows for the highest levels of 'justified' evil.

    Caio chump, I'm goin' to bed.

  89. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    Your response leaves me speechless. But it really is not like that.

  90. Saturnine

    Madskillz & Chyrch,

    I re-read much of the thread and it seems that my mistake has been to take you as just being another pair of disrespectful anti-religious people at heart. My point was at first to try and be as disrespectful (and unreasonable) as "you people" usually are towards Christians, but it seems it got out of hand.

    This didn't work.

  91. Madskillz

    Heads up, Sat:

    I AM A DISRESPECTFULLY ANTI-RELIGIOUS PERSON AT HEART

  92. BlueConservative

    Excellent - share this one with everyone you know.

    There is no war - takes two.
    Religion attacks science - one way.

    Seperation of Church and State!!!

    E Pluribus Unum !!!
    USA first and only appropriate motto, changed in 1954

    One Nation Indivisible.

  93. Madskillz

    @Sat

    - Your #95 post! It is a FAIL of such epic proportions that it will be printed out and pinned up next to my monitor the minute I return to work later this month. Even without the context, it is still so very funny.

    Although I am being condecending - I TRULY thankyou for this. Every time I think of it; it will make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside for the rest of my life! (:

  94. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Look, I'll give you something too, in return.

    It appears that you are quite passionate about the subject of harmonising science and religion, and also have the potential to do so. Much of the following is going to be concepts that you are already aware of and are trying to adhere to. Bear with me please.

    The Universe, as explained by science, is flawed. It has to be in order for it to exist. If the occurence of it's creation were uniform, the big bang would have been more of a big fizzle, and far less impressive at that.

    Now this, by default, means that everything within the universe is also flawed at some level. This is you, me, religion and all else.

    Obviously in this case, I am referring to applying flaw to your religion - Christianity. I know that you already have done as much.

    Right, so where is the problem? The problem is that you are not truly accepting of this. Why? Because you are in a blog that is more about explaining one's stance on religion, rather than in the acceptance of overall flaws in our entire existence. This is not a bad thing, as it gets us flawed humans to this point in that overall underderstanding.

    You need to be content with it all. You feel frustrated and angry when trying to explain your understanding to others, so therefore you are not content. Regardless whether or not people actually have somthing intelligent to say to you, does not matter. All that you are really missing here is where you started in the first place. But this is okay, because after all, you are flawed (:

    Mine, and many others reasons for being blatantly anti-religious are not the key here. We find religion just that little bit extra flawed in regards to what we percieve as right and wrong. This does not need to bother you, as we too are flawed and you can be as right as you choose to be. Just know that when you are challenging a persons perspective on this, it will always cause flames. It is possibly to best example of such. You may not really want to know how dark people can get on the subject of Christianity, and I respect that it is your choice to go there. In arguing or debating it, however, you are providing the required consent.

  95. Madskillz

    And c'mon bud, lighten up and have a good chuckle at #95. It really is fantastic - it may even be a contender for eclipsing some of my own doozies, but I doubt it (:

  96. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    What do you think I mean in #95? You seem to misunderstand even that.

    I asked you to show in what way I have contradicted myself. What you gave for an answer was just another unacceptable claim about Christians in general. Is that good argumentation?

    I am not claiming that I'm being right about everything. What I'm claiming is that I at least understand the basics of the religion that I'm talking about. It is obvious that you do not. Even if I personally fail in being a poor arguer, that does not change the overwhelmingly evident fact, that you atheists need to do a better job. Your arguments are not convincing either. The reason for this is, that you do not take the trouble to get to know the people you are arguing against.

    If you step outside religion intellectually, you cannot change it. You can only try to destroy it. It seems that's the only real way in which you and I differ here. I think we should develop it (and ourselves along with it), you want to destroy it.

    You haven't thought this through, man. Even if you succeed (which doesn't seem to be happening), what's next? My conviction is, that you will see that humanity has not in fact changed at all, and you will need to replace the old religion with a new one.

    What I'm asking is, why can't you start now?

  97. Saturnine

    @Chyrch,

    I still challenge you to think things over.

  98. Achems Razor

    Any of the 28,000,000 million gods and thousands of the religions in recorded history, are not why we are here.

    As @Madskillz, pointed out we are here because of imperfection, the only thing that is, and can ever be perfect is termed the great "Void".
    An imperfection in the "Void" itself brought the BB into fruition. The "void" in itself can not be verified.

    Try to imagine a state where nothing exists. Such a state is impossible even contradictory, since the concept existence is necessary to apprehend it, therefore existence exists necessarily, even if nothing else exists.

    According to quantum physics, and even Einstein GR, everything is illusion, there is really no such thing as time, space, matter. An "Atom" itself is 99.9999999%, empty, it is basically energy! There is no matter floating around in an "Atom" and the space between atoms are similar as the space between bodies re: planets, stars, galaxies, etc: in the cosmos.

    The engine that makes spacetime is the speed of light, which in its self is an illusion, at a photons perspective at the speed of light everything is static, time stands still.

    And then to top it off, the "Atoms" themselves are in more than one place at the same time/unlimited, they are dancing in and out of our existence constantly, we are in effect catching the atoms according to our vibrational levels that make up our existence re: string theory.

    The reality/universe that we are in, according to "M" theory is only one of unlimited "Branes" as in parallel universes theory/many worlds theory.

    Now do we as humans collapse the waveform in our computer brains, to form all we see? it is still all there all right, but in a sea of unlimited probabilities, in the quantum foam.
    See... "The Copenhagen effect"...also... "youtube-a conscious universe-the observer effect".

    So, we have a long, long, way to go before we can figure out anything at all!!

  99. Madskillz

    @Saturine

    Okay mate, I had a crack in post #100. I really did. I understand that I was presenting to you a lecture, and it is often hard for people to see this as anything other than patronising - and therefore the message is easy to miss. My smart-arseism to either side of the post prolly didnt help, but I gotta have my fun. Reading #100 away from those posts and my overwhelming patronidge may get a little more happening, although I suspect that It wont.

    So, let us now RETURN to religion. You were warned though - this is gonna get offensive.

    Before I go for your throat, I have a perfect (99.9%) analogy as to how I perceive you and Christianity in general. This may assist in our future yarns, and give further insight into why you and yours often recieve a negative reception from us mooronic atheists:

    On this awesome website/portal, there is a documentary called 'Pedigree Dogs Exposed'.

    After viewing this;

    1. The Church is the Kennel Club.

    2. The Kennel Club officials are the Churches authority - Bishops, Priests, Clerics, Popes etc.

    3. The dog breeders and show judges are the flock.

    Give special thought to the humane breeders, as they are an apparent minority within the circle and have mostly been far too quiet on the issue untill recently. To be fair, they were under an enormous amount of pressure and were afraid of losing their connection to the Kennel Club. This type of 'flock' member is not you. You are regular 3. Infact, I have a special example for you:

    In the docs blog section - Every single post was in overall clear favour of the message being delivered by the doc. Except for one rather brave individual (post #29). For right or wrong, this is EXACTLY how I view people like yourself.

    My own post in that blog, #43, is in there too. It is a message of personal humility. You could use this against me if you like, it is certainly leaving me wide open....

    I would not usually expect you to watch docs in order to make my points -it is just so VERY close to home that it should actually save us a whole night of blogging. And in this case animals are likely a good neutral ground for us.

    I wont dodge your last post. I'll happily attend to it after you have viewed the dog doc.

  100. Saturnine

    @Achem's Razor,

    At least you seem to know something about popular scientific theories.

    @Madskillz,

    Ok, #100 made some sense. I disagree, as you already know, about the role religion plays here. You say, that religions are "extra flawed". I say, that religions should be forced to help.

  101. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Thankyou, Sat. I would still like for you to look at the doggie doc though (:

  102. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    Ok, I'll watch it. I've been trying to shove some stuff down your throat as well, so I guess it's only fair. I just broke up with my girlfriend, so I have nothing better to do than this anyway.

  103. Madskillz

    @Achem's Razor

    You are so bloody clever that you scare the hell out of me!*

    *Pun intended (;

  104. Madskillz

    @Sat

    How about getting laid?

    Nah, you'll be right.

  105. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    Not through the doc yet, but I get the picture. Don't get me wrong here. It's a truly saddening thing to see how evil and stupid people actually are. One thing that separates ethically grown up people from the others is that they understand how much we actually fail as human beings.

    Remember what I said about 'ultimatums' before? Please read it again. I think you should see, that my type of Christianity is not 'regular 3'.

    What does it mean to help humanity with religion? I have said over and over, that religion must work as an obstacle to error, ethical or otherwise. Why would I want to improve on the past if I didn't think that the past has been flawed?

    I'm happy that you made it clear, that you in fact perceive me wrongly.

    I'm sorry if that's difficult to see.

    But don't. parade. the. mistakes. of. others. before. me. and. say. that. they're. mine.

    Please.

  106. Saturnine

    (That crossed out word was "s**pid'.)

  107. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    By the way, it really dawns on me more and more how little you really understand about Christianity.

    At least read something. How about C. S: Lewis' book called The Problem of Pain?

  108. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Referring to others mistakes as like to the person you are debating against can be a great format. Especially when both parties can see the mistake of the 'others'.

    Now, let's get crackin.

    Your version of Christianity is the worst form of number 3, the flock. It puts a fluffy face on religion and will therefore be more appealing to the modern masses, inevitably prolonging the pain of being subject to, and restrained by religion - for humanity as a whole.

    As you posted in #102 - you point out that in intellectually stepping outside of religion, I can only try and destroy it. This may be debatable, but it should probably come later in the conversation as the destruction of religion is very high up on my wish list - I need to be a little more convinced the other way before I can give you a 2 way productive discussion in this area.

    You see religion as an obstacle to error. Perhaps it sometimes USED to be, but now days I can only see it as an obstacle to mankinds progress.

  109. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    I'm not sure what you want me to think over. You've made some of the weakest apologist arguments I've heard, and presented no good reason for believing them.

    I've read the Bible in full, something most Christians can't even claim. Religion, and the reasons people believe in it have interested me for a long while now. I've read the books, watched the videos, researched the studies. While it's still early to determine, I can almost guarantee religion will be a topic of my thesis in Psychology.

    You've said several times that Atheists should know more about the religion they're criticizing, and to an extent, that's true. Here's the big flaw in that though:

    - There are thousands of varieties of Christianity alone. While you may think your perspective on it is true, the vast majority of Christians will disagree with you, and expect their critics to know about their version. Do you expect anyone to learn each variety?
    - Frankly, I don't need to know each variety of Christianity to not believe in it. Until someone comes out with valid reasons to believe it, I don't need reasons not to.
    - Believing in something BEFORE there's valid reasons to do so is naive. Not believing in something UNTIL there's valid reasons to do so, is applying proper skepticism and it's being intellectually honest.

  110. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    If religion does not work, it has to be reformed. I hope the moderation passes that other comment soon so you don't have to wait. (It just contains a link, not pirate-tongue.)

  111. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    Some good points there. Although I'm not an apologist in the usual sense. What I'm saying is that you can take part in reforming Christianity by achieving a critical (you say "atheistic") position within it. This implies that I think it is not dishonesty. I'm sure the traditional apologists hate me for that, because they think I'm actually "one of you".

    If you've read the scriptures with half a brain, you understand that religion is not really that difficult. Not even time-consuming. You just have to have a reasonably wise position that does not draw strict lines in between who is religious and who isn't, who is right and who is wrong. It's a conversation. If you take part in it, you will convince the others if you have the wiser position. You can use the symbols themselves (the religious language) in the justification of whatever you think. (You already know it's like that if you've actually read the sacred texts).

    Don't just think you're beyond religion. Your own ethics is "bound" (that's the meaning of the word 'religion') just like everyone elses. Understanding that should make you realize that you can't help being religious. The point is that you are probably wiser than many of the fundamentalists but you are not doing anything to help us change them for the better.

    See?

  112. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Okay, read it.

    I am already sold on that, Sat. I think that universal love is a great thing for humanity. I do it as much as I can stomach. However, I aint EVER loving certain people though. I can even get my head around that God is not neccisarily a complete bastarrd when babies die and whatnot, although I sympathise with those who cant.

    Your religions message of love conceals many things underneath that I feel are holding back humanity in extremely damaging ways.

    Here is my foremost concern:

    Christianity makes a huge case on love being truly acheived through repenting your sins and/or giving/gaining forgiveness. It states that this applies to EVERY case, no matter how difficult you may find it. I whole hardedly disagree with that ultimatum. Here is an unsavoury example of where I draw the line, and why.

    When a serial pedophile begins to feel a great sense of regret and guilt in their atrocities, and many do, they can turn to God for repentance and forgiveness. They will still face judgement later, but for the moment, this will alleviate their pain and guilt. They may temporarily stop hating themselves so much for thir crimes, which amplifies the odds on them revisiting their savage lusts. Another victim, well done 'love'. This can become a never ending cycle - I cant help but notice a bit of a trend in a religions clergy....

    I cant allow for anything that may initiate this. You see, my special type of forgivness for these wonderfully born again subjects comes in the form of a bullet. This is a very large part of why we have a justice system in place (seperate from Church), to try and take care of the messy jobs - and keep outraged people like myself from ruining our lives by spending the remainder of it in jail. I am aware that allowing myself to truly hate something is personally damaging - but I am only HUMAN. Forgiveness go screw itself, I'll take the bruises.

    I have a much better and bigger example of what I am getting at here, and this lot dont usually go to jail even when everyone is 'aware' of their crime - but I'll first allow for you to respond to the ontray.

  113. Madskillz

    @God

    Damn you for the word 'necessary', it gets me every time!

  114. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    It seems we are tantalizingly close to agreement here.

    I agree with the core of what you say, but disagree on death penalty. I'll see if I can argue against it. I'll say something about the problem of evil as well, although you graciously didn't insist on it yourself.

    Why do we have to think that there should be forgiveness for things that are not really and adamantly regretted or sins that are not understood completely and without remainder? There is in fact no reason for that, not in the Bible or elsewhere. That's what is meant by the "wrathful God", in essence. I mean that people can and should be drawn away from real evil with a proper use of their religion. If that does not happen, then you and I should react by doing the job better. I mean I think we as a people (in the west) already believe that pedophilia and eugenics are gross ethical mistakes. We should regret our properly understood sins with a real ethical pain in our hearts. Unless we want a society of psychopaths, that is. Symbols help, if reason and knowledge alone does not lead people to some kind of pure ethical realization (although I'm not sure there is such a thing without the context of how it is bound in society). I said before, that it would be ok if we loved everyone as much as is possible. Well, I don't think Christians have ever said that it is possible for them to love everything about a person. What is it that they can't in fact love, but that they should in fact hate? Oh, yes. It's the sin. I think people who can't really become anything but evil have a special life. I think it is likely that they don't feel enough to understand ethics for biological reasons. But they should not be put to death. Instead we should somehow be able to moralize them to a point where they really do understand. This is where the wrathful God could somehow be invoked better. I think He would be a lot better than a bullet. But this is a moot point as we know.

    The problem of evil is not difficult to solve. Think about it: There is a lot of terrible stuff that threaten us and our happiness. Much of it is not our fault. God knows it.

    Simple. as. that.

  115. Saturnine

    Oh dear. (Lol. that sounded really stupid.)

    Oops, I forgot to say that after 1) God knows that it's not our fault, I was going to say that 2) But why on earth do we really have to insist that it's Gods fault or "plan"? I mean I don't really see any reason why we should think that at all.

  116. Saturnine

    This is really hilarious at times. I hope you don't take off on that id*ocy.

  117. Saturnine

    @Madskillz,

    Come on, no Hume's argument about the problem evil, or something else? I'm not having you on, this is a real issue.

  118. Madskillz

    @Sat

    I wholeley disagree with the death penalty too, Sat. My entire country does, infact (in our law, not each individual). If Mr Ped is caught, a long stay in jail rotting is far more fitting than the quick and easy way out anyway. It is not by default a lifetime stay as of yet, but I'll hang out for a little progress here. My bullet solution is just a personal issue that I must keep in check and allow others to get on with their jobs.

    I am not entirely sure on how much you are agreeing with me here Sat, but YOU have to be careful around heresey, so I wont chew on you for that. I am running with that the majority of your Churches flock do not, and can not move forward in this area. I assume that this is where you were mentioning religious reform earlier? Good luck with that, but I'm glad for your thinking anyway.

    Bring me back to the finer points on the above after if you like, but first:

    The true enormity of the 'forgive and forget' syndrome is most damaging in the case of where it is applied to an entire nation.

    There are two primary aspects to this. The forerunner is the persons responsible for making the overarching decisions for a nation (and we may never know who most of these people really are, pfft), and the other is how they can really get into the psyche of their population to be able to 'justify' said decisions to them. And maybe even to themselves - who knows how they truly feel about religion, their ancestor pedigree may even have created most of it for all we know. Anyway, when a nation declares war on another, their must be a given reason if it is a 'forward thinking' country. WMD's etc.

    Now, it is not these 'open' exlanations that are the true problem here, which is at best a distraction. It is most certainly the coorporate media, but not soley or even in the majority. It is the ability for the masses of the attacker nation to feel a sub-concience lack of remorse for those on the receiveing end of the attack. Many may become repeadedly 'close' to the actual suffering being inflicted, but will tend to keep falling back into their 'comfort zone' via their religious conditioning. The conditioning will also bar many of them from looking further into the true impact of a war;

    The true casualties of war, in the numerical sense, is never the military. It is, and always has been, the civilians - usually grossly inflated over that of the military. In Iraq (...for example), the civilian population is not only subject to death from stray bullets and bombs etc. - which is as far as most will get in thiking. Very few get to the next bit - The largest impact is made via the destruction of a nations infrastructure and necessary trade. When Iraq had all of it's food production, water treatment, electricity etc destroyed - there was a HUGE roll on effect from such. Insult to injury is applying a trade embargo (medical supplies included in this case). Most will die simply from starvation, as their population is already massivley inflated from having former said trade cut off (Iraqs pitiful agriculture woulda been bombed if they had it anyway, alongside their methods of producing it that were). What is left after this lot die are usually victim to dysentry (dirty water), infection and countless other disease. Or simply for being old, infant or otherwise prone. The longer the 'siege', the more profound the casualty. In this particular case, it is infact MILLIONS.

    So, how the bloody hell can this scale of slaughter, even to the 'pro war' community, be justified? Well, often these days it simply cant, so how do they get people to be prone to 'turning a blind eye' and avoiding knoweledge of the uncomfortable facts? Yes, it is party the media, but History has shown, time and time again, that the method through which this is acheived is RELIGION. And this applies to apathy, as well as conviction.

    It may not be as obvious as in the fundementalist religions, but your religion of misguided love is still just as affected. Refer back to my 'ontray' example in #119. Yes the pedophile in this case is the attacker nations ruling sector, but the insane apathetic effect to people is a conditioned response! It doesnt matter that the love message would have most of your lot feeling bad for suffering people more than most others, as they have to relearn how to propely care about ACOUNTABLILITY. The 'extra' flaws in your religion around love is not just about them being misleading, it is also about them causing a mass form of DE-SENSITISATION. Your average Christian is not truly capable of feeling proper regret/guilt/remorse, as the overarching responsibility for them lay in the hands of another - GOD.

  119. Madskillz

    Due to the broad complexity of #125, I might not have covered all of my bases in this argument due to not being able to analy proof read it pre-post in my self induced 'timeframe'. I had a crack though and will fill in any holes that I may spot now.

    Please take this into consideration when you are preparing your counter attack. To save you time, not my cred.

  120. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    I agree with most of this. People. Have. The. Wrong. Theology.

    Reformation is possible. It has happened. It will happen. Do it.

  121. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Do it? You want me to help reform a religion? Jee-sus. That's a mighty tall order there Sat.

    Currently, my answer to that is 'NO' - but with a really good swear word in front of it.

    Your religion has such an awful track record that I personally cannot see it as 'salvagable'.

    Religion may STILL be able to serve a positive purpose for those who are, well, less mentally endowed (settle down, I dont mean you) - and does so in many ways already. Every decent human being has infinite worth, but to expect a significantly large number of people (sadly) to truly be able to grasp the bigger picture would be a bit naive of me. Also, regarding the slower chappie - I find that they hardly ever care about the bigger picture anyway. I dont mind this so much, I just wish that they would stop making self taught 'expert' opinions on things like politics and black people.

    Having said this though - reformed, better funded and simply more accessible education is FAR more appealing. Also, where the majority of people are apparently benefitting from your religion, is in the area of getting simple answers to difficult questions eg - Who and what am I and why is it so? Without some good answers to this type of question, and perhaps a litte philosopy, there is a large void left in a person (ooh, now there is an oppurtunity). Although I am apalled at myself for saying this - now that people have things like TV, mainstream music and facebook, I dont think that they are feeling this void so heavily any more, and they are far less likley to even bother enquiring about it. It is not just science that has killed religion, although it pretty much did invent these things. Still, some will be searching for a fleshed out identity and are entitled to this. A good teacher can give them this by teaching them the truth about our existence. A really good teacher can apply a more user friendly format for those who are still struggling, and still get the truth across. This does not necessarily just apply to schools.

    Honesty applies to all, regardless of their mental capacity. Your religion, PARTICULARLY after past reformation, is simply full of big fat lies. Even if you were only to keep the parts that really are just good healthy philosophy ie - Give a man a fish, he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish, he eats for a lifetime - it would merley be a book of good sense, not a religious text (ooh, another op!).

    Religion is just not required anymore Sat. People can get by without it just fine. It should be entirely based in the history department, where it belongs.

  122. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    Wrong reasons, there ("bad track record"). Please start thinking. And, another demonizing strawman ("religion helps only s**pid people) which is both ridiculous and untrue. Absurd pessimism (you think it's "naive" to think that people can grow up). They care. Even children do. More than you know. This just another misunderstanding of humanity on your part. If you don't like what they say, then if you yourself have a brain, you can explain. They may not listen, but you must not stop trying.

    Your ideas about how people have questions concerning existence are as s*u*id as ever. (No one is getting simple answers that are real. You are a complete ** if you think otherwise. That means you also.) All people ask these questions, because everyone dies. You underestimate just about everyone, it seems. Nothing has killed religion, you are living in a dream. What do you mean by "fleshed out identity"? The truth about our existence? Give me a f**** break. Are you in fact a complete m****? What truth? Do you have a good answer? When a person deals with absolute notions, such as "Truth", it's a religious question. If you think this is the same thing as scientific truth, you don't see the difference between a symbolic meaning and an issue concerning facts.

    People lie (some even actively, many passively because they misunderstand). Ye olde people did, we do, you do. There's no way of getting past that. You can't distinguish the forest from the trees. Sacred books are books of good sense if you can interpret them.

    Whenever you follow your heart, it's faith. Please train this area as well as your ability to know.

    You know, Madskillz, I'm beginning to really like and trust my arguments here.

  123. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    Oh, sorry. A simple answer can be profound but when it becomes like that, it really is no longer "simple" in the sense that I intended in the previous context. Please read this sentence a few times, otherwize you're likely to not see what I mean.

    A profound symbolic meaning is very associative and complex. Not simple. This is why they're hard to explain.

    Get it?

  124. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    I admit, that if I saw you face to face, I would have some recourse to the fact that it is very likely that my ranting style really just fails to bring out the arguments properly. I have to think more about this. Maybe Chyrch is right and this stuff really takes more effort than I admit.

  125. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Far out bloke - you really should patch up things with your girlfriend. Unless it is her who is being patched up.

    I'm not innocent of the odd insult, and I am very guilty of condecending remarks against Chrisianity and other things I don't like, but REALLY?

    Whilst I go back over your litany of wrath, to try and extract your actual points, I'll leave you with this:

    Much of my writing has an angry or even somewhat hateful undertone to it, but it is not YOU that I hate, it is your religion. There is an important difference here.

    The most apparent thing that I have learnt from you so far, that you have TAUGHT me, is that in regards to your religion's basic teachings in social interaction - you are a complete Christian FAIL. You truly are. I may not be absolutley spot on with my every thought and concept and can certainly sh*t stir, Sat, but at least I am not trying to pretend that I am something that I am not. ALL CHRISTIANS ARE COMPULSIVE HYPOCRITES!

    What is the need for DIRECT abuse here? You are assumedly sitting at your computer within the comfort of your own home (trailer, I'm thinking) - why do you feel the need to so STRONGLY express your anger at me personally? Is this about me or athiests? To what effect? I am a long way away (lucky for you, or I'd cave your F*****g head in), quite comfortable and completly free of concern over threat. I am fine with derogitry statements that are a PART of a point that you are making, but come ON.

    Things like 'start thinking' 'If you yourself have a brain' 'Give me a f***** break' 'Are you infact a complete m*ron' etc etc etc are reminicient of a 12 year old throwing a feral tantrum - you c**k head degenerate trailer trash.

    And you actually have a problem with the nasty athiests always being so tough on you and yours PRINCESS? Far out man (or boy) - what the hell do you expect? Do unto others.... um, I seem to have forgotten the rest... NOBODY wants your f*****d religion anyway!

    Your inner wisdom that gives you such divine insight into my life's experiences and overall absolute outlook on matters of socialality and various other things that I have not yet even mentioned are so profoundly astute! Please, O' holy Saturated one, aide me with your [in]celestial guidance.

    ...........And now for the fish;

    Re-read MY post #128, consider the context of my insults in it (some are actually jokes), re-read YOUR last post #129, and then re-read THIS post. Compare the insult ratio and type between ALL 3. Note the escalation.

    There is much that is so very deliberate in this post, Sat. A part of the challenge is to extract my actual points from this mess (you do not have to agree with them). I truly apologise for a some of my insults, no matter what the intent.

  126. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Get it? (;

  127. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Also note that whilst this blog format can be superior to a face2face situation, in that all get a chance to speak (and not get a broken nose) - it is still lacking vocal tone; a common problem with having to use caps to emphasise points. It is not always meant as if yelling. Infact, I should prolly work out how to use italics, as the majority of my caps use is really in that regard.

  128. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Hmm, I'll point out ONE deliberate. Your girlfriend being patched up. I dont figure that you bash women, even if you are a bit cranky (:

    Although, from an unpleasant personal experience, I can tell you that it is sometimes VERY hard to tell in a man, even when you think you know them quite well.

  129. jack1952

    @ chyrch

    What you are suggesting is just good manners and I couldn't agree more. There is a passage in the Bible where Jesus sends his disciples out to teach the Gospel. He tells them emphatically to go the local temples to teach but not to go door to door. In other words respect the beliefs of others and don't force your teaching on those who may not want to hear it. A lot of Christians skip this chapter I think. It's what makes a lot of Christians so intolerable. I don't mind discussion but I don't like someone who has all the answers especially when those answers came from one who lived 2000 years ago. I think you and I are probably fairly close in our philosophies.

  130. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    If you can say things like that, which are true, (I know I'm a bad example right now), than in fact you're being nothing more than a better Christian than I am.

    But don't generalize. That's a mistake on your part.

    Also, I'm really no thug, man, in real life. Nowhere near like that.

    jack1952,

    You got it! Excellent, man! You're actually using the Bible coherently. That's all I want to see.

  131. James

    I was an atheist who converted to islam as it made more sense to me...

  132. Madskillz

    @Sat

    -I'll take that as a compliment.

    -Yes to generalize.

    -Relax, I dont think that you are a thug.

  133. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    I'm sorry about the language. You made great and honest points there about how we should speak here. I should know better already. I really don't know why I'm even doing this.

    If people always said exactly what they think in real life, It would be a complete mess, wouldn't it?

  134. Madskillz

    @James

    And?.......

  135. Madskillz

    @Sat

    I am a huge fan of swearing. I get this from being surrounded by Christians (;

  136. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Oh, and yes to real life. Dont get too litteral on that though, it is what blogs are for.

  137. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Excuse the multi-post, I'm doing a few things here.

    - You are doing it because you are having tough relationship issues. Just keep in mind that we are not your girlfriend.

  138. Chyrch

    Wow there's been a lot of activity. I'd try to catch up, but I'd rather cut to the heart of the matter.

    Saturnine,

    You've implied that you don't take the Bible literally. I have a few questions about that, if you don't mind.

    1a) Do you believe Jesus existed?
    1b) If yes, do you believe he was the Son of God/God himself/Divine
    1c) If no, why Christianity?

    2a) Do you believe a God exists?
    2b) If yes, do you believe he is a personal God (one who listens and cares for us)?
    2c) If yes, what are your reasons for believing in him?
    2d) If no, why be involved in religion at all?

    Here's my overall premise on the matter. Let me know if you agree or not, and why:

    Some may need a symbolic religion to teach them right from wrong, but those are few. The vast majority of people don't need religion to teach them ethics. So the benefit that religion currently provides is marginal, and largely based on the organizational efforts (e.g. Churches have been around for centuries, and have unparalleled groups at their disposal to rally for a cause).
    On the other hand, religion has, and is being used to justify some truly awful actions around the world. Here's a short list of just some of the movements that are based largely around religious belief:
    Anti-vaccine
    Anti-Sex Ed
    Anti-condoms
    Suicide bombers
    Anti-blood transfusions
    Female genital mutilation

    These are just a few. Some are more religiously based than others, and none of them are completely about religion. But religion is what is used to justify these movements.
    While it can properly be argued that religion is just being misused in these instances, if there's no truth the claims religions make, why tolerate it?

    Essentially:
    There's marginal benefit to religion
    There's a lot of harm from religion
    Getting away from religion may impact the benefits, but considering they're minor, it's worth it to make a huge blow against the harmful, faith-based movements.

    Wow, that's long (that's what she said). I'm usually more succinct. Forgive me. I blame the Sambuca.

    Jack1952,

    Do you happen to know the scripture you mentioned?

  139. Chyrch

    Jack1952,

    Sorry, that didn't make sense. What I meant is, do you know where in the Bible the scripture you mentioned can be found?

  140. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    Mate, #145 is one of the most polished things I have ever seen.

    Even though I already agree with everything you just wrote, I just felt my athiest IQ go up several points.

  141. Saturnine

    @Chyrch,

    I'll try to be brief too.

    1a) Yes, 1b) Yes. But we have to qualify what divine means. You can start with the notion of perfect. 1c) rephrased: Why believe in a ethically perfect guy (a thing not of this world)? Answer: It's a symbol of our own ethical imperfection and the way our hearts are closed. We get that reality sorted out with the idea of Christ, and it really happens. The symbol is so simple that it should not in essence confuse us with regard to other stuff. Believing in Christ means that you've got help in personal soul-searching. It focuses it, and it really does not distort it if you get it right.

    But you know, I admit people can and do get it wrong. You should know that it's not a once-off thing but that life is complex. i don't blame the symbol when people fail, because that does not make sense. Many people get it right, though, and can indeed understand the language of Christianity. I'd just wish you would too. It's not indoctrination but just plain understanding. Or so I see it. Indoctrination begins only when the social control of an 'ultimatum-religion', as Madskillz put it, kicks in.

    2a) Yes. But we have to qualify what 'to exist' means here. Use the symbol of Christ. Christ is the 'way to Him'. How is he the 'Way'? Read 1a-c. I think we cannot say anything about God himself other than that 'Christ is His son'. But it still makes sense to say that "God be praised" and that sort of thing.

    Not intended as red herring, skip if not interested: (E.g. to say that 'God is omnipotent' is really just theological speculation, a nasty business that is dangerous because it is terribly easy to misunderstand the sense in which 'God is omnipotent' can be true. Briefly, you can solve the problem of evil by realizing that God is not omnipotent in the sense that he can do anything about it, and therefore is not to blame. Hume was a theologian, he just didn't get it. I think theological speculation is a great folly. There was no open society in the middle ages, so the theologians thought they could start all that blathering without distracting the actual people who later discovered the whole mess.)

    I might fail again by not knowing how to explain the language. I don't know. Do you get it? (I don't mean this nastily.)

    2b) Yes. But this happens in the sense that Christ is a person. He is omnipotent at least in the sense that he can heal any ethical wound if we really learn how to 'pray honestly'. It's a life-changing business, mind you. 2c) I think it makes deep sense to get into this. It has happened to me. I survived. My reason is intact. (I can do math, physics, evolutionary biology, and everything else. I am at least as ethical as the next guy, although I'm not perfect. And who is, really? That's the whole point. I normally try harder. These last few days, well it's been constant failure. But I'm not getting into that personal stuff any deeper. That would truly be bad for me.)

    In fact most of the time, it feels my whole life is intact because of this. I am free. Just as free as you. But I know how regret as well, thanks to 'Him'. I'm sorry if you find that you don't get it. But as long as you don't get it, please at least stop speaking about it as if you do.

    2d) If you don't believe in Christ, you're not a Christian. But I claim that you are involved in a religion nonetheless. You are just in a point where you want to stay outside of it. It's misguided. You don't have to be a Christian. Just open your heart to something. When you do, well... I can just hope you make some sense out of it when it happens.

    You give examples of awful things some people do (who happen to think they're not doing the wrong thing). Well you know, Chyrch, they're wrong. Simply wrong. There's no greater mystery in that. Why can we see that they are wrong? I don't know, you tell me. We just do. I think it's because we have a heart.

    You say something about benefits and harms. I think you are right in your position. It's coherent. However, I think there is an even better one. That is to try to help the people who clearly get it wrong to think more wisely. In a sense you atheist are doing just that. But pragmatically, I think the way through understanding religions (and accepting them when it's just ok) is a lot better.

    I hope you see that I'm not trying to justify harmful faith-based movements. I'm saying that they're wrong. I am not afraid of religion.

  142. Saturnine

    I failed in being brief.

  143. Saturnine

    By the way, a lot of things are wrong in all monotheistic religions, which should be put right by a people who are not scared of thinking their religion through again.

  144. Madskillz

    @Sat

    I'll be breif too

    Answer = Post #104

  145. Madskillz

    @Sat

    Sorry, couldnt help myself (:

    This is Chyrch's question to answer, of course.

    Great post, by the way.

  146. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    I agree on everything in #104, although I'm not sure if I personally understand the void issue scientifically yet so I refrain judgement. If it's not scientific, its just another speculation. Don't make theology out of it.

    Don't.

  147. Saturnine

    People should have reservations to M theory etc as well, before they themselves can say they really get it. Everyone knows it's not proven etc. etc. etc.

  148. Saturnine

    By the way, you don't have to teach me.

  149. Madskillz

    @Sat #155

    I do. I can.

  150. Madskillz

    @Sat #156

    99.9% correct

  151. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    Thanks. This was a very good very bad debate.

  152. Achems Razor

    @Madskillz:

    Actually post 104 is my post, not @Chyrch, I myself would like to ask @Saturnine to answer some of my solicitations, not just a blanket statement that "M" theory has not been proven, tell me @Saturnine, what exactly has been proven in your allegations? Need empirical evidence!

  153. Madskillz

    @Achems

    Pardon. I meant that in ref to #148. My bad.

    The nature of this post was a little vauge, as I am still heavily involved in debate with @Saturine. He hasnt said anything for over half an hour though - since his very strange post #159 - I wonder what gave him the idea that I had stopped debating with him?

    I have been very busy though, trying to understand the same post youre referring him to - #154. It truly baffles me.

  154. Madskillz

    #161 = in 'this same' debate ~

  155. Saturnine

    @Achems Razor

    The proof is in our life. If you try hard enough you can see what this means. After that it's just easy to understand, even if the phenomena that may arrive can be surprising and even strange.

    At heart it's healthy stuff, but you can get it wrong and it may turn into something crazy. We need critical people to get it. That's why I'm talking to you people. This is not just a Christian phenomenon, but a human issue.

    This kind of religion that I'm proposing is not about getting answers. That way is a youthful mistake. I would even like to apologize on behalf of some, well, uncritical Christians for not (yet) seeing how it is. But another point I've been trying to make is that I cannot be held responsible for other people's irrationality.

    If there's something that _I_ have said that sounds irrational, I can try to explain. But much of the time what I get from you is something I am not guilty of. If I do repeat some old mistake, I'd like you to show me.

    During this conversation I have already conceded to some points. The most important of them is that it is not as easy to explain my view as I thought. I lack concepts. You guys should beat us down with that issue until we develop concepts that work. But don't speak about stuff that we in fact already understand.

    If we fail, teach us. If you do it correctly, you are being very good Christians without actually having to admit it.

  156. Achems Razor

    @Saturnine:

    All right, we "may" teach you, but first, like I asked you in my previous question, why do you think that religee's have a pipeline to their invisible gods, when as a conservative estimate there are upwards of 10,000,000,000,000,000...ten million, billion planets in the universe, of which may be 100's of millions of exo-planets that are capable of supporting life.

    When that is put into perspective our little planet becomes basically invisible, and us humans are smaller than Atoms. And our whole human race has been here as a nano-second.

    As you say "proof in our life"
    There is no proof of any type of gods.

  157. Achems Razor

    @Sat:

    And another thing, stop with your double talk/double speak, as "you are being very good christians without actually having to admit it" don't try your back pedalling stuff with me, won't work!

  158. Saturnine

    Achems Razor,

    #164 I don't think it is even reasonable language to say that we think we have a "pipeline to our invinsible gods", or to God for that matter. Coming from you that sounds like just the sort of insanity that is not happening when Christianity is understood properly. In fact you are trying to shove a misunderstanding down my throat. Or were you in fact trying to say that "it's aliens"? I don't see how that could make sense as a proper question, really.

    It takes just one open hearted and fully conscious moment together with another person to see that if "anything happens" at all it's there. In fact ethical phenomena begin and are confirmed there. So is love.

    We are physical beings, but the issues (ethics, love issues) we deal with are directed beyond physical reality in the symbolic language we use. You don't have to be Christian to get it, and I think you probably already use some kind of symbols to think about those issues. Christianity as a whole is a symbolic language that is used in very simple every day lives to communicate love. This is the "proof in life" that I'm talking about. You seem to mistake proof of "God himself" (which no-one has) to the phenomena we are speaking of we say that "God operates". Be careful with this.

    #165 Fair enough, I wont back pedal anymore. It wasn't intended as a serious point, just something that came up along the way.

  159. Achems Razor

    @Sat:

    Don't have a clue as to what you are talking about, I suspect neither do you. Just meaningless, nonsensical words!

    Have a good day!

  160. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Please Saturnine. For the love of your God. For the sake of my inegrity.

    #153

  161. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    enable [?n?e?b?l]
    vb (tr)
    1. to provide (someone) with adequate power, means, opportunity, or authority (to do something)
    2. to make possible
    3. (Electronics) to put (a digital electronic circuit element) into an operative condition by supplying a suitable input pulse
    enablement n
    enabler n

  162. Saturnine

    @Achems Razor, (#167)

    Thank you for being to the point. I can see that I as of yet I fail to do better than to claim that I know my language and that love and ethics are complex and deep issues even to think about properly. Other Christians may come around and say to me that I failed to explain this even to them, though. That's just completely ironic but true. (I just asked a friend of mine and she said my language had lots of strange concepts even to her.) This is what you get when you try to explain language outside of its proper use.

    You have an argument that is impossible to fight. I hope you will use it honestly. I hope we find real common understanding in every way that is possible in the future.

    Nice to have met you.

  163. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    Later.

  164. Saturnine

    I regret #129. In that post I sound like I'm actually deluded. I really don't know what got to me. Maybe it was the timing (saturday night after I got home from a local bar), and the fact that this bunch of atheists was really starting to wreck me. I think the moment I lost it was precisely when Madskillz tried claim that we Christians are forcing stuff on them. Please accept, if you can, the following explanation:

    I'm a willing convert to Christianity from secular humanism. Nobody forced anything whatsoever on me. In fact the opposite was the case. I felt like I had to be "atheist" without really seeing the point. I still don't see it. I wanted to see if the religion that atheists had so much beef with was really like that image I got from my secular parents.

    It was not. It's better. But we do have a lot of issues, people.

  165. Madskillz

    @Sat

    John 9:1-7 - The Man Blind since Birth
    near the Temple of Jerusalem

    1 As he walked along, he saw a man blind from birth. 2 His disciples asked him, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?" 3 Jesus answered, "Neither this man nor his parents sinned; he was born blind so that God's works might be revealed in him. 4 We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming when no one can work. 5 As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world." 6 When he had said this, he spat on the ground and made mud with the saliva and spread the mud on the man's eyes, 7 saying to him, "Go, wash in the pool of Siloam" (which means Sent). Then he went and washed and came back

  166. Madskillz

    @Sat

    The only thing I hate more than Christianity, right now, is myself.

  167. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #174

    I'm just staring at the screen right now and cannot speak. You show me that my heart is not clean. You are true, Madskillz. Of course you are true! Oh my God. Did I not respect you before? I didn't. I am so sorry. Why did I not see this? Why am I still blind?

    I even think I see what you mean about Christianity now. I'd like to say everything but I can say nothing.

    My words are so brittle.

    I can say no more.

  168. Saturnine

    "The devil is confused. And he tricks me."

  169. Madskillz

    @Sat

    NINETY NINE POINT F*****G NINE PERCENT - CORRECT

  170. Madskillz

    @Saturine

    Now, as I am infact the polar opposite of how cruel I may now appear - I genuinely do feel concern at your welfare after that - I will make one last thing clear to you.

    Your fear of Quantum is founded. Particularly after.... Performing such a.... Rigid search through countless.... biblical websites to.... Find the.... Best.... Verse for the.... Job - It's demonisation was truly displayed almost EVERYWHERE.

    The irony here is, mate, that when you get your head around it - and you are more than clever enough to do so with the docs that I reccomended; you will find ultimate peace. This is because it outright VALIDATES Chistianity, Jesus, The Bible; and YOU.

    Regardless of whatever has occured in this blog over the last few days; it will put you on ABSOLUTE footing with EVERYONE who has posted in here. And EVERYONE EVERYWHERE EVERYWHEN. That is is how beautiful Quantum IS. IT IS LOVE, mate. In it's PUREST FORM.

  171. Madskillz

    @All

    It has not escaped me, and I have even applied multi post proof reading more than once, that @Saturnine may very well be not only the cleverest person I have ever met, but likley even a contender for the Record's Book. He may even be Steven bloody Hawkings himself for all I know.

  172. jolulipa

    @Saturnine
    I believe this type of Christianity is "different", because I was raised a Catholic and this is not the type of belief I was indoctrinated to. It was far more conservative, and quite frankly I would not have turn to believing more in reason against religion have I been indoctrinated with this new Christianity way of thinking. A Christianity who respect science is "different".

    But to help you a little I will copy paste a piece that will five you an Eureka moment:

    "A conflict arises when a religious community insists on the absolute truthfulness of all statements recorded in the Bible. This means an intervention on the part of religion into the sphere of science; this is where the struggle of the Church against the doctrines of Galileo and Darwin belongs.

    On the other hand, representatives of science have often made an attempt to arrive at fundamental judgments with respect to values and ends on the basis of scientific method, and in this way have set themselves in opposition to religion. These conflicts have all sprung from fatal errors."

    - Albert Einstein, Science and Religion (1941)

    And Saturnine, this is where you fail (and some of us). But lets stick with you:

    "It is this mythical, or rather this symbolic, content of the religious traditions which is likely to come into conflict with science. This occurs whenever this religious stock of ideas contains dogmatically fixed statements on subjects which belong in the domain of science. Thus, it is of vital importance for the preservation of true religion that such conflicts be avoided when they arise from subjects which, in fact, are not really essential for the pursuance of the religious aims."

    - Albert Einstein, Religion and Science: Irreconcilable? (1948)

    Believe me my friend Saturnine, this debate is not really essential for the pursuance of your religious aims.

    Regards.

  173. Achems Razor

    You may be right, me-thinks he has watched to much of "Orwells 1984"

    Double speak!! he's da*m good at double talk. Almost made sense at times, and yet it didn't. had the gray matter working overtime. (LOL)

  174. jolulipa

    @Everybody

    Please read GIVE where I wrote five in the 2nd para.

    Thank you.

  175. Achems Razor

    My last post was directed at Madskillz, it seems that the religious people can't seem to let go of there beliefs, but they do know that science is superseding their fairy tales, so they try to incorporate science into their equations, but like oil and water, may seem to mix if shaken, but goes right back to oil and water. Never be as one.

  176. jolulipa

    @Saturnine
    Father Coyne Christianity is not impoverished, is one fed with science and reason. In that sense is impossible for him to believe in miracles as the bible states. He himself says so in the interview.

    The point I have tried to raise in my two postings is that, Coyne avoids these types of debates by saying that He has no conflict with science and believes in anything science has prove. He also makes very clear that the belief in god and the participation in religion is due to the study of human historic, traditional and religious endeavor. Another field of study totally different of that of science.

    In here you are trying to justify religion and god on other basis and clearly trying to recruit help from us to "create" a better religion or a better God. I am afraid you will not get that from us.

    Quite the contrary... you have gotten most of us mad.

    Just my two cents, my friend. Just that.

  177. jolulipa

    @Achems Razor

    Science and Religion will never be able to "mix". In a perfect world they can co-exist. Some Christians are aiming at that.

    In the ideal world, though, science should rule.

    But that world is rather impossible, right?

  178. Achems Razor

    @Jolulipa:

    Well, the world is not perfect and seems it never will, and no, it is impossible for religion and science to co-exist, as per all the blogs here on TDF, and all the strife that religion causes around the world.

    Science is ruling now isn't it? you are writing on your PC, No? Where would we be without science?

  179. Achems Razor

    @J:

    Should of added, where would all the religee's be without science even? sitting in their cold, dark, dank, caves without fire, making fire is "science!"

    Science rules!

    I'm just sayin, (Carl Sagan)

  180. jolulipa

    @Achems Razor

    You got my sarcasm too soon...
    Damn, there is no joy in this world for me!

    :>)

  181. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #179

    Dont' worry. But you know, you really have to be True. That is a key issue about Christianity. If we fail in that, we even condemn ourselves to the hell. When we are in doubt about the sincerety of others it makes us vacillate between interpretations. But people always come up with the right ones, because in the end we see that there is no sense in not loving other people. It's a deep challenge. Critical thought is a key element in this. That and the fact that you cannot just be a cold person, really.

    jolulipa, #181

    I'm stunned by the fact that you still don't get it. Even Einstein did. His statement is completely correct. Be logical about it, please. You are completely missing the point.

    You cannot show in what way your accusation holds true concerning _me_.

  182. Saturnine

    jolulipa, #181

    Sorry about not being complete about what I said.

    I think it's just justified to think like I do about you atheists. Don't take it too seriously.

  183. Saturnine

    @Madskillz, And to everyone

    By the way,

    I'm really sorry if I insult you. I really respect your wisdom. I'm sorry if I don't seem to find words to say it properly.

  184. Saturnine

    I know anger is a mistake. I repent it.

  185. Saturnine

    Even if i fail in being imprecise in my arguments.

    And even if my heart is broken.

    Some of you guys just don't seem to get it right.

  186. Saturnine

    Sorry, another typo. Well, it's ironic isn't it?

    I meant that of course I'm failing with you lot. (Or at least it seems so.) It's complete suicide to start debating a horde of atheists in a place like this.

    : D

  187. Achems Razor

    @Sat:

    You have run the gamut, go back to the bar.

  188. Saturnine

    Achems Razor,

    You have understood nothing.

  189. jack1952

    Religions are man's first attempt at science. Some people want it to be the last.

  190. Saturnine

    If it seems like I'm playing with fire, people, just take it easy.

  191. Vlatko

    That is not correct @jack1952. Science precedes religion by far. When man figured out how to make the first stone/wood tool (and that was in the very early stage) the science, or scientific thought was born. And then came all the other things such as the wheel, fire etc.

    However, some things even being discovered where unexplainable. What are they, how do they form, what is their purpose etc... and religion was born. God did those things.

    In fact religion came out of ignorance.

  192. Vlatko

    And still insists on ignorance. If anyone here is a true believer, he can't bypass the six days creation.

    So just by being the follower of one of the Abrahamic religions you are AGAINST science, and still hypocritically exploiting its fruits.

  193. Madskillz

    @Achems @jolulipa @Saturine

    GUYS! I totally have it! I am going to be a complete bast*rd in making this claim and not revealing it yet, due to it needing an EPIC sized post that I am yet still to write and which needs to be written just right so I dont know on the timeframe - but for me, a pure breed atheist even, I can absolutely see how a single person can have science and faith co-existing within themselves. I will NEVER be religious, and my solution may perhaps only apply to new age Christianity for all I know - as it is it's very own overaching principles that are the body and support of the argument. Due to the absolute arrogant and spiteful stuborness of Christianity and it's SHEEP, I also think it may only ever appeal to an atheist; but it will possibly give food for thought (BEWARE FALSE PROPHETS).

    And if this claim is not absurd enough, check this out;

    It centers around INTEGRITY

  194. Madskillz

    @Alchems #182

    Yes indeed, although I was more eluding to the Professor (:

    Imagine if an academic of Quantum were 'sharking' around the atheist vs. sheep blogger 'ponds' in order to drive home the point, even though it appears that in this case we are, for the majority, somewhat sold on the prospect. It cant hurt to strenghen our debates in order to convince others (including atheists).

    And no one can ever be smarter than I am - to think so would be truly naive of me.

    Get it?

  195. Saturnine

    Vlatko,

    #200 How can such a thing be proven? Look at animals and humans. We are the same. I think the essence of religion (the meanings of life) was "there" before we discovered anything at all, even before we realized that we live in a world. Ritual and stories became ways of speaking about "those things". (And we do refer to something real with the language, even if it basically is about the source of all emotions.)

  196. Saturnine

    Vlatko,

    #201 Wrong. Conclusion.

  197. Saturnine

    @Madskills #202

    My mother and father teached me tho lighten up about religion and not take any of it seriously. They were right in doing so. What they didn't do was teach a language of love.

    I'm an average philosophy student.

    (I hope you find this funny.)

  198. Vlatko

    @Saturnine,

    You think the essence of religion (the meanings of life) was “there” before we discovered anything at all, even before we realized that we live in a world... but unfortunately you can't prove that, nor anyone else. Thus that stays in the domain of speculation.

    On the other hand I proved to you that the scientific thought came before the dogma, relying on what we know so far.

  199. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    Of course I mean that all (#206) in a very particular sense. I think religion should be taken seriously when it's right. But that's an issue about ethics and love.

  200. Saturnine

    @Vlatko, #207

    You may be right, but I think science can in fact try to show that it's like that. I don't know how, but I don't personally see how it's impossible. Maybe it is.

    What is the evidence to prove your view?

  201. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    I love you.

  202. Madskillz

    @Vlatko #200

    You too, are infact wrong.

    How about when 'man' worked out how babies are made?

    Science at it's BEST!

  203. jack1952

    @ Vlatko

    Not an easy point to comment on. It's been said religion was created as a way to control one another. It could also have been a way to try to control nature. For example - "Why did the migrating herds not return this year? Why hasn't it rained in 2 years. Why is it raining so darn hard now? How come the earth shook like it did? We have to find out so it never happens again". Dreams and visions could well have provided a perception of control. Maybe science and religion started together but religion took the fore front for so long due to a lack of information. As knowledge grew the religions couldn't continue to provide the answers that most were accustomed to. This slowly gave rise to the scientific process.

    I really don't know but have contemplated this problem for a long time. Understanding how a primitive man would have thought is just guess work for me but I tried to take a common sense approach. I like listening to other ideas so long as they aren't filled with anger and finger pointing.

  204. Saturnine

    Vlatko,

    I agree that religion is about ignorance in a sense. I think that is obvious once you become a grown up person. Many Christians don't grow up, for instance. That is a problem.

    i'm sorry about the flooding rant I've just drawn up on your beautiful and important site. I feel like an idiot.

    But I'm right.

  205. Vlatko

    My evidence @Saturnine? I'm stunned.

    Hmmm... What do you think?

    When our ancestors made the first simple stone tool to cut the meat from the animals, did they have a proper language and skills to propel religion among each other? I don't think so.

    Rudimentary scientific thought was evident in Neanderthals (200,000 years ago. They made even simple jewelry.) But religion came many centuries afterwards. Won't you agree? Building totems, worshiping the sun, etc...

  206. Vlatko

    Yes me too @jack1952. Discussion should be aimed at arguments not persons.

  207. Vlatko

    He didn't @Madskillz. That is instinct. Comes with your genes. You don't need to figure out how to suck air into the lungs.

  208. Saturnine

    Vlatko #212

    When they got to the "we have to |really] find out" -part, scientific questioning began for sure. But the questions were in there before it. That seems logical.

    Dreams and visions, well I don't know. I don't think my dreams and visions are things that I should think about as concerning only the natural world. It's about other kinds of things as well.

    My hypothesis is, that the other kinds of things precede the realization of the natural world and its causes and effects in living entities.

  209. Vlatko

    Well let's look at it this way @Saturnine.

    Trash humans as if they don't exist. Now observe a group of monkeys. They're displaying a kind of rudimentary scientific thought. Using sticks, rocks to help them get their food. They will even learn more complex things if they need to survive. But you'll never find anything that resembles religion in any form in their behavior.

  210. Saturnine

    Vlatko #214

    Well, it looks like you are correct. There merely remains the question what kind of beings our ancestors have been. I think it is somewhat clear from our own inherited ways of experiencing things, that they have been very emotional beings. Love, hate and peace were important things in their lives. Organized religion came about as a means of expressing and ordering those things. In that sense you are just correct, if you don't mind the way I add the emotion-issue to the picture.

  211. Vlatko

    @Saturnine,

    That is true when you bring up emotions which were/are vital for our evolution.

    Love, hate, fear, etc... made such a wonderful stage for religion to kick in and probably stay forever.

    Science is emotionless, cruel, cold... but true.

    However I'd disagree that organized religion came about as a means of expressing and ordering emotions.

    I think organized religion came about as a means of exploiting each others people emotions.

  212. Saturnine

    jack1952, #212 Sorry, I misdirected the reply in #217

    Vlatko, #220 It seems in fact just true organized religion kicked in when people had already realized a lot of other things. But the rest is open to further scientific questioning.

    The question about expression and ordering vs. exploiting is an ethical one if you put it that way. Not scientific.

  213. Vlatko

    @Saturnine,

    The question about expression and ordering vs. exploiting is an ethical one if you put it that way. Not scientific.

    Right. That is ethical one. Subject to interpretation.

  214. Saturnine

    Vlatko, #222

    Exactly.

  215. jack1952

    @ Vlatko

    The point about monkeys using sticks and rocks as tools is interesting. I was recently watching a doc where chimps were sharpening sticks and then using these sticks to stab prey hiding in a hole in a tree. It even showed a mother teaching its young how it was done. I guess this would be a rudimentary form of science. I'm not sure whether this shows a capacity for abstract thought. If a chimp ran into a problem and solved that problem that evening in a different environment and then returned to apply that solution, then we might say he used a scientific method. At that point that chimp may have to ability to wonder what his dead mother wanted of him in that dream he had last night. This would involve the ability to contemplate the metaphysical. Just something to think about.

  216. Vlatko

    @jack1952,

    It's an accumulated knowledge if you prefer.

    You're not born with math skills. You have predisposition to learn them, but someone have to teach/show them to you.

    As of scientific method, I didn't mention that. What I was using is rudimentary scientific thought.

    Scientific method is somewhat different.

  217. jolulipa

    @saturnine

    I have to appologise to you. You see, I do not write in these forums too often. The reason being I do not like to feed the trolls. I answer some of you concerns because I have dealt a lot with the subject of science and religion and have actually encountered many people like you that are quite interesting to talk to. None of them have ever been offensive to me.

    Your reply was not adequate to someone who has dispensed you respect. I tried to help by given you an alternative way of discussion and you took it as if I was attacking you. Major FAIL.

    Alienating people will not get you closer to your cause.

    That is an important cause of the apathy towards religious defendants, you answers are improper when presented with serious answers. As Einstein said in my quote at #181, I will not judge your beliefs with the scientific method, but with a philosophical one, yet you continue to request proofs. Proof is part of the scientific method and you don't get to use it.

    Anyway, it was my bad... as you said before... I still don't get it... and by now with both know I will never do. So....

  218. jolulipa

    @Everyone
    Sorry for all my grammatical mistakes. I hit the add comment bottom my mistake and send it before reviewing it. This is the fixed version. Sorry again.

    @saturnine
    I have to appologise to you. You see, I do not write in these forums too often. The reason being I do not like to feed the trolls. I answered some of your concerns because I have dealt a lot with the subject of science and religion and have actually encountered many people like you that are quite interesting to talk to. None of them have ever been offensive to me.

    Your reply was not adequate to someone who has dispensed you respect. I tried to help by given you an alternative way of discussion and you took it as if I was attacking you. Major FAIL.

    Alienating people will not get you closer to your goal.

    That is an important cause of the apathy towards religious defendants by us antagonists, your answers are improper when presented with serious questions. As Einstein said in my quote at #181, I will not judge your beliefs with the scientific method, but with a philosophical one, yet you continue to request proofs. Proof is part of the scientific arena and you don’t get to use it.

    Anyway, it was my bad… as you said before… I still don’t get it… and by now with both know I will never do. So….

  219. jolulipa

    @Vlatko

    True is whatever you believe in. Science is about facts not true.

    "Science is emotionless, cruel, cold… but factual".

    But it is true... science overall rely on truthfulness and reality. :>)

  220. jolulipa

    @Madskillz

    Yes!!!! I agree completely. It is about INTEGRITY.

    Now... give me my food!

  221. Saturnine

    jolulipa, #226

    Thank you for saying all of those things. Especially concerning my exceptional behavior. Most of us turn the other cheek, in fact they do it a lot these days.

    You know this don't you: The only proof I'm asking is the one in which I see that people who speak about religions know what they are talking about. If they don't understand something, they should be careful. That is the tall order. If you get my point, you will use the language of any religion in a way that makes sense. That would be very helpful. I still think you can do it while remaining honest. It's important for all of us.

    I have been insulted greatly by all this misunderstanding that "neoatheism" has _provoked_ in the last few years. It has resulted in hate-speech. Its only fruit is that Intelligent Design is being put to its place (if it indeed ever had a proper one).

    I just could not keep my cool anymore.

  222. Saturnine

    People, listen

    If you associate _only_ scientific truth with Truth in the sense that carries the full meaning of Integrity, you are at risk of forgetting that integrity is at heart an ethical question. I think i don't have to explain this to many of you.

    Religion (as it should be) is about the aspects of integrity that are not about science.

  223. jolulipa

    @saturnine at #231

    My point since the very beginning!!! Yet the majority of Christianity continues to look for scientific support to explain something that cannot be scientifically explained.

    In the process, religious folk attack us for not offering or allowing that support. The attack goes personal when they try to attach that denial by calling us fans, fundamentalists, neoatheist or being part of a so call "atheist" religion.

    If you stop trying, we will not have a reason to denounce you.

    Stick to the ethics, the behavior, the traditions, the culture, the integrity, etc. leave science alone.

    Although I know a lot about theology, I never enter discussions where the bible, the coran, god or jesus existence is being questioned. Why? I am biased.

    If they are or were real, they are just dead men and books. Nothing more.

    Those debates are not really essential for the pursuance of my scientific aims.

    Thank you all.

  224. Saturnine

    jolulipa, #232

    Theology is about the meaning of the questions, _not_ about answers. If you ask questions that make no sense, you will not get sensible answers. Theology is not the thing that is necessary, the point is just to understand the way life is. Sometimes understanding follows from proper theology.

    There are many Christians who get it absolutely wrong. Some of them have power. This must change.

    Everyone is invited.

  225. Saturnine

    jolulipa, #232

    Maybe I should add to #234: Theological answers must serve the issues, not undermine them. This is really simple. But if people ask questions that don't make sense, then there is really no issue that can be served by any kind of theology.

    The questions of Intelligent Design are flawed. Questions that seek evidence for God in nature are more often than not misunderstood.

  226. Chyrch

    Wow. I turn on my computer to find over 30 emails from this discussion. I can't keep up with you guys. Not that I have much more to say anyway, but I must voice some opinions on the topics the conversation has recently brought up.

    Specifically, the difference between truth, knowledge, and belief. In post 228, jolulipa said "True is whatever you believe in. Science is about facts not true". While I agree that Science is about facts, and not truth, I must reject the notion that "truth is whatever we believe in".

    Truth is something rare, precious, and something that doesn't require any humans to exist. To use an age-old analogy, if a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, no one knows it fell, or has any reason to believe it fell, but it's true it fell nonetheless.

    To use another analogy:

    Person A tells Person B "I have a 1970 Chevy Impala in my garage"
    Person B, having not visited the garage to verify, can not say it's true. He can though, believe the claim.
    The only thing he actually knows about the situation is that Person A made the claim, and that by itself is not enough to make claim to the truth. If Person B thought Person A as being a reputable person, belief might be justified, as it's not an extraordinary claim.

  227. Chyrch

    Oh, and stop mixing up religion and philosophy. Philosophy is the investigation of behavior, not religion. Religion is already based on presuppositions that have no part in philosophy.

  228. Saturnine

    jolulipa, #232

    Sorry. In fact I have never seen how a question that seeks evidence for God in nature can make any kind of sense.

    I just hope theologians will begin to get real about it.

  229. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #238

    I'd like to see you try that on your professor.

  230. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    I've challenged people far more intelligent than I on subjects like this. In the end, logic must be followed and objects stated for what they are.

    Religion
    –noun
    1.
    a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, esp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.

    Philosophy
    –noun,plural-phies.
    1.
    the rational investigation of the truths and principles of being, knowledge, or conduct.

  231. jolulipa

    @Chyrch

    The tree that fell is a fact. One can go a study it. The car in the garage, if it can be checked then is fact too, otherwise is an assumption. It becomes true when you believe it exists even if you have not seen it.

    Truth or lies are based on something somebody says or writes and you decide weather to believe or not in it. It becomes fact when you checked it to be true.

    Hey! but what you say is also true. ..at least for me. Why? I believe you.

  232. Chyrch

    Jolulipa,

    "It becomes true when you believe it exists even if you have not seen it"

    That's one of the silliest things I've heard. Belief does not equate to truth in any way. Something is a fact AFTER it's been verified. Something is true before it's even known of. Belief is simply CONVICTION of truth.

    TRUTH
    –noun,
    1. the true or actual state of a matter: He tried to find out the truth.
    2. conformity with fact or reality; verity: the truth of a statement.
    3. a verified or indisputable fact, proposition, principle, or the like: mathematical truths.
    4. the state or character of being true.
    5. actuality or actual existence.
    6. an obvious or accepted fact; truism; platitude.

    FACT
    –noun
    1. something that actually exists; reality; truth: Your fears have no basis in fact.
    2. something known to exist or to have happened: Space travel is now a fact.
    3. a truth known by actual experience or observation; something known to be true: Scientists gather facts about plant growth.
    4. something said to be true or supposed to have happened: The facts given by the witness are highly questionable.

    BELIEF
    –noun
    1. something believed; an opinion or conviction: a belief that the earth is flat.
    2. confidence in the truth or existence of something not immediately susceptible to rigorous proof: a statement unworthy of belief.
    3. confidence; faith; trust: a child's belief in his parents.
    4. a religious tenet or tenets; religious creed or faith: the Christian belief.

  233. Madskillz

    @Vlatko @Other relevant parties

    In refference to my #211 post - Nope, I still dont agree. This is my fault, as I left it in a single sentence for the purposes of humour. I realise now that it is not actually funny at all without the context known/stated prior. Sorry - Brain fart.

    I am up to scratch on how 'instinct' functions, although I see it as more of a usefull (and totally valid) catergorization method to something bigger. More on that later, as this isnt my point here.

    Sciences no.1 flaw is infact EXACTLY the same as an ultimatum religion such as Christianity; it insists upon itself. It is of course completly neccesary, however it is also it's worst enemy in the sense of making progress. A good analogy is Wikipedia, in that it is most certainly not a completely reliable source, but due it's 'open to edit' stance; it will always be subject to evolution. This is where Christianity fails. It is very debatable on how much of this issue, having been in place for such a long time, is in fact the very FOUNDATION of Scientific Method; it taught us MUCH. It is this default, perhaps, that brought truly significant scientific minds into action such as Leo D, Galileo etc. There is of course significant scientific minds which pre-date Christianity by reletive light years (ie. Greek philosopy/scientists), so the argument on Christianity holding back scientific progress still holds true. Almost. For the sake of overly epic sized posts, I will put this concept in another.

    I state that mankind was applying true, SENTIENT science pre-dating the stone/wood tool era. My basis for this is that of being properly aware of the act and consequence of mating. Intinct serves it's purpose in ensuring that life will reproduce, which is lucky for Christians (unlucky for everyone else), but my argument here is based around what would fall into the category of 'Social Science'. Our human ancestors would have been applying basic sentient forms of selective breeding and birth control well before learning how to use tools to their true effect. The selective breeding aspect applys to a sentient based decision process on what is an ideal 'mate'. The birth control aspect would be in the sentient realisation that 'too many is too much' for a 'tribe' to function properly in regards to limited resources (ie. food). These two concepts are still very much a 'work in progress' to this very day. My theory does not rule out the study already done on the evolution of tool usage at all, however I believe that it would shift some pretty significant dates. The 'grey area' around these dates alone would alow for further possible science to be performed. I would be highly suprised if this area has not already been addressed and petitioned for by academic parties for application. As I was writing earlier on the flaws of science; not having this applied to the popular overall concept can be truly stagnating as not all scientists would take it into consideration by default when making their future studies. Usefull via convenience, much like an equation is.

    I'm pretty sure of myself on all of this (currently), however this is also my very first go at real blogging. I'm no stranger to the internet, but I threw blogging out a while back after mostly experiencing it's usual debased form; non/counter productivity. I am absolutely open for people to blow all of this completly out of the water, as it has only really just fallen into place for me over the last few days - this applys to almost everything in this post. A disclaimer: I do not reffer to @Sat's 'teachings' directly here, but my frustrations and concerns have pushed my mind into re-organising prior knoweledge in order to form some new revelations in myself. I gained benefit from regular speculative thought from reading other peoples posts. To be fair though, it probably helped that I was also more aligned with the the other bloggers concepts.

    My reading material to date has consisted almost entirely of science fiction/fantasy, but I think it may be time for me to grow up a little too. But just a little.

  234. jolulipa

    Chyrch

    Yeah... I am a silly person. I appologise for that.

    I also need to improve my skills at looking in a dictionary. It seems you have master that.

    I also need to learn to identify when words are being analysed in the sense of context or in the sense of language.

    Silly me!

    But hey at least I managed a plus... I was able to utter one of the "silliest things you’ve heard" In that case I excelled.

    These silly things happen because English is not my first language and in mine, we see things in a silly way.

  235. Madskillz

    WHA??? You can't even get away with F**t?

    Fahrt! Fhort! Phart!

    So nerr...

  236. jolulipa

    Let's give some context:

    It is true gravity behaves the way Newton described. It is a fact that gravity behaves the way Einstein described. Yet we call Newton's description a "law" and Einstein's a theory.

    Bad example? Well, I didn't checked the dictionary on law and theory.

    yeah... silly me again.

  237. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #241

    Your have a ******** dictionary.

  238. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #241

    Think about it. That's nothing more than an argument from authority to you and me.

  239. Madskillz

    @Sat @jolulipa

    #244 Is not my Christianity vs. Science harmonisation 'claim to fame'. I have realised now that to do it justice, it belongs in the realms of a proper academic format - with many a correlating refference to substantiating evidence. This is so very required to bring about it's intended effect. However, for the sake of practice, I'll have a crack at it here in an 'along the lines of' sense. Bear with me (:

  240. Saturnine

    Chyrch, (on the several notions)

    With #249 I meant only the definition of religion. I'm getting tired of this. Religion is not like that. The professor who wrote that piece knows better. He just had to come up with a short paragraph for the dictionary. An ungrateful job. Words like that should not be put in a dictionary. I mean how can religion change if it's set up that way?

    Think. About. It.

  241. Chyrch

    Jolulipa,

    Your sarcasm is telling of the conviction behind your beliefs. I understand things may get lost in translation when having discussions with people around the world. However, using proper terminology is crucial when discussing complex matters. It's included in the "laws" of Logic for a reason.

    I used the dictionary to help discern the differences between religion and philosophy. I still had it open and felt like it could be more useful than more analogies about the differences between Knowledge, Belief, and Truth.

  242. Chyrch

    No Saturnine,

    It's using words how they're properly defined. Yes, words can change definition over time, but they don't change just because you don't agree with them.

    We already have a word for how you're defining religion. It's called Philosophy.

  243. Saturnine

    @Madskillz,

    #244 Truly interesting. I think I'll read it tomorrow with a sharper brain.

  244. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    If you think I was using a bad dictionary, try these:

    Mirriam-Webster:

    Definition of RELIGION
    1a : the state of a religious b (1) : the service and worship of God or the supernatural (2) : commitment or devotion to religious faith or observance
    2: a personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices
    3 archaic : scrupulous conformity : conscientiousness
    4: a cause, principle, or system of beliefs held to with ardor and faith

    Oxford Dictionary:

    1. the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power , especially a personal God or gods:ideas about the relationship between science and religion

    2. a particular system of faith and worship:the world's great religions

    3. a pursuit or interest followed with great devotion:consumerism is the new religion

  245. jolulipa

    Chyrch

    Sorry you took it that way. I used sarcasm trying to avoid being condescending. I failed on that.

    The context of my comment at #242 was that in science words not always means what a dictionary describe they are. We were discussing science and in that arena, truth has not much value. Fact does and hence my correction of Vlatko's assertion about “Science is emotionless, cruel, cold… but true" and suggested "factual” instead.

    Then you went to disagreed with my description of truth.

    I am not upset that you corrected me. I did't like you calling me silly and mocking my comment. Then, and only then I used sarcasm.

    Now, again you conclude that it "is telling of the conviction behind your beliefs". I wonder what is your conclusion on my beliefs?

    Sorry for all this. I am not a thin skinned person, but was surprised by your uncalled remark.

    Now I have given you a context: in the dictionary scientific law and theory are well defined yet in the example I used, it is not. Why is that?

    I was just trying to help you understand my point regarding truth and fact.

    That's all.

  246. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #253

    How is future religion defined? Does the definition change? Does another point of view win over?

  247. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #255

    Ok, I think you have to see what I at least meant by #258.

  248. justjim

    a simple question for believers of god....
    if god can cure all manner of diseases
    (cancer, aids, etc....)
    then what does god have against amputees?

    all manner of religion has caused far more harm
    than good.

    it's time to understand that this life we all have
    is experience of a particular plane of existence before
    moving on to the next grandest version of ourselves in
    the next plane. the "god" of any religion is not part
    of the next plane and shouldn't be part of this one.

  249. Achems Razor

    @Madskillz:

    Instead of using "Brain Ph@rt! You should instead use..."Maladaptive Brain Activity Change" that would be to intellectual for the Victorian moderation system to grasp.

    I know! I know, the moderation system is there for a reason, at least makes us come up with new angles.(LOL)

    And "you's guises" are mentioning philosophy, wrong! philosophy bakes no bread!

  250. Chyrch

    Jolulipa,

    I've been a bit short this evening as well, so I apologize if my comments came across as abrasive.

    I'm not going to discuss any rudeness. Let's just drop it and focus on the arguments.

    In regard to the difference between a scientific law and a scientific theory, we must emphasize the scientific part. There are plenty of sources describing the difference, so I'm just going to copy paste here:

    A law differs from a scientific theory in that it does not posit a mechanism or explanation of phenomena: it is merely a distillation of the results of repeated observation. As such, a law is limited in applicability to circumstances resembling those already observed, and is often found to be false when extrapolated.

    In short, a Theory uses many Laws to support itself, and can include many things that haven't yet been identified. Newton's Laws have been verified. Einsteins Theory of Relativity haven't been fully verified. In fact, many of Einstein's theories have been adjusted due to new understandings.

    Therefore, there is no discrepancy between Newton's Laws and Einstein's Theories.

  251. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    I'll try to be brief, although it will likely come out as blunt.

    Religion isn't going to turn into something that already exists.

    To be Religious, faith is necessary. Faith can not reconcile it's differences with Philosophy. To study anything with a presupposed bias is being intellectually dishonest.

    Until Religion finds a way to exist without faith, it will always be known as Philosophy's mentally challenged little brother.

  252. Madskillz

    @All

    Insult, if done in an intelectually appropriate manner, is vital to our purposes here. After all, debate in itself is a form of such.

    eg. @Saturnine; you truly are a tool.

    I regret nothing!

  253. jolulipa

    @Chyrch

    Dropped.

    I must add something to you comment above: Einstein special and general relativity has passed all predictions it made although some have not been proven right, and not been proven wrong either. Newtons was proven wrong because its laws did not account for the movement of mercury. Einstein's theory did.

    There was a discrepancy. Einstein's passed were Newton's had failed.

    Newtons laws are still useful, because they are easy to comprehend and work for most situations quite fine. They are not right and therefore it is wrong to call them laws, yet scientist have agreed to just leave it like that.

    Einsteins theory is far more successful and have not fail. Never.

    My point being that the definition of those words sometimes does not apply to science way of using them.

  254. jolulipa

    @Chyrch

    I also forgot to mention that instead of theory, I use the words "of best scientific description of natural phenomena", Evolution is such that. Why? in the USA they have given a connotation to "theory" that it is not jet proven. That does not happen in the rest of the world. So I use the description of fact to make quite clear that there is no doubt in the scientific community about these concepts.

    Another example of a discrepancy between the "regular" definition and the context driven understanding of a word. --in science--

  255. Achems Razor

    @Jolulipa:

    You are correct, Einstein proved that gravity is not instant, as in Newton gravity, in Einstein gravity. if the Sun disappeared suddenly, it would still take approx. 8 minutes for the Earth to veer off into space. "Einstein's gravitons" travel at the speed of light, except none of the gravity makes sense with quantum gravity.

  256. jolulipa

    Conclusion my dear friend Chyrch:

    That is why it is very important for us all not only to use the proper "terminology that is crucial when discussing complex matters" but also use the ones necessary to allow people not to perceive them wrongly.

  257. jolulipa

    @Achems Razor

    Agree 100%. But not being able to describe gravity's influence at the Quantum level, does not invalidate it.

    More over, we do not have a testable theory on how gravity behaves at that level at all.

    We'll get there, I hope. Will get there...

  258. Madskillz

    @Alchem's Razor #261

    Indeed! Good one (:

    A thought on the matter; I watched a docco not long ago about the life of Stephen Hawkings. It presented a section on his famous 'Amiga' style voice alternative. It pointed out that although technology allowed for a far better 'new' alternative quite a few years back, he has to this day adamantly refused to have it changed. It's quite interesting that I'd never even considered this untill I watched the doc. Also, as he makes quite an effort with tone inflection for the purposes of effective communication, and his communication necessity is of the highest degree, can you imagine how much work he has put into his 'grammar'! In an overall view of all these things; TRUE INTEGRITY

    And yes, I spent FAR too much time in getting my Amiga to hurl abuse (:

  259. Achems Razor

    @J:

    The reason that they call Einstein gravity a theory is because he postulates the bending of spacetime as gravity. That it is not really known as fact. Nobody really knows what gravity really is, also light, electricity and time.

  260. Chyrch

    Jolulipa,

    Ah I see what you mean. It's true, many use words with no regard for Etymology. Theory/Law/Hypothesis are all used interchangeably by the ignorant. It's something I've heard scientists lament about in regard to public understanding of science.

    It's infuriating how often I have to dumb down simple terms. I once had a conversation where my "opponent" dismissed evolution by saying "I'd just rather not believe I'm descended from apes". It's 2010 and people still think that way. Ridiculous.

  261. jolulipa

    @Achem’s Razor

    Right. Einstein's is called properly whereas Newton's is called wrongly.

    Yet we can see gravitational lensing due to warped space in the face of large masses. So I don't know if it is fact and don't know it isn't.

  262. Madskillz

    @Achem's Razor

    @#270 'In an overall view of all of these things' - Grammar fail!; TRUE IRONY

  263. Chyrch

    Jolulipa,

    About post 268, you're right. English is a far from perfect language and few know it well.

  264. jolulipa

    Exactly Chyrch! in the way we can get around to explain ourselves better, ignorance at the "publicity/media" level will be less. The misunderstanding of science will be reduced and the impact of those driven by hate, religion and right wing politics will be diminished.

    That is my point!

  265. jolulipa

    Guys... I need to go.

    My wife just gave me the "look". She believes in god and uses female's "dubious" ways to get me away from spreading my heresy and making too many atheists friends, on line.

    I like her dubious ways... so... Sorry.

    See ya all tomorrow!

  266. Madskillz

    @Alchem's Razor

    What is your avatar name in regards to? Void post if too personal.

  267. Madskillz

    @jolulipa #277

    You like banging cupboard doors and crashing dishes? I myself much prefer sex.

  268. Achems Razor

    @Madskillz:

    Occams Razor, could of used ochmams, ockham, occems, all mean the same thing, "all things being equal, the simplest solution is often the right one." So used Achems, a medical version. still means the same thing.

  269. jolulipa

    @Madskillz

    That what she sells and I always buy.

    Soooo... See you amigos!

  270. Chyrch

    Jolulipa,

    That's funny stuff. Have a good night.

    My girlfriend believes in God too, but finds my often exaggerated distaste for religion amusing, so I'm covered. I think she's an Atheist in disguise, but that's another subject.

    Madskillz,

    I find posts 274 and 275 hilarious. Wasn't intentional at all.

    I remember hearing what you mentioned about Hawking in post 270. Maybe I watched the same documentary on TV. If you happen to recall the name of it, would you kindly let me know?

  271. Madskillz

    @Alchems Razor #280

    Very good. However, after my brief visit to ol' Wikipedia I gained a horrid suspicion regarding my #244 post; It was confirmed; I referred to my HYPOTHESIS as a THEORY. Bugger!

    Now, whilst I could make an unfounded claim at trying to be very clever with that, it really kills my hard work a bit (hence this post).

    Ah well.

  272. Madskillz

    @Chyrch 282

    HA! Thats excellent!

    Re: Stephen H Christ - Yeah certainly. I'll have a look right after this post.

    Your post also re-enforces my need to stop reading posts haphazardly for a while. The debating I was following kinda went x different directions awhiles back and my lazy nature kicked in. Many of my recent posts that were not directly @'ed me were based off of singular refference (:

  273. Madskillz

    @Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Curse you! I do nothing in moderation! It's not FAIR!

  274. Jo McKay

    Again good doc, great questions. For myself, I am agnostic (so I know what I don't believe in), but for years, am not certain about much at all. This film presents some interesting clarity though. My take so far: So, our cosmos 'seems' to have a preference for matter over anti-matter (the Hadron experiments I think) - and human biology 'seems' to have a preference for a God (concept or idea)... Religion (and it's doctrines), however - I would argue is Not biology, or a 'need' for congregation, etc, but rather, is more simple - the attempt to justify elitism, power, and control, over the many, by the few...(who also decide what is knowledge, and what is relevant). Personally, I agree that the 'preference' for the God idea isn't going away anytime soon - because it offers a gift, the cost of which is a will to believe. That gift gives - more meaning & some purpose to life (or the imagination of meaning/purpose), maybe also gives, the placebo effect of healing and hope. That's powerful stuff... Without doubt, the spectacle and spectacular unfolding of 'star stuff' is energetic fuel. But, as long as it offers no purpose beyond selection and survival and a ridiculously short 'healthy' life span, then Many, will likely Hope, for More. ( I suddenly find myself, a little less frustrated by the 'believers', just wish 'they' would spend some time being quiet for a while - maybe have their OWN spiritual experience - and throw out the painfully nasty doctrines). ooops, feel a hippy peace song coming on - nuff said.

  275. Madskillz

    @Your comment is awaiting moderation

    Arrrrrrrgh!

  276. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    A. Brief. History. of. Time. - but with fluffy animals.

  277. jack1952

    @ Jo McKay

    It's only natural to grasp at straws. Just a little while longer. I promise to be good. I may even grovel. Just give me hope.

  278. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay #287

    You have no idea how how much I wanna touch on what you are reffering to in your post. It also allows me to procrastinate a little further in regards to post #284 (:

  279. Chyrch

    Madskills,

    Thanks. I'll check that out, and watch it if I haven't already seen it. Not sure what relationship it has to the book, but I guess I'll find out.

    Also, whatever you're on, I want some.

  280. Jo McKay

    @ Jack - Ha- agreed."It’s only natural to grasp at straws. Just a little while longer. I promise to be good. I may even grovel. Just give me hope." - think about it; for immortality? for 17 Virgins? (or whatever)- lotsa guys will grovel if she's just breathing (but I digress); it's been my observation that not a lot of 'reason' is required if 'belief' in some One gives back so much (psychologically); when even bald denial offers freedom from pain (even temporary pain), many will jump right up on the denial train. Doesn't that make some sense? @Madskillz - touch :)

  281. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    Medical grade insomnia; an old friend. If you would care to delve deeper into this apparent condition; analyze my entire posting in this blog. Besides 'x' ammount of micro-slips, I have had 6 or so hours of actual sleep right up untill post #244, in which I had just had a 3 hour nap beforehand. I was approaching 70 hours 'awake' prior to this nap, I think - it is SO hard to tell how many days pass. It is completley drug/alcohol free besides 2-3 shots of Drambui (slugged from the bottle) at the very beginning and the use of a few caffeine slugz to maintain comfort levels - counter productive, I know, but through past experiences I generally know when I am in for a 'long haul'.

    To summarise this analysis for you (I'm not THAT self-indulgent), I will give example of a very 'special' typo from #132. I can recall it with ease for 2 reasons. It was the turning point of @Saturnines bi-polar rants, but more importanly it was, by it's very self; read, re-read and read again before I was satisfied at writing on to continue my post. I am not dyslexic. I have a very firm grasp of this word. Even right NOW I couldn't do it without 'spell checking' it via google search bar. I'd tried 3 times again too. I wrote this entire post with very little proofread/edit. I can touchtype VERY well. Here it is:

    socialality

    sociality

  282. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    My ref. to touchtyping is intended to stand alone (;

  283. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    I write 'apparent condition' as in I truly enjoy the madness and hilarity of it - Particularly on reflective re-reading after a DECENT sleep (:

  284. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    I am aware that you were more likely reffering just to my howls at the moderater, but I truly AM self-indulgent (;

  285. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    You may already be aware of this, but I think it is interestingly associated in some ways;

    (Copy/Paste. I'm also lazy)

    The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno't mtaetr in waht oerdr the ltteres in a wrod are, the olny iproamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it whotuit a pboerlm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Azanmig huh? yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt!

  286. riley

    i would like a nice pastrami sandwich.

    with pickle.

  287. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    Oo, another really good 'explanation' as to my avatar name.

    It is, infact, the name of a Pitbull I met on one occasion when I was 14 years old. I've been using it on/off for 2 years now. Particularly obnoxious owner (I love Pittyz, I even have one).

    Madskillz the dog had Ghonorrea at the time.

    I am not Indiana Jones. I think.

    I don't have Ghonorrea at present, but certainly smell as if I do.

  288. Madskillz

    @riley

    You gonna share that around? I LOVE Pastrami.

  289. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #253

    Your're naive. But I think you at least know what you're saying. If I say you're right, then Philosophy as I think you see it has already won. But you're not right, Chyrch. You'll see. You will. I'm sorry this is all that I can say. Religion will return to your mind immediately when you find that you are having a religious experience. Philosophy only helps make sense of it. The religious symbols that you have make that sense have meaning. The religious symbols interpret the experience in advance and direct it. It's allright.

    Put that on your thesis.

  290. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    I'm right on this. Believe me.

  291. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    @301 underscore the word 'helps'.

  292. Saturnine

    Chyrch, and the rest of you lot,

    You'd better just underscore the whole #301.

  293. Madskillz

    @Vlatko

    I Just read the FAQ

  294. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    Take care of yourself. I liked your postings. It think you are a truly smart person and that you can handle it. Train your heart as well as your mind. See other people and think positively about them, even if they're not perfect.

    But for now, I really have to take a break and think about something else at work. Discussions on these issues continue elsewhere.

    I've got something really easy and non-intellectual coming up at last.

    Maybe I too can sleep properly soon.

    Regards.

  295. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    God is 100%; Residing on 3 Levels.

    The Domain.

    The Workshop.

    The Dungeon.

  296. Patrick

    @Madskillz

    That was close.thought you we're talking about LDS church there for a minute in #305.

  297. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    It was just a bone. I dont know why there hasnt been a bigger effort made by Christians around the singularity in the void. The 'egg' that the universe stemmed from. What is the void? How did the 'egg' get there? What made it? etc. etc. There seems to be only disagreement on all else. It's an obviously avoided area for most of them, and I just cant understand why? It's their best starting point for ANY argument!

    I think it is because anything that has been popularly demonised within the 'flock' never gets a second thought. It doesnt even get a first thought really, as at best (most wont even touch it) Christians are just looking for holes in it from the moment of viewing/reading/listening. They think that the whole concept was designed to insult them personally, as if scientists were just out to disprove God from the very beginning with all of their hard work. Quantum/cosmology has done anything but, infact. It even makes us atheists have to step back and accept the possibility of there being a God. It even justifies religion in about 12,000 ways that I can think of, including it's use (not by me). In their own words it even makes the bible make sense! Or it could, if theyd just get off their shining white high horses. Self inflicted idiocy is most that is wrong with this life, it really is.

  298. Madskillz

    @Saturnine @jolulipa

    Chrisianity, along with many other religions, has been facing tough times for quite a while now due to the 'debunking' nature that IS science. As a person's faith is so very close to their hearts and what defines them as being a moral and thoughtful person; science will often offend, before enlighten. This may lead to a 'self inflicted' case of ignorance, and will only strengthen their disagreement against something that may have otherwise been to their benefit. It is also this that has often led to unjust persecution against other parties throughout history.

    One of the primary failings within the Christian faith, and indeed people in general, is a need to have clear set rules for the moderation of what they perceive to be right and wrong. This will lead to defining morality; what are correct morals to adhere to. This is the overarching purpose of the Bible, and gives itself credence by the fact that it really is quite right on most of it, bringing about further recruitment from those who were not brought up within the faith. Where a person may have been lacking in having a correctly functioning 'moral compass', they can find direction in the Bible's teachings. This may lead to true feelings of elation and inner content, as this 'moral compass' is required to find true hapiness in life. Unfortunately one will also 'owe' their allegience to the rest of the Bible's teachings, as they can only now see it as the overall TRUTH, due to the 'gift' that it has given them. This is misguided.

    What is often overlooked by beleivers, is in their very own teachings. Morality is infact inherent within the human being; we are born with it. It was put there by God, in order that we, as people, are to love one another. This may be true, however evolution may also take credit for this concept.

    It is known to most, religious or atheist, that decent morality is vital for us to survive as a species; Without tolerance of one another, we could not function as a group. Humans are reliant on group dynamics to function.

    Whether through divine implementation, or evolutionary neccesity, it stands to reason that we would all have an inner engine driving our 'want' to adherere to moral law. The problem with setting moral laws down as being a thing that can only be learnt would be truly devastating, however I do not think that Christianity is doing this directly. Through it's convictions though, it is giving measure to the concept. This will lead many, even perhaps the majority, to a passive misunderstanding; even against one of it's primary teachings.

    So what is the 'alternative' to being taught that which is already apparent within? What is the conscience 'link' to this inner engine that drives one to a correct set of moralistic code? It is infact INTEGRITY. If one were to understand the true meaning of this notion, it is all they actually require to be able to come closer to that which is already a part of them from birth.

  299. Madskillz

    @Saturnine @jolulipa

    This still aint the harmony jigga. I'm gonna make it a 3 par series, with #242 (formally #244) being one of those parts.

    I actually only took about 30 mins to write this out, and even came up with a littl bit extra as I was doing it. Letting the mind stew on stuff for a bit is a truly wonderful thing.

    Brains are cool; such clever things.

  300. Madskillz

    @Saturnine @jolulipa

    I'm pretty happy with #308, minor typos be damned. However;

    The problem with setting moral laws down as being a thing that can only be taught is that it can be truly devastating, however I do not think that Christianity is doing this directly.

  301. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    If you do not already have one, i suggest that you get a dog. I HIGHLY reccomend a Bullmastiff. Do not be averted by their 'largish' size (45kg-55kg), as they do not require much excercise or space (although keep in mind 'by-product'). Just be sure to check that is has been bred by a genentically responsible breeder and is registered under such moderations.

    I do NOT extend this notion to cats in ANY way.

  302. Madskillz

    @Jo Mckay

    Something here is totally freaking me out. Your #283 post sounded SO much like my Dad (although nothing that we have really discussed to date) that I was truly wondering...

    I did a google and a Jo Mckay popped up near the top. I didn't read far, but If that is YOU; you have a FREAKISHLY similar resemblence to what my father and I myself do careerwise.

    Spooky.

  303. jack1952

    @ Jo Mckay

    It makes perfect sense. When all reasonable avenues fail, why not try the unreasonable. Theres nothing to lose.

  304. Madskillz

    @Jo Mckay

    Although my over posting is a clear indicator of a lonely night, and I am usually squeemish about making more than 2 posts in a row, I gotta drop this one due to the damn moderator stickin' it to me again.

    Something here is totally spooking me out. Your #283 post sounded SO much like my Dad (although nothing that we have really discussed to date), that it truly left me wondering…

    I did a google and a Jo Mckay popped up near the top. I didn’t read far, but If that is YOU; you have a extrordiarily similar resemblence to what my father and I myself do careerwise.

    Spooky

  305. Madskillz

    @Saturnine @jolulipa @God @Whatever

    Okay. Truly EPIC sized overall post. Whatever. I waited a day to slap it down, an nuffin' has happened in here since then, so I dont' have MEGAPOST guilt. Part 3 is humour based, yes. Am drunk, yes; any other ideas appreciated?

    I am quite literally a person from the school of hard knocks and mispent youth, so gimme a break here please. In that I mean arms, legs and anything else you can get a hold of. Bring it.

    Science 0 – 1 Sheep

    Science's no.1 flaw is infact EXACTLY the same as an ultimatum religion such as Christianity; it insists upon itself. It is of course completely neccesary, however it is also it’s worst enemy in the sense of making progress. A good analogy is Wikipedia, in that it certainly is not a completely reliable source, but due to it’s ‘open to edit’ stance; it will always be subject to evolution. This is where Christianity fails. However, it is very debatable on how much of this issue, having been in place for such a long time, is in fact the very FOUNDATION of Scientific Method; it taught us MUCH. It is this very default, perhaps, that brought truly significant scientific minds into action such as Leo D, Galileo etc. There are of course significant scientific minds which pre-date Christianity by relative light years (ie. Greek philosophy/scientists), so the argument on Christianity holding back scientific progress may still hold true. Almost. When truly profound advancements are made by relatively small parties; who is to say whether it would of occured without their very being having existed within it's given form?

    For the sake of this argument, I state that mankind was applying true, SENTIENT science pre-dating the stone/wood tool era. My basis for this is that of being properly aware of the act and consequence of mating. Intinct serves it’s purpose in ensuring that life will reproduce, which is lucky for Christians (unlucky for everyone else), but my argument here is based around what would fall into the category of ‘Social Science’.

    Our human ancestors would have been applying basic sentient forms of selective breeding and birth control well before learning how to use tools to their true effect. The selective breeding aspect applys to a sentient based decision process on what is an ideal mate; who to mate with and HOW. The birth control aspect is in the sentient realisation that ‘too many is too much’ for a ‘tribe’ to function properly in regards to limited resources (ie. food). These two concepts are still very much a ‘work in progress’ to this very day. MY theory does not rule out the study already done on the evolution of tool usage at all, however I believe that it would shift some very significant dates. The ‘grey area’ around these dates alone would alow for further possible science to be performed. I would be highly surprised if this area has not already been addressed and petitioned for by academic parties for application. As I was writing earlier on the flaws of science; not having this applied to the popular overall theory can be truly stagnating, as not all scientists would take it into consideration by default when making their future studies. Usefull via convenience, much like an equation is.

    Science 1 – 1 Sheep

    Christianity, along with many other religions, has been facing 'tough times' for quite a while now due to the ‘debunking’ nature that IS science. As a person’s faith is so very close to their hearts and that which 'defines' them as being a moral and thoughtful person; science will often offend, before enlighten. This may lead to a ‘self inflicted’ case of ignorance, and will only strengthen a Christian's disagreement against something that may have otherwise been to their benefit. It is also this, in part, that has led to unjust persecution against other parties throughout history.

    One of the primary failings within the Christian faith, and indeed people in general, is a need to have a 'clear set of rules' for the moderation of what they perceive to be right and wrong. This leads to defining morality; what are the correct morals to adhere to? This is the overarching purpose of the Bible, which lends itself credence by the fact that it IS quite right on much of this concept. This tends to bring about further recruitment from those who were not brought up within the faith. Where a person may have been lacking in having a correctly functioning ‘moral compass’, they can find direction in the Bible’s teachings. This may lead one to a true feeling of elation and inner content, as this ‘moral compass’ is required to find true hapiness in life. Unfortunately one will also ‘owe’ their allegience to the rest of the Bible’s teachings, as they can now only see it as the overall TRUTH, due to the ‘gift’ that has been bestowed upon them. This is misguided.

    What is often overlooked by beleivers is infact within their very own teachings. Morality is inherent within the human being; we are born with it. It was put there by God in order that we, as people, are to love one another. This may be true, however evolution may also take credit for this.

    It is known to most, Christian and atheist alike, that decent morality is vital for us to survive as a species. Without tolerance of one another we could not function as a group; humans are reliant on group dynamics to function. Whether through divine implementation, or evolutionary neccesity, it stands to reason that we would all have an inner engine driving our want or NEED to adhere to moral law. Defining moral laws as being something that can be taught can be truly devastating to an individuals personal growth. Christianity is not doing this directly, although through it’s convictions it is giving a great implication of such. This will lead many, even perhaps the majority, to a passive misunderstanding against one of it’s primary teachings; non-Christians are immoral.

    So what is the ‘alternative’ to being taught that which is already apparent within? What is the conscience ‘link’ to this inner engine that drives one to a correct set of moralistic code? It is infact INTEGRITY. If one were to understand the true meaning of this notion, it is all that they actually require in order to come closer to that which is already a part of them from the moment of their birth. Perhaps even beforehand.

    Science ? - ? Sheep

    What is the nature of the Void? What, if ANYTHING, actually exists there? What brought about the singularity that was the 'egg' of the Universe into effect? Big questions, I know. Unanswerable, I know. But is this not that which makes both science AND religion the wonders that they TRULY are? Is this not that which defines religious 'creationalism' as a possibility? Is this not that which drives the scientific mind? I wonder... Do both religees AND atheists both avoid this concepts? In the 'sense' of Quantum AND religion alike; are these not the REAL questions that we should all be asking OURSELVES?

    My approach here will be through a 'grasp' of Quantum, although I will attempt to lend credence to religion also. The religious refference will be to, in the main, Christianity; this is the religion that I am most familiar with. This should not matter, as ALL religions are VALID.

    Through the teachings of Quantum; there is no further reality (for us) than the 'simple' totality of 99.9%. Through Quantum's and various other's teachings, to acheive 100% is also akin to reaching the speed of light; the speed limit of the Universe, as far as 'we know it'. From our very human 'point of view', this is not possible. Within the concept of 100%; ALL becomes static/stationary. Or even ceases to be. Time does not exist here. At least not as 'we know it'. It is already 'known' that when one approaches the Universal speed limit; time begins to slow down in relation to all other matter elsewhere. Such as the planet Earth. Black holes are a good starting point here. However, we also 'know' of this concept from such simple basis as the satelites that we launch into Earth's orbit. These satelite's internal clock systems require a miniscule adjustment in their cycle in order to keep them in sync with Earth's 'time'. Time is relative. Relative to where you are, in refference to somewhere else.

    The 'term' 99.9% 'simply' refers to flaw. All that 'is', or ever 'was', and is yet to 'be', is subject to this 'minor' flaw. This gives 'insight' into what brought about the possibility of the Universe 'itself' ever being 'posible'. For without this flawed state, the Universe could not exist. This is a 'matter' of matter/anti-matter. Again 'from our point of view'; imperfection IS perfection. Except for Mondays. They just suck.

    Enough of the 'overuse' of the '. One gets the idea. I will now drop back into the realms of 'reality' (could not be helped!). As is eluded to in the further above sections, what is the nature of.... MAN and.... HIS/HER relationship with all of this? Nobody can actually answer this question properly, no matter how clever they are. Not at present, at least. But as I have always enjoyed a challenge from a very young age (Hi Mum&Dad!), so I'll have a crack at it.

    As Quantum has been somewhat overdone here, let us look at Christianity. It's current state is one of crisis, and no matter how much 'reform', it is still struggling to 'keep up'. This is not necessary. Even though the overarching theme of Quantum is FLAW, let us just keep it, er, real. It was pointed out earlier in this text that Christianitys greatest 'brick wall' was that it insists upon itself. SO WHAT? This tends to end up in a debate of BIBLICAL proportions, but I'm feeling a little friendly so, have a fish;

    Has anyone ever considered that the 99.9% was an intentional implementation via God's workshop? That he/she/...whatever got down to being TRULY crafty in creating a tiny speck of, well, EGG - which would then result into becomming the Universe thereafter? FROM ONE DAMN SPECK OF EGG?!! In the basic principles of engineering; the less moving parts the better. It is beyond our comprehension that which 'really' goes on about the place, as it is so damn DIVERSE. Perhaps ol' God had an inkling of this before he created the Singularity? In that ALL things would come about therof? If there ever were an engineer who could apply such fine refine, it's gotta be God yeah? Think about this (no, really). Is it possible, that even the very teachings within the Bible that are of ultimative sense are actually intentional design? To whip us mere mortals into, um, rational sense? Yes there was an apparent 98 odd thousand year neglect to humanity, but what would God define as HUMANITY?

    Where was the 'M' theory? Well, my drink didn't just float away or crush within itself alongside myself, however it DID knock over as is USUAL (hush, Kinetics!). Oh, and this is where Hell and whatnot may be. God prolly wouldnt have it 'within' the Void. Land value, you understand.

  306. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Really shoulda put a paragraph spacing at beginning of; MY theory does not~

    This lot are gonna think that I am some sorta twit. Ah well, they are all going to Hel...

  307. jolulipa

    @Madskillz

    I like your posting. Quite interesting and deserves a better reading and a proper answer.

    I am traveling to the north of my country to do some whale watching... it is their season now and do not want to miss them (is the first for my children). so I will answer in three or four days.

    Anyhwo... see ya all later!

  308. Jo McKay aka Polar Jo

    @ All
    Okay - I have forgotten by now, what it was I got from this documentary, and been swallowed up in the discussions - some very fascinating by the way. From the existence of God to the value of religion (or particular religions); has Science killed God; is belief in such an 'archaic' concept purely illusion, naive, childish, OR are both beliefs (for or against) a profound longing for the beginning which was Nothing, or the beginning which was One? Hmmm, allow me to weigh in with a few more thoughts: 1. From what Ive been watching in the current Science arena - If the Hartle/Hawking wave function proves the Universe existing held a 95% probability for Life- Some say this makes a God/Creator a problem, because what 'omnipotent' Creator would say "I will this Universe into existence, and I will give it a 95% probability that life will evolve" (Argument being that if 'God' willed Life, then surely the Laws of the Universe would prove out a 100% probability, IF, that is God is perfect.

    Then Quantum mechanics comes along and 'proves' that particles (within a vacuum) can come into and out of existence, showing that if the very small is a window into the very large, then the Universe can have absolutely come into being 'out of Nothing'. - Interesting point, but look at 2. Some very strange demonstrations are coming out of Quantum mechanics. One of my favorites is, the degree to which we 'all' create our own reality. It appears that we 'decide/determine' what we see BEFORE we actually see it (often changing or creating or re-creating what was - or wasn't actually there before).

    I've been fascinated by this for some time, but the bottom line for me has always been - what is it's practical application?. And, for this discussion I think there is one: Every one is right! If you want to be. Yes, a God could have created a Universe with 95% probability of building Life, and sat back to watch and see what happens - 5% improbability could be "Free Will" or the Uncertainty Principle. IF we create our reality, then perhaps "I" am the only One who exists, therefore, "I" am God or NOT. If I would rather live in a reality without a God/Creator, (open sesame) my wish is granted! So, if my understanding is even on the Quantum Field - Yes, your God exists and Yes, there is no God -you can have it your own way. Now, what will you do about that? A wise person once said "Be careful what you pray for (or don't pray for) you might just get it"... :) peace

    @ Madskillz - I just read #315...similar wave length, that's spooky too (It is a mad mad world sometimes). I don't think we are all just comparing apples to oranges (one irrelevant to the other), to me, at least up to what i kinda, sorta, maybe understand Quantum mechanics is opening the POSSIBILITY of Everything and Everywhere - and IF some of us can wrap our head around it? Well, I don't know what were going to do with it...:) ... ps. I was curious so looked up Jo McKay; not me; though thought it was weird that we have many similarities. Look up instead Polar Jo McKay (one of my nick names), some of my pages come up. As for careers, I was a Community Development Specialist (Healing & Wellness) for a long time; last few years I Write (more for pay then for me, so far- what do you and your father do?). pps. This has been fun. Thanks.

  309. Jo McKay

    @ MadSkillz Good stuff. I did post a reply, however, it is "awaiting moderation" - what is that about anyway? Maybe too long. Anyway, cheers till I get "approved" :)

  310. Madskillz

    Thankyou. You know what? Hunting whale doccos (poor taste plug o' the day) is exactly what led me into this excellent website/portal. What are those buggers REALLY up to? Why would a mammal return to the sea? Sperm whales have real life Street Fighter SONIC BOOMS! - Who says video games are bad for kids (;

    I have no doubt that you will have a wonderful time.

  311. Madskillz

    Thankyou. Your'e right, to give due respect to what I think THAT is about would require a HELL of alot more compression than what I applied to my Theory of Awesomeness. Let's just say that I suspect that it is a matter of the soul, and where it's home is.

    And the LAST thing I want to find in here is my DAD. He'd be able to tell y'all how many lies I've been telling.

  312. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    A fishy moment...

    There is no such thing as a bad question; There is no such thing as a bad answer.

  313. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Things that have been bugging me for awhile. NOW moerso than EVER.

    Arrogance/Confidence

    Psychoanalysis/Self Awareness

    Excuse/Excuse

  314. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Overarching BUG;

    I am no longer sure that I am an ATHEIST.

    What have I DONE.

    HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEELLLLLLLLLLLLLP!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Oh wait, there you are..... ARRRRRRRRRRRRGH!!!!!!!

  315. Madskillz

    @Polar Jo

    I will have to read your post several more times, however for the moment;

    'Do not quote me on this', but in my chrissie hols I was told by a beloved family member (Inlaw, would you believe?), that there has been a recent study into particle behaviour. Apparently they will have a uniform nature UNLESS they are being VIEWED.... hmmmm.

    And now for some (other?) Science Fictional goodness;

    In the sense of the 'individual realities' concept, in ADDITION to, what if we apply the notion of the 'collective mind'? The HIVE MIND?

    SCAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRREEEEEEEEEE.

    Who's the bloody ALIENS around this joint! This is OUTRAGEOUS! (I'm taking that one back)

    12,754 other things, but I think it should be left there for a bit.

    My father and I both work in Aboriginal Affairs. My father has been crackin at adult training/community development/aged care. He wants to be a writer. I've been crackin at youth work/public service. I think that I want to become a writer one day.

    Now, before you hate me re: public service;

    Be the change that you want to see in the world - You know who.

  316. Madskillz

    @joululipa @JoMkay

    #320 was aimed at jolulipa

    #321 was aimed at JoMkay

    Excuse for the the oversight, I am quite literally 'full of myself' at present (:

  317. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    It occured to me that I should point out that Community Development type jobbies within Australian Aboriginal Affairs are NOT Government based. Aboriginal communities recieve Government funding (and strings), but the Communities determine who gets their pie. My dad would say "Keep the bast@rds honest". I would say "Yes Dad, that's what the bast@rds are trying to do". I think that my Dad WAS a little funny about me going over to the 'Dark Side'. He never has, and never will work for the public service. Except in the sense of fish.

    It also occured that I should google up on 'Community Development Specialist', to see what it's relation is to the above. The results were a serious mix of public sector/public service.

    This is getting WEIRDER by the.... Post?

  318. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Reffer posts #325 #327 re: Life experience. Do teach me more about love please?

    IN YOUR FACE

  319. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz . #321 "Luke - I am NOT your father" lol (more on that later).

    Nice to meet you. Kind of a scary web site to say something as specific as this - but, wisdom be damned :) ... I like the way you think/write what you think... a few other's on here I am also growing in respect for. Personally, I am not much impressed with purely intellectual (or academic) discussion, though I do respect 'evidence based research', so links, quotes, etc can be helpful in understanding what someone really thinks - as long as they actually get back to what their own thoughts are. No offence to anyone (whatever floats your boat ya know); I get very little from talking to a text book... Now Universal Mind hey?

    # 325 - I love it, it's the real University dont you know...I was first interested when studies came out (early 80's I think) showing that when one person (or group) learned a new video game, subsequent individuals learned the same 'new' game much faster - even, when introduced to people who had previously had no experience or knowledge or concept of what a video game was learned the 'games' even faster yet , ultimately demonstrating that knowledge (dare i say 'gnosis') once learned goes 'into' a World Mind or Universal Library where we are all connected (Quantum entanglement?), so the speed with which we pick up new learning is exponential... many exceptional examples of this since. It gets back to the 'true paradox' of we are all One and we are all None. If we share our knowledge with one another in this way (perhaps also images, what about dreams, and nightmares, etc?) it makes sense that we can at least relate to most peoples arch types.

    AND if we add another dimension to 'shared knowledge' and include the possibility of Generational knowledge or Gene memories (now that's a bit frightening, just on a personal level; I don't want to 'remember' that much of my families histories and experiences, ha, but maybe I already have, filtered it, integrated it, and dumped what I thought unimportant?)...aww the un -knowable. Maybe, it provides an explanation for several things touched on here, if humans have 40 or more thousands of years of saturation of 'supernatural beliefs' ? - and- we are related to ALL our histories and thoughts, then the (stubbornness or refusal) of the many to whole heartedly 'embrace' "New" learning makes even more sense. (Especially when they do not WANT to learn it).

    But, just like the breaking of the 4 minute mile - even if you hadn't heard about it, 'Universal Mind' eventually integrated it (admittedly only to those who wanted to run faster already, and many were breaking the record everywhere). Which gets back to the exercise of Individual Will and Collective Will. (Let's agree to stay 'out' of the collective unconscious for the moment). Can we change our reality (Quantum mechanics says, of course we can, and do, every day); but, how 'much' can we change reality without the support of the Collective? Hmm For the sake of brevity, I'll take a giant leap here; I think, the best 'hope' (I know very big word) for Science and Critical Thinking (humanity has previously thrown out knowledge and gone 'back' to the dark ages, remember, simply because the Science both threatened religious and monarchic powers, and was unpalatable to the 'masses') is to learn how to speak to (listen and talk) to one another in a way that opens the door called Curiosity. Rather than pounding absolutes at others, curiosity, might invite (insight) a revolution of 'new' learning???

  320. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Insight on Educational Rreofm;

    An easily accessible database archive should contain Quotes WITH their respective author. The author's name should be otherwise removed in all other respects. I tend the think that most of them wouldn't mind.

    Insight into racial predudice;

    Besides in the legitimate pursuit of historical means, Genetics and Cultural Identity MUST be viewed as SEPERATE concepts. BOTH are WONDERFUL things.

  321. Madskillz

    @Jo Mckay

    Insight;

    I posted #330 before reading #329.

  322. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    And I was born in 81. Hmmm, when was that study done?

    It has not passed notice on my behalf that the AUTHORITIES that be are 'interested' in our conversation. However;

    Integrity 1 - 0 Paranoia. THANKYOU QUANTUM.

  323. Madskillz

    @Jo Mckay

    Another bone for the Authoritar;

    In the sense of 'school', I outright failed year levels 8,9,10,11 and 12. Before 'finding' my way at age 22 (youth work), I was a pupmper of fuel and a flipper of burgers.

    Infact, besides some nature doccos, Stephen H. Christ's History of the Universe series and about 10 mintutes of the Doc above; IVE BEEN MAKING EVERYTHING UP AS I GO.

    Not bad for a 'tree hugger' eh?

  324. Madskillz

    @Authoritar

    I'm cool with dyin. NOW.

  325. Madskillz

    @Authoritar

    I'm not cool with spam. EVER.

  326. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    Regarding your #329 Post; I TOTALLY agree. (;

  327. Madskillz

    @Jo Mckay

    Insight;

    You can read much of these posts in a 'backward' direction with realative ease. We truly are full of ourselves.

  328. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Bug;

    Full of one's self/enlightenment

  329. Madskillz

    @The Office

    You lot are in for a bit of a shock when I return on Monday.

  330. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Insight;

    I may be cool wiv dyin, but most of the people I know certainly aint. DAMMNIT!

  331. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Integrity 1 - Authoritar 1 - Paranoia 1 - Mental Concerns 0

  332. ProudinUS

    @Madskillz

    Dam! You ok?..rehab maybe?

  333. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    Insight;

    In post #337 'realative' was not a clever typo. It was a typo.

    Mental Concerns - Pending Review

  334. Madskillz

    @ProudinUS

    Yeah. More than ever infact. The only rehab for insomnia is an enforced sleeping pattern.

    Don't worry, I assure you that there is an overall context to my 'madness' (:

  335. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Inight;

    Walk away for a bit.

    Handing the 'Blog Stick' over.....

  336. Jo McKay

    @Madskillz ... A good paragraph can always be read backwards, it stands on it's own, lol... I did continue the thread from 329, but alas am awaiting moderators approval. I started with: "@ Madskillz #324 and a bit of #325(still chuckling), but I hope yur not talking from serious angst here. Hey, it’s all relative anyway." So :) more on that later I guess. RE: # 333 and 'beyond' (at least I think that's the number - someone's messin w the order... imagine twilight zone introductory music here ... :), you could almost imagine the numbers winking in and out of existence, ha. I do not buy your claim to 'faking it', and I would love for anyone to take me up on the Curiosity is the key suggestion - if, that is we want to ever get past the cave man, who has the bigger club mentality; hitting folks over the head just damages those good big brains :)... ciao

  337. Saturnine

    Atheism

    I

    How did we get anything right?

    Some ones had to start it, didn’t they? They were the first ones to ask a question about Truth. There was some answer. They recoiled. They found shelter among their own kind. What they insisted on was imprinted on their children.

    Time passed.

    Some of them said, that God is about their acts of delusion. That became atheism.

    II

    Before this happened, when the children first heard their father and mother Ask, they saw that even within the mere question it is possible to misunderstand what they say. In this hesitation, the second kind of question was made. And they didn’t have to say anything.

    In this epoch of their life, these beings had a language. Even if they were quiet.

    III

    In time it had to be that they asked about misunderstanding itself, and they saw a false nothingness. This was when many questions were made, among which is the question of delusion.

    At that time, the beings didn’t have to fall to any of it.

    But the question of delusion was a paradox, and tricky.

    IV

    There was a time, no-one knows when, when She put a finger across her lips and said: “Shh”. That was when dreams became dreams. And all loved her for that gentle act, and all were with her. And all should love her still, and never misunderstand an answer.

    Was this time before there was delusion? Tell me.

    V

    A wind blew across the plains that the beings saw. (The heaven was above.) And they didn’t have to ask more about it, because they were safe.

    But they were happy, and curious.

  338. Madskillz

    @Jo Mckay

    No angst here - me an' God brus are pretty cool. He's fairly liberal with his lightning bolts, but this is a particularly common trait in anyone I spend alot of time around. He allows me to forgive him.

    You meant my colourful school history? Winkin' in and out all Quantum like? Yeah, although it was more put across at the time that it was my future prospects that were Winking in and out of reality. To da' man; What EV-AAA.

    Curiosity key indeed. In order to apply relative thought on any matter, one must view ALL things subjectively in an impartial manner. Even the French. The key in overcoming self inhibiting notions is curiosity.

    I have a pretty good club, I am just a little afraid to use it.

  339. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Why do you need a bible?

  340. Saturnine

    @Mad,

    The Bible speaks about questions. But you know, sacred stuff can be found anywhere.

  341. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Hmmm. How about EVERYWHERE?

  342. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    I have no imediate Aboriginal genes, I just grew up out in remote communities. Nobody back home cares that I am 'white'. This was Desert Culture, in my case. Most Australian's tend to think of 'Aboriginal' as being a collective society. One and the same. Pre-colonization there were 400 or so distuinguishable language groups; Nations. There are now about 40. Good times.

    Ngarpartji Ngarpartji - What's mine is yours. Give and recieve. If you scratch my back, I scratch yours. - Pitjantjatjarra.

  343. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Ware subliminal messaging; intelligence is no barrier. All information must be viewed with subjective thought.

    My hair line is receding; I feel like a Coke.

  344. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    I re-read your #318 post again and there was a bit there that was aside (perhaps...) from the 'indvidual/collective mind'.

    Now, as I was speaking of subliminal messages (#354), my mind went imediately to doughnuts. Where you reffer to particles being a window of the very small into the very large, it brought to mind a PARTICULARLY vivid dream I had when I was 17. I hadn't then, or since, done any actual research on Doughnut Universes, but I'll attempt to draw a picture of what I experienced;

    I had a drawn back view of the Universe, which then became overlayed with a green marked grid. The grid, along with the image respectively, was attempting to bend in and out in all sorts of bizzare shapes - however whenever it tried to invert in on itself, the image would 'snap back' into form. After many varients took place, an inner-inner monologue stated "The matter needs somewhere to go. It is energy, and all energy must be replenished, like a re-chargable battery. Like a Human Being. Black holes are your key". I imediately thought of how matter enters a black hole, and 'apparently' ceases to be. The grid image returned. It formed into a doughnut shape and threatened to 'snap' back into form. Black holes were applied directly, and an enourmous (felt?) pressure was released. However, the pressure begun to rise (again?). I felt panic. An equal ammount of 'extra' black holes were applied, with visible sprays of matter returning INTO the doughnut universe. The pressure did not go; it became STABLE. The doughnut universe AGAIN inverted(wtf?); I awoke.

    Pretty cool huh?

  345. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    #355

    This is why I don't need a bible.

  346. Madskillz

    @All

    No, I am not Jo McKay. But by no means take MY word for it. GOOD thinking on your behalf!

    Dunt Da Dunt Da Dunt Da Dunt Da Dunt Da Doo-Da-DOOO.

  347. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    #356

    But is perhaps why I need a girlfriend.

    Dunt Da Dunt Da Dunt Da.....

  348. Achems Razor

    Seems like yous guys's are getting into some supernatural parlance here.

    Will relate an experience that happened to me many years back.

    Was regressed, not by hypnosis, drugs or booze, but by a technique employed by some friends of mine, was still cognizant of my surroundings laying there with my eyes closed, instead of going into the past, went into the future, was in a spaceship with a big wrap around command deck, unreal visualizations, was beautiful to see all the galaxies in deep space.

    Then all of a sudden everything went completely black, did not know what happened, Perhaps the spaceship blew up. But took it that I died! Perhaps just flipped universe as in many worlds theory.

    Then all was bright white, but not blinding, and was on like a flat sheet of paper, one dimension.

    The one dimension thing started vibrating, scared the h5ll out of me, woke up suddenly but not properly per, their techniques, could not focus, everything was grainy like looking closely at a photograph in a newspaper, anyway my sight came back after a few minutes, and that night slept like a baby, with an almost overwhelming feeling of peace and well-being.

    Never really been to scared of death ever since, leary yes, but not scared.

    Anyway the point of this story is the power of the mind! and nothing is as it seems.

  349. Madskillz

    @Alchems Razor

    Wicked! You did, of course, use a quality brand of salt didn't you?

    And, er, on the ship.... the 'crew' didn't.... well, you know?

    Heh, that's a fantastic yarn, that is.

  350. Madskillz

    @Alchems Razor

    Back in the day, residing in a flat with my brothers, there were many a night of my eldest brother and his 'friends' having a good old D&D/Bong session (never shared). Sometimes Magic. One of the friends, a very clever, and very SCARY individual professed a deep connection with the 'Dark Arts'. He REALLY knew his stuff. Too well.

    At one of these gatherings, he offered to challenge the audience with some evidence to his convictions. The audience were made up soley of debunking skeptics (very careful skeptics in this case), so they accepted the challenge. One offered up himself for 'piggage'.

    Now, must point out here that although this Ocultic chappie (deceased) was more than a little alarming, he ALWAYS threw his convictions around with a sense of 'moral' responsibility. He claimed to understand the sides of Dark and Light and the Grey Area in between. He REFUSED to 'teach' anything of the Dark Matter, as he himself admitted to it's inevitable self destruction (later proven). He neve claimed it as anything more than a quick, brief, rise to power. He had the utmost respect for those who 'walked' along the slower, and domminant 'Light' path.

    Anyway, back to the yarn. This is a case of Astral Travel. The 'pig' (bong denied) was layed out comfortably on the floor, with a ring of salt poured around him (circle of protection) and some verses read from the Occult chappie. The Pig's temples and feet were being massaged (I hate being a little brother) to induce the pig into a state of pure relaxation. When the Occult chappie was satisfied that the the pig was sufficiently 'prepared', he began the entry strategy.

    He intoned along the lines of; "Are you there 'pig'. Can you here me?'. Good pig. Good. Now, you are in a clearing yes? A nice, grassy clearing, with some flowers around the edgings and some stone ruin rubble yes? Pig, what do you see? Good, pig, good. Now, on the edge of the clearing, among the stone ruins, you see a stone stairway yes? Good pig, good. Now walk to the stairs pig, walk to the stairs. Are you at the stairs pig? Good, pig. Walk down the stairs pig, walk down the stairs. Slowly pig. Slowly. . Now pig, what do you see?"

    The results were INCREDIBLE. The 'pig' started muttering all SORTS of wonderful things. He only needed the occasional simple questions along the lines of "what are you seeing", and he was seeing ALOT. A bloody wolf, I think it was, introduced itself to the pig and made FRIENDS with him. It had a name, it had ADVICE and it eventually revealed itself as his SPIRITUAL GUIDE. What a cool wolf. I hope I have one too. Tarro cards at a later date kept showing one up (and a bloody snake), but I've decided that it is a Dingo (which are also Lupine). Even as a spectator, Astral Travel was one of the COOLEST things that I have EVER seen.

    Yeah yeah, don't try this at home kids blah blah. And why you're at it stop looking at porn.

    There are MUCH more user friendly ways to Astral Travel (if you're not hyperactive like I am), get a book about it. Apparently you already have/are doing it in your dream state.

    And also, kiddies, I have ANOTHER story about Mr. Occult chappie. Ohhhh yes. I saw him in a vision. I saw him DIE. They still havent found him, kiddies....

    DONT TOUCH THE OCCULT

  351. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Seeya!

  352. Patrick

    Wow!.........I thought you guys were talking about Joseph Smith and the LDS church there for a minute.

  353. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    Naw. My hats in the wash.

  354. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    Hmmm, however....

    Having said all of the above, who's really to say, yeah?

  355. Patrick

    Now, if there was visions of seagulls.........?

  356. Madskillz

    @All

    Okay, okay. Y'all know I'm gonna do it. 'Spit it out Madskillz. Whats the damn vision?". Right. Well, this occured in my pre Quantumy days, about 8 years ago, but it had personal credence to it even then. You see, it was a SHARED vision.

    I begin with a message about/to the dead. I respect the dead. I beleive they are all about the place in many forms, some of which we may be able to interact with even. They may provide inner advice, direction or enhanced ability. The more naughty sort may, perhaps, be attending their own 'special' form of afterlife that probably involves red hot pitch forks of a 'curious alien' nature. They may be in time out as something exciting like a rock. When they begin to behave perhaps an upgrade to a tree? Of the scrubby arid lands sort? Who KNOWS. Mr. Occult chappie, in his own words, described his 'fate' as POSSIBLY being transformed into an 'Astral Demon' - One who attaches itself to unwary Travellers and 'hitches' a ride home with them. Or chews on their silver lines. Anyway, if this is what Mr. Occult chappie is up to; Bring it MATE.

    Again, back in the day, I got very little attention from the usual suspects coming in/out of the flat. The only one that actually considered me more than just an annoying piece of furniture was infact, Mr. Occult chappie. He did several good deeds for me, such as dragging all the others around and getting me to spout Psychology exercises out at them all to prove that I was at LEAST as clever as the rest of them, and even, on one occasion, convinced my school to withdraw their 'Expelled' hit on me. In a way, we were quite close. I really liked this guy. He dragged me down to the local gym, and bought me a 'random pick' lottery box raffle thing. Which I chose correctly (Cha-Ching!). And then he made me purchase a years membership with it (grrr). He refused to 'train' me in his 'arts'.

    Now, the vision occured several years later, and I hadn't seen him in all that time. A couple years after that, I was attending my big bros pre-wedding gathering, which some of 'the usual suspects' were also attending. I will 'start' there.

    Hanging out in the backyard shed (some STILL hadnt dropped the habit), were the 'boys' and myself. Mr Occult chappie came up in conversation and there was a gloomy 'overcast' to the group. I asked what was up? They all looked at me incredulously, and told me that Mr. Occult chappie has been 'missing' for over 2 years now. Dont you watch late night tv Madskillz? He's been on the 'missing' add's for AGES. I have since seen the add, not so long ago actually. CREEPY. Anyways, I told them that I'd had a 'dream' about it. At this point, one of the other guys got all worked up and told me 'Hell no!' and 'Don't man. DONT'. Well, I did. The following was confirmed AND some added to as I told it.

    The 'dream' actually begun within another dream. A regular dream. I was doing something ordinary in it, but I began to hear a soft, pleading call of my name. It got a little louder and then SNAP. I was THERE. I saw Mr. Occult in the backseat of a moving car, night time, yellow vinyl seats, hunched over in the middle, tears flowing, pleading for his life. PLEADING. I could FEEL what he was FEELING. To either side of him were two figures, blurred, one had a stainless steel 'snub' pistol casually draped across his lap. They were completeley ignoring Mr. Occult - who KNEW this was the end. This was the END of the ROAD. There were no options. There was no escape. HE WAS FINISHED. The 'image' begun to slowly swing towards the passenger side front, bringing yet another blurry character into 'view' SNAP. The vision went black. In some indeterminable time of blackness, there was suddenly an ORANGE FLASH/BANG!....

    Mr. Occult was no more. I could no longer feel his presence.

    If you can, rest in peace mate. Rest in peace.

  357. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    .... You'd be at the beach?

  358. Madskillz

    @All

    IF you CHOOSE, here is a fish;

    Whenever you feel an unsavoury 'presence' about the place, imagine a pure white light within your mind/body. Now extend this light outwards, untill it is completley enveloping your mind/figure. Now push it out a few inches beyond...

    You have been 'cleansed'.

  359. Madskillz

    @All

    Lighten up guys*

    Pun intended (;

  360. Patrick

    @Madskillz

    I'd be at the beach.But would definately bring some sunscrean because as you know sometimes the rays off the sun can be annoying and down right nasty! But if I get burned to bad I can always blame the ultra violet rays that I know absolutely nothing about.You know what I mean?

    Did you know all of your capital words you had in 367,when bunched up in order almost sounded cool?...Man,I'm tired and definatley need a nap as you can tell.

  361. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    Hmmm, on review of #367; COOL?!! Arrrrggghh! White light! WHITE LIGHT!

    And now for something completly different..... IT'S;

    I reckon' that the whole sunscreen thing is a little over done. Like terrorism. It IS the GIVER of LIFE ya know? I mean, don't waste your time crisping up on the beach (The bar is more fun), but get a BIT of it inta ya.

    Vitamin D(?) cannot, to my knoweledge, be attained any other way.

    The OTHER one (can get in a bottle) counters Osteo Perosis, PARTICULARLY if you are an ageing Patricia.

  362. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    Oh, and get a good dose of Vitamin A, or you'll turn into a scurvey dog.

  363. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    And C..... Ya know what, just do the whole Alphabet.

    Or you'll turn into a Christian.

  364. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    Heh, just thought of a funny moment;

    I was watching a comedy talk tv show a few years back, and the story was about the HUGE smog issue in LA.

    The presenter 'passed over' to an 'interview' with a unhappy Mel Gibson (Clip from Ransom).

    "GIVE ME BACK MY SON!"

  365. Madskillz

    @Patrick @Gaia

    UV is the bad stuff (stay outta the beds, that's for plants). It is also what the atmosphere is for; keeping/letting most of it out. Oh, and keeping air in as well (Handy). But anyways, when carbons are burnt off (Polution), the atmosphere thickens and too much gets trapped inside.

    This is Global Warming.

  366. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    Er... Unless you were reffering to the LDS.

    Whatever, I don't mind selling an environmentalist add.

  367. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    I'm SO gonna get slammed on my vitamin 'Madskillz'

    I regret nothing!

    ... Except not taking B the other night. Hooooo.

  368. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #348

    Ya know, pretty much just supplant 'atheist' for 'Christian' in most of that and we got a deal.

  369. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Damnit! #379 woulda been gold! With, you fool, WITH!

  370. Patrick

    @Madskillz

    On the smog issue/comedy thing in #375,every once in awhile nature kicks in and drives the smog out with the Santa Ana winds and gives people a breath of fresh air from industry smoke.....Ya,local winds are a blessing in disguise. Unless there is a fire ,of course.

  371. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    ...Feel kinda bad towards @Saturnine. This is after all a 'campfire' session.

    Well, I'll be DAMNED if I'm gonna TELL HIM!

  372. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    Hooo yes. We know a bit about FIRE over in Oz mate. I was in the middle (edge) of a pretty nasty bushfire in our Nation's Capital once.

    I retract the blanket statement of "I'll try anything once".

  373. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    And this year at xmas (Summer), we got a bit of a radical 'change'. A third of the country ended up under water (minor exageration).

    WTF?

  374. Madskillz

    @Patrick

    Any good riots lately?

  375. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Dunt da da DUNT DA DA dunt da da DUNT DA etc.

    KHERWHILLIN IN DA NHEM UHF!

  376. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Some times ah fheel like I dohnt have a phartnaa (correct)

    Some times ah fheeel like, muh only friend (Pending review)

  377. Patrick

    @Madskillz

    on #385 I wouldn't know.I left the San Fernando Valley after my wife had our first kid.(to many foreigners and illegalls bashing the US) So moved up north.Found a good welding job in a small city where you can still be Proud in US.

  378. Troy

    You know a funny thing about these religes arguments about how its all about love,empathy & whatnot

    I never realised that you had to belive storys about imaginary beings to actually care about things... weird

    Just forget the fact that the one in a million (probably way more) chance that the earth (& not to mention the universe) has gone through tons of random events (i could rattle a list off, but most will know what im talking about) to even give any creature the chance to experience this "spiritual" thing called consciousness let alone exist is amazing on its own

    If you think (or learn) about all of that it will give you a pantload more satisfaction than any man made fiction novel ever will

    Why cant some people just get over the fact that there isnt a special "reason" why anything is here, you think because your ancestors stopped swinging out of trees & started speaking to each other that makes you different from any other living thing?

    I say get over yourself & as garth in waynes world said "LIVE IN THE NOW" & enjoy the ride, you only get one shot, dont waste it beliving in bull****

  379. Chyrch

    No way!

    Troy, I had pretty much given up on these comments, but seeing a Wayne's World reference among all this silliness is hilarious as hell.

  380. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    Hmmm. Wanna debate?

  381. Chyrch

    Debate what?

  382. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    Er... My ability to read a post properly?

  383. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    Cats vs. Dogs?

  384. Troy

    @Madskillz

    Lol your bored arnt you

    Chyrch is on team awesome my canberian friend :P

  385. Madskillz

    @Troy

    Canberra?

    Wanna debate?

  386. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    SOMEBODY KNOWS THE CAPITAL OF AUSTRALIA! (:

  387. Troy

    Haha i suppose i did make a premature assumption from reading some posts :P

  388. Madskillz

    @Troy

    Nah, that bushfire stuff was just a refference to God's wrath.

    I didn't waste TOO much time living there.

  389. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Dont tell another story yet. Dont tell another story yet. Dont tell an~

  390. Chyrch

    Sorry Madskillz

    While I enjoy a debate like anyone else, I can only get interested in debates I'm passionate about. And I like cats and dogs equally.

    Not to sound like a dating ad or anything, but my passions include:

    Secularism (obviously)
    Women
    Psychology
    Women
    Science
    Women
    Politics
    Women
    Travel
    Women

    etc.

  391. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    It's been a long time since I've been on a date. Hold on a sec...

  392. Troy

    Boys not to be a stick in the mud but as as a guy said once whislt tavelling down the deathstar trench "stay on target" (or topic)

    Id much prefer to hear people tearing apart religious belief systems :P

  393. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    Well, I can't choose women, or I'll never get one.

    .... Thinking, thinking

  394. Madskillz

    @Troy

    Done that - #315

  395. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    If I go for politics, I'll probably lose my job.

    Whats so 'good' about cats?

  396. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Feral cat tally - xxxxxxxxxxx

    Eaten - 0

  397. Chyrch

    Cats are awesome since they're a big F.U. to religious people. Almost all pets (of any kind) have gone through thousands of years of domestication in order to have them as pets. Essentially, we took "God's creation" and made it better.

    Also, Jeanne Tripplehorn is gorgeous.

  398. Madskillz

    @Chryh

    You left out their still, undomesticated, killing/adaptive prowess (:

    Isn't Jeanne a little 'Sigourney Weaver'?

  399. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    Mila Kunis. Now I'd SMASH that.

  400. Madskillz

    @Angelina

    I still pray for you....

  401. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    I wish Jessica would stop calling. Sheesh. She KNOWS how I feel about Angie.

  402. Chyrch

    Mila Kunis is hot too, but I'm generally into older women. I'm 24 and my girlfriend is 39. Most younger women I've met still haven't realized they can have a persona as well as a body. Plus, the know what they're doing a hell of a lot more, and nothing is sexier than a woman who knows what she wants/needs.

    Ahem ... uh ... and oh yeah, cats are cool. And religious people are silly

  403. Madskillz

    @Chych

    Heh, yeah. I totally agree. Was just being a little im-a-tooer.

    Except about cats.

    When I was 23 (5 minutes ago), I met a German back packer freuline. Vetinarian. Stayed in touch, went over to Germany 6 months later and.... Hung out. For a month. She was 32 and 6' 2" - Same as me.

    .... I turned 24 whilst I was over there.

    BEST HOLIDAY EVER

  404. Chyrch

    Actually, that brings up a decent topic. My girlfriend and I have discussed this before. She thinks I'm too harsh, but then again, she's a bit of an apologist.

    Here in Canada, it's illegal to teach Creationism in Science class. It's not excluded out of schools completely however. Catholic schools, which are publicly funded here, can teach creationism in other classes, so long as they don't present it as science. This creates the following scenario:

    Indoctrinate children with the god crap and creationism at an early age.
    Keep science more on topics about photosynthesis and the structure of atoms.
    Glaze over evolution.

    This is obviously a huge problem. The thing is though, it's only a small part of what I see as a much larger issue. That issue being that adults who believe in magic and have imaginary friends are teaching children.

    No other excuse other than religion would this be tolerated. If an adult claimed he believed in Santa, there's no way he'd get any responsibility to teach children. Yet religion gives them a free pass.

    My contention, which is what my Girlfriend says I'm too harsh with, is that not only should Catholic schools be rid of, anyone who believes in the supernatural (of any kind) are not qualified enough to be given the responsibility of teaching the future generations.

  405. Chyrch

    Apparently "Cr@p" is a naughty word and is forcing my comment to be moderated. As someone who is very passionate about Free-speech issues, this is painful.

  406. Madskillz

    @Chyrch #414

    Kinda why I'm still single. Have been for quite a while. The good one's tend to be taken.

    That and the syphalis.

  407. Madskillz

    @Your post is awaiting approval

    LEAVE CYRCHNEY ALOOOOOOONE!

  408. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    I dont care what anyone says. I'd SMASH THAT too.

  409. Chyrch

    Yeah, they're usually taken. Mine was when I first met her lol. What can I say, the better man won.

    Can you see my long post about Catholic Schools? If not, I'll just repost it and edit the naughty word.

  410. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Long post/Catholic Schools

    Dont dont dont dont dont dont dont

  411. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    Why no sir. I have no notion as to that which you reffer?

    Please, may you be so kindly as to re-post?

  412. Chyrch

    Sure. Here it is:

    Actually, that brings up a decent topic. My girlfriend and I have discussed this before. She thinks I’m too harsh, but then again, she’s a bit of an apologist.

    Here in Canada, it’s illegal to teach Creationism in Science class. It’s not excluded out of schools completely however. Catholic schools, which are publicly funded here, can teach creationism in other classes, so long as they don’t present it as science. This creates the following scenario:

    Indoctrinate children with the God (expletive removed) and creationism at an early age.
    Keep science more on topics about photosynthesis and the structure of atoms.
    Glaze over evolution.

    This is obviously a huge problem. The thing is though, it’s only a small part of what I see as a much larger issue. That issue being that adults who believe in magic and have imaginary friends are teaching children.

    No other excuse other than religion would this be tolerated. If an adult claimed he believed in Santa, there’s no way he’d get any responsibility to teach children. Yet religion gives them a free pass.

    My contention, which is what my Girlfriend says I’m too harsh with, is that not only should Catholic schools be rid of, anyone who believes in the supernatural (of any kind) are not qualified enough to be given the responsibility of teaching the future generations.

  413. Madskillz

    @Chyrch #423

    I'll need a moment to 'dignify' that with a response. (Content)

  414. Madskillz

    @Cyrch #423

    THIS MAKES ME SO ANGRY

  415. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    I have no doubt that your missus is lovely, however, you are gonna have to get her around a bit before you can go anywhere with it.

    I mean this for your sake.

  416. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    Keep in mind; she's older than you. More passive to the issue.

    I know you already eluded to that. Just honing focus is all.

  417. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    I swear, no more relationship advice without consent.

    (And of course, I got syphalis...)

  418. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    Oh yeah, and you'll find that more and more teachers wont stand for it. Even some Catholic ones.

  419. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    Never 'let up' on these concerns, however in a comparitive sense, you can relax a little.

    Canada is sitting near the top (With us, yay!)

    Your neighbour is sitting a few spaces above the 3rd world.

  420. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    I don't know this for a fact, however going though all the Blahblicle sites for @Saturine gave me some insights to (potential) loopholes that maybe being applied too.

    I cant write out Einstein texts off top of head (I WISH), but there was a LOT of this sorta thing;

    Einsteins(known homosexual) Theory(still doubted in Sci com.) of Relativity(To what, exactly?)

    THEY WONT EVEN LET A GUY SAY HIS PIECE!!!

  421. Chyrch

    We don't have too much of an issue with funding. It's supposed to come out of property taxes (you can specify what school board you wish the education portion of your property taxes to go to). But this hardly covers the costs. A few years ago, the Catholic school board in my area was massively over-budget several years in a row. The board was temporarily run by a government appointed official to deal with it, but not before millions more were spent than necessary.

    The issue is more about setting examples. Too much emphasis is put on facts and figures, and not nearly enough on developing critical thinking skills. These are the ages when it would be most crucial to be developing these thinking skills, rather than hoping they'll remember some formulas.

    Critical thinking, by necessity, leaves no room for faith. So a person who has faith is not applying proper critical thinking skills. As soon as assertions are used to fill in gaps of knowledge, rational thought has been ignored.

    Can a teacher honestly teach thinking skills when he is unable to understand them?

    You're right that they don't actually have to be Catholic, but the vast majority are. Even most of the general public claim to be religious.

    This of course, opens the question as to how honest people are in these claims. I've known many Christians who've made claims of the divinity of the Bible. Yet, when asked if they've read it, excuses are always made. Isn't it funny how you can believe that a book is inspired by the very creator of the universe, yet somehow reading the latest John Grisham is more important.

    Certainly many believe in religion simply out of comfort and fear of the unknown(pride gets in the way of people admitting ignorance, so they'd rather assert knowledge).

    It's a bit of a shame. Conscious thought is an amazing thing, yet it opens up pathways to so many fallacies and irrational behaviour.

  422. Chyrch

    Rational thinkers in the U.S. are a rare find.

    They recently passed legislation that lets pharmacists off the hook if they refuse to prescribe something that violates their conscience. As if a women in actual need of an abortion aren't going through enough. Now they have to contend with finding a pharmacist that will do their bloody job! There aren't any ways to express how indignant I am with this without bothering the moderators.

    They actually call themselves Pro-life? They, and people like them, are responsible of millions of preventable deaths. Any time I hear a "Pro-lifer" talk about how wrong 9/11 was, how 2000 lives were lost because of crazy religious fanatics, it makes me want to slap them.

    Anyway, it's late for me here. I'll catch up tomorrow. Have a good one.

  423. daniel

    God is necessary because people are a**holes

  424. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    Whilst money still exists, the costs of Education will never be covered. The Gov guy was put in to fix the Cath school rip, but these things ALWAYS take time. It's due process, nothing more. Can't usually be helped. I'm pretty sure you know a bit about that, as you didnt rip on Gov (But should still where it counts!)

    However, all the HIGH HORSE SCABS that think it is okay to pilfer away monies into THEIR KIDS corners need to be thrown into medieval dungeons. Ironic, yes?

    There is some pretty ordinary critical thought 'teaching' occuring in public schools too. They arent personally incapable of it just coz of religion......

    Yeah, Oz is same with majority peeps claimin Religion they dont even bother to look into. I'm not sure which is worse? The sheep or the lambs? It's VERY SCARY. Why cant they just pray to their FACEBOOK. No offense if you get into it, I'm just an 'off gridder' sorta peson. Don't really watch tv, no mobile ph, public transport primary mode blah blah. Dont get the wrong idea, I LOVE EATING MEAT. Especially the stuff I get for MYSELF.

    Ya know whats cool though? In Oz and NZ, with our Consensus' in the Religion box 'other'; There is a steady rise in Jedi!

    Anywayz, I gotta bail. I've been up for nearly 2 in a row now, with work starting tomorrow. I can barely read, let alone think.

    Seeya later

  425. Madskillz

    @Vlatko

    Yeah, no worries. Got a little steered into personal yarns. Can I still tell ghost stories? (Anthropology purposes)

  426. Madskillz

    @Anyone

    Was thinking about my doughnut dream (#355) today. With the 'extra' black holes that had matter flowing back INTO the Universe; Dark Matter??

    Was also wondering if the 'extra' holes were really of equal ammount (artistic licence), as there are of course Super Massive Black Holes. But then, there could be Super Massive Dark Matter Holes too....

    I should start reading about this stuff. Luvin' it.

  427. eireannach666

    Ill just say this, and Im taking it from Sagan. , On the universal scale if scaled down to 1yr calendar, We humans dont even appear unttil the last minute of Dec, 31st. So what Im saying is we are nothing to this universe or universes (if mTheory is correct) We as Achems said are but the smallest minority compared to matters throughout the cosmos.

  428. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz 321,349,357 and @ Achems Razor 359; Wow sorry I missed the follow ups, though this thread seems to have gone 'way' off topic, lol. Blame it on the late nights... Visions and Dreams? Astral Travel? and then (the irony?) discussion re: firing all teachers who cling to 'supernatural beliefs'? Ha ha ha ha... That said, been there too. I have seen the donut Universes too (isn't that part of Hawkings picture now?), but have absolutely no clue - and your descriptions helps not at all. While I get the 'idea' of multi-universes, I can not 'see it'. I did the "meta physics thing briefly (20 yrs ago); astral travel (no tools or familiars used), a few weird experiences with 'warped space & time', etc. but as previously noted, while a bit of an explorer, I have always returned to the Q "where is the practical use or application". I can understand how folks can 'get into it', so to speak, for me, just another example of the flexibility of both the nature of reality and what the 'mind' can do. - Maybe we can get back to the thread later, as for me, I have a deadline looming (procrastinated to the point of now having to really work :) and will be 'out' for the week. Carpe Diem Gentlemen, and Madskillz - get some anti-biotics, lol

  429. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    It was a thought perhaps, to step out of the square for a moment. Although not in the absolute - Occultic, dream state, Astral Travel; these kind of things are pre-institutional religious and scientific mediums which are remnants of religious persecutions. There is something in that ya know. It's fundemental to what humans were really about before their minds were 'numbed' over by mass control systems and lazy insight. I do not speak about you directly, however I am sure that you have noticed many are a 'bit out of touch'?. TV gets WAY to much of the wrap for this. Concepts should be challenged. Always. ESPECIALLY pop Science, as they wont crucify you for trying (sorta). Even as a kid I looked further into Ouija boards than the 'science' which 'debunked' it. Case closed my butt.

    It can't hurt to see what people are up to behind the closed doors of a religion dominant society. I would often get 'shut down', 'refused entry' or lectured via Psycology whatnot that keeps changing by the person or decade (Prof and non). I feel that it is a shame for these things to be exterminated out of existence because we now have something newer and shinier. I'll take science for all it's got, but not without a grain of salt.

    Re: Dungeons. Pardon. I was reffering to 'upper middle class' religees. My bad. Was getting way off topic anyway. Little close to home. Although for those who insist on it glazing over real ed (@Cyrch)... Thats SMACK on topic (:

    The syph worms have dug in too far. It's merely 'stabilised'. The Hep C will get me first anyway.

    Have you got a sister?

  430. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    Rightio. Did a little lazy reading on Dark Matter.

    It is beleived by (Some) scientists that Dark matter is actually the second most prevelent substance in the Universe (25%). Regular matter is around 5%. Dark Matter is believed to shroud around galaxies, helping to form and add structure to such.

    And then there is DARK ENERGY (koughh khurr), which makes up the other 70% of the Universe's substance. This is believed to shroud the entire Universe and it's function (as can so far be determined), is actually to SPEED UP the Universal expansion. Drawing it outwards, if you will.

    Where is the matter that flows into Black Holes GOING? Is this some kind of re-cycle jigga?

    I must read more.

  431. Asad

    @Achems Razor
    I've read your posts on a number of blogs here on TDF and am very impressed with your knowledge and views. But often I don't get time to write myself. I actually believe in Double-truth theory aka Averroism. See below.

    Double-truth theory, in philosophy, the view that religion and philosophy (or science for that matter), as separate sources of knowledge, might arrive at contradictory truths without detriment to either—a position attributed to 13th century CE muslim scholar Averroes (Ibn Rushd) and his interpretations of Aristotle and his reconciliation of Aristotelianism with the Islamic faith.

    European philosophers in turn applied these ideas to Aristotle's writings and their relation to the Christian faith. Besides Averroes, the main philosophers involved in the movement were Siger of Brabant and Boetius of Dacia.

    The main ideas of the earlier philosophical concept of Averroism — found in Averroës' commentaries to Aristotle — were:
    • there is one truth, but there are (at least) two ways to reach it: through philosophy and through religion;
    • the world is eternal;
    • the soul is divided into two parts: one individual, and one divine;
    • the individual soul is not eternal;

    Siger of Brabant tried to claim that there existed a "double truth": a factual or "hard" truth that is reached through science and philosophy, and a "religious" truth that is reached through religion. This idea differed from that of Averroës; his idea was that there was one truth reached in different ways, not two truths. He did however believe that Scripture sometimes uses metaphorical language, but that those without the philosophical training to appreciate the true meaning of the passages in question were obliged to believe the literal meaning.

    I’d like to respond to your few posts above:

    #40
    “The sheer audacity, to even contemplate that humans have any pipelines to any types of gods in the vast cosmos is the epitome of nonsense!”

    # 57
    “No religious person that wrote on TDF has ever proved anything even remotely viable on an type of the thousands of religions, and millions of different gods. Period! I don’t expect any Earth shattering developments from you either.”

    #
    104
    “So, we have a long, long, way to go before we can figure out anything at all!!”

    To your above posts I’d say, isn’t non-belief purely on the basis of metaphysical naturalism or empiricism a case of extreme arrogance, the complete opposite of the lofty values of humility and modesty? For not allowing a tiny chance for the existence of an Unseen Force, aren’t non-believers as radical as the religious dogmatists that they so vehemently scorn?

    I invite you to read more of my discussions with another reader in the documentary “A History of God” in the religion section here on TDF. There I have taken great pains to reconcile science and faith (Islam i.e.). Please feel free to comment there.

  432. CTP Energy

    For past 100 years many scientists, including Einstein, have worked on deriving-finding a Unified Field Theory which is a physical theory the proposes to unify the four known forces by a simple set of general laws or formulas. These forces control all of the observed interactions of one physical matter.

    This underlying unity is the CTP Energy Cycle™. All scientists to date have been missing two non-physical energies C-energy and T-energy in order to be able to develop the Unified Field Theory.

    The creation of atoms and other physical forces from C-Energy via T-energy whose Units are plugged to both physical and non-physical sides and in effect create all atoms and physical realities is the missing link in the Unified Field Theory. All forces, energies and their interactions, and not just four considered above to date are created by C and T-energies via the CTP Energy Cycle™.

  433. Chyrch

    Asad,

    I know your post was directed at Achem, but there are a few problems in your post I can't let stand.

    First off, early Philosophy may be fun to quote as many do, but in practice, it's of little value to us today. Just like any other form of study, it's archaic roots have been expanded upon and corrected.

    To even use Philosophy to try and find answers is going to just lead to more questions. While, by definition, Philosophy is the investigation of truth, it doesn't so much assert answers, as simply come up with possible answers. The rational aspects make sure that any Philosophical theory adapt and evolve along with the other sciences, pure and social.

    That being said, it may indeed have some merit. It's simply not nearly enough now that we have more understanding of how the natural universe works.

    Your comment:

    "isn’t non-belief purely on the basis of metaphysical naturalism or empiricism a case of extreme arrogance, the complete opposite of the lofty values of humility and modesty? For not allowing a tiny chance for the existence of an Unseen Force, aren’t non-believers as radical as the religious dogmatists that they so vehemently scorn?"

    This comment of yours is, no offense, really poorly thought out. You're equating possibility with belief, and that's just absurd. Here's a little breakdown of how these are different:

    Is it possible God exists? Yes
    Is it possible Jesus exists? Yes
    Is it possible Jesus died for our sins? Yes
    Is it possible fairies exist? Yes
    Is it possible in some reality I'm married to Megan Fox? Yes
    Is it possible in some reality I'm married to Barney the Dinosaur? Yes
    Is it possible in some reality the USA is considered a rational country? Yes

    I'm sorry to bombard you with ridiculous scenarios, but the point is this: Just because something is possible does not mean it's justified to believe it.

    To go even further: Just because something is TRUE does not mean it's justified to believe it.

    This, of course, applies when we don't know if something is true or not. Two hundred years ago, people were right not to believe matter is composed of atoms, despite it being true.

  434. Achems Razor

    @Asad:

    Thank you for your comment, Am siding with @Chyrch: to me philosophy bakes no bread, and religion does not even start the oven.

    Your Averroism from the 13th century is akin to the CA argument from Plato's time, for one thing impossible to reach a one truth by merging philosophy and religion, it still ends up to be a belief. Not a fact, for a fact needs irrefutable empirical evidence.

    For one thing I do not care what anybody says, there is not one shred of empirical evidence that a person as Jesus existed, basically just the latest in a long line of deities from antiquity.

    For science the only time there is "non-belief" as you say, is when all experiments have been exhausted to prove the theory as fact.

    There are scientific theories in the works now that may become facts in the future, or may not.
    I realize that the human race has a long way to go to learn more, re, quantum physics.

    With religion all is static, stagnant, all they can do is add new stories, new scenarios. Can not take away from the original beliefs, the are etched in stone. And philosophy is more generally a play of words. The best lawyer wins.

  435. Harry

    The true religion is islam! the bible has been changed in the course of times, and the real message of jesus was changed. The koran explaines many scientific facts. This documentary sees religion mainly from the christian point of view. God has revealed many scientific facts in the koran who dont contradict the video, such as embryology, expanding universe and the sun being the centre of our solar system, and not the earth!!. This all being revealed in the 7th century through an illiterate man our prophet mohammed (PBUH) So im muslim and ill stay muslim till my last breath.

  436. Chyrch

    Harry,

    I've edited your post a little to just highlight the parts of it that are accurate. Here it is:

    "the bible has been changed in the course of times. This documentary sees religion mainly from the christian point of view. an illiterate man ... mohammed."

    Couldn't agree with you more Harry, nice post. I'm not sure why you included all those jokes though. There isn't a minimum character requirement.

  437. Asad

    @Chyrch and Achems Razer:

    With due respect I think you both misunderstood the essence of my message. May be I was wrong to quote Averroism and Aristotle and therefore you thought I was referring only to philosophy. What I meant in fact was that science and religion (only Islam from my point of view) can coexist with out contradicting each other. In classical Greece and in the medieval ages science as we know today was in its most rudimentary stages. What those scholars had was philosophy and yes it is of little use today but in those days it gave people reason to investigate and reason. Philosophy eventually led to experimentation and thus “science” in the couple of hundred years before the Renaissance.

    Below I have reproduced a few relevant excerpts from my blog posts # 12 to 31 in the documentary “A History of God” here on TDF. You may want to go onto that documentary to read all of it as it is much more detailed.

    “My understanding is that the stories in the Bible and Quran are allegorical at best and these collections of writings are primarily moral guidelines that actually persuade people to understand the world around them and that this can only be done by studying the sciences and philosophy. Whether these writings were divinely inspired or not is really up to the believer or non-believer for that matter, and nobody can ‘definitely prove’ whether the writings are divine or not or that a divine being even exists. One can only choose to believe in God or not.

    I strongly disagree with the Creationists who reject not only evolution and but essentially all of astronomy, paleontology and other sciences. The evolution of man in Africa from species of apes is certainly reconcilable with the Abrahamic faiths and only the most myopic will deny it. Evidence all over the planet clearly shows evolution to be the best way to explain the diversity of life and I believe that God chose organic evolution as a way of bringing into existence the natural world.

    There were Muslim scholars centuries ago who did not believe in creationism. For e.g. in the early 10th century, Muhammad al-Nakhshabi wrote in The Book of the Yield: “While man has sprung from sentient creatures, these have sprung from plants & animals, and these in turn from combined substances.” In “Life of Hai” by the 12th-century Andalusian philosopher Ibn Tufayl, evolution is strongly emphasized. Hai is “spontaneously generated”, emerges from the slime, evolves through various stages and discovers the power of reason to shape his world and to understand the universe.

    The Quran does contain many verses that point towards nature, and constantly asks its readers to reflect on the wonders of the cosmos. “Travel throughout the earth and see how He brings life into being” (29:20) is a piece of advice we frequently find in the Muslim sacred text. Elsewhere we read, “Behold, in the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the alternation of night and day, there are indeed signs for men of understanding . . .” (3:190). These verses simply urge believers to study nature and reflect on the awe-inspiring diversity and complexity of the universe. But there is also the ubiquitous message about God as the Creator and the Omnipotent, Omnipresent, All-knowing.

    Modern atheists like Richard Dawkins and even Stephen Hawking now, are unquestionably great scientists who put logic, objectivity and scientific research foremost in their works which is exactly how it should be. Great scholars of the past like Aristotle, Galileo, Copernicus and Darwin too could not have gone that far had they not put aside their contemporary religious beliefs. Scientific research should be completely secular and only logic be used to unfold the secrets of nature.

  438. Asad

    @Chyrch and Achems Razer:

    With due respect I think you both misunderstood the essence of my message. May be I was wrong to quote Averroism and Aristotle and therefore you thought I was referring only to philosophy. What I meant in fact was that science and religion (only Islam from my point of view) can coexist with out contradicting each other. In classical Greece and in the medieval ages science as we know today was in its most rudimentary stages. What those scholars had was philosophy and yes it is of little use today but in those days it gave people reason to investigate and reason. Philosophy eventually led to experimentation and thus “science” in the couple of hundred years before the Renaissance.

    Below I have reproduced a few relevant excerpts from my blog posts # 12 to 31 in the documentary “A History of God” here on TDF. You may want to go onto that documentary to read all of it as it is much more detailed.

    “My understanding is that the stories in the Bible and Quran are allegorical at best and these collections of writings are primarily moral guidelines that actually persuade people to understand the world around them and that this can only be done by studying the sciences and philosophy. Whether these writings were divinely inspired or not is really up to the believer or non-believer for that matter, and nobody can ‘definitely prove’ whether the writings are divine or not or that a divine being even exists. One can only choose to believe in God or not.

    I strongly disagree with the Creationists who reject not only evolution and but essentially all of astronomy, paleontology and other sciences. The evolution of man in Africa from species of apes is certainly reconcilable with the Abrahamic faiths and only the most myopic will deny it. Evidence all over the planet clearly shows evolution to be the best way to explain the diversity of life and I believe that God chose organic evolution as a way of bringing into existence the natural world.

    There were Muslim scholars centuries ago who did not believe in creationism. For e.g. in the early 10th century, Muhammad al-Nakhshabi wrote in The Book of the Yield: “While man has sprung from sentient creatures, these have sprung from plants & animals, and these in turn from combined substances.” In “Life of Hai” by the 12th-century Andalusian philosopher Ibn Tufayl, evolution is strongly emphasized. Hai is “spontaneously generated”, emerges from the slime, evolves through various stages and discovers the power of reason to shape his world and to understand the universe.

    The Quran does contain many verses that point towards nature, and constantly asks its readers to reflect on the wonders of the cosmos. “Travel throughout the earth and see how He brings life into being” (29:20) is a piece of advice we frequently find in the Muslim sacred text. Elsewhere we read, “Behold, in the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the alternation of night and day, there are indeed signs for men of understanding . . .” (3:190). These verses simply urge believers to study nature and reflect on the awe-inspiring diversity and complexity of the universe. But there is also the ubiquitous message about God as the Creator and the Omnipotent, Omnipresent, All-knowing.

    Modern atheists like Richard Dawkins and even Stephen Hawking now, are unquestionably great scientists who put logic, objectivity and scientific research foremost in their works which is exactly how it should be. Great scholars of the past like Aristotle, Galileo, Copernicus and Darwin too could not have gone that far had they not put aside their contemporary religious beliefs. Scientific research should be completely secular and only logic be used to unfold the secrets of nature.

  439. Asad

    and more:

    “Atheists have my respect simply because they use reason and logic. Most people who believe in god(s) are blindly following the religion of their fathers and forefathers. An atheist, on the other hand, even though he may have belonged to a religious family, uses intellect to deny the existence of God; whatever concept or qualities of God he may have learnt in religion may not seem to be logical to him anymore.

    An atheist agrees with the first part of the Islamic monotheistic creed which is ‘There is no god’. So he/she is already half way there, and now only the last part is left i.e. ‘But God (Allah)’. Atheists today are eliminating (false) models of god, but they are not eliminating God.

    God has made Himself clear on innumerable occasions throughout history but to the non-believer every miracle is a fraud and every mystic a madman. Were all the Biblical Prophets (many of whom like David, Elijah, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezra, Haggai, Zachariah, John the Baptist, Jesus are mentioned in literary references other than the Bible) who all took great pains in the face of monumental adversities in spreading the same monotheistic message, just plain liars/fraudsters? The process of divine revelation ended with Prophet Mohammad who is the last of the prophets and who brought the final and most clear divine message and evidence in the form of the Quran.

    The Bible was written down from oral memories by scribes in and around the 7th Century BCE. When it describes the creation of the world and mankind (Adam & Eve) it is basically borrowing a lot from older mythologies (esp. Sumerian) and using allegorical language. The story of creation and Adam & Eve was told in such a way that the ancient people could relate to stories that they already knew. However, it had a huge Monotheistic twist; instead of a multiple gods it was now One God who created the world and is controlling it. Moreover as the Bible isn’t an accurate history therefore it has many anachronisms and inconsistencies that are just untenable in the face of modern archaeology and research.

    If one asks simply for evidence of God’s existence then it is surely the Quran itself…preserved as promised word for word since 1400 years which fact is undisputed to this day. Unlike Moses, Jesus and many other prophets, Mohammad was no miracle worker; his legacy is the Quran itself. If one reads the Quran with an open mind and without inherent bias then one will find many facts that can baffle the mind that how an illiterate Bedouin could come up with philosophies about cosmology, biology, embryology, the big bang, expansion of the Universe and much more. It is not just a book of theology but contains far deeper concepts and lessons for those who understand.

    “Have not those who disbelieved known that the heavens and the earth were one connected entity then He separated them” (Quran 21:30) = a reference to the Big bang theory/expansion of universe.

    “It is not for the sun to overtake the moon, nor doth the night outstrip the day. They float each in an orbit” [Quran 36:40] = a reference to cosmic orbital motion.

    “Then He turned to the heaven when it was smoke…” (Quran, 41:11).

    “And it is He who has constructed the heaven with might, and verily, it is He who is steadily expanding it” (Quran 51:47) = Expansion/inflation of the Universe.

    “That Day We will fold up heaven like folding up the pages of a book. As We originated the first creation so We will regenerate it. It is a promise binding on Us. That is what We will do”. (Qur’an, 21:104) = the universe expanded out with a big bang, will end with a big crunch (i.e. the universe collapsing in on its self) and then will start again with another bang.

    “We placed him (man) as (a drop of) sperm in a place of rest, firmly fixed; then We made the sperm into a clot of congealed blood; then of that clot We made a lump (fetus); then We made out of that lump bones and clothed the bones with flesh…” [Quran 23:12-14].

    These are just a few of the many verses in the Quran that talk about the universe and life. One must realize that there are those who will never believe no matter how much proof or evidence is produced. The reason is some people don’t want to believe in a Creator or Sustainer. We don’t have to see an artist to recognize a painting, correct? So, if we see paintings without seeing artists painting them, in the same way, we can believe God created everything without having to see Him.

  440. Asad

    and more

    “Atheists have my respect simply because they use reason and logic. Most people who believe in god(s) are blindly following the religion of their fathers and forefathers. An atheist, on the other hand, even though he may have belonged to a religious family, uses intellect to deny the existence of God; whatever concept or qualities of God he may have learnt in religion may not seem to be logical to him anymore.

    An atheist agrees with the first part of the Islamic monotheistic creed which is ‘There is no god’. So he/she is already half way there, and now only the last part is left i.e. ‘But God (Allah)’. Atheists today are eliminating (false) models of god, but they are not eliminating God.
    God has made Himself clear on innumerable occasions throughout history but to the non-believer every miracle is a fraud and every mystic a madman. Were all the Biblical Prophets (many of whom like David, Elijah, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezra, Haggai, Zachariah, John the Baptist, Jesus are mentioned in literary references other than the Bible) who all took great pains in the face of monumental adversities in spreading the same monotheistic message, just plain liars/fraudsters? The process of divine revelation ended with Prophet Mohammad who is the last of the prophets and who brought the final and most clear divine message and evidence in the form of the Quran.

    The Bible was written down from oral memories by scribes in and around the 6th century BCE. When it describes the creation of the world and mankind (Adam & Eve) it is basically borrowing a lot from older mythologies (esp. Sumerian) and using allegorical language. The story of creation and Adam & Eve was told in such a way that the ancient people could relate to stories that they already knew. However, it had a huge Monotheistic twist; instead of a multiple gods it was now One God who created the world and is controlling it. Moreover as the Bible isn’t an accurate history therefore it has many anachronisms and inconsistencies that are just untenable in the face of modern archaeology and research.

    If one asks simply for evidence of God’s existence then it is surely the Quran itself…preserved as promised word for word since 1400 years which fact is undisputed to this day. Unlike Moses, Jesus and many other prophets, Mohammad was no miracle worker; his legacy is the Quran itself. If one reads the Quran with an open mind and without inherent bias then one will find many facts that can baffle the mind that how an illiterate Bedouin could come up with philosophies about cosmology, biology, embryology, the big bang, expansion of the Universe and much more. It is not just a book of theology but contains far deeper concepts and lessons for those who understand.

    “Have not those who disbelieved known that the heavens and the earth were one connected entity then He separated them” (Quran 21:30) = a reference to the Big bang theory/expansion of universe.

    “It is not for the sun to overtake the moon, nor doth the night outstrip the day. They float each in an orbit” [Quran 36:40] = a reference to cosmic orbital motion.

    “Then He turned to the heaven when it was smoke…” (Quran, 41:11).

    “And it is He who has constructed the heaven with might, and verily, it is He who is steadily expanding it” (Quran 51:47) = Expansion/inflation of the Universe.

    “That Day We will fold up heaven like folding up the pages of a book. As We originated the first creation so We will regenerate it. It is a promise binding on Us. That is what We will do”. (Qur’an, 21:104) = the universe expanded out with a big bang, will end with a big crunch (i.e. the universe collapsing in on its self) and then will start again with another bang.

    “We placed him (man) as (a drop of) sperm in a place of rest, firmly fixed; then We made the sperm into a clot of congealed blood; then of that clot We made a lump (fetus); then We made out of that lump bones and clothed the bones with flesh…” [Quran 23:12-14].

    These are just a few of the many verses in the Quran that talk about the universe and life. One must realize that there are those who will never believe no matter how much proof or evidence is produced. The reason is some people don’t want to believe in a Creator or Sustainer. We don’t have to see an artist to recognize a painting, correct? So, if we see paintings without seeing artists painting them, in the same way, we can believe God created everything without having to see Him.

  441. Asad

    Now, the scientific community and physicists in particular are not claiming that science has proven that God does not exist, but rather that science has eliminated the need for God. This of course is nothing new and to say that scientific theories and new discoveries rule out the existence of God and hence close the book on the subject once and for all is farther from the truth. The matter is still up for debate amongst various physicists. I quote John Millis, Ph.D., (assistant professor of physics and astronomy at Anderson University, in Anderson Indiana) who writes about Stephan Hawking’s new book, The Grand Design as follows:

    “Even if we assume that the Universe initially existed in a complete vacuum state, absent of all matter and energy and before time began, it is possible for a Universe to spring into existence. In fact, according to the laws of quantum mechanics such events should happen spontaneously at a very high rate.

    Some of the Universes created would collapse almost as quickly as they were created. Others would expand so quickly that nuclear reactions would have no chance to exist and would be doomed to expand forever. However, some would meet the specific conditions right to support life. And at least one of those could contain the right planet, orbiting the right star at the right time for the right conditions to exist for life to spring into existence.

    First of all, this entire argument presupposes that the Universe initially exists in a complete vacuum, but also coincidently still obeys the laws of general relativity and quantum mechanics. Those on the religious side of the debate would likely resolve to the classic refrain “well who implemented the laws of general relativity and quantum mechanics?” Well, I believe this to be the wrong question, but I’ll get to that in a moment.

    Ultimately the short answer to the question is that there is nothing dictating (as far as we know) what the laws of physics were. This leaves the door wide open for a deity to choose whatever laws he/she sees fit. But it does not preclude a set of physical laws naturally existing prior to the big bang. While this does not appease the religious types it does lead to a more fundamental question that calls into question Hawking’s assertion that general relativity and quantum mechanics would dominate a pre-Universe.

    Specifically, why are there any laws of physics at all? Most cosmological models lose traction prior to the moment of creation as we have no way of predicting what the laws of physics are before the “big bang”. There is nothing about the current state of our Universe that allows us to even guess the conditions surrounding the moments prior to existence. While Hawking’s position is just as valid as any, it is far from conclusive.

    But let’s take things even one step further. Assuming that Hawking’s Universe is correct, and the Universe arises from a natural process (again ignoring the fact that he is relying on the pre-Universe conditions matching the post-Universe conditions, for which there is no evidence) is it possible to explain the evolution of the Universe completely using only current physical laws? In short, no.

    This is not to say that science needs God to explain some of the phenomenon of the Universe, but science certainly does not rule God out. Take for example the expansion of the Universe. This is a subject that physics struggles to explain. The current resolution is that a mysterious dark energy drives the Universe to expand, which is our way of saying that we have no clue. Now, I am not suggesting that this is specifically God’s doing, but simply pointing out that there are major holes in our understanding of the Universe (which this is one of many) and that to conclusively say that a higher intelligence is not involved is premature at best.

    So while Hawking’s comments are interesting, it certainly does not bring to a close the debate of whether science can claim exclusive rights to the creation of our Universe. I have a feeling that the conversation will continue ad nauseam for decades to come. Why do I think that? Because we’ve been saying for decades that we are on the door step of understanding all there is to know about the Universe. But this simply isn’t true. As soon as we think we are getting close the Universe always seems to reveal something new that just perplexes us even more, and I don’t know that an end is in sight”.

    I believe John Mills very succinctly sums up how our knowledge about the universe and life is not final and that science has in no way ruled out God from any picture.

  442. Asad

    and

    “Atheists have my respect simply because they use reason and logic. Most people who believe in god(s) are blindly following the religion of their fathers and forefathers. An atheist, on the other hand, even though he may have belonged to a religious family, uses intellect to deny the existence of God; whatever concept or qualities of God he may have learnt in religion may not seem to be logical to him anymore.

    An atheist agrees with the first part of the Islamic monotheistic creed which is ‘There is no god’. So he/she is already half way there, and now only the last part is left i.e. ‘But God (Allah)’. Atheists today are eliminating (false) models of god, but they are not eliminating God.

    God has made Himself clear on innumerable occasions throughout history but to the non-believer every miracle is a fraud and every mystic a madman. Were all the Biblical Prophets (many of whom like David, Elijah, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezra, Haggai, Zachariah, John the Baptist, Jesus are mentioned in literary references other than the Bible) who all took great pains in the face of monumental adversities in spreading the same monotheistic message, just plain liars/fraudsters? The process of divine revelation ended with Prophet Mohammad who is the last of the prophets and who brought the final and most clear divine message and evidence in the form of the Quran.

    The Bible was written down from oral memories by scribes in and around the 6th century BCE. When it describes the creation of the world and mankind (Adam & Eve) it is basically borrowing a lot from older mythologies (esp. Sumerian) and using allegorical language. The story of creation and Adam & Eve was told in such a way that the ancient people could relate to stories that they already knew. However, it had a huge Monotheistic twist; instead of a multiple gods it was now One God who created the world and is controlling it. Moreover as the Bible isn’t an accurate history therefore it has many anachronisms and inconsistencies that are just untenable in the face of modern archaeology and research.

    If one asks simply for evidence of God’s existence then it is surely the Quran itself…preserved as promised word for word since 1400 years which fact is undisputed to this day. Unlike Moses, Jesus and many other prophets, Mohammad was no miracle worker; his legacy is the Quran itself. If one reads the Quran with an open mind and without inherent bias then one will find many facts that can baffle the mind that how an illiterate Bedouin could come up with philosophies about cosmology, biology, embryology, the big bang, expansion of the Universe and much more. It is not just a book of theology but contains far deeper concepts and lessons for those who understand.

    “Have not those who disbelieved known that the heavens and the earth were one connected entity then He separated them” (Quran 21:30) = a reference to the Big bang theory/expansion of universe.

    “It is not for the sun to overtake the moon, nor doth the night outstrip the day. They float each in an orbit” [Quran 36:40] = a reference to cosmic orbital motion.

    “Then He turned to the heaven when it was smoke…” (Quran, 41:11).

    “And it is He who has constructed the heaven with might, and verily, it is He who is steadily expanding it” (Quran 51:47) = Expansion/inflation of the Universe.

    “That Day We will fold up heaven like folding up the pages of a book. As We originated the first creation so We will regenerate it. It is a promise binding on Us. That is what We will do”. (Qur’an, 21:104) = the universe expanded out with a big bang, will end with a big crunch (i.e. the universe collapsing in on its self) and then will start again with another bang.

    “We placed him (man) as (a drop of) sperm in a place of rest, firmly fixed; then We made the sperm into a clot of congealed blood; then of that clot We made a lump (fetus); then We made out of that lump bones and clothed the bones with flesh…” [Quran 23:12-14].

    These are just a few of the many verses in the Quran that talk about the universe and life. One must realize that there are those who will never believe no matter how much proof or evidence is produced. The reason is some people don’t want to believe in a Creator or Sustainer. We don’t have to see an artist to recognize a painting, correct? So, if we see paintings without seeing artists painting them, in the same way, we can believe God created everything without having to see Him.

  443. Asad

    AND

    “Atheists have my respect simply because they use reason and logic. Most people who believe in god(s) are blindly following the religion of their fathers and forefathers. An atheist, on the other hand, even though he may have belonged to a religious family, uses intellect to deny the existence of God; whatever concept or qualities of God he may have learnt in religion may not seem to be logical to him anymore.

    An atheist agrees with the first part of the Islamic monotheistic creed which is ‘There is no god’. So he/she is already half way there, and now only the last part is left i.e. ‘But God (Allah)’. Atheists today are eliminating (false) models of god, but they are not eliminating God.

    God has made Himself clear on innumerable occasions throughout history but to the non-believer every miracle is a fraud and every mystic a madman. Were all the Biblical Prophets (many of whom like David, Elijah, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezra, Haggai, Zachariah, John the Baptist, Jesus are mentioned in literary references other than the Bible) who all took great pains in the face of monumental adversities in spreading the same monotheistic message, just plain liars/fraudsters? The process of divine revelation ended with Prophet Mohammad who is the last of the prophets and who brought the final and most clear divine message and evidence in the form of the Quran.

    The Bible was written down from oral memories by scribes in and around the 6th century BCE. When it describes the creation of the world and mankind (Adam & Eve) it is basically borrowing a lot from older mythologies (esp. Sumerian) and using allegorical language. The story of creation and Adam & Eve was told in such a way that the ancient people could relate to stories that they already knew. However, it had a huge Monotheistic twist; instead of a multiple gods it was now One God who created the world and is controlling it. Moreover as the Bible isn’t an accurate history therefore it has many anachronisms and inconsistencies that are just untenable in the face of modern archaeology and research.

    If one asks simply for evidence of God’s existence then it is surely the Quran itself…preserved as promised word for word since 1400 years which fact is undisputed to this day. Unlike Moses, Jesus and many other prophets, Mohammad was no miracle worker; his legacy is the Quran itself. If one reads the Quran with an open mind and without inherent bias then one will find many facts that can baffle the mind that how an illiterate Bedouin could come up with philosophies about cosmology, biology, embryology, the big bang, expansion of the Universe and much more. It is not just a book of theology but contains far deeper concepts and lessons for those who understand.

    “Have not those who disbelieved known that the heavens and the earth were one connected entity then He separated them” (Quran 21:30) = a reference to the Big bang theory/expansion of universe.

    “It is not for the sun to overtake the moon, nor doth the night outstrip the day. They float each in an orbit” [Quran 36:40] = a reference to cosmic orbital motion.
    “Then He turned to the heaven when it was smoke…” (Quran, 41:11).

    “And it is He who has constructed the heaven with might, and verily, it is He who is steadily expanding it” (Quran 51:47) = Expansion/inflation of the Universe.

    “That Day We will fold up heaven like folding up the pages of a book. As We originated the first creation so We will regenerate it. It is a promise binding on Us. That is what We will do”. (Qur’an, 21:104) = the universe expanded out with a big bang, will end with a big crunch (i.e. the universe collapsing in on its self) and then will start again with another bang.

    “We placed him (man) as (a drop of) sperm in a place of rest, firmly fixed; then We made the sperm into a clot of congealed blood; then of that clot We made a lump (fetus); then We made out of that lump bones and clothed the bones with flesh…” [Quran 23:12-14].

    These are just a few of the many verses in the Quran that talk about the universe and life. One must realize that there are those who will never believe no matter how much proof or evidence is produced. The reason is some people don’t want to believe in a Creator or Sustainer. We don’t have to see an artist to recognize a painting, correct? So, if we see paintings without seeing artists painting them, in the same way, we can believe God created everything without having to see Him.

  444. Asad

    The following posts seem to have been repeated: # 452, 454, 456 and 457.
    Moderator please could you remove them.
    Thanks.

  445. Achems Razor

    @Asad

    Your posts seem to be doubled up, should only write it once, even though it seems it did not go through the first time, it will, sometimes not instant.

    Everything that you have wrote I basically heard it all before on these threads, a lot of the same type of stuff from one blogger called @1400: so nothing new to me.

    And I told him the same thing will say to you, to me the Quran is not the original knowledge of the universe, it was superseded by the vedic texts and greek thinkers. to name a few.

    The vedic texts, such as Shalapatha Brahmann says that the heavens are spheres.

    Pythagoras...582-500 was the first person to realize that the Earth, Moon, and planets are all spheres.

    Leucippus (F.C.440), and Democritus, (460-370) are the first that said everything is made up of atoms.

    I have a lot more lists/evidence that can refute your saying that it was in your Quran first, all that stuff is already on some docs on this site, I have so many blogs on TDF do not know what specific docs they are on. I do not want to re-write anymore, but if you have patience you may find them.

    And with respect, do not wish to continue on this discussion, for me will lead nowhere, will leave the floor open to others who may want to discuss this further with you.

  446. Asad

    @Achems Razor
    I agree that the Quran is not the original and only source about universals truths. Quran is a continuation of the same message that has been conveyed by prophets even before the time of Abraham in Ur (ancient Sumer around 2000 BCE). What makes it special that it is preserved as promised word for word for the last 1400 and has not been contradicted by modern science and technology. That is why religion and Islam both compliment each other rather than be at odds with each other.

    Pythagoras is credited with realizing that the planets, moons are all spheres but the concept can be traced back to Jewish beliefs about an orderly cosmos hymning the praises of its Creator. Now everyone knows that Jewish beliefs have borrowed from Sumerians who were the first civilization. In ancient times as now, all civilizations borrowed ideas from one another; the classical Greek age came some 2000 years after the Sumerians, Babylonians, Assyrians and thus learned a lot of their astronomy, geometry, philosophy from earlier civilizations in the east.

  447. Chyrch

    Asad,

    That's some very convenient reasoning you're using.

    First you say that the Quran is correct in some very general aspects of how the universe is composed. Then when shown that those concepts have been around for a lot longer than the Quran, your response is simply to say that they were inspired by God too?

    Is there any knowledge man can attribute to hard work and study? Or was it all divinely inspired?

  448. Space Cadet!

    Asad, and everyone else.

    Here's a dilemma for you : You all say that everything needs a creator or designer. Something cannot just MAKE ITSELF now can it. Who made god then? Maybe it was us :)

  449. Saturnine

    @Asad

    Thank you for showing up.

  450. Madskillz

    @Asad

    ZZZZZZzzz...* Wha? Yeah, rightio. All good. I'm no innocent to megapost, but you gotta try to focus yeah? Helps us too as well. And @Vlatko is a wrathful God...

    @Cyrch

    When you were breakin' it down in #447 - great order. A true 'lol' moment for me. Although you are perhaps already aware, but validly left aside to make a solid point;

    Good philosophy usually stems around intangible matter, which is intended to stimulate thoughtfulness in a comfortable manner. It's role in science, and life in general, is kinda like a good 'warm up' session and 're-motivator' when the chips are down. It can lend support to what the scientist is setting out to do; make the intangible - tangible. Is just a case of whatever floats ya' boat I guess. I am no scientist (surprise!), but it works for me (:

    @Alchems Razor

    You are way too scary to pick a fight with. Everything you have said is 99.9% correct. Whether I agree or not.

    @Harry

    Fail.

  451. Space Cadet!

    I wonder if you guys could write essays like your comments back in high school...

  452. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Christianity and Islam joining forces...

    INTERESTING

  453. Madskillz

    @Space Cadet

    I certainly couldnt/didnt.

    I was a space cadet.

  454. Chyrch

    Madskillz,

    Yeah, I'm certainly not dismissing philosophy. It has it's role, and a very important one. That role is not discovering truths, however.

    And I'm glad you liked my little jokes. I didn't want to ridicule, but had to come up with something to demonstrate how ridiculous the notion Asad was putting forward.

    Space Cadet!,

    Personally I was never very good with writing or speaking, as is demonstrated on this board. Thanks to a learning disability closely related to autism, I've struggled with it all my life. However, it's forced me to be succinct, and to the point, which many people appreciate (others, not so much).

    But you raise a point that should always be mentioned in discussions such as this. We're all at different levels of education and learning. A high school student isn't going to understand the concepts of logic as well as someone who graduated almost a decade ago, and has since gone to college and/or university.

    It's important we not belittle others personally. There are many very intelligent people who are wrong in many areas. I don't think we've had an issue with this on this board yet, but it's still something that's important for all discussion.

  455. Madskillz

    @Space Cadet @Chyrch

    Indeed. To add, however;

    Life experience outside of academia will sharpen one's mental facilities and capacity to learn also. Sometimes moreso than many who have been sloggin' it out in University respectivly.

    My career has always centered around Conflict/Resolution, sometimes even in a literal 'break-neck' requirement sense. This has tuned me into being a somewhat healthy shark.

  456. G.Ravi

    It is a valuable documentary film and I am very much pleased.I remember my eyeopener Thanthai Periyar from Tamilnadu, South India. This is the right time to eliminate god. God is not a person. Even god is not a right word. Godliness is right. It refers quality not quantity. Thanks for this film.
    G.Ravi, Teacher, Taminadu, South India.

  457. jolulipa

    @everybody

    Wow! I came with a rested "soul" after watching some beautiful animals such as the humpback whales and started to read the comments and enjoy. But then I encountered this Asad guy and my "soul" went dark.

    Now I don't have the will even to answer some due comment to Madskillz ingenious comment way behind.

    I appreciate all the nice things Asad said about science, even acknowledge that Arabians were far ahead in math and algebra and geometry long time ago, but the fact remains that Islam is a religion who today hinder study and knowledge advancement and also they have this sharia law who decapitates and stone people, treat women like dirt and is intolerant of everything else but what the Quran says is acceptable. Not to mentioned that the "prophet" Mahatma was a warmonger and a pedophile.

    Sorry, but major FAIL.

    Now, back to my happy little corner of the universe...

  458. jolulipa

    Ah! one more thing... @Sat in #464 and @Mad at #467:

    It is not like what you think. Asad is recruiting the help of atheists to get rid of the competition. He said that we are doing a great job of getting rid of the "false religions". Saturnine wanted us to help "rebuild" Christianity but this one wants us to help Islam to eliminate the others.

    In Islam that little tactic is called "Takeyya", where is OK to lie and deceit in benefit of Islam.

    Sorry again, but major FAIL.

  459. jolulipa

    The implications of the principle of Al-Takeyya

    Unfortunately, when dealing with Muslims, one must keep in mind that Muslims can communicate something with apparent sincerity, when in reality they may have just the opposite agenda in their hearts. Bluntly stated, Islam permits Muslims to lie anytime that they perceive that their own well-being, or that of Islam, is threatened.

    In the sphere of international politics, the question is: Can Muslim countries be trusted to keep their end of the agreements that they sign with non-Muslim nations? It is a known Islamic practice, that when Muslims are weak they can agree with most anything. Once they become strong, then they negate what they formerly vowed.

    The principle of sanctioning lying for the cause of Islam bears grave implications in matters relating to the spread of the religion of Islam in the West. Muslim activists employ deceptive tactics in their attempts to polish Islam's image and make it more attractive to prospective converts. They carefully try to avoid, obscure, and omit mentioning any of the negative Islamic texts and teachings.

    An example of Islamic deception is that Muslim activists always quote the passages of the Quran from the early part of Mohammed's ministry while living in Mecca. These texts are peaceful and exemplify tolerance towards those that are not followers of Islam. All the while, they are fully aware that most of these passages were abrogated (cancelled and replaced) by passages that came after he migrated to Medina. The replacement verses reflect prejudice, intolerance, and endorse violence upon unbelievers

    In conclusion, it is imperative to understand, that Muslim leaders can use this loop-hole in their religion, to absolve them from any permanent commitment. It is also important to know that what Muslim activists say to spread Islam may not always be the whole truth. When dealing with Muslims, what they say is not the issue. The real issue is, what they actually mean in their hearts.

  460. Madskillz

    @jolulipa @All

    Thankyou for your compliment jol, and I am very glad that someone else elaborated on where 'I' was going with the jibe at @Saturnine (#467). It needed to be done via another party, and well done at that. You did, in fact add more to my personal insight beyond that of the 'basic' Crusading sort etc. - Your summary of Islam, a religion that I am passive towards, gives me something else extra to move forward with (and I totally agree with all said of such). Here is Madskillz MkII;

    This is a case of dominant religions. The primary two in fact (economic grounds). There is a void in between each which has spanned millenia and as such, spans the collective (mis)understanding of such also.

    Christianity and Islam have forever been at intense conflict between eachother. Even though their religions stem from similar roots, they appear to be more aggresive to one another moreso than any other religion respectively (Judaism is being cleverly quiet). There may be a passive acknoweledgement within all thoughtful sorts that this is based around profound contradiction due to their relative natures; something that is of extreme offense to their very being.

    Now, whilst all of the above is most certainly the case - we should dwell into the realms of what we now know via hindsight/reflection/fact.

    Institutionalised Religion, up untill somewhat recently, WAS the overarching Governments of the 'developed' world. Debatably still is for some. These institutions are breeding grounds for CLEVER persons for good or bad intent. This brings to question 'the greater good' and what is preferable in the 'decision' processes; who calls THOSE shots. Rest at ease that since seperation between Church and State there is progress in these areas within the West, albeit not perfect. But this also brings me to my next point.

    Islam is often, in it's originating sectors, part therof local Government. Leave monarchial aspects aside for now, it is of subsequential relevance (so keep in mind throughout). The question that should be asked here is why? Why have they not ALSO seperated religion from state? Answer; because the do not have to.

    Islam in itself is far superior to Christianity in that it allows itself to evolve due to a very special 'loop hole'. They are able to extend themselves beyond religious convictions in the name of progress via justified lies. I personally give them credit for this. It brings them ClOSER to being human in the TRUE sense. However, it also allows them to maintain solid overall control of thier respective populaces and denies them true freedom. This is NOT a friendly referrence to America, as they maintain similar control via far more clandestine measures. It is though, testament to their superior scientific roots. Desert/Crossroads/Trade anyone? This area of the world is not only the cradle of 'Civilisation', it is also the cradle of modern science and the current world market. Modern resources (Oil) falling into place at EXACTLY the right time can only give the majority of Islam added credence in their 'choice' of given faiths. The Cycle continues....

    What is overlooked by many is the persevereance of a selective group under pressure. This does not just apply to a huddled bunch of desperate and brave soldiers in a trench; it also applies to nations and EMPIRES. Because of the superior nature of Islam and it's respective technological armies and advances, Christianity has been driven VERY hard into learning in one of the best known ways; from mistakes. This, ironicaly, has driven Christian based warfare (West) into a superior form itself. This is undeniable.

    The balance of Christianity vs. Islam had, untill recently fallen into the arena of the Christian. However, via recent scientific dominance discovery (Oil), the balance has been restored. This is a matter of market forces. It is with mixed feelings that I again give respect to the pure merchantilism and diplomacy of the primary Islamic State unto intelectual and re-affirming foresight during what was/is literally a world stage 'free for all'. However, do not forget that untill recently the Desert has always been a natural shield of epic proportions. It still is really, in the sense of cost/benefit. It is a 'tough nut to crack'. Example is obvious.

    All this said, who OWNS it all? The Weapons, the politicians, the power?..... Status quo? For now?

    Please PLEASE stop pushing the envelope. We are ALL suffering. Keep the religions real, even fundemental if you like. This may even be safer. This is all paramount to the Human species SURVIVAL.

    @Cyrch Dogs are WAY more cooler than stoopid Cats.

  461. Madskillz

    @joluipa

    I dunno if you are mixing things up via name referrence, as I am self admitantly naive as to Islam, however;

    Mahatma GHANDI is the pedophile.

    I 'shame' in truly taking on his personal quote of; Be the change that you want to see in the world.

    F*ck Ghandi, I'm takin' that one.

  462. Madskillz

    @jolulipa

    Whales are cool.

    SOLD.

    Still feel free to debunk any of my statements, I just had to say that.

  463. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    ... I reckon' that them whale-ish bast@rds are the ones messin' stuff up on the surface.

    Blue whales, the probable overaching primary whale, have been reduced to 3% of their natural population.

    Now, I'd like to think that they are more tolerant and nicer than the average human, and in such regards perhaps a 'pre-emtive strike' was actually in order.

    I dont like to think about that mob considering this a coupla hundred years or (far) more ago though. It insults my intelligence and ability to sleep at night.

    What really GETS me, is WTF are they up to? No, really. WTF?

  464. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Alas poor #475, for I knew the well.

  465. Madskillz

    @All

    BTW, get the F*ck outside of your OWN square. As like in a permanent sense vs. a cherry pickin' orgy.

    I say this because I care. If you are exempt from my wrath, you will know as such.

    @Alchems Razor

    You are exempt in all regards.

    @God

    Please dont let him slay me. PLEASE?

  466. Madskillz

    @Christianity @Islam

    F*ck you too.

    If you can overcome your OWN teachings, I, as an ATHEIST SCUMM, have given you every KEY indicator as to reprimand and co-incide your faith back into mainstream society via relative and HUMANISTIC reproach. If YOU deem necessary, start NOW.

    SUCK IT UP PRINCESSES.

    MOVE ON.

    It is the destination of 'MAN', and you gotta decide whether or not to join the PARTY.

  467. Saturnine

    @jolulipa #473-4

    I have not seen how Asad is himself guilty of lying in this way that you say he is. If he is e.g. of a wahhabist tradition or an Iranian conservative, then I can understand what you take him to mean by "false religion". But I cannot comment further on that.

    However I think firmly, that people who know something about religions know that if you don't take a moderate and respectful position with relation to difference of interpretation and tradition, there will be a bloody mess.

    And only the Devil thinks and takes steps in the direction of a bloody mess.

  468. Chyrch

    Jolulipa,

    You put together a well constructed post about Islam. While Christianity has it's faults, at least it has been forced into modern times in respect to civility.

    It's a little odd though. Christians are (in my opinion), much more civil and peaceful. They are mostly apologists who simply like to believe in God for the sake of comfort, and wish no harm come to anyone.

    For the most part, I think Muslims are the same. However, they have a much larger, and much more vocal group within, which wouldn't hesitate to slit someone's throat if they felt there would be even the slightest amount of personal gain by doing so.

    However, they have conviction in their beliefs, and a holy book to back them up. This is why "moderate Muslims" are seldom heard from. They know that to criticize the actions done in Islam is a grave sin, and most know that the horrendous actions done in the name of Islam are very much backed up by Islamic teachings.

    Christianity isn't immune to this scenario of course. The Westboro Baptist Church may be the most hated family in America, but at least they're being honest with themselves about their beliefs. The Bible absolutely shows that "God hates Gays" (other word not used out of fear of the moderation wait).

    So what are the options for Islam? Unfortunately, the best option may be something I personally dislike. We have to convince Muslims that the Quran is symbolic.

    That's not likely to happen any time soon. I'm hoping something will be done though. It may sound a bit dramatic, and perhaps a bit groundless, but I really fear that this conflict between Muslims and the modern world is going to get ugly. A devout people with mob mentality who believe in myths, while having access to modern day technology and weaponry is not a good mix.

    I'm hoping we see a peaceful compromise, but I'm just not that optimistic.

  469. Chyrch

    To mention something important regarding Islam,

    Islam, and an unfortunately large number of it's believers, are barbaric. They're atrocious people who would kill for the smallest amount of gain. They're uneducated, uncivil, and are a huge detriment to humanity's progress.

    I do NOT entirely blame religion for this though. To do so, would be simplistic narrow-minded. Religion may play a factor, but it's not as large as many would like to think.

    Many societies are similar to the barbarism found in the middle east. Anyone familiar with the very bloody history of Africa knows this. The disgusting crimes done in Africa are ones that will give even jaded people like myself nightmares. There are no words strong enough to properly convey how horrible the actions are, and frankly, I don't want to spend any more time thinking about it.

    Religion is a slight factor in Africa, but largely, it's irrelevant. These horrible events take place more due to survival issues, societal issues, and economical issues.

    So while there are societies just as, if not more, barbaric than ones in the Middle East, there's reason to be more weary of religious societies like this.

    Take an African warlord, who's raped, pillaged, massacred, and done things to innocent people that when known about, will make someone with even the slightest bit of empathy hate any God that would allow it. If you were to get the upper hand on him, and be threatening his life, he'd beg for mercy and forgiveness, because while he may have no regard for other lives, he doesn't want to die himself.

    Now take a Muslim in this same scenario, who's done similarly horrendous acts for largely different reasons. When you get the upper hand on him, and threaten his life, there's no begging for mercy. There's only a smile as he presses a button, knowing that anyone he takes with him is going to Hell, and that he helped pave the way for him and his people to get into paradise.

    THAT is why religion is dangerous, and that was bloody hard to write.

  470. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #483-4

    I'm sorry, but you have to learn to speak in a more informed and respectful way. Otherwise you risk being just another naive propagandist.

  471. Asad

    @Chyrch: I agree with most (in fact almost all) of the things that you, Achem’s Razor and many other atheists and scientists say about the importance of reasoning. I share more of your beliefs than the ugly Creationists in America and the even more uneducated and bigoted Muslims. I’m also at odds with most muslims who take the teachings in the Quran literally rather than symbolically and whose minds are trapped and seem to be living in the same ages of ignorance that prevailed in the 7th century CE.

    But I will enhance your knowledge about what I believe is the true Islam, which sadly is not believed or practiced by the majority of muslims. Islam has been held hostage by the same dogmatic creed of priests that held sway over Christianity and totally distorted its peaceful and lovely message.

  472. Asad

    @Joululipa and Madskillz,

    Sorry to be so blunt but your deafening ignorance is epitomized by the fact that you don’t even know the name of Islam’s last prophet (which is Mohammad, 570-632 CE ) and then you have the audacity to rant about it and write your gibberish. By the way, Mahatma Gandhi (1870-1948) was a great Indian leader who helped in the cause of India’s independence from the British in 1947.

    I know that I will be banging my head against walls but for the sake of debate I will present my case very briefly here.

    I will not go on to preach the morals of Islam but suffice to say that in an era when the Arabs in the 7th century CE (from the rich traders to the deprived Bedouin) used to bury their new-born daughters alive, practice polygamy (without any limit on the number of wives one could take), gave no rights to women kin in inheritance, force girls to marry against their wish, trade slaves and treat them worse than animals, racial discrimination was common, not to mention indulging in drunken revelries, Prophet Mohammad’s preachings as follows were nothing but revolutionary:

    • Burying alive of new-born girls was banned
    • Limit on no. of wives (4 maximum with many difficult conditions to fulfill as compared to unlimited before)
    • Women were given rights in inheritance for the first time in history
    • Women could marry of their own will and could refuse if forced
    • Islam makes learning and education (not just religious) compulsory for all men and women. Mohammad said that a person should even go to China if he has to pursue higher studies (of course there is no Islam in China so it definitely refers to the learning of sciences, arts, philosophy etc. and not just religion)
    • Slave trade was discouraged (if not altogether banned) and freeing slaves considered a virtuous deed
    • All people accorded equal rights and no discrimination on the basis of race, creed, etc.

    There is considerable debate about the age of Mohammad’s last wife Aisha. The most commonly held believe is that say she was 9 when betrothed to Mohammad but the marriage (and thus the consummation) happened when she 14. Now that makes him a pedophile in our age but 1400 years ago in Arabia and in most cultures girls were married as soon as they reached puberty. And Aisha wasn’t married against her will as she later became the most vocal advocates of Islam and an inspiration to muslim women.

  473. Chyrch

    Asad,

    If you want to believe the Quran is symbolic, great. It's a step in the right direction and I hope more Muslims come around to thinking this way. We need as much of the Muslim world as possible to stop hiding their barbarism behind religious doctrine. Only when people see stoning a woman for what it is will people begin to change.

    Saturnine,

    If you're going to tell someone they're misinformed, or naive, at least try and enlighten them. Don't just make a comment like that and think that's enough.

    Then to top it off with a comment about being respectful? What a joke. Your entire 2 sentence post was the equivalent to "You're being an ignorant jerk" and you make a comment about being respectful?

    Luckily for you, I don't see respect as being necessary in an adult conversation. I will be civil, but I will not respect childish ideas, and I cannot guarantee I can respect the person who has them.

  474. jack1952

    @ Asad

    If the Quran is symbolic then it also interpretive. To claim the knowledge of the true Islam, no matter how benevolent the intention, is to claim a special insight. Since you are not the prophet you cannot possibly have a personal line of communication with God. If you do, why can't I. I'm a smart guy. The trouble is that even if you believe the Quran is literal, it is still interpreted by the reader. No two people can interpret the same passage identically. It would seem then that the truth is different for everyone. That's a lot of truths.

  475. Chyrch

    Asad,

    They are talking of Ghandi, who while known as a very peaceful man, was also a pedophile and actually a huge racist.

    Your last comment about Islam being revolutionary in it's time, I agree with for the most part. There are definitely some things you're attributing falsely to Islam, but I'm not going to focus on those. At the time, it was a step forward. There was also a time when the Muslim world was the front-runner in the science. But in 2011, that means diddly-squat.

    Morals change and improve as societies evolve. To say a man is perfect, holy, an example of morals, is to say that he will be those things forever. It would be true even now, but that's not the case.

    I'm not going to pick on Mohammad for being a pedophile, as times were incredibly different in terms of sexual maturity, average first birth age, average life span, etc. However, while you say that Islam is progressive by allowing a woman choice of whether or not to marry, you say in the same post that Mohammad married a girl when she was 9! It doesn't matter the age of consummation at that point. Do you honestly think that a girl at 9 years old, in any time, was mature enough to make a decision as large as this? Even if she wasn't "forced", and didn't say outright that she didn't want to marry, there's not much difference between force and coercion when it comes to a 9 year old girl.

  476. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #488

    What I'm saying that it seems very obvious to me and I believe to everyone, that you are just trying to disguise your contempt for these people that you have decided to put down verbally. This disguise is the superficial concession you make when you admit the elementary fact that religion is not everything there is to know about a culture and its problems.

    What are the causes of the societal problems in Africa? Much of the problems have arisen as effects of the time Europe colonized it. Certain overly proud European (and American) forces have made a huge mess of Africa. I don't want to stress the point, but I really think it doesn't help anyone if we just arrogantly say that the peoples you spoke about are barbaric. That does not inform anyone about anything, but in fact misleads. There are barbaric acts done by the most civilized people. This is another elementary fact.

    What I see from those posts I criticized with the two lines is this: The only thing you want to do is to dislike somebody. The big picture does not matter.

    The real challenge would be to educate the ones who don't yet know what is relevant. I don't see how you are doing this. Or did you mean to explain wisely that the Qur'an forbids suicide by that thing you said about the "Muslim who does not surrender"?

  477. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    You are over-simplifying my points. I mentioned Africa because it's an example that societies that don't emphasize religion as much as others are still capable of horrendous things. I didn't go into a lot of detail about the history of Africa because it's not relevant to my point. I'm sorry if you missed what that point was.

    I find it funny that someone who had such disregard for etymology about religion and philosophy is taking such a strict approach to my use of the word barbaric.
    I'm not calling them actual barbarians. But to describe the actions done by these people, barbaric is appropriate. If you can think of a more appropriate term for burying someone chest-high in the ground and stoning them, or gang raping a mans wife and daughters in front of him, let me know.

    How am I hiding my contempt for these people exactly? They've done hideous things and continue on doing so. Bloody right I have contempt for them. I don't see why I'd wish to hide that. I really hate people who do wicked things, oh no.

    No offense, but this is yet another time in this thread I've had to break things down for you. I'm sick of having to re-explain my points because you didn't understand them the first time. No one else seems to have that problem, so I suggest you start reading more carefully, or perhaps studying about Logic and it's related fallacies.

  478. Chyrch

    And yes, the Quran forbids suicide. Does that automatically mean that the men behind such suicide bombings as I described didn't do it because of religious motivation?

    There are reasons why the suicide bomber "community" is largely Muslim. Yes, a lot of it may be political or societal. I've even heard thoughts about it being partly about sexual frustration. They ALL can/may/do play a role. But one thing is clear: Suicide attacks are a hell of a lot easier to follow through with when you believe you'll go to paradise for it.

    You say I'm ignoring the big picture? I'm not. I'm trying to take all things into consideration. I've said on many occasions that religion shouldn't be blamed entirely. You're the one who keeps ignoring religion's role in these atrocities.

  479. Asad

    @Chyrch, I honestly thought you were more learned than this. FYI Gandhi was not a pedophile either. He was married at 13 to a girl was also 13. All else is mere propaganda. And yes Gandhi was a racist, as racist as Nelson Mandela himself!

    Sorry in advance for being too long but I have to make certain things clear here.

    Your knowledge about Islam is limited and your perception of Muslims is sadly very stereotypical, like that of an uncouth Arab wielding a sword. That perception, however, is not entirely incorrect considering what you see which is the fact that majority of the Islamic countries have a literacy rate of less than 50% , are ruled by autocrats (who are sadly endorsed by the same West that questions China’s communist govt) and many export terrorism. I’d hate to generalize but the muslims are definitely more than 500 years behind the more cultured westerners.

    Muslims today are contributing nothing other than spreading hatred against others who don’t agree with them. Like I said before, this is due to the fact that they are held hostage by same bigoted priests who are anti-reasoning and anti-progress. You name it, the Wahabis of Gulf, the Deobandis of Af-Pak, or the Khomeini inspired Shias of Iran & Lebanon, they all share the same myopic and literal views on the interpretation of the Quran and therefore a view narrow and radicalized worldly outlook.

    Those intolerant, blinkered and rigid views on religion and everything else, however, are not held by the other interpretations of Islam especially the minority Sufi (most prevalent in India & Pakistan), Ismaili (e.g. the Agha Khan) and generally the pre-Khomeini Shias (e.g. the Pehlavi rulers in Iran 1979). These creeds of Islam have always placed emphasis on reasoning, learning, scientific research as pillars of faith rather than a blind following of the scriptures. These were the same views that were held by Islamic scientists and scholars in the middles ages such as the 11th century Avicenna (whose texts on medicine was taught in the west until Henry Gray published his anatomy in the 19th century) and from whom the western civilizations learned a lot and gained inspiration for their revival.

    While Christianity underwent great reform, the arts and sciences too had a renaissance in the 15th and 16th centuries in Europe. The sacking of Baghdad and most other muslim cities in the 13th century by Genghis Khan and his successors struck a great blow to Islamic scholarship from which they could truly re-emerge. Subsequently Islam retrogressed into radicalized and insular outlooks and also got bogged down into bloody civil wars. Eventually Christians prevailed because to a certain extent they had turned away from their Bible and the power of the Church subsided.

    Agreed that religion is dangerous and brings about many a war. However, when we peer through the seven thousand or so years of recorded history we find that humankind’s past is steeped in conflicts and that more blood has been shed on regional/territorial, cultural, racial and economic issues than on religious basis alone. The bronze age wars of Babylonians & Assyrians, Hittites & Egyptians & Assyrians, the ravages of the Sea People across Mediterranean and Near East, Persian invasion of Babylonia, the Greco-Persian wars, Alexander’s conquests, Roman expansion and collapse, Viking raids, just to name a few that took place by the end of 1st millennium CE.

    You mention that Muslims are barbaric, agreed for the most part they are but let’s see what has happened in the last 500 years and what the “more civil” westerners have been capable of. I will not say Christianity was solely responsible because the conflicts had always got more to do territorial and racial issues than just religious doctrine.

    The below was compiled by another blogger on this forum and I’m just sharing some facts here:
    • Spanish ethnic-cleansing of Jews & Moslems – Inquisition of 1492
    • North America – Extermination of Native Americans
    • South America – Extermination of South American Natives
    • Australia and New Zealand – Holocaust of Aborigines and Maoris
    • Southern Africa & Apartheid
    • Enslaving India & China, and force the locals to produce ‘Opium’: for someone who does not know, Wars were fought by massacring natives for forcing Opium trade.
    • American History of Slavery
    • Klu Klux Klan & lynching of African-Americans
    • World War II – holocaust of the Jews in Europe
    • Frying up two entire cities with children, old and women in Japan – 1945
    • Making life hell out of Vietnamese, and now repeating it in Afghanistan and Iraq not to forget I am leaving Palestine out of the picture
    • Ethnic cleansing of Muslims in Bosnia in the 1990s

    Islamic barbarism is limited to some countries Middle East and North Africa while the white supremacists killed and rampaged for the last 500 years all over the world and still do.

    And thanks for calling Gandhi a racist!

  480. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    Ok, maybe I did read your posts in a bit of a hurry. #483 was in fact mostly fine. I just got worried about what you are saying in #484.

    You said, that "Islam, and an unfortunately large number of it’s believers, are barbaric. They’re atrocious people who would kill for the smallest amount of gain. They’re uneducated, uncivil, and are a huge detriment to humanity’s progress." Then you go on to explain that "these people" + Islam make a terrible combination. Asad, as I read his posts, tried to say that Islam has helped. I tried to say, that you cannot be taken seriously. The people you speak of are not really barbarians, but that barbarism is an exception, which can occur in any society, no matter how civilized.

    I can't see how you can deny this. I also can't see how I've misread your post #484. In fact I have not.

    It seems what is happening is that I cannot always see what points should be taken seriously, and that I forget, that you don't really intend to over-generalize when you speak about "people" like that. It's just a way of speaking, is it not?

  481. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    I share your contempt of evil. I just don't appreciate it when people choose to speak only about the evils that other people do. And secondly, you really should identify the "people" more properly than you did in #484. "An unfortunately large number" is greatly ambiguous.

  482. Asad

    Islam is the true monotheistic religion. Islam recognizes all the Prophets in the Old and New Testaments (including Abraham, Moses, Jesus and John the Baptist) and upholds their message which is submission to the one true God and the creation of a society wherein there is justice for all.

    Christianity is not monotheistic at all when it believes in the so-called divinity of Jesus. Jesus never claimed to be divine or a son of God or some manifestation of God Himself. It was what he was made some three hundred years after his death by people (Romans/Greeks of the Nicene Creed) who had been influenced for centuries by multiples gods and sons of gods and goddesses. It was convenient to present Jesus as son of God so that the new religion of Christianity would appeal to the pagan populations of the Roman Empire and beyond and they would relate to a new son of God.

    Anyways, it was better for for the Romans and other pagans to believe in a distorted version of Jesus’s message/religion than to continue living their hedonistic lives and believing in their pantheon of gods and goddesses. In short, even though Christianity is not strictly monotheistic and Jesus’s message has been altered (eg. concept of salvation of mankind by Jesus’s death at the cross was never his message), it has done a lot more good in human history by teaching compassion, love, social justice to mankind.

    Judaism can be said to be a truly monotheistic and Islam has borrowed more from Judaism than any other religion. The concept of ONE GOD is exactly the same in Judaism and Islam. The ancient Jews erred greatly in not propagating their religion and in being a closed society. Also far more emphasis was on rituals (sacrifice, worship) than on the real message of the Old Testament (i.e. doing good and belief in One God). They also did not believe in Jesus and prosecuted him and his disciples. Even today they are a closed society and have not truly grasped the real message of the scriptures.

    Islam’s concept of God is:
    “Say: He is Allah, the One and Only! Allah, the Eternal, Absolute; He begetteth not nor is He begotten. And there is none like unto Him”. (Holy Qur’an 112:1-4).
    The above is a very important Surah (chapter) from the Holy Qur’an because it proclaims the Oneness (Tawhid) and Absolute nature of Divine Essence. It declares that Allah is Eternal, i.e., He is beyond the bounds of time and space. It also describes that Allah does not give birth nor is He given birth and then declares that Allah is beyond comparison. It directly supports the first declaration (shahadah) of Islam: “There is no god but Allah”. In this context, Islam is based on belief in One God (monotheism).

  483. Asad

    English philosopher, scientist, lawyer and author par-excellence, Francis Bacon (1561-1626 CE) has been called the father of ‘empiricism’ but was a Christian nevertheless. He had this to say (from Wikipedia):

    Regarding faith, in De augmentis, he wrote that
    "the more discordant, therefore, and incredible, the divine mystery is, the more honour is shown to God in believing it, and the nobler is the victory of faith."

    He wrote in "The Essays: Of Atheism" that
    "a little philosophy inclineth man’s mind to atheism; but depth in philosophy bringeth men’s minds about to religion."

    Meanwhile in the very next essay called: "Of Superstition"
    Bacon remarks-
    "Atheism leaves a man to sense, to philosophy, to natural piety, to laws, to reputation: all which may be guides to an outward moral virtue... but superstition dismounts all these and erecteth an absolute monarchy in the minds of men: therefore atheism never did perturb states; for it makes men wary of themselves... and we see the times inclined to atheism (as the time of Augustus Caesar) were civil times; but superstition hath been the confusion of many states, and bringeth in a new 'primum mobile.' that ravisheth all the spheres of government."

    It must be noted, however, that Bacon did maintain his own Christian beliefs, of which he differentiated from "superstition". Bacon notes that
    “It is better to have no opinion of God at all, than such an opinion as is unworthy of him: for the one is unbelief the other is contumely; and certainly superstition is the reproach of the Deity.”

    Yet even more than this, Bacon's views of God are a personal matter, as he writes that
    “They that deny a God destroy man's nobility; for certainly man is of kin to the beasts in his body; and, if he be not of kin to God by his spirit, he is a base and ignoble creature.”

    Nevertheless, Bacon contrasted the new approach of the development of science with that of the Middle Ages:
    "Men have sought to make a world from their own conception and to draw from their own minds all the material which they employed, but if, instead of doing so, they had consulted experience and observation, they would have the facts and not opinions to reason about, and might have ultimately arrived at the knowledge of the laws which govern the material world."

    In my opinion, belief and or no-belief is a personal matter and that relgion should best be left out of politics. Bacon 400 years ago had hit the nail on many fronts above esp. in “It is better to have no opinion of God at all, than such an opinion as is unworthy of him: for the one is unbelief the other is contumely; and certainly superstition is the reproach of the Deity.”

    In other words, unbelief (atheism) is much better than distorted/perverted belief (when the exalted tenets of religion are degraded to mere superstition).

  484. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    I hope I don't confuse you with my talk about "barbarians" and "barbarism" in #495. I don't mean peoples, but certain people who do "barbaric" acts (gross ethical failures).

  485. Chyrch

    Asad and Saturnine,

    This is getting painful. There's only so far I can break this down before I start feeling like I'm talking to children.

    Asad, you said:

    "FYI Gandhi was not a pedophile either. He was married at 13 to a girl was also 13. All else is mere propaganda. And yes Gandhi was a racist, as racist as Nelson Mandela himself!"

    You're right in that it was never really confirmed whether or not Ghandi did anything sexual with the young girls he'd lay naked with to find out if he conquered his sexual impulses. Let's not have this discussion be about Ghandi.

    To both of you:

    There's something you are obviously missing. I'll try to clarify this the best I can:

    When I say "an unfortunately large number of it’s believers, are barbaric", that does not mean all. Nor does it mean that no on else on the planet is barbaric as well. It means "an unfortunately large number".

    To simplify even more:
    "Unfortunately large number", does not equal "all".

    Saying that the West has had displays of barbarism as well is completely true, but it doesn't negate the point! The same applies to your comment, Asad, about Ghandi being racist, just like Mandela. You're right! They were both racist. You know what that means? That Ghandi was racist, which was my comment in the first place. Should I mention every person who was/is racist just to make a point that Ghandi was racist?

    While I did say Islam itself is barbaric, I did not say that all Muslims are barbaric. I even clarified that when talking of Christians being mostly good people, saying: "For the most part, I think Muslims are the same". Then, I separated Muslims with the "barbaric" radicals I was discussing, by saying "However, they have a much larger, and much more vocal group within". See how that works? Paying attention pays off.

    Saturnine, you said:

    "I share your contempt of evil. I just don’t appreciate it when people choose to speak only about the evils that other people do"

    The same reasoning I was mentioning can be applied to this as well. I don't have to mention, or even acknowledge every travesty that's occurring around the world when discussing a, or some, tragedies. To do so would be a colossal waste of time, just like much of this post.

    Even simpler:
    I can say someone was evil without having to say "Like Hitler".

    Or another way to put it:
    I don't have to end every one of my criticisms of another nation by saying "but he have our faults too".

  486. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    I hope you are not intentionally misleading when you claim in #492 that I am speaking of "barbarian peoples" when I use the word "barbaric" in #491. In fact I mean what you do.

    I said, that "it doesn’t help anyone if we just arrogantly say that the peoples you spoke about are barbaric". I mean that in the same ethical sense that you did.

    I'm sorry if I caused misunderstanding. However I still think that you spoke very ambiguously. Maybe it was not intentional. I might have gotten that wrong.

  487. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    So you're saying, that there is a large and vocal group of 'barbaric' (grossly unethical) people within Islam, and that this is not merely the fault of Islam itself.

    I'm sorry, but if that's all you're saying, then there really is no news to it.

    I tried to at least claim, that furthermore, even the people who are guilty of gross ethical failures are in most cases exceptions and not the rule. I'm not saying, that it's just like your hometown, but I'm saying that it's close. If the society (and religion) is broken, these people can do whatever they please. The fact that there are places where African society is broken is another issue, but still a fact.

  488. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    Re-reading 491, and you're right, I got a slightly off interpretation of what you wrote. Thanks for clarifying, and you can thus disregard my comment about it.

    I don't really think it's arrogant, simply because I'm not sure that word applies here, but I get your meaning.

    Frankly, I don't particularly care if it was arrogant, or rude for that matter. The point should stand on it's own, regardless of people's sensitivities. I'm not, as an adult, and one who cares greatly for open debate and rational discussion, going to mince words.

  489. Asad

    @Jolulipa, here’s a bit to enlighten your soul once again (sorry that I had darkened it!). The Al-Takeyya that you mention is actually “Taqiyya”. It is not exactly what you state that “Islam permits Muslims to lie anytime that they perceive that their own well-being, or that of Islam, is threatened”. It is more about concealing your faith in order to survive in times of extreme danger. In Islam’s early days, the Muslims in Mecca often concealed their faith when they felt threatened by the pagans.

    See more below (from Wikipedia):

    Taqiyya is a practice in Shia Islam whereby adherents may conceal their faith when they feel that they are under threat, persecution or compulsion.

    The practice of concealing one's faith in dangerous circumstances originates in the Qur'an itself, which deems blameless those who disguise their beliefs in such cases. The practice of taqiyya in difficult circumstances is considered legitimate by Muslims of various persuasions. Sunni and Shi'i commentators alike observe that Quran 16:106 in particular refers to the case of 'Ammar b. Yasir, who was forced to renounce his beliefs under physical duress and torture.

    Similarly, Quran 3:28 enjoins believers not to take the company of doubters unless as a means of safeguarding themselves. "Let not the believers take those who deny the truth for their allies in preference to the believers – since he who does this cuts himself off from God in everything – unless it be to protect yourself against them in this way… Regarding 3:28, Ibn Kathir, a prominent authority writes, "Whoever at any time or place fears their [infidels'] evil may protect himself through outward show." As proof of this, he quotes Muhammad's companion, al-Hassan, who said, "taqiyya is acceptable till the Day of Judgment [i.e., in perpetuity]."

    Shi’ism would not have spread at all if not for taqiyya, referring to instances where Shi'a have been ruthlessly persecuted by the Sunni political elite during the Umayyad and Abbasid empires. Indeed for the Ismailis, the persistence and prosperity of the community today owes largely to the careful safeguarding of the beliefs and teachings of the Imams during the Ilkhanate, Safawid dynasty, and other periods of persecution.

  490. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    "So you’re saying, that there is a large and vocal group of ‘barbaric’ (grossly unethical) people within Islam, and that this is not merely the fault of Islam itself."

    Yes! That is exactly what I was trying to clarify. I don't blame religion for ALL evils. All my contention has been is that it's a very powerful motivator.

  491. Asad

    @Chyrch
    I am not sure if you got it, but I called Mandela a racist in pure sarcasm and likewise I thanked you for calling Gandhi a racist in sarcasm too. Gandhi and Mandela racists? you must be kidding me mate?... if not then shame on the double standards that you have. You’re actually branding persons who dedicated their lives to fighting apartheid and unjust rule as racists, surely to you apartheid was correct and enslavement and bondage of millions Africans acceptable too? Surely attacking Iraq was justified too? Shame!

  492. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #503, 505

    Ok. I have to admit, that I was just being Very arrogant and trying to instruct you on how to put your words. That was quite unnecessary. Besides, I'm not being clear enough either.

    I should debate more, so I wont be so surprised when I see a response in strong words. #492 was just strangely effective, even if it merely threw me off balance.

  493. jolulipa

    @Asad at #467

    If you were truly so interested in the "good" islam and your good behavior, you must have understood that it was a typo that I used the first name of Ghandi instead of the real name of whom I was speaking of: Mohammad. I was speaking about Islam and there is no other prophet in Islam than Mohammad. So you claim of ignorance on the base of that mistake is totally unfounded and misleading.

    It was Mohammad the pedophile (not saying that Ghandi wasn't one too). Whatever you muslims want to say, there is no way in this world that a grown person can accept that a 9 year old girl was marrying someone on her own will. That is sick. It doesn't matter the era. It is wrong and your prophet did it. Whatever she did after all the indoctrination she went through is irrelevant.

    If you are truly talking from your hart (and there is no way in this earth to know that, since you guys have that takeyya thingy -which, by the way, you have not denied or spoken about-) You are using the part of quran that is not so offensive to us, knowing well that there are other nastier things in the quran that have abrogated all that tolerant mambo jambo.

    Remember Asad:

    "An example of Islamic deception is that Muslim activists always quote the passages of the Quran from the early part of Mohammed’s ministry while living in Mecca. These texts are peaceful and exemplify tolerance towards those that are not followers of Islam. All the while, they are fully aware that most of these passages were abrogated (cancelled and replaced) by passages that came after he migrated to Medina. The replacement verses reflect prejudice, intolerance, and endorse violence upon unbelievers"

    You mentioned the worshiping of Jesus by christians as making them polytheists, but forgetting that you yourselves treat Mohammed the same way christians do for Jesus.

    Mohammed was a vile person who killed people for the pleasure of it, who pillaged travelers, countries and cities and who requested his men to give him a percentage for "Allah" of their pillages. Hateful, revengeful, pedophile, thief, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera...

    Although there is minority of Muslims who are quite peaceful, the truth is, the majority are extremists who their only goal is to establish Islam as the ruler over all infidels.

    Islam is a religion who seeks power and control over the world and who calls everybody against it a lesser human being. This "religion" has a codice of law (sharia), and a way of government. There is not accepted form of government other than Theocracy in the countries where islam is leader. MOST OF THE MAJOR MUSLIM COUNTRIES OR REGIONS(*) ARE INVOLVE IN SOME KIND OF TERRORISM, CONFLICT OR WAR. Check you maps and you will notice if there were no muslim country, the world would be a very peaceful place.

    Personally I believe Islam to be a threat to the world and it is people like us who must denounce it and try to stop it.

    Islam is not "sciency", tolerant or benevolent.

    (*) Balkans, (Bosnia-Herzegovina), Kosovo, Russia (Chechnya), Egypt, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Turkish (Kurds), Irak, Iran, Indonesia (East Timor), Pakistan, Sudan, Ethiopia, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Palestine, Syria, Algeria, Nigeria, Niger, Tunisia, Sierra Leone, Northern Cyprus, etc.)

  494. Saturnine

    @jolulipa
    &
    @Chyrch

    Here we go again. jolulipa claims that most muslims are evil. That is prejudice and ignorance.

    Chyrch, would you enlighten jolulipa? Or would you not?

    That is a key question.

  495. Saturnine

    @#509

    If you didn't like how 'evil' sounded there, replace it with the 'extremists', that is found in jolulipa's #508

  496. jolulipa

    @Asad

    Sorry but when I wrote my latest comment I had no read your comment at #504. Still you answer is not satisfactory since the majority of islam sees the Al-Takeyya thing a different way that you describe. It is seems as being OK to lie and deceive when necessary, not only to hide their believes but also to get time and space to get strong again and be able to defeat them at a later time.

    I will not be quoting the large number of Islamic scholars who says this, but you can check it. Is all over the net.

  497. jolulipa

    @Saturnine

    Based on my ignorance and prejudice, I think there is a big difference between evil and extremists... look for it. Evil is misquoting what I said to belittle me. In that sense I will welcome any "enlightenment" coming from you.

    And, by the way, my dear friend... I stand by it.

  498. Chyrch

    Asad,

    I really don't want to get into discussing Ghandi. We've already entertained you when you brought up Islam, which is itself off-topic to this thread.

    But you've displayed yet another error in critical thinking in your last points.

    You're assuming that because they fought against racism against their own people, they couldn't be racist themselves.

    If you've read anything by these two men, you'll see that both made racist comments, Ghandi blatantly so. Mandela was much less so, but I agreed with your comparison for the sake of argument.

  499. jolulipa

    @all who referred to my visit to our whales sanctuaries

    In my country, in these times, every year, Humpback whales come to give birth to their young. Whale watching is a very regulated activity in order not to disturb these magnificent creatures.

    You cannot imagine how cool is this activity until you've have seen a whale close enough to appreciate their size and beauty. They sing too.

    It was a great experience and I would encourage anybody who can to do.

  500. Saturnine

    @Chyrch, & @jolulipa

    to Chyrch
    1) Islam is about God. It's not off-topic.
    2) Stop talking about Gandhi and Mandela. It's misleading.

    to the both of you
    3) Who exactly are the large number of vocal people in Islam who are guilty of gross ethical mistakes? Are they the majority or the minority?
    4) What does it mean to be an 'extremist' in Islam?
    4) Who exactly are the extremists? Are they the majority of the minority?

  501. Saturnine

    @515 (I hope you can see, that I did not mean to be obscurely poetic, when I said "majority of the minority".)

  502. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    If Jolulipa indeed called most Muslims evil, I would have disagreed with that point. I've already said that I believe most Muslims are good people.

    However, as Jolulipa already corrected, he said they were "extremists", not evil. I don't really find this word wholly appropriate, although a case might be made for it.

    There's no doubt the average Muslim is more devout than the average Christian, and tend to take their beliefs much more seriously. Religion is inherently divisive, and makes the more devout look at "infidels" as lesser people who will be judged by God and sent to Hell.

    That's quite extreme already.

    If using the word "extremist" to convey the notion of a religious terrorist, I'd mostly disagree with that. It's a small portion of Muslims who would commit terrorism. Although I don't think that's what Jolulipa meant either. He is correct in saying that the majority of Muslim countries are involved is some sort of terrorism.

  503. jolulipa

    @Sat

    I am going to put it very simple for you, since I have to run in a few minutes...

    Anybody who is muslim, and follows the quran, enforces in his home and sometimes in public (depending the public) that women stick to a strict code of conduct who denigrate them as human beings,

    Anybody who at the news of a "martyr" committing a martyrdom act, says "Allahu Akbar",

    Anybody that after hearing an infidel was killed by whatever reason, also says "Allahu Akbar",

    Anybody who defends the acts of Mohammed and call him a "guidance" in his/her behavior,

    Weather he or she is a "tolerant" and loving person, to me is an extremist.

  504. jolulipa

    Thank you Chyrch, an extremist is NOT a terrorist and I never equaled them in any of my previous comments.

    And never forget, that even those tolerant non-terrorist ones condemned and were appalled by somebody drawing a caricature of Mohammed and were willing to march against it. Those are extremists.

    When have you seen a Christian fell offended by a picture of Jesus?

  505. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    Q&A

    1) Islam is about God. It’s not off-topic.
    The topic is the relationship between Science and Religion

    2) Stop talking about Gandhi and Mandela. It’s misleading.
    Moot, since I already stated I don't want to talk about it.

    to the both of you
    3) Who exactly are the large number of vocal people in Islam who are guilty of gross ethical mistakes? Are they the majority or the minority?
    The question is poorly phrased, since it doesn't separate those who are vocal and those who commit "gross ethical mistakes". But I'll give an answer.

    Obviously we can count al-Qaeda as being both vocal and terrorists.
    The Taliban can be counted as well, although they are more political.
    "Dr" Zakir Naik, and all his fans.
    Every single Muslim who rioted and threatened violence against Salman Rushdie for writing a book.
    Every single Muslim who rioted and threatened violence against anyone working for the Danish newspaper that published cartoons that offended them.
    Every single Muslim who rioted and threatened violence when
    Terry Jones promoted a "Burn the Quran" Day.
    Every single Muslim who rioted and threatened violence when South Park had an episode featuring Mohammad.
    Every single Muslim who supported internet censorship when faced with "Draw Mohammad" Day.
    All members of the group Revolution Muslim, and other such groups.

    4) What does it mean to be an ‘extremist’ in Islam?
    Depends on who you ask. It's not really a strict definition. From the list above, I'm sure you can figure out how I interpret "Extremist".

    5) Who exactly are the extremists? Are they the majority of the minority?
    I've said plenty of times now that most Muslims are good people, and how I interpret "Extremist" would leave a small percentage of Muslims as being so.

  506. jolulipa

    "Allah Akbar!" cheered Egyptian Muslims while trampling the remains of dozens of Christians eviscerated in last Friday's suicide bombing. Yet we're assured that the phrase has nothing to do with Islam.

    Video taken at the gruesome scene outside a church in Alexandria, Egypt, clearly shows local rubberneckers whooping it up as they shout "Allah Akbar!" — Arabic for "Allah is greatest!" We heard the same celebratory chant from Palestinians and other Muslims around the world as the Twin Towers burned.

    Never mind all that, say apologists intent on separating Islam from terror. The expression is benign, they insist.

    American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee head James Zogby said it's more an expression of frustration, like Christians blurting out their Savior's name after accidently hammering their thumb. "Somebody says 'Jesus Christ!' they're not making a statement of faith," he explained. "They're saying, I'm really mad right now."

    The comparison is absurd.

    Muslims say "Allah is greatest" to exalt their God. When Christians mutter "Jesus Christ," they in contrast are taking their Lord's name in vain. There's no corresponding "Jesus Christ is greatest!"

    He and other "moderate" Muslim panelists said Americans have it all wrong, that they've been fed "misinformation." They maintained that Islam is "tolerant," that "democracy is at the heart of Islam," and that women who wear the Islamic headscarf are "liberated." They also claimed that the Ground Zero mosque is "actually intended to develop interfaith understanding."

    Who's misinforming whom?

    The moderator noted at the end of the program that CMSA is run by "Mr. J. Saleh Williams." Turns out the "J" stands for Jihad. Williams is a convert to Islam, and that's the name he chose. Of all the Arabic names, that's the one he picked.

    Such disinformation lulls Americans into a false sense of security about the threat from Islamism.

  507. Saturnine

    Chyrch & jolulipa, Interesting answers.

    Chyrch, Agreed, except 1) the notion that the divisiveness of religion leads to religious intolerance. This is a matter all religions can fight against on their own terms. Islam does this as well. 2) You say that the majority of muslim countries is involved in some kind of terrorism. I think you should be speaking of warfare, not terrorism. Are we "negotiating with terrorists"? If we are not, then we are not trying to make peace.

    jolulipa, Women are honored in Islam, despite the fact that there are exceptions to this. Therefore your claim concerning women in Islam is not true. I subscribe to your definition of an extremist, if Allahu Akbar always means to praise the event in question. But now, you said that most muslims are like that. It's very difficult to see how that could be the case. Furthermore, I don't think it's clear how it can make you an extremist if you call on Mohammad for guidance. Remember, you should be making serious arguments here.

  508. Saturnine

    #523 was directed at #518 and #519

  509. jolulipa

    @everybody

    I have to go away for a couple of hours, so I do not have time to address Sat questions.

    Instead I will give you all this Doc about the true islam: Islam: What the West Needs to Know

    It is hosted here, search it, watch it and come back. Then we’ll talk about Mohammad’s guidance and islam peacefulness.

    Cheers!

    Islam: What the West Needs to Know

  510. Saturnine

    Sorry for misspelling Muhammad in #523.

    jolulipa,

    You claim, if I am not mistaken, that most Muslims secretly enjoy when non-muslims die. I think it would be absolutely paranoid to think so. Furthermore, if they do so, that feeling is affected by the Devil, not by God. And even if it was true, they can wake up to the fact that it is a mistaken impulse at any time.

    It is written in our hearts. I'm sorry if I can only give the Christian answer here.

  511. Asad

    All,

    The debate was about science and religion and I gave my views that there is nothing in science that Islam contradicts nor is there anything in Islam that science contradicts. They are perfectly compatible to those who can discern.

    Many people disliked the mere mention of Islam on this forum simply out of their inherent prejudice. Out came pouring the same old redundant theories about Mohammad’s wives and Islam’s hidden agendas. Then someone mentioned Mahatma by mistake and it bared open the red-neck agenda of one (who called Gandhi a racist without provocation and labeled Mandela the same) who I previously thought was rather rational.

    Sorry for sounding a bit harsh but Gandhi and Mandela are racist to you simply because they defied the white colonial and apartheid forces (which you obviously didn’t appreciate) and not only because they said a few things against a specific race in their speeches. It seems that your bias against Islam only disguises your contempt for any one who does not look like you or think like you. I reiterate that more blood has been shed on regional/territorial, cultural, racial and economic issues than on religious basis alone which again attests to the fact that behind the garb of your religious prejudice underlies the racial bias that exists within you.

    Jolulipa, you say that there are no prophets in Islam other than Mohammad however the Quran mentions 26 prophets by name, almost all of whom are mentioned in the Bible as well.

    Mohammad is revered in Islam but NOT worshipped, and nor is there a concept of salvation of one sins through any one in Islam. You reap what you sow in this world.
    I have nothing against those drawing cartoons of Prophet Mohammad or Jesus or even writing derogative material about them as everyone has the right to his/her own opinion.

    Prophet Mohammad did not marry Aisha when she was 9; the marriage was promised at that stage but actually happened when she was 14 and post-puberty.

    Mohammad’s life is as much recorded as of any one in history. Even before Islam he was well-respected in Mecca and nick-named “Sadiq” i.e. one who speaks the truth. No where has any one recorded him pillaging travelers, countries, cities (lol) or being a thief or revengeful. These are all figments of your fanciful imagination. He even forgave all his enemies in Mecca who had previously forced him to migrate to Medina.

    The following may also help in understanding why according to you most Meccan verses are quoted by muslims and not Medina verses:

    "The overarching theme of the Quranic verses is the emphasis on the monotheism doctrine in worshiping only one God and opposing the general polytheistic belief of the people of Mecca. Hence, majority initially opposed this new religion, but gradually adherents increased. The mission of Muhammad continued 13 years (610 to 623 CE) in Mecca. The general theme of the verses and chapters revealed in Mecca thus emphasized in establishing logical proofs for monotheism detailing on the attributes of God and His supreme power. This is illustrated often by relating stories of past people and prophets and what happened to them when they rejected the monotheistic message. In general Mecca verses emphasized the establishment of the monotheism doctrine, the prophethood of Muhammad and the reality of the Day of Judgment. As the people of Mecca were masters of the classical Arabic language, Prophet Muhammad considered Quran – being the words of God- a miracle and challenged the Arabs of Mecca to bring a similar chapter like the Quran. Thus, the chapters of Mecca –in addition to the monotheistic tone- had a secondary objective of being literal, rhetorical and linguistic challenge for Arabs. This is evident in selection of strong words, phrases and Arabic constructs in Meccan verses.

    Following are some characteristics of Meccan verses:
    • Short verses, and strong rhetorical style and rhythmic sound.
    • Repeated use of emphasis, exhortation, analogies and oath.
    • Emphasis on the belief in Allah, the Day of Judgment and description of Hell and Heaven (paradise).
    • Call for adherence to good moral and universal characters like truthfulness, kindness to relatives, old and neighbour, etc.
    • Argument with the polytheists and refutation of their associating partners with Allah.
    • Warning the polytheists through stories of previous messengers when punishment came to their people when they rejected their message.

    Later, the prophet migrated to Medina in 623 CE where the people welcomed him and where was allowed to be free preached. With a year there were so many converts to Islam that Mohammad could defend himself and his followers against the Meccans who attacked them in Medina in 624 CE. Verses revealed in Medina started to lay down Islamic law and jurisprudence, in addition to the continuing theme of Islamic monotheism. Medina period witnessed many battles of Islam and eventually Islam expanded to other nearby cities and tribes. In general, Medina surahs emphasized on establishing Islamic laws, ethics, morals, marital and family laws, monetary transactions, and relationship of Islam and Muslims with other world religions.

    Following are some of the stylistic and subject characteristics of Madani verses.
    • Details of Islamic jurisprudence and legal system as well as laws governing family, money transaction, international law and acts of worship
    • Mention of 'hypocrisy' and dealing with hypocrites.
    • Any verse that starts with “O you who believe” (since they are primarily directed at muslims who were now significant in number).
    • Long verses
    • Easy vocabulary
    • Mention of 'Jihad' and detailing on its rulings.

    Surely since war was imposed on Muslims when they came to Medina therefore it made sense to establish rules on when and in what conditions to wage war in self-defense.

    The comments section in the documentary “Islam: What the West needs to know” was recently closed by Vlatko because a convert to Islam (from Catholicism) by the name “Sin number” had left everyone (including Vlatko) without an answer.

    I urge Chyrch and Jolulipo to do some navel gazing and look at happened in the last 500 years to see what the “more civil” westerners have been capable of. I will not say Christianity was solely responsible because the conflicts had always got more to do territorial and racial issues than just religious doctrine.
    • Spanish ethnic-cleansing of Jews & Moslems – Inquisition of 1492
    • North America – Extermination of Native Americans
    • South America – Extermination of South American Natives
    • Australia and New Zealand – Holocaust of Aborigines and Maoris
    • Southern Africa & Apartheid
    • Enslaving India & China, and force the locals to produce ‘Opium’: for someone who does not know, Wars were fought by massacring natives for forcing Opium trade.
    • American History of Slavery
    • Klu Klux Klan & lynching of African-Americans
    • World War II – holocaust of the Jews in Europe
    • Frying up two entire cities with children, old and women in Japan – 1945
    • Making life hell out of Vietnamese, and now repeating it in Afghanistan and Iraq not to forget I am leaving Palestine out of the picture
    • Ethnic cleansing of Muslims in Bosnia in the 1990s

    Again, Islamic barbarism is limited to some countries Middle East and North Africa while the white supremacists killed and rampaged for the last 500 years all over the world and still do.

    Peace.

  512. jack1952

    @ Asad

    The atrocities you cited were done by those who came from Christian countries but were done in the name of greed and power and not for religious reasons. Those Europeans committed those crimes because they could. Human history is filled with atrocities that have been committed by the victors. Some day Western power will be a thing of the past. Unfortunately some other group will only be too happy to step in and commit their own atrocities. It is the cycle of history. To ascribe blame to only one group does little to get at the root of the problem. We have to accept that we as a species are prone to this type of behavior. Only then one groups perceived moral superiority will not justify their own immoral policies.

  513. jolulipa

    @Asad

    Two things: you wrote that "No where has any one recorded him pillaging travelers, countries, cities (lol) or being a thief or revengeful"

    One who claims to be a messenger of God is expected to live a saintly life. He must not be given to lust, he must not be a sexual pervert, and he must not be a rapist, a highway robber, a war criminal, a mass murderer or an assassin. One who claims to be a messenger of God must have a superior character. He must stand above the vices of the people of his time. Yet Muhammad’s life is that of a gangster godfather. He raided merchant caravans, looted innocent people, massacred entire male populations and enslaved the women and children. He raped the women captured in war after killing their husbands and told his followers that it is okay to have sex with their captives and their “right hand possessions” (Quran 33:50) He assassinated those who criticized him and executed them when he came to power and became de facto despot of Arabia.

    Qur'an 33:26 "Allah made the Jews leave their homes by terrorizing them so that you killed some and made many captive. And He made you inherit their lands, their homes, and their wealth. He gave you a country you had not traversed before."

    Bukhari:V5B59N362 "So the Prophet killed the Qurayza men. He distributed their women, children and property among the Muslims."

    Tabari VIII:38 "The Messenger of Allah commanded that all of the Jewish men and boys who had reached puberty should be beheaded. Then the Prophet divided the wealth, wives, and children of the Qurayza Jews among the Muslims."

    Qur'an:8:12 "I shall terrorize the infidels. So wound their bodies and incapacitate them because they oppose Allah and His Apostle."

    Ishaq:288 "Allah divided the booty stolen from the first caravan after he made spoils permissible. He gave four-fifths to those He had allowed to take it and one-fifth to His Apostle."
    Tabari VII:29
    Ishaq:289 "The Apostle heard that Abu Sufyan [a Meccan merchant] was coming from Syria with a large caravan containing their money and their merchandise. He was accompanied by only thirty men."
    Ishaq:289 "Muhammad summoned the Muslims and said, 'This is the Quraysh caravan containing their property. Go out and attack it. Perhaps Allah will give it to us as prey."

    Relating to him being a pedophile, he marry the girl when she was 6 and rape her when she was 9 not as you said 14 and here are the references for you stop deceiving us:

    Already, when Aisha (the daughter of Abu Bakr, Mohammad's closest friend and unquestioning ally) was about 4-5 years old Muhammad started dreaming of a union with her [Ref: SAHIKH BUKHARI, 5:235] and he wasted no time in realizing his dreams, inspite of the fact that object of his dreams was a mere child.Perhaps you want to assume that it is "normal" for a 50+ year old man to dream of marrying a 4-5 old child, and then ACTUALLY ask for her hand at 6?
    Is it normal for an oversexed old man (Muhammad had over 9 wives and concubines) to dream of a union with a 4-5 year old girl?
    Muhammad ( SAW ) was basically oversexed, his sexual relationship with Aisha is a special case, which fits his strong need for a larger latitude to satisfy his sexual urge, as is witnessed by:
    "The Prophet used to visit all his wives in a round, during the day and night and they were eleven in number." I asked Anas, "Had the Prophet the strength for it?" Anas replied, "We used to say that the Prophet was given the strength of thirty (men)." And Sa'id said on the authority of Qatada that Anas had told him about nine wives only (not eleven)." [Bukhari.1:268]
    When she was 6, Muhammad asked Abu Bakr, Aisha's father, for her hand. Abu Bakr thought it was improper, because, as he said "I am your brother"; Muhammad brushed aside Abu Bakr's reservation by saying that it was perfectly lawful for him to marry Aisha [ Ref: SAHIKH BUKHAR I7:18].
    What happened to " there is no compulsion in matters of religion ?" Anyway what compulsion did Muhhammad need being a prophet his word was law, he restricted men to only four wives when he himself had more than four, that was a convenient exemption for Muhhammad.
    So, Aisha was betrothed to Muhammad, and 3 years later, i.e. when Aisha was 9, the marriage was consumed. And Muhammad was 53 then [SAHIH BUKHARI 5:236,7:64,7:65,7:88] .
    The 3 year waiting period probably had to do with the fact that at that time Aisha had contracted some disease, whereby she, temporarily lost her hair. Aisha was then socially and psychologically still a child as is evidenced by the fact that she was still given to her toys, she was unaware of what was happening around her, and her playmates behave as would the children at present times [Sahih Bukhari 8:151,5:234].
    Aisha became Muhammad's favourite wife. And the sexuality in the relationship was predominant [ SAHIH BUKHARI .1.270, 3:36, 7:6, 3:148, 3:149, 3:150, 7:142, IbnSa'd 1pg165 ]. Later, Aisha was to be called the "mother of believers".
    If you are wandering, yes, the relationship was pedophilic.

  514. jolulipa

    @Asad

    Relating to you mentioning other atrocities committed by the rest of the world, what is your point?

    That muslims are less atrocious?
    That since other committed those atrocities, muslims should be allowed to commit theirs?
    That what you do is OK?

    Please give your point, because I am a little stupid :) and cannot see it.

  515. Chyrch

    Asad,

    You are the epitome of the irrational religious person that makes religious apologetics a joke. You've ignored our statements when they've contradicted your points, only to have you repeat later on as though they still stand. They didn't have any merit when you first said them. Why would they have any merit after we've refuted them?

    You said:
    "Then someone mentioned Mahatma by mistake and it bared open the red-neck agenda of one (who called Gandhi a racist without provocation"

    This is the last time I mention Gandhi on a board about religion. Since you're obviously too lazy to check it out yourself (no wonder you're religious), here are some quotes:

    "Kaffirs are as a rule uncivilised—the convicts even more so. They are troublesome, very dirty and live almost like animals"

    "[Indians are] undoubtedly infinitely superior to the Kaffirs"

    "We believe as much in the purity of race as we think they do... We believe also that the white race in South Africa should be the predominating race"

    Just to clarify, since you've already shown tremendous ignorance on the subject, "Kaffir" refers to a Black African ok? Now stop bringing up Gandhi.

    If I'm coming across as harsh, good. You've brought down the quality of this discussion so much it pains me. You've shown yourself to be even more intellectually dishonest as Saturnine, who at least would have the decency to acknowledge when his points were refuted.

    To top it all off, you've displayed absolutely no attempts to understand what people are trying to tell you, and that is why critical thinking will always elude you. Science will always be a mystery to you because of this. But hey, at least it'll be easier to delude yourself into believing fairy tales.

    You say:
    "Prophet Mohammad did not marry Aisha when she was 9; the marriage was promised at that stage but actually happened when she was 14 and post-puberty."

    But these sources put the consummation at 9 or 10:

    Karen Armstrong, Muhammad: A Biography of the Prophet, Harper San Francisco, 1992, p. 157.

    Barlas (2002), p.125-126

    Sahih al-Bukhari, 5:58:234, 5:58:236, 7:62:64, 7:62:65, 7:62:88, Sahih Muslim, 8:3309, 8:3310, 8:3311, 41:4915, Sunnan Abu Dawud, 41:4917

    Tabari, Volume 9, Page 131; Tabari, Volume 7, Page 7

    Bukhari, Book of Qualities of the Ansar, chapter: ‘The Holy Prophet’s marriage with Aisha, and his coming to Madina and the consummation of marriage with her’. For Muhsin Khan’s translation, see this link and go down to reports listed as Volume 5, Book 58, Number 234 and 236.

    Maulana Muhammad Ali was the first Islamic scholar directly to challenge the notion that Aisha was aged six and nine, respectively, at the time of her nikah and consummation of marriage. This he did in, at least, the following writings: his English booklet Prophet of Islam, his larger English book Muhammad, the Prophet, and in the footnotes in his voluminous Urdu translation and commentary of Sahih Bukhari entitled Fadl-ul-Bari, these three writings being published in the 1920s and 1930s

    Turns out that it's been fairly recent that Muslim scholars have been saying that the consummation was delayed until she was 14.

    If Islam now teaches that she was 14 at the time of consummation, well then History contradicts it. And since History is a science, it turns out that science does indeed conflict with Islam.

  516. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    Why do you repeat that claim about me being intellectually dishonest as if it would be obvious that it is true? It would certainly be intellectually dishonest for _you_ to be religious before you saw valid reasons for it. But for me, I have seen the valid reasons, and have thought through the issues. I don't want to get back to this.

    You say that it is decent to acknowledge when someones points are refuted. I say that it is mandatory. You are doing your job. The next step is to learn to do it respectfully.

  517. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    In fact, as I have said, I think that atheists are religious in the minimal sense that they have an ethics. To "be religious", in the sense that I intended in #532 is to symbolically deepen the thinking of ethics. Etc. I know you don't accept this, and I don't want to repeat stuff.

    My point is, that I'd like to see how I'm being intellectually dishonest. Am I being fair in asking this of you?

  518. Fluxy

    @ Saturnine: Uhh. I'm pretty sure religion doesn't lead to a higher state of thinking. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not a genius or savant or anything of the sort, but I'm fairly sure thinking leads to higher states of thinking. You know? Practice makes perfect? Now, if you believe that religion allows you to achieve higher states of thought, then more power to you. But that's not the religion doing it. It's you. That was just the general theme I was getting from your comments.

    Some of you guys really just love cranking out meaningless walls of text.

  519. Saturnine

    Fluxy,

    You know what, I agree with what you say when you say that we ourselves are the ones who deepen the thought. The thing that I'd like to add to that is something that I think is very obvious. In thinking about anything, we use language and symbols that are shared with other people. If a person does not see that, she/he may misunderstand what it means to be an individual. There is a wide range of different symbolic constructions in the world. The individual arrives at them, sometimes by choice, sometimes for other reasons. Then the individual chooses to get into it or to shut oneself outside it. Sometimes it seems that other people choose for the individual, and thereby use power over him/her. I think that is basically wrong.

    Patriotism could be an example of such a symbolic construction. It is a higher state of thinking about ethics, that is achieved with the use of symbols. Abrahamic religions basically work in the same way.

  520. Madskillz

    @Asad

    I'll save everyone from getting archive hayfever. You posted Francis Bacon stuff (who I suddently like now) with your opinions wrapped around it to 'help' interperet Frankie boy for us;

    In my opinion, belief and or no-belief is a personal matter and that relgion should best be left out of politics. Bacon 400 years ago had hit the nail on many fronts above esp. in “It is better to have no opinion of God at all, than such an opinion as is unworthy of him: for the one is unbelief the other is contumely; and certainly superstition is the reproach of the Deity.”

    In other words, unbelief (atheism) is much better than distorted/perverted belief (when the exalted tenets of religion are degraded to mere superstition).

    Now back to me. What Francis means is that RELIGION is an INSULT to GOD. To have God properly in your life, you need to chuck out USELESS bloody RELIGION. NOT distorted/perverted forms of such. ALL OF IT.

    Ironically, your 'opinions' are EXACTLY what he is talking about.

  521. Saturnine

    Fluxy,

    Also, one could say that there is usually a "big phenomenon" that drives patriotism. The ethics is felt with the impact of the sense of this big phenomenon. This phenomenon is what the symbolic language points to.

    If there is no "big phenomenon" to be sensed, then the symbolic language is speaking about nothing. I am not advocating belief in such nothingness. If people don't see a meaning that religious symbols point to, then they should not use them.

  522. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Hullo again 'lover' boy.

    When a people, through various means/ends becomes a minority (even in their own country), through inter-generational degradation is completly shattered culturally and is now often subject to the common depravities inherent within low socio economic communites;

    A MISSIONARY steps in. Often troves of them. Through passive (by example) or direct means, they 'offer' these truly DESPERATE peoples the Lords Salvation via accepting Jesus/God into their lives.

    These Missionaries are usually the only 'decent' people from the 'other' side they have met. It is clear that these people are doing FAR better in life than they are. Many jump at the opurtunity (funnily enough), and denounce their 'obviously' inferior culture for that of the 'superior' one. At best they retain some of their own culture, and conduct a 'merge' but with Christianity overarching it in the ABSOLUTE.

    How do you feel about this?

  523. Madskillz

    @Fluxy #534

    You are a genius and a savant.

  524. Madskillz

    @All

    Oh yeah, and Prius cars are dumb.

  525. Madskillz

    @Asad

    I already pumped this one out earlier, but I dig it so I'll give it to ya;

    Ware subliminal messaging; intelligence is no barrier. All information must be viewed with subjective thought.

    You reckon' that you are good at the above. You are however, a paricularly fine prey to such. Good luck mate.

  526. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Get a Dog.

  527. Madskillz

    @Asad

    Whatever;

    #475 I said that I am passive towards Islam. I forgot to put 'relatively' in brackets after it. Christianity is the bigger offense in my region. Yours to, I suspect (Australian?).

    I like having Islam staking out turf in a Christian dominant zone. Their lap dances are of high value to the atheist/agnostic who needs reafirmation on why they are as such.

    Buddism whatnot is perhaps exempt here, although I don't need that either. And everyone knows that Buddist Monks are all ninjas, which makes them cool. Otherwise, I hate all religions for EXACTLY the same reason;

    They stagnate INTEGRITY within the human being.

  528. Saturnine

    @Madskillz, #538

    I think that all colonial imperialism was absolutely wrong. I don't have to explain the history to you, I think you have indicated that you already know it. Original peoples should not be messed with, but instead they should be honored (unless they really are culturally bound to a grossly 'barbaric' state ethically, and that there is very clear indication of this).

    Modern missionaries have rarely if ever been qualified anthropologists, and I think their approach has almost necessarily been flawed because of this. One can imagine a situation, where the missionary has helped the culture in a way that has been completely "nonviolent" in the sense that he has not exerted a real pressure to conversion upon people. But that situation is an utopia that I think has never happened.

  529. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    You say that religion stagnates integrity within the human being. How does it do this? Can you be taken seriously?

  530. Asad

    @Jolulipa

    You have obviously lifted off material from one of the countless anti-Islamist websites. Anti-Islamic writers like Craig Winn have long twisted Hadith and Quran to spread their vile. Muhammad Sultan of the Council on American-Islamic Relations stated that Winn "seems to lie in hatemongering and fomenting incitement for the purpose of cashing in on fear and ignorance."

    They use Hadith and Quran selectively and completely out of context to trumpet hate against Islam. The rebuttals (found on the internet and published works) are comprehensive therefore I will give mine below

    There is considerable doubt about Aisha’s age at the time of marriage and even if she was 9 or 13 or 14 it is scientifically proven that children matured younger in the ancient times and people generally had shorter lifespans.

    This forum was not to discuss Mohammad’s life but you have made it.

    “By Elias Abdullah – on “defendtheprophet” website

    Anti-Muslim activists claim that Islam allows sexual relations with children. They cite without any context the following narration:

    “Narrated Hisham's father: Khadija died three years before the Prophet departed to Medina. He stayed there for two years or so and then he married Aisha when she was a girl of six years of age, and he consummated that marriage when she was nine years old.” [Sahih Bukhari, Volume 5 Book 58 Number 236]

    Does this narration say that the Prophet had sex with Aisha when she was so young? No. All it says is that a marriage contract was drafted when she was six, and she agreed to the marriage when she was nine (because forced marriages are forbidden in Islam). Only someone with a perverted mind would read his own perversions into the text.

    Child marriages have been practiced since the beginning of time. Islam did not invent the practice, but rather instituted laws to regulate the practice, most notably introducing the necessity of a women's permission to be married.

    “Classical Islamic law allows child marriage on the condition that the marriage is contracted by the legal guardian and that the marriage not be consummated prior to the child's reaching the age of maturity. The child, upon reaching the age of maturity, may renounce the contract prior to its consummation. Most Muslim countries have enacted minimum age requirements for marriage. At present the minimum age requirements in the various Muslim countries range from sixteen to eighteen for females and seventeen to twenty-one for males.” [The Oxford Dictionary of Islam, "Child Marriage." Esposito, J. L. (2003). New York: Oxford University Press]

    This was part of the Prophet's mission to protect the rights of women and children, as he himself was an orphan and knew how cruel pre-Islamic Arabian customs had been to the weak and vulnerable in society. As recorded in the Sunan of Ibn Majah:
    “Chapter: Rights of the orphan
    Narrated Abu Hurairah: Allah's Messenger said: “O Allah, bear witness that I have issued a warning concerning (failure to fulfill) the rights of two weak ones (in society): orphans and women.” [Sunan Ibn Majah, Book 33, Number 3678 (graded Sahih "authentic")]

    Admittedly, there are problems in rural areas with child marriage, but this is attributable to cultures failing to develop, rather than orthodox Islamic teachings.

    The conditions of the Prophet’s marriage to Aisha
    The Prophet initiated the marriage contract under the supervision of Aisha’s father, Abu Bakr, when she was six years old (or nine according to some) and he consummated the marriage with her permission after she reached the age of puberty. It is completely false to suggest that the Prophet had sexual relations with her when she was a prepubescent child.

    The Prophet was married to one wife, Khadija, for several years. When she died, it was suggested to him by others that he take another wife. Martin Lings describes the scenario that led to Aisha’s marriage:
    “Khawlah, the wife of Uthman ibn Mazun, had been very attentive to the various needs of the Prophet’s household ever since Khadija’s death; and one day when she was in his house she suggested to him that he should take another wife. When he asked her whom he should marry, she said: Either Aisha the daughter of Abu Bakr or Sawdah the daughter of Zamah. [Lings, M. (1983). Muhammad: His life based on the earliest sources. New York: Inner Traditions International.p. 109]

    The fact that Khawlah suggested this marriage to the Prophet demonstrates that such marriages were acceptable in local customs for reasons we will explain. No one objected to it, most notably Aisha’s father and Aisha herself.

    In the ancient world, people were considered adults as early as age seven

    In ancient societies, the modern concept of childhood did not exist. This is because people did not need the level of literacy and education they need today to function as adults in society. Neil Postman, a prominent media critic, describes this phenomenon:
    “In a literate world, children must become adults. But in a non-literate world there is no need to distinguish sharply between the child and the adult, for there are few secrets, and the culture does not need to provide training in how to understand itself… And that is why, in all the sources, one finds that in the Middle Ages childhood ended at age seven. Why seven? Because that is the age at which children have command over speech. They can say and understand what adults can understand. They are able to know all the secrets of the tongue, which are the only secrets they need to know. And this helps explain why the Catholic Church designated age seven as the age at which one was assumed to know the difference between right and wrong, the age of reason. It also helps to explain why, until the 17th century, the words used to denote young males could refer to men of thirty, forty, or fifty, for there was no word – in French, German, or English – for a young male between the ages of seven and sixteen. The word child expressed kinship, not age.” [Postman, N. (1982). The disappearance of childhood. New York: Delacorte Press. P. 13-14]

    Since it is known that the Prophet lived in a largely illiterate society, a similar situation existed in 7th century Arabia. At the age of 9, having reached puberty and equipped with all the education needed to function as an adult, there is simply no reason in these circumstances why Aisha should not be married.

    This is confirmed by Colin Turner of the University of Durham Middle East Studies department:
    “A marriage between an older man and a young girl was customary among the Bedouins, as it still is in many societies across the world today. It was not unheard of in Muhammad’s time for boys and girls to be promised to each other in marriage almost as soon as they were born, particularly if the union was of direct political significance to the families concerned. However, such marriages were almost certainly not consummated until both parties had entered adulthood, which Arabs in the 7th century tended to reach at an earlier age than Westerners today. It is highly unlikely that Muhammad would not have taken Aisha into his bed until she was at least in her early teens, which was wholly in keeping with the customs of the day, and in context not in the least improper. [Turner, C. (2006). Islam: the basics (pp. 34-35). London: Routledge]

    High death rates were a reason ancient societies consummated marriage early

    The harsh living conditions and high death rates of ancient societies necessitated that men and women marry much earlier than they do in the present time. Walter McCall of St. Mary’s University, writing in review of an in-depth study on marriage in ancient Rome, states:
    “In the opening chapter, the authors inform us that, traditionally in pre-modern societies, age-at-first-marriage for girls corresponded with the visible onset of puberty. In these early societies, high mortality rates demanded an offsetting high-birth rate. As a result, younger marriages were required to facilitate population growth.”

    The importance of the scientific anthropological principle of relativism

    It is unfair and unhistorical to apply 21st century Western cultural standards to an ancient society that existed under very different and much harsher living conditions. Sheikh Faysal Mawlawi, deputy chairman of the European Council for Fatwa and Research, writes:
    “Aisha was not the first case, for many girls married at her same age to men who were at their fathers’ age… After the passage of many centuries, we find now some Orientalists who try to strike a comparison between the conditions of our present time and what existed 1400 years ago. They are trying to apply the criterions of the Western society to that society that existed in the Arabian Peninsula very long ago.”
    This coincides with the anthropological principle of relativism; that any objective study of other cultures, particularly ancient ones, must discard ethnocentric ideas and not misjudge other societies based on a limited understanding of social conditions. This view was articulated by anthropologist Alfred Kroeber:
    “Anthropologists became aware of the diversity of culture. They began to see the tremendous range of its variations. From that, they commenced to envisage it as a totality, as no historian of one period or of a single people was likely to do, nor any analyst of his own type of civilization alone. They became aware of culture as a "universe," or vast field in which we of today and our own civilization occupy only one place of many. The result was a widening of a fundamental point of view, a departure from unconscious ethnocentricity toward relativity. This shift from naive self-centeredness in one's own time and spot to a broader view based on objective comparison is somewhat like the change from the original geocentric assumption of astronomy to the Copernican interpretation of the solar system and the subsequent still greater widening to a universe of galaxies.” [Kroeber, A. L. (1923). Anthropology: With Supplement. New York: Harcourt, Brace and Co. p. 11]
    Ancient societies should be compared to other ancient societies of the same time period that lived under the same conditions, rather than comparing ancient societies to modern societies living under drastically different conditions. This point is made by George Readings who criticized those who claim Muhammad is a pedophile, saying: “This attempt to aggressively apply a modern British definition of pedophilia to seventh century Arabia strikes me as a sign of severe anthropological illiteracy.”

    Christian sources confirm that early marriage was acceptable in the ancient world
    Christian sources record that St. Joseph at age 90 had married the Virgin Mary when she was 12 or 14 years old. The Catholic Encyclopedia states:
    “A year after his wife's death, as the priests announced through Judea that they wished to find in the tribe of Juda a respectable man to espouse Mary, then twelve to fourteen years of age. Joseph, who was at the time ninety years old, went up to Jerusalem among the candidates…”
    Many Christians will dismiss this story as apocryphal, but the fact that it was recorded at all testifies that early marriages in the ancient world were acceptable social practices.

    Forced marriages are forbidden in Islam

    Aisha was not forced to marry the Prophet, but rather she wanted to marry him. Islam in general forbids women to be married against their will.
    “O you who believe, it is not lawful for you to inherit women against their will…” [Quran 4:19]
    Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, "A matron should not be given in marriage except after consulting her, and a virgin should not be given in marriage except after her permission." [Sahih Bukhari, Volume 7 Book 62 Number 67]

    The Prophet and Aisha had a healthy, loving relationship

    The Prophet and Aisha were known to have a very good relationship that benefitted the Muslim community. Islam in general encourages love and mercy between spouses.
    “Another of His signs is that He created spouses from among yourselves for you to live with in tranquility. He ordained love and kindness between you. There truly are signs in this for those who reflect.” [Quran 30:21]
    “Narrated Aisha that while she was on a journey with the Messenger of Allah: “I had a race with him and I outran him on my feet. When I became heavier, I had a race with him and he outran me. He said: Tit-for-tat.” [Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 14 Number 2572]

    The Prophet never hit women or servants

    Aisha herself testifies that the Prophet never hit or abused women or servants.
    Narrated Aisha: “The Messenger of Allah never struck a servant or a woman.” [Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 41 Number 4786 (graded Sahih "authentic")]

    The Prophet’s strong ability to control his sexual desires
    Aisha herself testifies that the Prophet was most capable of all men at controlling his sexual urges and desires.
    Narrated Aisha: “The Prophet used to kiss and embrace his wives while he was fasting, and he had more power to control his desires than any of you.” [Sahih Bukhari, Volume 3 Book 31 Number 149]

    The legacy of Aisha as a great scholar

    The Prophet married the young Aisha with the intention of teaching her to become a great scholar, which in fact occurred. Hundreds of beautiful traditions are narrated on her authority, such as the following:
    “Narrated Aisha: Allah's Messenger said: “O Aisha, indeed Allah is kind and He loves kindness and confers upon kindness which he does not confer upon severity and does not confer upon anything else besides it.” [Sahih Muslim, Book 32 Number 6273]
    For this reason, Aisha was a scholarly authority for the early companions of the Prophet, as demonstrated by the following tradition:
    Narrated Abu Musa: “Never was a hadith unclear to us – the companions of Muhammad – and we asked Aisha but that we found with her some knowledge about it.” [Jami at-Tirmidhi, Book 46 Number 3883]

    The Prophet’s kindness towards children

    We mentioned that Aisha had reached womanhood when she went to live with the Prophet, so she was not a child by local custom, but it is worth mentioning that the Prophet in general encouraged kindness and mercy towards children.
    Narrated Abdullah ibn Amr ibn al-As: The Prophet said: “Those who do not show mercy to our young ones and do not honor the rights of our elders are not from us.” [Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 41 Number 4925]

    The age of marriage is not fixed in Islam

    Traditional pre-modern societies considered puberty the appropriate age of adulthood and marriage, but the Holy Quran does not fix the age for marriage, although it does mention “maturity” (Surat an-Nisa 4:6). The wisdom behind not fixing the age of marriage is that human societies may find that the age of “maturity,” both physical and mental, changes in different times and places. Islam was revealed with a measure of flexibility that has allowed it adapt to different cultures on every continent. For this reason, many Muslim countries have legislated different minimum age requirements for marriage and there is no standard practice in this respect.
    Some people, even ignorant Muslims, claim that because Muhammad is the perfect model of Muslim behavior, then it is appropriate for any man to marry any young girl regardless of the circumstances. But this opinion disregards the fact that conditions (shuroot) are an integral part of Islamic law. Furthermore, there is a difference between emulating the Prophet in his character, which all Muslims must do, and emulating the Prophet with respect to social customs, which change according to social conditions.
    George Readings challenges this argument:
    “The “argument” goes that Muslims believe Muhammad to be a perfect model for behavior and therefore the fact of Muhammad’s marriage to Aisha somehow proves Islam to be a depraved religion. That no good can come of following it etc. etc. ad nauseam. This attempt to aggressively apply a modern British definition of pedophilia to seventh century Arabia strikes me as a sign of severe anthropological illiteracy…
    In the jurisprudence of the main schools of Islamic law it was accepted that a child could have a marriage arranged for them by their marriage guardian but it should not be consummated until puberty was reached, when the child would have the “Option of Puberty” (khiyar al-bulugh). This meant that the child would be allowed to repudiate the marriage if it had been contracted by a marriage guardian who did not have the right of ijbar (i.e. who was not their father or, apart from the Hanbalis, their father’s father). As the Quran does not deal with these matters many of the rules governing them would have been drawn from pre-Islamic custom and Muhammad’s implicit endorsement of them through not rejecting them.
    In considering the question of marriage age in Islam it is, therefore, entirely appropriate to discuss Muhammad’s marriage to Aisha. A book entitled ‘Does God Hate Women?’, which looks at various religious attitudes towards women, would do a disservice to its readers if it were to ignore a matter of such relevance: marriage to a pre-pubescent child with whom consummation occurs upon reaching puberty is not a model most people would be happy with in the modern world (although Bolivia sets the age of consent at puberty).

    Which is probably why nearly all Muslim countries have reformed these rules beyond recognition. The age of consent in Algeria and Malaysia is 16, in Indonesia it is 19 for males and 16 for females. In Egypt it’s 18 for both and Tunisia 20. Reform has not, however, come to Saudi Arabia. Back in April the world followed the case of a mother trying to obtain a divorce for her eight-year-old daughter who had been married off by her father to a friend he owed a debt. In the end she succeeded and now there is even talk of Saudi Arabia preventing marriage before the age of 18.

    Muhammad’s marriage to Aisha would logically only be of real concern to a non-Muslim living in 21st century Britain if Muslims were, following his model, regularly involved in child marriages. But, apart from possibly in Saudi Arabia and Iran, they aren’t. If your claim is that Islam is fundamentally depraved because Muslims seek to emulate Muhammad and he married a six-year-old, then it is entirely shot down by Muslims not emulating Muhammad on this matter.”

    Conclusion
    Prophet Muhammad never had sexual relations with children and he never allowed such practices. Although she was young by modern standards, the Prophet’s marriage to Aisha was consummated when she had reached womanhood according to legitimate social custom. She was never abused, but rather she grew to become a great scholar and a role model for all Muslims. The attempt to misconstrue this blessed marriage as pedophilia is an ignorant or dishonest smear tactic which ignores the scientific anthropological principles. In contrast, many honest non-Muslim scholars who study the Prophet have praised his character and teachings. Annie Besant, a prominent 20th century women’s rights activist, had this to say about him:
    “It is impossible for anyone who studies the life and character of the great Prophet of Arabia, who knows how he taught and how he lived, to feel anything but reverence for that mighty Prophet, one of the great messengers of the Supreme. And although in what I put to you I shall say many things which may be familiar to many, yet I myself feel whenever I re-read them, a new way of admiration, a new sense of reverence for that mighty Arabian teacher.” [Besant, A. (1932). The life and teachings of Muhammad: Two lectures by Annie Besant. Adyar, Madras, India: Theosophical Pub. House.]

  531. Asad

    @Chyrch:
    Gandhi obviously stated so but he was in South Africa as a young man. Only you consider him a racist on the basis of these statements alone, not Nelson Mandela (who btw idolized him) and the rest of South Africa. If Gandhi were a confirmed racist then Mandela would never have idolized Gandhi. Gandhi and Mandela changed the course of history for good for their people which is obviously not appreciated by your red-neck agenda.

    Now back to Mohammad’s life:

    See the answering-christianity website for countless rebuttals on all of anti-Islamists’ propaganda.

    Zahid Aziz in ‘muslim.org’ compiled the following rebuttal:

    Age of Aisha at time of marriage with Holy Prophet Muhammad:

    It is believed on the authority of some Hadith reports that the marriage ceremony (known as nikah, amounting to betrothal) of Aisha with the Holy Prophet Muhammad took place when she was six years of age, and that she joined the Holy Prophet as his wife three years later at the age of nine. We quote below from two such reports in Bukhari.

    “It is reported from Aisha that she said: The Prophet entered into marriage with me when I was a girl of six … and at the time [of joining his household] I was a girl of nine years of age.”

    “Khadija died three years before the Prophet departed to Medina. He stayed [alone] for two years or so. He married Aisha when she was a girl of six years of age, and he consummated that marriage when she was nine years old.” Bukhari, Book of Qualities of the Ansar, chapter: ‘The Holy Prophet’s marriage with Aisha, and his coming to Madina and the consummation of marriage with her’. For Muhsin Khan’s translation, Volume 5, Book 58, Number 234 and 236.

    As to the authenticity of these reports, it may be noted that the compilers of the books of Hadith did not apply the same stringent tests when accepting reports relating to historical matters as they did before accepting reports relating to the practical teachings and laws of Islam. The reason is that the former type of report was regarded as merely of academic interest while the latter type of report had a direct bearing on the practical duties of a Muslim and on what was allowed to them and what was prohibited. Thus the occurrence of reports such as the above about the marriage of Aisha in books of Hadith, even in Bukhari, is not necessarily a proof of their credibility.

    Determination of the true age of Aisha:
    It appears that Maulana Muhammad Ali was the first Islamic scholar directly to challenge the notion that Aisha was aged six and nine, respectively, at the time of her nikah and consummation of marriage. This he did in, at least, the following writings: his English booklet Prophet of Islam, his larger English book Muhammad, the Prophet, and in the footnotes in his voluminous Urdu translation and commentary of Sahih Bukhari entitled Fadl-ul-Bari, these three writings being published in the 1920s and 1930s. In the booklet Prophet of Islam, which was later incorporated in 1948 as the first chapter of his book Living Thoughts of the Prophet Muhammad, he writes in a lengthy footnote as follows:

    “A great misconception prevails as to the age at which Aisha was taken in marriage by the Prophet. Ibn Sa‘d has stated in the Tabaqat that when Abu Bakr [father of Aisha] was approached on behalf of the Holy Prophet, he replied that the girl had already been betrothed to Jubair, and that he would have to settle the matter first with him. This shows that Aisha must have been approaching majority at the time. Again, the Isaba, speaking of the Prophet’s daughter Fatima, says that she was born five years before the Call and was about five years older than Aisha. This shows that Aisha must have been about ten years at the time of her betrothal to the Prophet, and not six years as she is generally supposed to be. This is further borne out by the fact that Aisha herself is reported to have stated that when the chapter [of the Holy Quran] entitled The Moon, the fifty-fourth chapter, was revealed, she was a girl playing about and remembered certain verses then revealed. Now the fifty-fourth chapter was undoubtedly revealed before the sixth year of the Call. All these considerations point to but one conclusion, viz., that Aisha could not have been less than ten years of age at the time of her nikah, which was virtually only a betrothal. And there is one report in the Tabaqat that Aisha was nine years of age at the time of nikah. Again it is a fact admitted on all hands that the nikah of Aisha took place in the tenth year of the Call in the month of Shawwal, while there is also preponderance of evidence as to the consummation of her marriage taking place in the second year of Hijra in the same month, which shows that full five years had elapsed between the nikah and the consummation. Hence there is not the least doubt that Aisha was at least nine or ten years of age at the time of betrothal, and fourteen or fifteen years at the time of marriage.” Living Thoughts of the Prophet Muhammad, 1992 U.S.A. edition, p. 30, note 40.

    To facilitate understanding dates of these events, please note that it was in the tenth year of the Call, i.e. the tenth year after the Holy Prophet Muhammad received his calling from God to his mission of prophethood, that his wife Khadija passed away, and the approach was made to Abu Bakr for the hand of his daughter Aisha. The hijra or emigration of the Holy Prophet to Madina took place three years later, and Aisha came to the household of the Holy Prophet in the second year after hijra. So if Aisha was born in the year of the Call, she would be ten years old at the time of the nikah and fifteen years old at the time of the consummation of the marriage.

    Later research:
    Research subsequent to the time of Maulana Muhammad Ali has shown that she was older than this. An excellent short work presenting such evidence is the Urdu pamphlet Rukhsati kai waqt Sayyida Aisha Siddiqa ki umar (‘The age of Lady Aisha at the time of the start of her married life’) by Abu Tahir Irfani. Points 1 to 3 below have been brought to light in this pamphlet.

    1. The famous classical historian of Islam, Ibn Jarir Tabari, wrote in his ‘History’:
    “In the time before Islam, Abu Bakr married two women. The first was Fatila daughter of Abdul Uzza, from whom Abdullah and Asma were born. Then he married Umm Ruman, from whom Abdur Rahman and Aisha were born. These four were born before Islam.” Tarikh Tabari, vol. 4, p. 50.
    Being born before Islam means being born before the Call.

    2. The compiler of the famous Hadith collection Mishkat al-Masabih, Imam Wali-ud-Din Muhammad ibn Abdullah Al-Khatib, who died 700 years ago, has also written brief biographical notes on the narrators of Hadith reports. He writes under Asma, the older daughter of Abu Bakr:
    “She was the sister of Aisha Siddiqa, wife of the Holy Prophet, and was ten years older than her. … In 73 A.H. … Asma died at the age of one hundred years.” Mishkat al-Masabih, Edition with Urdu translation published in Lahore, 1986, vol. 3, p. 300–301.
    This would make Asma 28 years of age in 1 A.H., the year of the Hijra, thus making Aisha 18 years old in 1 A.H. So Aisha would be 19 years old at the time of the consummation of her marriage, and 14 or 15 years old at the time of her nikah. It would place her year of birth at four or five years before the Call.

    3. The same statement is made by the famous classical commentator of the Holy Quran, Ibn Kathir, in his book Al-bidayya wal-nihaya:

    “Asma died in 73 A.H. at the age of one hundred years. She was ten years older than her sister Aisha.” Vol. 8, p. 346.
    Apart from these three evidences, which are presented in the Urdu pamphlet referred to above, we also note that the birth of Aisha being a little before the Call is consistent with the opening words of a statement by her which is recorded four times in Bukhari. Those words are as follows:

    “Ever since I can remember (or understand things) my parents were following the religion of Islam.” Those four places in Sahih Bukhari are the following: Kitab-us-Salat, ch. ‘A mosque which is in the way but does not inconvenience people’; Kitab-ul-Kafalat, ch. ‘Abu Bakr under the protection of a non-Muslim in the time of the Holy Prophet and his pact with him’; Kitab Manaqib-ul-Ansar, ch. ‘Emigration of the Holy Prophet and his Companions to Madina’; and Kitab-ul-Adab, ch. ‘Should a person visit everyday, or morning and evening’.

    This is tantamount to saying that she was born sometime before her parents accepted Islam but she can only remember them practising Islam. No doubt she and her parents knew well whether she was born before or after they accepted Islam, as their acceptance of Islam was such a landmark event in their life which took place just after the Holy Prophet received his mission from God. If she had been born after they accepted Islam it would make no sense for her to say that she always remembered them as following Islam. Only if she was born before they accepted Islam, would it make sense for her to say that she can only remember them being Muslims, as she was too young to remember things before their conversion. This is consistent with her being born before the Call, and being perhaps four or five years old at the time of the Call, which was also almost the time when her parents accepted Islam.

    Two further evidences cited by Maulana Muhammad Ali:
    In the footnotes of his Urdu translation and commentary of Sahih Bukhari, entitled Fadl-ul-Bari, Maulana Muhammad Ali had pointed out reports of two events which show that Aisha could not have been born later than the year of the Call. These are as follows.

    1. The above mentioned statement by Aisha in Bukhari, about her earliest memory of her parents being that they were followers of Islam, begins with the following words in its version in Bukhari’s Kitab-ul-Kafalat. We quote this from the English translation of Bukhari by M. Muhsin Khan:

    “Since I reached the age when I could remember things, I have seen my parents worshipping according to the right faith of Islam. Not a single day passed but Allah’s Apostle visited us both in the morning and in the evening. When the Muslims were persecuted, Abu Bakr set out for Ethiopia as an emigrant.” Muhsin Khan’s English translation of Bukhari, Volume 3, Book 37, Number 494.

    Commenting on this report, Maulana Muhammad Ali writes:
    “This report sheds some light on the question of the age of Aisha. … The mention of the persecution of Muslims along with the emigration to Ethiopia clearly shows that this refers to the fifth or the sixth year of the Call. … At that time Aisha was of an age to discern things, and so her birth could not have been later than the first year of the Call.” Fadl-ul-Bari, vol. 1, p. 501, footnote 1.

    Again, this would make her more than fourteen at the time of the consummation of her marriage.

    2. There is a report in Sahih Bukhari as follows:
    “On the day (of the battle) of Uhud when (some) people retreated and left the Prophet, I saw Aisha daughter of Abu Bakr and Umm Sulaim, with their robes tucked up so that the bangles around their ankles were visible hurrying with their water skins (in another narration it is said, ‘carrying the water skins on their backs’). Then they would pour the water in the mouths of the people, and return to fill the water skins again and came back again to pour water in the mouths of the people.” Sahih Bukhari, Kitab-ul-Jihad wal-Siyar, Chapter: ‘Women in war and their fighting alongside men’. Khan’s translation Volume 4, Book 52, Number 131.

    Maulana Muhammad Ali writes in a footnote under this report:
    “It should also be noted that Aisha joined the Holy Prophet’s household only one year before the battle of Uhud. According to the common view she would be only ten years of age at this time, which is certainly not a suitable age for the work she did on this occasion. This also shows that she was not so young at this time.” Fadl-ul-Bari, vol. 1, p. 651.

    If, as shown in the previous section above, Aisha was nineteen at the time of the consummation of her marriage, then she would be twenty years old at the time of the battle of Uhud. It may be added that on the earlier occasion of the battle of Badr when some Muslim youths tried, out of eagerness, to go along with the Muslim army to the field of battle, the Holy Prophet Muhammad sent them back on account of their young age (allowing only one such youngster, Umair ibn Abi Waqqas, to accompany his older brother the famous Companion Sa‘d ibn Abi Waqqas). It seems, therefore, highly unlikely that if Aisha was ten years old the Holy Prophet would have allowed her to accompany the army to the field of battle.

    We conclude from all the evidence cited above that Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) was nineteen years old when she joined the Holy Prophet as his wife in the year 2 A.H., the nikah or betrothal having taken place five years previously.

    The Bible on marriage of young girls with much older men:
    As it is Christian evangelists and other believers in the Bible who have been bitterly reviling the Holy Prophet Muhammad on account of his marriage with Aisha, we put to them the practices of the great patriarchs and prophets that are recorded in the Bible itself in this connection. The main accusations regarding the marriage of Aisha are that she was too young in age while the Holy Prophet was a much older man, being fifty years of age, and that consent to marriage was either not obtained from her or she was not capable of giving it.

    Abraham:
    In the book of Genesis in the Bible it is recorded about Abraham:

    “Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had borne him no children. But she had an Egyptian maidservant named Hagar; so she said to Abram, ‘The Lord has kept me from having children. Go, sleep with my maidservant; perhaps I can build a family through her.’ Abram agreed to what Sarai said. So after Abram had been living in Canaan ten years, Sarai his wife took her Egyptian maidservant Hagar and gave her to her husband to be his wife. He slept with Hagar, and she conceived. … So Hagar bore Abram a son, and Abram gave the name Ishmael to the son she had borne. Abram was eighty-six years old when Hagar bore him Ishmael.” (Genesis, chapter 16, verses 1–4, and 15–16, New International Version. Bolding is mine.)

    Firstly, it is evident that as Abraham (who then had the name Abram) was 86 years old, Hagar must have been some fifty years younger than him, and probably even younger, to bear a child. Secondly, the Bible speaks of Sarai giving her maidservant Hagar to Abraham. So Hagar’s consent was not obtained but rather she was commanded by Sarai to go and become Abraham’s wife.

    David:
    The first book of Kings in the Bible begins as follows:
    “When King David was old and well advanced in years, he could not keep warm even when they put covers over him. So his servants said to him, ‘Let us look for a young virgin to attend the king and take care of him. She can lie beside him so that our lord the king may keep warm.’ Then they searched throughout Israel for a beautiful girl and found Abishag, a Shunammite, and brought her to the king. The girl was very beautiful; she took care of the king and waited on him, but the king had no intimate relations with her.” (1 Kings, chapter 1, verses 1–4, New International Version. Bolding is mine.)
    So there seems nothing wrong, according to the Bible, in procuring a young virgin, again apparently without her consent, whose duties include lying with the elderly king in bed. The intention was certainly for sexual enjoyment, otherwise there was no necessity of looking for a young, beautiful virgin. A much older woman, perhaps a widow, could have performed all these duties, including lying with the king to keep him warm.

    Mary and Joseph:
    The most famous marriage in Christianity is no doubt that of Mary, Jesus’ mother, with Joseph. While the following details are not in the canonical Gospels in the Bible, it appears from other early Christian writings (known as apocryphal writings) that Mary was twelve years old when the temple elders decided to find a husband for her. They selected the husband by drawing lots, and Joseph whom they chose was an elderly man, being according to some accounts ninety years old. The husband was selected and Mary was handed over to him, and she played no part in his selection.

    These accounts are summed up in the Catholic Encyclopedia, 1913 edition, which is available online, as follows:
    “It will not be without interest to recall here, unreliable though they are, the lengthy stories concerning St. Joseph’s marriage contained in the apocryphal writings. When forty years of age, Joseph married a woman called Melcha or Escha by some, Salome by others; they lived forty-nine years together and had six children … A year after his wife’s death, as the priests announced through Judea that they wished to find in the tribe of Juda a respectable man to espouse Mary, then twelve to fourteen years of age, Joseph, who was at the time ninety years old, went up to Jerusalem among the candidates; a miracle manifested the choice God had made of Joseph …” (In article St. Joseph, under letter J. )

    Although these apocryphal accounts are not now accepted by many Christians, and the Catholic Encyclopedia says that they “are void of authority”, yet it also speaks of their influence as follows:
    “they nevertheless acquired in the course of ages some popularity; in them some ecclesiastical writers sought the answer to the well-known difficulty arising from the mention in the Gospel of the Lord’s brothers; from them also popular credulity has, contrary to all probability, as well as to the tradition witnessed by old works of art, retained the belief that St. Joseph was an old man at the time of marriage with the Mother of God.”

    However, these accounts are accepted by the Eastern churches. The website of the Ukrainian Orthodoxy has an article on this subject entitled An Elderly Joseph which agrees with the presentation in the apocryphal writings “of Joseph as an elderly man, a widower with adult children”. It concludes:
    “The Christian East’s picture of Joseph as a courageous, faithful, God-centred elderly widower rings true.”
    Below is a quotation from one of these apocryphal books, The Infancy Gospel of James, describing how Mary’s husband was selected.

    While the Western Christian churches may not accept these accounts as authentic, the Eastern churches in Europe do accept that Mary was 12 years old and Joseph a widower 90 years old when they married. Moreover, there is nothing in the Gospels of the New Testament to contradict these accounts, and the Gospel stories are not at all inconsistent with these ages for Mary and Joseph.

    “When she [Mary] turned twelve, a group of priests took counsel together, saying, ‘Look, Mary has been in the temple of the Lord twelve years. What should we do about her now, so that she does not defile the sanctuary of the Lord our God?’ And they said to the high priest, ‘You have stood at the altar of the Lord. Go in and pray about her. And if the Lord God reveals anything to you, we will do it.’ And the priest went in taking the vestment with twelve bells into the holy of holies and prayed about her. Suddenly, an angel of the Lord stood before him, saying, ‘Zachariah, Zachariah, depart from here and gather the widowers of the people and let each one carry a staff. And the one whom the Lord God points out with a sign, she will be his wife.’ So the heralds went out to the whole surrounding area of Judea and the trumpet of the Lord rang out and all the men rushed in.

    Throwing down his axe, Joseph went out to meet them. And after they had gathered together with their rods, they went to the high priest. After receiving everyone’s rod, the high priest went into the temple and prayed. When he was finished with the prayer, he took the rods and went out and gave them to each man, but there was no sign among them. Finally, Joseph took his rod. Suddenly, a dove came out of the rod and stood on Joseph’s head. And the high priest said, ‘Joseph! Joseph! You have been chosen by lot to take the virgin into your own keeping.’ And Joseph replied, saying, ‘I have sons and am old, while she is young. I will not be ridiculed among the children of Israel.’ And the high priest said, ‘Joseph, fear the Lord your God and remember what God did to Dathan and Abiron and Kore, how the earth split open and swallowed them because of their rebellion. Now fear God, Joseph, so that these things do not happen in your house.’ Fearing God, Joseph took her into his own possession.”

  532. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Yep.

    You cannot, as per posts like #544. You see, your disease (Christianity) is the KILLING BLOW to an integral culture/individual. This is why;

    As I stated WAY earlier in the posts, morality is inherent within the human being. You are born with it. This can be via divine implementation and/or evolutionary necessity. Humans need to tolerate (love) one another, in order to conduct group dynamics; vital to our species survival.

    Integrity is the conscience 'link' into bringing one into adhereance with Moral Law/moralistic code. And everything else also. It is, well, integral to such.

    One of the primary wonders of the human brain is that it is able to 'join the dots' in between one concept and another. Filling in the blanks, if you will. If a brain does not do this, it's owner will be in a permanent care facility stuck at the technical age of 0 throughout their life. Having this issue in varied lesser extents constitutes any number of medical conditions.

    The danger with the 'blank filling' is subliminal messaging, in the sense of when you are telling yourself things that are not merely for the purpose of attaining a cerebral goal and then shed or refined therafter. This condition is called Ignorance. Integrity steps in to help us keep it REAL.

    Integrity is about honesty. Honesty WITHIN. One must run a 'bullshitometer' over EVERY conscious thought that they have; What is the concept for? Why do I have it? Where did it come from? - With a bit of practice, this method becomes VERY easy and near instantaneous. Initially you will be shocked by how many lies you are 'unknowingly' telling yourself (and others) ALL the time. However, it also fills one with true elation. Elation is one of evolutions award processes (even better than drugs). You are being awarded for evolving.

    Religion likes to claim that they have the answers that integrity gives us by default. Religions state that their texts are WORD. This implies that one can 'teach' a person about inherent notions rather than 'guide'. This contradicts and taints integrity imediately. Religees, and just most people in general, have broken minds because they seek answers from sources other than THEMSELVES. Yes knoweledge can be found without, most of it actually, but it needs the 'bullshitometer' scanned over EVERY bit of it. ESPECIALLY THE BIBLE.

    If you place integrity in an OVERARCHING stance to all else, you will break free.

    You may even decide to keep your religion, for what its worth.

  533. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    You have your answer coming. THE ANSWER, actually. I refuse to repost due to moderation on a minor swearing. It would somewhat contradict the entire post.

    If it does not come, to bad.

  534. Madskillz

    @Asad

    #551 is for you too pal. It's coming. You could stop copy/pasting HUGE piles of rubbish that you have pre-written f's sakes how long ago, and perhaps answer ANYTHING I've tossed your way?

    #537 would be nice.

    But don't spend too much time on it. The sledgehammer is awaiting moderation.

    If you dodge THIS one too; you are the biggest liar I've ever come across.

  535. Achems Razor

    @Asad:

    My comment is short and to the point.

    Not pedophile you say, then explain to everyone what the term, "Thighing" means!!...google ..."thighing Mohammed"

  536. Madskillz

    @All

    Oh, and the Biotxy Septic System is really cool. Won invention of the year a few back. Aussies are good at inventing stuff.

  537. Madskillz

    @Ignorance

    #549

  538. Asad

    @Madskillz
    your gibberish never made sense to me. Learn proper English first and then debate.

    @Razor
    It did goodle it, your sources are again propaganda and hate (wikiislam, answerhing-islam.org and similars ones) not much different from what Nazis used against Jews.

  539. Madskillz

    @Asad

    KEEP TELLING YOURSELF THAT

  540. Madskillz

    @Asad

    Okay, okay.

    Tell me then, for the sake of communication;

    Which parts of my imperfect English are you struggling with?

  541. Madskillz

    @Asad

    You are frightened of me.

  542. Achems Razor

    @Asad:

    Oh no you don't, I asked you a question about "thighing"
    and you gave a broad statement, that it is propaganda, that does not fly.

    Again ...google..."Mufa Khathat"

  543. Madskillz

    @Asad

    Why dont you re-post #549 with your 'opinions' inverted around/in it?

    This would be FACINATING

  544. Madskillz

    @Achems Razor

    I reckon' that he's gone off to do some SERIOUS praying.

  545. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #549

    That was in fact a very good answer. I see how you define religion. I'm a bit put off by the fact that you suggested that I should get a bullmastiff, though. You see, I think that the proper function of all religion is to sort out the subliminal phenomena that we get trapped in and are faced with in the course of our lives. If it fails to do that, it fails as a religion and must be repaired. I see that you think that religion is in fact a cause of much of that confusion that I say it should repair. To a point, I agree completely. Whenever it becomes apparent, that I am around people who have an _overly_serious_ view on religion, theology or politics, (or science), it suddenly feels as if the room is "full of it".

    Whenever I get insulted by people who just assume that I am a source of bull, I begin to strangely confirm it. That is one of the ways that 'subliminal messaging' works, or so I see it. That is also why I tend to demand evidence for the bull from the people who just decide to dis me for some strange reason.

  546. Saturnine

    @Asad

    From all that I've read from your posts, you deserve a lot more respect than what you are going to get from some of these people.

    You cannot be held responsible for the things that other people do. They will, constantly and by any means possible, try to make you look like you are just as guilty as the (strawman) image that they have of you. If they catch you, they will run you down with it, even if every other thing that you have said is perfectly reasonable and wise.

    That is the way of some of them. I don't think it is fair at all. We can only hope, that humankind is developing.

  547. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    You are SO close mate. So VERY close.

    The dog referrence is just me and my smartarsism. Dogs shed insight on true UNCONDITIONAL love. It never ceases to amaze me how much these awesome beasts are willing to put up with and yet still remain loyal to what they perceive to be their owners. In my experiences within really 'low socio economic' areas, I have seen this concept countless times pushed to the EXTREME.

    And thanks for responding. You are relative LIGHTYEARS ahead of @Asad

  548. Saturnine

    @Asad,

    What I want to stress, is that even when they think they have caught you, they will act as the prosecutor, judge and jury at once, and will forgive "you" for nothing, even if they themselves are completely mistaken about you.

    Childish is a word.

  549. Vlatko

    @Asad,

    You said: You posted a hate filled program against Islam (What the West needs to know) and then closed the comments section when you couldn’t handle the truth.

    At TDF there are hundreds of documentaries filled with "hate" against Christianity, US Government (and others), Politics, 9/11 and even Science, etc. etc., so your theory of me being against Islam is not holding any water. In fact I'm against EVERY religion, only and only IF their proponents try to PROMOTE their religion as the right one and peaceful one under my nose and under the noses of TDF audience (do you see yourself in this category?).

    Consider yourself warned.

  550. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    Why is it that I like you?

  551. Achems Razor

    @Asad:

    You do not know how to answer my question except to give bias websites.

    There is a lot of evidence for it, all a person has to do is google it!

    Everything that you cherry picked is utter complete nonsense, again I say "all" religion is the scourge of mankind!

  552. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Because I want to help you. I care.

    It is Evolution which makes it so.

  553. bahar

    The Unity of Religion and Science

    A major source of conflict and disunity in the world today is the widespread opinion that there is some basic opposition between science and religion, that scientific truth contradicts religion on some points, and that one must choose between being a religious person, a believer in God, or a scientist, a follower of reason.1

    The Bahá'í teachings stress the fundamental harmony of science and religion. This view derives from the belief that truth (or reality) is one. For if truth is indeed one, it is not possible for something to be scientifically false and religiously true. 'Abdu'l-Baha expressed forcefully this idea in the following passage:

    If religious beliefs and opinions are found contrary to the standards of science, they are mere superstitions and imaginations; for the antithesis of knowledge is ignorance, and the child of ignorance is superstition. Unquestionably there must be agreement between true religion and science. If a question be found contrary to reason, faith and belief in it are impossible, and there is no outcome but wavering and vacillation.2
    Bahá'u'lláh affirmed that man's intelligence and reasoning powers are a gift from God: "This gift giveth man the power to discern the truth in all things, leadeth him to that which is right, and helpeth him to discover the secrets of creation."3 Science results from our systematic use of these God-given powers. The truths of science are thus discovered truths. The truths of prophetic religion are revealed truths, i.e., truths which God has shown to us without our having to discover them for ourselves. Bahá'ís consider that it is the same unique God who is both the Author of revelation and the Creator of the reality which science investigates, and hence there can be no contradiction between the two.

    Contradictions between science and traditional religious beliefs are attributed to human fallibility and arrogance. Over the centuries, distortions have gradually infiltrated the doctrines of many religious systems and diluted the pure teachings originally given by the Manifestation who was their Founder. With time these distortions become increasingly difficult to distinguish from the original message. Similarly, unsupported speculations of various schools of scientific thought have at times become more popular and influential than the results of rigorous scientific research, and have further blurred the picture.

    'Abdu'l-Baha affirmed that religion and science are, in fact, complementary:

    Religion and science are the two wings upon which man's intelligence can soar into the heights, with which the human soul can progress. It is not possible to fly with one wing alone! Should a man try to fly with the wing of religion alone he would quickly fall into the quagmire of superstition, whilst on the other hand, with the wing of science alone he would also make no progress, but fall into the despairing slough of materialism.4
    In another passage from the same work, He affirmed that the result of the practice of the unity of science and religion will be a strengthening of religion rather than its weakening as is feared by many religious apologists:

    When religion, shorn of its superstitions, traditions, and unintelligent dogmas, shows its conformity with science, then will there be a great unifying, cleansing force in the world which will sweep before it all wars, disagreements, discords and struggles--and then will mankind be united in the power of the Love of God.5-

    1 Adapted from William S. Hatcher and Douglas Martin, The Bahá'í Faith: The Emerging Global Religion (San Francisco: Harper and Row, 1985), pp. 87-89.
    `Abdu'l-Bahá, The Promulgation of Universal Peace (Wilmette: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1922. 2nd edition 1982, p. 181.
    Bahá'u'lláh, Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá'u'lláh (Wilmette: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1939. 2d rev. ed. 1976), p. 194.
    'Abdu'l-Baha, Paris Talks (London: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1969), p. 143.
    'Abdu'l-Baha, Paris Talks (London: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1969), p. 146.

  554. Madskillz

    @baha

    I hate ‘Abdu’l-Baha's TEACHINGS.

    They merely re-cycle and STRENGTHEN the INTEGRAL issue.

  555. Lary Nine

    @Asad~
    Jeez! Give it a rest. It's a "Comments" section, you space-hog. Save the term papers for grad school. Do you really think long-winded diatribes persuade anyone to see your POV? Quite the opposite. People become more convinced that Islam inspires fanaticism.
    Or is that what you want? I get it. You're a double agent---of course, that explains it.

  556. Madskillz

    @Lary Nine

    Nah, this one is more of a discussion/debate session.

  557. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Does @Lary REALLY think that people are going to read 577 reviews on a documentary?

    I didn't even watch half of it, and that gives me a head start in this debate.

  558. bahar

    @ madskillz everyone has there own way of thinking no one should judge, or make rude comments, we all have a brain and we should invastigate the truth for ourselves.

  559. Madskillz

    @bahar

    I'm not afraid to judge.

    Yes to 'investigate the truth for ourselves'. Spot on.

  560. bahar

    @ Thank you ..... and also being openmined is important tooo u know, but in the end we all have our journey in life our own test and difficulities to make us stronger, its important to educate ourselves and t help humanity in our own way. With Religion you can go on and on and consult of what our belifes are but really in the end its all about unity that we are all one and god is one .

  561. Madskillz

    @bahar

    Yeah, kinda. However;

    I am a HUNTER.

    You are PREY.

    You should probably do something about this, as I have plenty of bullets.

    What are your feelings on Hitler?

  562. bahar

    LOL hitler lol smart man, educated the world in some way, set an example to us, by how one person can change the world if they truly belive in something and set the world on fire. But his way, his thought were not right if you know wat i mean , it never worked, people wanted to kil him. he was Prejudice. Jus in that alone is what killed him, why it never worked out. People in the end want one thing and thats LOve, love too all and love is what set the world on fire, what sets us on fire. People even now that follow a cult why it never spreads cause its not really based on love, its based on control and power.

  563. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Meinkampf - My Struggle.

    I mean, really. Like, REALLY? Un-F****n-Believeable.

  564. Madskillz

    @bahar

    Ya know, #583 sounded an awful lot like judgement. And Hitler probably would have considered it quite rude.

  565. bahar

    hey you even said judgement your not afraid of it so i put it out there ; 0

  566. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #573

    #549 was in fact so well said, that it crystallized what religious education is when it works properly.

  567. Madskillz

    @bahar

    GOOD FOR YOU

  568. Saturnine

    (Of course I think that Christianity does not kill the individual if it works properly.)

  569. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Or when it doesnt.

  570. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Soooooooo CLOSE.

  571. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    #549

    The last two lines.

  572. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    If you can prove to me that a religious person cannot 'guide' in the sense that you mean in #549, I'm in trouble.

  573. Chyrch

    Vlatko,

    I want to apologize for my role in turning these comments into a lengthy debate. I've been trying to keep on-topic, but I won't be offended if you delete all of them after.

    Saturnine,

    I call you intellectually dishonest because you falsely attribute things to religion with nothing but assumptions. Like this comment:

    "I think that atheists are religious in the minimal sense that they have an ethics"

    I know you're using a different definition of Religion, but you can't just interchange words because it backs up your point. You're clearly using the term religion interchangeably with what many would call Spirituality. That's already a vast difference in definition.

    But there's a problem with spirituality. It's incredibly vague, and is thus vulnerable to misuse. You, however, exploit this vulnerability but call it Religion, thus justifying to yourself what you've attributed to religion.

    There is no way to honestly attribute ethics to religion (in the proper sense of the word).
    However, you can attribute whatever you want to spirituality, since by it's nature can't be investigated.

    Asad,

    I've said some harsh things to you, so I'm not going to take offense to you saying I have a "Red-neck agenda" (although I could certainly pick on the validity of such a statement, and it's undertones that suggest that I must be calling Gandhi racist to justify my own racism, which is absurd). Plus I said I'm not talking about Gandhi anymore. Anyone can read his works for themselves.

    I'm not going to get into how in response to sources of Aisha being 9-10 at time of consummation, you cited (obviously) biased websites in rebuttal. There's this thing called apologetics, and people have been practicing it for centuries.

    But why is it only recently scholars have started to question that Aisha was older than 9-10?

    It's more than a little suspicious that it took modern times, when pedophilia is more frowned upon then before, to get scholars to "investigate" the issue. That is apologetics at work.

    Madskillz,

    I understand your point when you tell them to get a dog. Just be sure they don't take it literally, since cats are much better.

  574. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    It's all in there bud. However I dont mind clarifying it for you;

    It is because they THINK that they are guiding. They are in fact TEACHING.

    Teaching as in dictating/lecturing.

  575. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    I don't mean to have you on. However, I must say right away, that I think that it is relatively clear, that religious people can 'guide' in that sense. In fact there's a lot of that sort of stuff going on where I come from. People compete with each other on who is better at it.

    But I still began to think again about the issue, whether it is really possible for us religious people to really succeed in it. I think I'm sure that we can, but I'm open to other suggestions.

  576. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    Re: Cats. You ignorant pr*ck.

  577. Madskillz

    @Madskillz

    Bwahahahahahahaha~

  578. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #596

    Excellent. Just EXCELLENT.

  579. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Now, just for kicks, have a rethink on @Chyrch. As to where he is directly, or perhaps indirectly (matters not) coming from; What is his intent?

  580. Lary Nine

    How about 600 posts? That's what this one is...#600. Do you know how many players hit 600 home runs lifetime in the majors? I'll wait here for an answer...

  581. Chyrch

    Madskillz,

    Wow. I hope that was a joke about my Cats comment lol. I expected to be called that by Asad or Saturnine (in fact I was, just in less clear terms, since apparently suggesting something is much nicer than actually saying it).

  582. Madskillz

    @Lary Nine

    Sure;

    Do you know how much I care about Baseball?

  583. Madskillz

    @Chyrce

    Well yeah, fundementally it was a joke.

    You never denied that cats, domesticated whatnot, are still insanely adaptive killing machines.

    Even though I TOTALLY disagree with cats being valid pets outside of their natural habitats, you have not told me any lies - so you are integral.

    Thats all that matters.

  584. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #594

    You say, that I claim that ethics is caused by religion, or is born from religion in some way. I do not say that. In my view, (or hypothesis), religious questions have, in their essence, "been there" before we even learned to think properly as homo sapiens. I think these questions are at heart ethical, but that word is not good enough to describe them. Proto-ethical could be a more proper word. Later, organized religion came and started to give cultural expression to these questions. Ethics, in this picture, has always had a place outside organized religion.

    In order for there to be an organized religion, it requires 1) the binding of ethics in a culture, and 2) the deepening of ethical thinking (or thinking about love, integrity, you name it) by religious cultural symbols.

    What I meant by the minimal sense that atheists have religion is that they have 1) but not 2). This may be controversial. But I think that there is still a case to be made here. I know that you won't accept it. You don't even have to like me or take me seriously. It may be, that I am baselessly overconfident, but I don't think you can call this dishonesty.

  585. Madskillz

    @All

    Oh yeah, and nuclear power will keep us going when the oil runs out.

    However, as the price of oil goes up, so does the validity in extracting/exploring for it. It could be sitting right beneath you.

    Just get the damn nuclear going already. It aint great, sure, but it's certainly a preferable alternative whilst we work out that tidal generators are the key.

  586. Chyrch

    Madskillz,

    I agree with you once again. Cats are indeed "insanely adaptive killing machines". I don't see that as a downside lol.

    There was a big story in Hawaii about prayers before each session of the state senate. Several complaints were made, one involving objecting during the prayer, which lead to him getting thrown out and assaulted.

    The senate finally voted to stop the pre-session prayers out of fear of legal action, since they knew they wouldn't win.

    This is part of the article I was reading:

    "They (the ACLU) continue to threaten governments with lawsuits to try to force them into capitulating to their view of society," said Brett Harvey, an attorney for the Alliance Defense Fund, made up of Christian lawyers to defend free faith speech. "Governments should take a stand for this cherished historical practice."

  587. Lary Nine

    How could I possibly know that? It was "600" thing anyway.

  588. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #594

    I hope you see, that in this picture that I hastily drew up in #605, there is a space for ethical or proto-ethical thinking both within the organized religion and outside it.

    I imagine, that there have always been people who have occupied this ethical space that they find to remain outside their organized religion.

    At least I think this is a real and proper question. I have been very sure, that this is the defining question of atheism. But now I find, that I'm tired of all this arguing.

  589. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    Your reasoning is what I'd call dishonest. It's your assumptions.

    "religious questions have, in their essence, “been there” before we even learned to think properly as homo sapiens"

    You say "religious questions" as though it means something. I assume you mean questions about our origins, purpose, and moral code?

  590. Madskillz

    @Lary Nine #608

    Yes.

  591. Madskillz

    @Chyrch #607

    Re: Cats. I kinda agree on this not being a downside. It gives me guilt free pleasure in transforming them into scenic splash.

    Re: Hawaii - Now I know why you clearly have some respect for Governments (;

  592. Madskillz

    @Chyrch #613

    Heh, well said.

    Some of them actually have specific units/teams in place to counter this issue. Integrity within Goverment, NOT fluoride mind control whatnot (whatever). I'd put money on it occuring within your own. Hell, I'd even put a hefty wager on it occuring within your neighbours.

    It's getting better. Slow but sure.

    To help some get their heads around this;

    It is written into all Australian public servants contracts that they are not allowed to express their political views in the workplace.

    Sounds ridiculous right? Think about this;

    Public Service/Politician

  593. Madskillz

    @The Office

    I'm pretty damn sure that I havent actually breached contract in any of my posts. I have NEVER stated that MY views are shared in Government Policy. They are mine, so bugger off.

    Except the last post #614 maybe. Whatever, take the bloody freebie.

  594. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #610

    I assume, yes. And I go about overconfidently saying, that "it is like that". But why do you think my assumptions are dishonest?

    My definition of these 'religious questions' is problematic, because the term 'religious' can be said to be anachronistic. 'Proto-ethical', or 'life-questions' could be better, but those can be misleading as well.

    However what I mean by religious questions is not so difficult to say. Religious questions are ones that, when asked properly, begin to show that there are deep and wide phenomena that affect us within, and are ready to begin to "turn us on" to things such as hyperbolic imagination and memory, phenomena of unity with others, perceptions of dramatic sexual unity and the like. Other things, such as hyperbolic ideas of justice, are possible only after people can in fact form such ideas culturally as well.

    I'm suggesting, that this sort of activity, which includes this sort of question-making as the relevant thought-process which has to happen before discovery, is basically inherent in all beings. Whether organized religion has kicked in or not does not matter. Calling these questions 'religious' may problematic, but at least it's convenient.

    I hope it's clear, that I'm not speaking about scientific questions concerning our origins and purpose. I understand, that when these questions get a religious sensiblity, they can easlily get out of hand. The question concerning moral codes is an interesting one, for is seems, that they are always deepened in a manner that looks similar to the thing that happens when the symbolic systems of organized religions do their thing.

  595. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    I forgot to say, that the question-making, as a thought-process, does not have to be conscious.

    But that's just my theory. Go ahead and rip it to pieces.

  596. Madskillz

    @All

    Oh yeah, and fluoride really IS bad stuff. The corporate interest vs. actual benefits aside;

    Even the pro-fluoride groups, toothpaste companies included, are quite clear on one thing. Fluoride IS poison, however the order of the day is moderating a SERIOUS restriction on ingestion in the cost/benefit sense. The 'safest' maximum ammount in drinking water supplies is one part in a million. The ratio in toothpaste is 1000 - 1500 parts in a million. YOU MUST NOT SWALLOW IT. The effects of fluoride poisoning are many, however the primary concern is this; It significantly depletes IQ, particularly in young developing minds.

    Toothpaste tastes great to alot of kids. Even if their parents catch them at it (devouring tubes of such), the damage gets done. Would anyone in here like an ADHD 'diagnosis'? They seem to come in cereal boxes these days....

    Alot of parents dont even mind/care if their kids are suckin' away on the stuff.

    The above is currently what is 'keeping me awake at night'.

    Educate, Inform, Survive.

  597. Madskillz

    @Vlatko

    Thank you for providing the 'dots' on this one.

  598. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    "Calling these questions ‘religious’ may problematic, but at least it’s convenient."

    That's exactly it.

    We've already discussed Religion vs. Philosophy and their proper definitions. You admit to using a different definition of Religious, yet you keep on doing so. I'm not saying it's dishonest to use a word wrongly. I'm saying it's dishonest to use a word wrongly in order to justify your beliefs, which I believe is what you're doing.

    "Religious questions are ones that, when asked properly, begin to show that there are deep and wide phenomena that affect us within, and are ready to begin to “turn us on” to things such as hyperbolic imagination and memory, phenomena of unity with others, perceptions of dramatic sexual unity and the like. Other things, such as hyperbolic ideas of justice, are possible only after people can in fact form such ideas culturally as well."

    This entire paragraph could have stayed valid using many other words other than "Religious".

    There's no need to invoke religion into these questions, so therefore, they aren't religious. They're just questions of a philosophical nature. But you continue to call it religious, which wrongly attributes these questions to religion.

  599. jolulipa

    @Vlatko

    I must appologise to you for misusing your comments area and posted a couple of very long rants. I also did some copy/paste. I've got your message and will from now on stick to the rules. Sorry.

    @everyone

    I have read all the comments since my last intervention and think that the point was made of whom "the Messenger" really was. The apologetic Asad will call any reference to a scholar that confirms Muhammad behavior as being pedophilic and wrong for a prophet of "god", to be all lies spread by hate mongers and Islamophobics and label them a big joke. A great way to debate.

    Bahar is another example of some discusion I had with Saturnine about science and religion and my opinion that it goes in the same line of that of Father George Coyne. I can live with that, and have ended my exchange with Sat because of that.

    But Asad is (like Vlako suggested) doing some preaching. I that pushed my buttons and I lost my cool.

    Therefore I am through with that and will return to being more of the "silent mass" of this wonderful site.

    Cheers!

  600. Madskillz

    @jolulipa

    Where you say being more of the 'silent mass' - Is that kinda like Dark Matter? I wouldnt know, as you may have noticed I struggle to ever shut up.

    Spooky.

    You can have long rants at me if you like. I like ranting.

  601. Saturnine

    Chyrch, (sorry for another longish post)

    You say that it’s dishonest to use a word wrongly in order to justify ones beliefs, which you believe is what I'm doing. However, I don't think I'm using the word wrongly, instead I see myself as trying to refine its meaning. If I've given the impression that I'm trying to justify my "beliefs", then I think that has much to do with the fact, that I have been bombarded with lots of questions and claims about religion, that I have for some reason taken personally. Maybe this has been a mistake. But I am really merely interested in two things: 1) What religion is about, and 2) People who think they know what religion is about.

    You say, that there’s no need to invoke religion into these questions I spoke of, so therefore they aren’t religious. You say that they’re just questions of a philosophical nature. And you say that when I call them religious, this wrongly attributes these questions to religion. I see what you mean.

    However, you see that when a person finds that he knows how a religious language works, he can appropriate this language in his approach to the 'life-questions'. That being the case, it makes sense to speak of these questions as 'religious' if and only if you are able to use religious symbols to properly identify the questions and to see what they are trying to get into.

    In fact, it seems that it makes sense to speak of the 'life-questions' as 'x', if and only if you find that you subscribe to the way 'x' gives these questions meaning.

    Therefore I think it is clear that at least one proper (and major) way of speaking about these issues is to say that they are religious. I acknowledge, that I cannot say that there are no other ways.

    Philosophy can be said to be an example of another way. The relevant difference between organized religion and philosophy is easily seen in religious rituals. Religious rituals have a very different _way_ of focusing things to thought, than what is done in philosophy. However I think it is obvious that the core issues and questions that they deal with are the same.

    I’m interested in the question, whether a future religion (or a post-religion, if you want to call it that) can refine the way we human beings deal with those questions, thereby improving the way we human beings experience life. This is a question of the evolution of religion and culture. I hope you see where I’m coming from with this.

  602. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    I'm a little sleepless and bored, so I'm gonna rain on Cyrch's parade (coz he likes cats).

    1. Entrapment/Some good philosophy

    2. Enlightened/Just as ignorant

    X. Youre on the right track here, and you a likeley going to express personal prior context to the word 'religion' before using it (which is better), however be careful of how this may affect your own thoughts.

    Here is another fishy concept;

    Religious texts, in the main, were written by people who perceived themselves to be more INTEGRAL than the majority around them. They saw it parmount to 'enlighten' the masses by writing about their OWN personal experiences of their journey in self discovery. Much of it can be credited to past religions/philosophys, but that doesnt actually matter. It's a good thing. Some of them probably were integral in the true fullness of it's meaning too, but could only work with what they had in the day. This is no crime. Back then.

    If some of these individuals were still about the place in some sentient manner, I suspect that they would quite LITERALLY be turning in their graves at the damage that they have contributed to in the modern world and it's individual beings.

  603. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    - Or perhaps they are privy to some of Gods Grand Design?

    Remeber I was crakin' on earlier about perserverance/inovation/invention etc. - Often coming about due to 'pressure' being applied against them?

    It's a bit like having a personal trainer.

    Cruel to be kind, is God. Cruel to be kind.

  604. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    You make perfect sense. Sogyal Rinpoche once wrote about the 'inner Buddha nature' in these lines: You have the Buddha nature within you, and if and when you find a _guide_, you project this 'Buddha nature' to the other person and see how the other person can manifest it. The outer "teacher" reflects the inner teacher. I think this is something similar to what Maria Montessori has said about children, who instinctively follow an "inner teacher" within themselves, that guides them to what is really important at their developmental stage. The kids themselves do it, but when you look at them, it seems that there is a lot of stuff "written within us" like a code that can unravel itself if we find the right conditions for it to do so. I think this is interesting.

    But this is off-topic.

  605. Saturnine

    @#626

    Maybe it is not off topic. I seem to be losing track.

  606. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    And a little upsetting; I never got to go to one.

    It matters not, I made it through the 'school of hard knocks' (just), which may have put me exactly where I should be.

    Nuff o' that.

    Your Post Religion just needs what I said in #546. Place integrity BEFORE it, as a seperate and overarching concept.

    Mix in as many other religions/parts as you like,

    Put on 180 degrees c for 1 conceptual formation

    Remove from head and leave to cool for 10 millenia.

    -Do not be averted if it tastes like sh*t, just go back over the recipe and try again.

  607. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #628.

    *Speechless*. But only because you already said it all.

  608. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    "However, I don’t think I’m using the word wrongly, instead I see myself as trying to refine its meaning"

    This is contradictory. If you were using words properly, you don't have to alter their meaning in any way. Also, it goes back to a comment I made a long while back, that you can't simply redefine words to suit your whim.

    "However, you see that when a person finds that he knows how a religious language works, he can appropriate this language in his approach to the ‘life-questions’. That being the case, it makes sense to speak of these questions as ‘religious’ if and only if you are able to use religious symbols to properly identify the questions and to see what they are trying to get into."

    If you've actually managed to find out how religious language works, congratulations. You've succeeded where many philosophers have failed for generations (It began right when apologetics became popular, how interesting).

    Even if you did iron out the many flaws of religious language and found out how to apply it properly, it doesn't change the nature of the questions. Only your approach to the questions changes.

  609. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    To refine a concept or an idea is not to just bluntly of whimsically redefine it. You can look at the dictionary and see what it says about 'refine'. I think you can even say, that religious education is fundamentally nothing other, than the refining of your idea (and concept) of religion.

    I think it is clear, that the nature of the 'life-questions' does not change if the approach changes. But the nature of the approach is more significant, than the questions themselves, because it defines how we treat the issues in question.

    I think I don't have to stress the fact, that millions of people use religious language and see how it works for them. I'd like to see them get the best out of it, and to avoid the worst.

  610. Chyrch

    Jolulipa,

    It's a shame you're leaving, although I understand. You're one of the few coherent ones. It's been a pleasure.

    Fittingly, you made a great point in your last post. Asad was clearly suffering from confirmation bias to an extremely high degree. This isn't uncommon in apologetics, but makes rational discourse very difficult.

  611. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    I think you are being unreasonable if you cannot see, that you are suffering from the same confirmation bias of which you blame Asad. You guys just had contradictory interpretations of the same facts. That counts as discovering moot points. If I'm not mistaken, neither of you admitted this when you were talking about the Aisha issue. Instead you just went over the top with it. Or so it seemed to me.

  612. Madskillz

    @Anyone

    All right, after a long sleepless night re-reading a heap of posts, I am gonna revisit something that I usually would have touched on sooner.

    There was a big row on what the nature of 'barbaric acts' was all about. I'm not so sure that the majority are really looking at it impartially, or in the bigger picture of such.

    It is pretty clear what a 'babaric act' is, in that it is reveling in other peoples suffering. From where I sit, I see it coming from ALL sides.

    'Everywhere else' got it's flogging, so I'll pick on the West.

    There was much attention brought to the fact that many muslims like to have a good ol' screech about Western slaughter. Now, I recall quite clearly that when the towers came down, the majority of people around me were not even subtley expressing nastiness towards the Middle East; They were litterally calling for BLOOD. 'That's IT!, bomb the F***ERS!' 'F***ing Towelhead C**ts - lots and lots of that sort of thing. Oh, but 'they' started it? Bah, no they bloody didnt. If that could ever be dicerned it goes way back before either Islam OR Christianity were even ESTABLISHED.

    What I also recall VERY clearly, besides Osama Bin Lid stating on live CNN sat phone link that 'Good to whoever did it, but it wasnt us' (odd), was that within like 3 days of the towers - America went and carpet bombed Afghanisthan. Near 3000 recorded civilian casualties (Militant-?). Eye for an eye? Nope, not even that.

    The average Afghani is pretty damn average. They are pov, illiterate, were living off rocks since the Taliban shortly beforehand had cut off Americas Heroin supply (was still going strong in the NATO controlled north), and for whatever other poxy religious nuttiness; they had bugger all to do with anything beside surviving through to another fruitless day.

    Now, after the invasion force strutted in not long after, heroin production returned to full operation, the American instated 'governer' had his office set up (Ex CEO of OIL COMPANY), the oil pipeline formerly denied by the Taliban was built through to the Caspian sea (to flog to China), and everyone back home was 'why don't these people love us?'. WHY THE F**K DO YOU THINK NOT? Then operations were, of course, kicked BACK up in Iraq. The Gulf War NEVER ENDED. And they DONT LOVE US either.

    So now terroism is about 7 billion times more prevelent than before. Top job. Spread the love. Fail.

  613. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    Of course I suffer from confirmation bias, as does everyone. I, at least, recognize it, and can source anything I've stated as a fact.

    There are no different interpretations of facts. There are facts, and there's accepting them or not. When presented with the fact that many sources say that Aisha was 9 when she consummated her marriage to Mohammad, Asad presented me with the fact that many modern scholars disagree. The difference is in determining which, if any, of the sources are accurate. That's how it works in a world where absolute knowledge is impossible.

    And I'm sorry, but you can not "refine" a word to make it mean something it doesn't. You can only define a word more or less strictly, but the word's meaning must stay the same, which is evident by the dictionary definition or "refine", as you suggested I look up:
    make minor changes so as to improve or clarify (a theory or method):ease of access to computers has refined analysis and presentation of data

    Take, for example, the etymology of atheism. It's origins simply mean "without god". At the time it simply referred to people who didn't profess belief in the Christian God.
    It became less strict when used to define someone who was no belief of any God, Christian or other.
    It started to be defined as someone who believes there is no God. This is still found in many dictionaries, and is pretty misleading. William Lane Craig often uses this in his arguments to say that his opponent has a burden of proof that there is no God. This is entirely meaningless since no one has to believe there is no God, in order to not believe in one.

    Even in Craig's improper usage, atheism still remains closely associated with it's origins.

    Now for the etymology of the word Religion:

    The word religion is derived from Latin "religio" used by the Romans, before Jesus Christ, to indicate the worship of the demons.

    The origin of "religio" is debated since antiquity. Cicero said it comes from "relegere" (to read again, to re-examine carefully, to gather) in the meaning "to carefully consider the things related to the worship of gods".

    Compare that with it's modern definition:

    -the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods

  614. jolulipa

    @Madskillz at #622

    Is more like "the dark side of the force" so of speak. :)

    @Chyrch at #632

    It certainly been a pleasure. But I am not gone, I'll be just "quiet" but watching. Respect my friend!

  615. Madskillz

    @All #634

    I figure that some of you know all that stuff already. I just wanted it added to the overall picture for my own sake; in case there was anyone who didnt. And it really Sh*ts me (obviously)

    I spose it's also a bit 'dodgey' posting stuff like that too.

    Whatever.

  616. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    Two of my dictionaries accept the following as 'religion', which i regard as describing religion in the -minimal- sense I meant in my previous posts: A: "A particular interest or influence that is very important in your life: 'For him, football is an absolute religion.'" (Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary); B: "A pursuit or interest to which someone ascribes supreme importance: 'consumerism is the new religion." (Oxford American Dictionary)

    When I say minimal, I mean minimal. In fact I seem to have been wrong in admitting that this way of speaking about the minimal sense of religion is controversial. This sort of way of describing the essence of religion is used in post-enlightenment protestant theology by F. Schleiermacher. He defines the essence of religion as being a 'feeling of utter dependence'. For this Hegel famously criticised him for thinking that only people who are like dogs are religious. But that was just rhetorical. In many senses we are like that. Also, P. TIllich defines the essence of religion as the 'ultimate concern' that a human being has.

    These minimal definitions of religion can be said to be too inclusive. That seems to be true. But that doesn't mean that they are wrong. I don't like the dictionary-argument, but even I can say that this minimal sense seems to be in the dictionary. See how bad the dictionary-argument is? I have tried to achieve a more refined idea by talking about 'life-questions' and the diffrerence between 'minimal' and 'symbolically deepened' religion. It is basically a question of what religion is about, and what looks like religion.

    No-one has to say that they are religious in this minimal sense, but it seems it is not wrong to say so. I admit, that I may have been unreasonably provocative in an early posting, where I said "don't just say that you are not religious, your ethics is bound... etc.".

    I say, that to be 'minimally religious' is a description of a way of being that is common to the majority of human beings. This is not the only possible description, and you don't have to accept it.

  617. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    I hope you see what I meant, when I said that there are some words that should not be put in a dictionary. 'To refine' is stable enough to be there, 'religion', however, is too complex to be defined in a few lines.

  618. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    The reason why the dictionary-definition of complex issues is problematic is because it can easily give the impression, that the issue itself is straightforward. I merely want to challenge straightforward ways of seeing what religion is about. I think that is the right thing to do.

  619. Madskillz

    FFS!

    Religion/Parents/Dildo

    I have faith in my Religon

    I have faith in my Parents

    I have faith in my Dildo

    It only has to be INTEGRAL.

  620. Troy

    Far out Saturnine you really know how to beat a dead horse

    I have no idea why you keep trying to press home your argument when you clearly keep being nailed (no pun intended) with every response to your rants

    You approach your angle with such rhetoric its absolutely mind numbing

    I seriosly feel stupider after reading yours & Asads posts

  621. Madskillz

    @Troy

    No. @Cyrch was equally guilty.

  622. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    I agree that "dictionary-arguments" are not perfect. That's why I highlighted the etymology of religion and compared it to modern definitions.

    As I mentioned, there are plenty of dictionaries that define atheism as: "the belief there is no God". Dictionaries are full of errors, but coupled along with etymology, we can still adhere to the law of identity within Logic.

    As you admitted, you found two very loose definitions of religion that kind of support where you're going. That would be fine if it wasn't so blatantly obvious those definitions are used in more slang/social terms.

    I mean, you're using the definition when used in "For him, football is an absolute religion" as support for your definition? Seriously?

    You may not believe it, but I do understand what you're trying to accomplish. I simply reject it. Your kind of apologetics has been around for centuries, if not more.

    Madskillz,

    If you'd like to (coherently) discuss any of your disagreements with my posts, I'd be more than delighted to play defense.

    Troy,

    A little harsh to Saturnine about feeling stupider having read his posts. We disagree on a few things, but it doesn't make his comments stupid. Although I'll agree with you about Asad. I award him no points.

  623. Chyrch

    This is funny. The first one of us to comment here was Saturnine, way back in post 11.

    The beginning of that post?

    "A brilliant doc, however with some idiotic conversation in the comments. Well what can you expect."

    I've enjoyed the discussion immensely, but I sure hope Vlatko can mass erase for the sake of everyone else!

  624. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    You quote;

    I agree that “dictionary-arguments” are not perfect. That’s why I highlighted the etymology of religion and compared it to modern definitions.

    What is your solution?

    COHERANT enough?

  625. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    Here ya go;

    I agree that “dictionary-arguments” are not perfect. PERHAPS BY HIGHLIGHTING the etymology of religion and COMPARING it to modern definitions WOULD HELP.

  626. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz Jeopardy question - define coherent? lol :) @All Well, I peaked in on this thread a couple times this week itchin to 'go round', THEN, my eyes began to bl**d with all the dictionary and doctrinal quotes. Obviously A Horizon Guide to Science and Religion is going to generate some long thoughts ... but OMG ... :) ... or yours :). A suggestion? I am going to watch this doc again, and get back on track (maybe, anybody else?)

  627. Madskillz

    @Jo Mckay

    Coherant; Makes sense.

    Review doc? Naw, it's weak as p*ss.

    I'll behave and keep focus if you wanna chuck something up in the air (:

  628. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    Bleh, you are r*ght. I'll watch it 'again'.

  629. jo mckay

    @ Madskillz 649, too funny. Plz no more dictionaries...Where are you at with this discussion. Last we wrote you were exploring dark matter ? I thought there was some good talk begun, some 200 or so comments ago :) re: the origin of religion. Interesting to me that those who do imbibe (in religion that is) 'seem' not just very defensive, but afraid - which makes some sense to me...

  630. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz :) ok I'm game, but you have to watch the 'entire' film. (You never did did u?) From what I've seen here, maybe we should all watch a Monty Python film instead, Ha (imagine music symbols, and whistling "Take a look on the bright side of life ...) I'm loading the film as we speak.

  631. Saturnine

    @Chyrch,

    Thank you for your sincerity. But you know, etymology + dictionaries don't always establish identity. 'Religion' is an example of such an issue, and I have tried to show why.

    If you understand me, then you don't have to ridicule my point by emphasizing the fact that you don't believe in Maradona.

  632. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    You know what? It actually turned out that I HAD watched the entire doc the first time. I just TOLD MYSELF that I hadnt. Arrrgh!

    After coming to some pretty serious (personal) conclusions in the posting over the last three weeks, I have actually become more 'switched on' than EVER. For a week or so now, I have suddenly found facination in pretty much EVERYTHING.

    When watching this doc AGAIN, I actually found that I really ENJOYED it. I know the key;

    I was biased towards religion. I was victim to my own ignorance.

    I still hold to ALL that I have said about religion from my very first posts (keeping in mind some of it was conclusion building), but now I dont feel so bad about it. I think that it is causing mass ignorance and all but, well, ignorance is just ignorance. Not religion.

    It all works fine, just with integral method applied to it.

    Everything does.

    I will always judge right from wrong (and accept being wrong), but it all just feels okay even MORE than it did before.

  633. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz Yup watched it again, now back to square one. Evolution is fact. Intelligent Design a cover up/smoke screen. That said, it's all an illusion anyway, our mass/matter is so transparent, weightless, and uncertain (pun intended) of itself, that it hardly bears (bares?) consideration. I did enjoy the tar glop on the concrete which represents dark energy, :) hahaha; "we don't know 'what' it is, so it may as well be that" :) Then the scientist who admitted "Dark Energy? ... I don't like it...I wish it would go away". That was my favourite part. I like her. Then, in the end even Dawkins admits "god" is likely not going anywhere. Long as our brains are as they are, looks like we have a preference for some kind of supernatural belief. (like the 'preference' tho slight, for matter over anti-matter perhaps?)... I reviewed...I don't know anything anymore...a fool to think I ever did...but oh well, what the hay. You know, when I was a child, the first time I saw a snow globe, I looked at the little world inside and said - maybe that's what our world is, hmmmpf
    @ Chyrch & Saturnine Good luck with that discussion, hope you find the clarity you seek.

  634. Achems Razor

    Religion BLAH!

    In the news, over 30 people dead 100 injured by Islam terrorists in "Russian" airport!

    Like I said religion is the scourge of mankind!

  635. Madskillz

    Jo McKay #654

    Where am I at with dicktionary conversation? Well, I had no part in it at all, except to step in and SMASH it. Bloody horrible stuff, those yarns.

    On matters of darkness; to be honest, I havent read any more from #444. I have dwelled on it a bit since though, and am still very interested in both Dark Matter/Energy and Black Hole matter 'destruction' - which also according to some science; there may be a singularity being created in the heart of such.

    In the relative sense, I am inclined to apply particles being in two places at once subjectively to the concept; Dark Matter and/or Energy being the 'by product' of matter entering a Black Hole.

    Other added concepts are;

    Black Holes forming Dark Matter and Super Massive Black Holes forming Dark Energy.

    The concept that this entire process is in order to replenish energy back into the Universe in order to keep it 'alive'.

    *Just in*

    The singularity that may occur within a Black Hole is a 'door way' into the other Multiversal Dimensions (BH's suck in gravity too, yeah?). Perhaps the Dark Matter/Energy goes around in an infinite(ish?) loop that picks up all of its strange nature, with the 'regular' matter which was sucked through being reintroduced on the 'back' of the DM/E. This infinite loop is the 'turbine' charging the Universe.

    Now, I have to stop making up concepts and do some actual research (;

  636. Saturnine

    @Jo McKay, & @Madskillz,

    Why is it that when I read your posts I somehow feel like there is clarity and happiness just around the corner, and that I'm somehow still the blind man? : )

  637. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    Big fat post coming. It is.... JOYFULLY awaiting moderation.

    Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr~

  638. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Because it is so (;

  639. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    Do you agree with me on the point, that critical thinking does not necessarily lead to atheism?

  640. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    Whilst I'm waiting for my Dark Matter/Energy post to come through, I'll try and summarise the Occulty/Dreamy like predecessor religions;

    I beleive that these sort of religions were usually about seeking the truth in integrity.

    And then one with a big sword came along and smashed the notion out of them. And then another one with a bigger sword came along and smashed that one. And then~

    Modern Religion is born! Hallaeluja!

  641. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #664

    Good one. And you can turn it around a few ways. Check this out;

    CT = A

    A = CT

    And;

    R = CT

    CT = R

    Answer = .......

  642. Jo McKay

    @ Saturnine :) Thanks made me smile some more...no clarity tho' ... must embrace the uncertainty (It's all just quarks and electrons I'm told) ... so just happiness - not so bad huh?
    @ Madskillz - looking forward :) . So, occult like dreamy religions (if your on the wave (heh) I think), your talking about mystics and mysticism - those cats (yeah I know you don't like cats, I do - see, dogs would go to church on Sunday, cats would 'give you the LOOK), anyway, they might discuss their deep thoughts around a pre-historic cafe, but they would never have agreed to organizing and setting down the 'rules' - I agree, with the rest.

  643. Vlatko

    Yes probably I'll do that @Chyrch. Mass erase.

  644. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz 656 ... I am still laughing...though I got a sense of some sense after your "this just in". .. turbines recharging the universe, did I get that right? And black holes as a doorway to other 'universes' or dimensions - maybe - last I heard it was supposed that 'worm holes' (another happy name) in space thought to have potential as travel portals, or something (perhaps like a air vacuum), Hawking talked about these maybe allowing travel 'beyond' the speed of light - another space and time bender - so then giving way or access to either deep space or other 'dimensions'... Now even tho' I know I just wrote the previous, I am thinking, what the heck' - If your right or wrong, you can always just copy the thought and write that book you mentioned...:) I was feeling oh all right, as in ... all righty then ... when dark matter came on the scene, but then dark energy, and, get this dark 'flow' is the latest addition to the family - at which point I said to myself - self - just let it go...:)

  645. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    Dogs are THE church. And God spelled backwards, of course.

    Ah yes, mystics and mysticism. Much better way of putting it.

    I disagree, under the assumption that you feel that true critical thought requires 'rules'?

    Well it does, but it all LAY in Integrity. Imma thinkin;

    In the human mind; the very FIRST concept to occur, alone, with nothing attached to it; a singularity; brought about via our evolution;

    50/50 Concept = True Contradiction

    TC = Need for Solution

    NfS = Conceptual Development

    CD = Soulution Method Attained

    This is the template for ALL following concepts, hence putting ALL faith in Integrity.

    Hell, I havent crunched out a math problem properly since, well, forever. My Literacy Comprehension and Abstract Thought aptitudes are... high; but Numercy has always sat back in a really ordinary average. I tend to think that this has recently changed ALOT. I reckon I'm doin' okay on the Critical Thought simply by placing absolute trust in Integrity, yeah?

    Or not.

  646. Madskillz

    @Jo Mckay #666 (oooo..)

    Yeah. Im thinkin' on that aspect too re; reaching light speed opening worm hole.

    Quantum time; 99.9% Total Reality

    Well, if there is a singularity within a Black Hole, it means that there is a void surrounding it. The nature of the void is 100% - just as is light speed.

    At 100% - ANYTHING goes (:

  647. Saturnine

    @Jo Mckay,

    Uncertainty and happiness, I'll live with that.

  648. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz correction at light speed everything slows downnnn - as in apparently, if we got close to light speed time would almost stop; aging slow down, etc. (Wonder if it goes backward once you pass the speed of light - could come out the other side of the worm hole and have to wait to be born :) - I have no concept of what a 100% void would be, as all this 'new' (relatively) dark matter, energy, flow has established that there is no empty space, no void - it's all 'something', it's just INVISIBLE ... (hey i'm not makin this stuff up). As for singularity - I better do some research of my own. I have to read over your comment 667 - I was hoping I wouldn't get the previous number - but now I know why some persons stepped out of the room :) ...I;ll get back to you on the integrity stuff

  649. Jo McKay

    @ Saturnine very very cool. (when quarks started appearing and disappearing, apparently without rhyme or reason in science labs, some scientists just 'took a walk', gave it up, could not face the uncertainty). I am a little weird, in that I feel comforted by uncertainty; it sometimes means 'possibility' - and hey like Madskillz says Integrity is what 'feels' good... so...:) enjoy the happiness ... comes highly recommended.

  650. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    Dude, at Light Speed everything STOPS. This is why we have the 99.9% Total Reality; Light Speed is THE LIMIT. We 'cant' get there, coz our 'time' slows down as we approach the Limit. It is sorta like a compensation measure to stop us going SPLAT into Unreality.

  651. Madskillz

    @Saturnine @Jo McKay

    NOOOOOOOOOOOoooooo.

    Certainty is all you need. The uncertainty is the 'dash' of (for want of a better word) ignorance holding you back from 100%

  652. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz :) Place absolute trust in Integrity (or not) - I like that. Absolute and trust are another couple of very subjective terms. RE: 667 True critical thought? - no- you used the term religion - I admit my bias, but religion is a 'club' at best, and worse than tyranny at worse, for me that is - I do know folks who do very well being part of their club - but, and this was my point, if it's religion (an organised doctrine attached to a set of beliefs) then the doctrines suggestions I would call 'rules'. Critical thinking is almost entirely the opposite, as the expectation is that we can learn to think in a critical (not negative - just means the ability to ask questions, break things down into their small parts, like quantum :), sorry) manner, to me means I am thinking for myself. Danger in that of course, is if one, follows up the thought with making their own decisions, then there is no one else to blame, cept' moi'... need thick skin, LOTS of Integrity, sense of humour and willingness to be wrong, silly, even, a fool sometimes. Equals to me, the opportunity to realize my human-ness - all good...

  653. Jo McKay

    :) I stand corrected ... and just winked out of existence... lol ... nice thought - but no 100% in my world, (did get a few on stats exams; that's easy as long as you remember the formulas for a finite space in time). - but I am no dark energy teacher or preacher - so whatever works for you, works for you... :)

  654. Madskillz

    No. You are remaining in possibly the hardest square to break out of. You are still applying complex conceptual matter religion. This can only work to a point.

    There are only two Ultimates in our 'reality'. This provideds; True Contradiction; True Impartial Thought; True Relative Thought;

    Integrity vs. Ignorance

    50/50 Concept = True Contradiction (Impartial; Relative Thought)

    TC = Need for Solution

    NfS = Conceptual Development

    CD = Soulution Method Attained

    -----Relative Cerebral Sequence-----

    50/50 Concept = True Contradiction (Impartial; Relative Thought)

    TC = Need for Solution

    NfS = Conceptual Development

    CD = Soulution Method Attained

    etc. etc. etc. etc. ~

  655. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    Uncertainty/Fear/Anger;

    All these things are your inherent 'detectors' of Ignorance flaw in your Integrity.

    Subliminal message;

    'I am comfortable with my Uncertainty/Fear/Anger'

    Ignorance taint now in concept; All relative concepts attached contain Ignorance flaw.

  656. Jo McKay

    Madskillz @ 676 - I think I get that; I'm not proclaiming 50/50 contradiction or equal relativism, in any kind of personal way. I can say 'whatever' to other's choices (as long as I'm not too emotionally involved, even then, I still 'try' to shut - up). I have lots of ideals, just do not anticipate I will often achieve the 100% potential, especially re: major values like Integrity, honesty, kindness, generosity, love, etc. (maybe 70, 80% ... or if no one is around for a while, maybe even better ... :) To me, uncertainty is potential, possibility; if I could 'get' to 100% certainty about virtually anything, I might indeed enter the void ...hmmm

  657. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    To further clarify (I'll ease up after @Vlatko)

    At the very beginning of a forming concept, there is an equal balance of Integrity/Ignorance. The former is the solid relative concept (from another), the latter is the new information to test it against. This is the impartial thought required to develop the forming concept into a pure Integral concept; Now ready to attach to another.

  658. Saturnine

    @Madskillz, & @Jo McKay,

    I'll take certainty in the form of integrity and the uncertainty when it shows itself to be integral. If possible, I'll mix it with some proper happiness.

  659. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    I assure you that all this alone will give you happiness.

    NOTHING IS TOO HARD. This is subliminal messaging via flawed Ignorance burried in a concept within you mind.

    Apply 'seek and destroy' to all Ignorance.

    Follow the 'negative' feelings to find your target.

  660. Achems Razor

    @Jo Mckay:

    Just for analogies sake, if you were travelling close to the speed of light, time would appear to slow to the one observing you, pretend that you the observer is looking at the travellers wrist watch, it would slow or stop. But to the one who is travelling, there would be no slowing of time, and if the traveller shone a flashlight, the light from him would still be travelling at 186,000 miles per second.

    But nothing can gain C, even an atom travelling close to speed of C would become an infinite mass, and at speed of C would be a singularity.

  661. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz - aww, now I get it. Not that kind of uncertainty. The paradigm I am familiar with is: Anger = Fear = underlying pain, grief or sorrow, can equal Joy returning, if the underlying pain is faced. Uncertainty is not one of my demons. Hmmm ... now that I put that down, I may be wrong ... no, don't think so. In quantum terms, the Uncertainty Principle (my understanding) is mostly the awareness that 'reality' may indeed be purely perception. I 'see' potential, positive potential in that small door opening.

  662. Madskillz

    @Achems Razor

    Aha! I've been DREAMING of this moment;

    There is one VITAL flaw in your post. The watch CANNOT STOP.

    Unless it has HIT the LIMIT; Unless the traveller broke the REALITY BARRIER.

  663. Madskillz

    @jolulipa

    You write;

    Anger = Fear = underlying pain, grief or sorrow, can equal Joy returning, if the underlying pain is faced

    Just take out the 'can equal' and replace with 'equals'

  664. Achems Razor

    @Mad:

    Sounds weird doesn't it, but no reality has been broken, that is the reality, the watch will stop, the traveller frozen in time, forever frozen in eternity to the observer, but the traveller will still be travelling on his merry way, at his regular time, say into an event horizon of a black hole.

  665. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz - no I didn't get it - 'now' I get it - (Thanks for slowing everything down :) Makes 'perfect sense. @ Saturnine :) I love it! Madskillz won;t :); I like "Nothing is too Hard" @ Achems Razor - give me a minute ... I know the 'law' we can not travel to the speed of light (I was messing around with the worm hole as portal idea, also the idea that in 'other' dimensions/parallel universes there may be different laws). I don't get the observer analogy re: sure you/I wouldn't 'actually' slow down; but isn't it proposed that i/you/ we who are travelling would slow down metabolically, not age?

  666. Madskillz

    @Alchems

    You still said 'traveling close to LS'. I'm petty, so I'm gonna take it.

    An-ee-way, yeah. Very cool stuff. But due to the nature of existing within Unreality; Maybe everything changes? I can see how the torch light may still apply, because it is fantastic, but maybe you would instantaneously 'go' elsewhere before you could shine it anywhere?

    I'm trying to think of a Black Hole bit that has 'stopped' to the 'observer'. Spose that would be the actual HOLE?

  667. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    Try post #315 for a Quantum summary. Part 3; Science ? - ? Sheep

    The bit on Multivers at the end wasnt great. I had my inner monologue filling in the blanks that I didnt write down!

    Gravity is disproportionate to the other primary ingredients which came out of the Singularity in the Big Bang. It is relativly 'stuff all' in comparison. To even up the ratio, we need a place for all that 'missing' gravity to go. Thats why we 'figure' on multiverses.

  668. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    Don't be frightened now, but I have a Tourrette syndrome -like monkey mind, that starts spewing shit when I look too deep to the unhappiness-causes. They say that such things can appear if ones contemplation is forced to visit the night-side (John of the Cross said something like that). I'm going to personally exorcize the ** if a Paraclete does not arrive before I find the proper way myself, so don't worry.

  669. Saturnine

    Madskillz, (Referring to the previous post possibly still in moderation)

    If and when I succeed, I think my DNA will be fixed and the happiness will not only be for me but for my kids also, if and when they arrive.

  670. Achems Razor

    @Jo:

    No, we would not slow metabolically, would still age at normal.

    This is time dilation, as in Einstein, say for instance we went on a round trip to a planet at least 1/10 the speed of C. for 3 years. The earth and everything on it on our return would have aged say 30 years.

    Even our GPS systems are off sync. have to be adjusted constantly, because of their speed around the Earth.

  671. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    I'm not worried. You have it now. reffer to #681 for clarity.

    You now merely need to go through your mind and 'etch a sketch' out all the Ignorance flaws. Thats all. The more you scrub out, the happier you will become.

    You will need to do this forever, but I 'suspect' that after your mind gets a bit more training in the area, it tends to 'sniff out' flaws by itself. But don't drop the concious methodology (it will stick hard anyway).

    Place your faith in Integrity; you are now qualified to place it anywhere else you choose.

  672. Saturnine

    Madskillz, cf. #690-1

    I rethought that. Maybe I'll make it a pet monkey instead.

  673. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz re-read your theory of Awesomeness - wanna start a church :) - seriously, very good post. I think that was what this doc was getting around to. I am not sure about the numbers... the singularity as the egg?... smile... that would require a Mother God wouldn't it. :) Hawking likes 'creation myths'; I actually sent him this story - from the six nations Iroquois the story of creation is: "In the beginning there was nothing, and the first thought struggled to be born, when it finally burst into life, the next thoughts were born rapidly; and that is how the Universe got started". Told to me by an elder of the Tuscarora people... I agree with you about the troubled place 'religions' find themselves in, and I think that when/if we mess with people's hearts, we are unnecessarily drawing battle lines... I dislike, however, being proselytised to - or innocents being made afraid ... values or morals are better taught by example. Interesting - :)

  674. Jo McKay

    @ Achems Razor - Thank you - I misunderstood- I wonder who would agree to take that kind of trip, if they would have to return.

  675. Madskillz

    @Alchems Razor

    I've got an idea on breaking the reality barrier.

    In the sense of my Integrity equation, where the first single existing concept in our mind comes into being; the singularity; well, thats within a void yeah? Like the singularity pre-Big Bang.

    The nature of the void is 100%; and we have this in our own minds; just like it was in pre-Space. They are one and the same.

    We are already breaking the reality barrier as if we were traveling the speed of light. The light fantastic.

    We are the light. We can go anywhere.

  676. Madskillz

    @Plagerism

    I know I'm not the first to write something like that.

    But now I get it.

  677. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #694

    I think you know my answer to that (;

  678. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    From the six nations Iroquois the story of creation;

    “In the beginning there was nothing, and the first thought struggled to be born, when it finally burst into life, the next thoughts were born rapidly; and that is how the Universe got started”.

    How very dark; the human race has become.

  679. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #699

    I won't turn it into a bullmastiff.

  680. Madskillz

    @Jo

    Thanks, you have made me cry.

  681. Chyrch

    Wow, this is now about black holes and quantum mechanics? I can see the relevance, and I find it interesting, but I'm not touching it. There are far too many unknowns to even begin discussing it's relationship with the nature of the Universe.

    Saturnine,

    I can concede a little on both questions you posed to me, although I'm not sure it'll be satisfactory to you.

    I was a little strict on the whole "dictionary definition" aspect of our discussion. By saying that, I'm not conceding that you're using the word religious in an appropriate way. Rather, I can understand how tempting it is to label what you're describing as religious. My point on the matter, is simply that the word religious, automatically conjures up notions of a deity, which I've found no reason to include.

    About critical thinking leading to atheism, I believe that holds true. That's not to say a person who believes in God can't be a critical thinker. But when properly applied to ourselves, which is a very hard thing to do, we find that faith has no place if we are to stay honest about it. There are no good reasons to believe in a god of any kind, and until there are, the proper response is simply "I don't know".

  682. Jo McKay

    @ Madskillz re: how very dark... Has become ... didn't we start out that way? re:697 Good Speed with the Reality Barrier... We are light ... Happiness dreams all, I regrettably must jet. Had a great time and will smile as I remember. Thanks gentlemen!

  683. Madskillz

    @Jo #704

    Yes. Thank you again.

  684. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #701

    Perhaps it is not you; who needs to be doing the turning?

  685. Saturnine

    Chyrch, #703

    I think that's just fine what you said. I think your position is ok. For myself, I think deity-ideas have to be very strictly criticized. One can really and in fact say, that integrity leads straight to this activity. The idea of God has to be deconstructed for it to function properly as a concept. After critical thinking has been applied, what is left is a very pure concept, which does not "paint images" of any kind, but still has a proper linguistic function.

    This is the only sense in which I think 'grown up people' (I'm being optimistic) use it, and accept it in a dictionary. I think it is clear, that 'god-talk' is not necessary for there to be a religion (or a similar activity with a different name). But I also say, that god-talk can and must be accepted by people who succesfully deconstruct it. This is a real challenge, but I think many people, and many atheists, have in fact already done it.

    Atheism is an advanced position with regard to the idea of God. Critical thinking leads to it. I regularly revert to it in order to check my rationality out. However I also think it is possible to sidestep it altogether if you happen to come to an understanding about atheism and the deconstructed idea of God from a very young age. This is why I think that critical thinking does not necessarily lead to atheism. I also think it does not have to be the final position. I think this is because the idea of the basic freedom of thought is superior to everything else.

    Atheism is part of the picture. It is very useful and powerful in correcting misconceptions. Here is a radical claim: I think it is clear, that you can have the actual faith in God that people of the Abrahamic religions speak about _with_ the ideas of atheism, if you use a properly deconstructed idea of God. In this way of thinking you use the name of God (which is 'holy' anyway) -always- -indirectly- in the religious language, which means for instance, that you don't predicate anything of God, not even existence. (R. Kearney and J-L Marion are examples of guys who think in these lines, and try to constructively effect the way religious language is regarded among the Christians. Many theologians also think this way, but they are a flexible bunch anyway.)

    The reasoning for this idea, which may sound preposterous, is that through deconstruction there is to be found a trace of meaning in Abrahamic language which shows how such ideas as "Don't speak the name of God in vain" show a deeper logic to the language.

    I'm figuring this out myself also, so bear with me if I don't give you the Magnificent Point in a way that is easy to chew on.

  686. Saturnine

    Chyrch

    I have to add to #707, that people who say that you don't have to predicate being to God imply that this is the position that people achieve quite naturally if they are honest to themselves. The problem of the deconstructive theoreticians is that they make it sound too difficult.

  687. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    Another addition to #707: This way of thinking also explains the way that the 'critical guy' hears the story of Genesis. When he is told that "God created... etc.", he immediately sees the symbolic function of the term 'God' in the sentence, and does not think that it is even proper to imagine the/an entity who is said to be doing this.

  688. Saturnine

    @Madskillz, #706

    I'd like to say 'exactly' and sound pedantic, but you've managed to represent my 'inner teacher' so well today, that I don't think it would sound right.

    And yes, all is so well, so well.

  689. jolulipa

    @Sat @Chy @Mad

    I think you should get a room... Serously!
    :>)

  690. jolulipa

    @Sat @Chy @Mad

    I think you should get a room... Seriously!
    :>)

  691. Madskillz

    @jolulipa

    Your mum said that we could use hers.

  692. Saturnine

    I can't figure out anything smart (or right) to say. I need to trace out Shakespeare or something, and improve my English.

  693. Saturnine

    (English is not even my second language.)

  694. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    There is nothing wrong with your English.

    Stop it.

  695. Madskillz

    @Chyrch

    You like Psychology, yeah?

    What are your insights on Hanibal Lecter? (decent enough ref.)

    @Vlatko; purpose being to step outside the square to view humanity as a whole, in order to view relative flaws in religious and scientific principle alike.

  696. Saturnine

    I think I'm going go skiing today.

  697. Madskillz

    @Alchems Razor

    I'm a little stuck on something.

    With gravity being dispersed throughout Multi dimensions to bring 'order' to Universal substance ratio;

    Why does this not apply to the other ingredients?

    I understand that gravity 'flows' in a slightly different manner, but if gravity can 'escape' this dimension, why cant other things?

  698. Madskillz

    @Alchems Razor

    Is non-gravity substance 'welcome' in other dimensions?

    Why is gravity?

  699. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay #666

    Forgot to mention earlier;

    Dark Flow.

    SAH-WEET

    Sold. You get first 'thank youz' when my theory is proven.

  700. Madskillz

    @jolulipa

    I like starting fights. Your post earlier;

    (@Saturnine)
    And never forget, that even those tolerant non-terrorist ones condemned and were appalled by somebody drawing a caricature of Mohammed and were willing to march against it. Those are extremists.

    When have you seen a Christian fell offended by a picture of Jesus?

    ***Back to me***

    Are you SERIOUS? I can think of about 723 cases just off the top of my head. Jeez some of you lot tell alot of lies. Are you SURE you are not a Christian, jo?

    What say, if I were to take a pic of Jeebus, and draw in a Pentagram or Swastika carved into his forehead?

    No offense?

  701. Madskillz

    @Vlatko

    Islam: What the West Needs to Know

    When do the comments open again?

    (Scrub the former rubish, whatever)

  702. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #707

    I like this post.

    Just one thing you quote;

    This is the only sense in which I think ‘grown up people’ (I’m being optimistic) use it, and accept it in a dictionary. I think it is clear, that ‘god-talk’ is not necessary for there to be a religion (or a similar activity with a different name). But I also say, that god-talk can and must be accepted by people who succesfully deconstruct it. This is a real challenge, but I think many people, and many atheists, have in fact already done it.

    Good use of brackets re: optimistic; dwell on that one. And keep in mind that 'God talk' will get in the way of progress to non-Godees.

    You are still a dopey Christian, but I can agree with all of it.

  703. eireannach666

    @madskillz
    Gravity leaks in not out, well theoreticlly, we are thought to be getting the tail end of gravity leaked.

    That would account for how weak of a force gravity is.

  704. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #710

    (I am so in for a @Vlatko cull...)

    I wasnt referring to myself or whatnot. And yes, I have gained much personal growth insight from you; albeit nothing to do with Christianity (as a religion), or untill very recently perhaps, direct guidance.

    I really meant that one can learn much from a dog.

    And cats are dumb.

  705. Madskillz

    @eiran

    Okay. Can you elaborate on that for me?

    I figured that it was all about gravity being dispersed 'evenly' (pending dimension requirements).

    How does it leak in? Didnt it (from our point of view) originate from our Universe in the BB? From the Singularity? In an instantaneous dispersal to all other dimensions, that is. This sounds kinda vain, but you gotta work with what you got.

  706. Madskillz

    @eirean

    Bleh. Scuse' - I meant what I was getting at in #727, but I understand that ALL dimensions came about at the same time when the Singularity cracked. And are maybe still forming.

  707. Chyrch

    Mad,

    Look up Graviton

    It's hypothetical, but shows promise in quantum physics. At least to the point that many hypotheses (M-theory being one) predicts it's existence. It's one of the things CERN is working on, and if found, will be a huge boost to many theories.

    However, it's theoretical physics, and as such, should be taken with a grain of salt.

  708. Madskillz

    @Cyrch

    Cheers. Will do re: Graviton

    Quantum already works fine by me in a general sense. It is kinda like having a 'good missus' taming my otherwise theme park imagination. It also alows me to invent better rides.

    Everything should be taken with a 'grain of salt' (;

  709. Madskillz

    @Cyrch @eirean

    Wicked. Sounds funky enough for me to play with re: Graviton

    It states that due to Graviton's nature, they could possibly 'leak' in from other dimensional Branes.

    I didnt see anything that said that they couldnt leak out. I think. This brings me back to gravity sloshing around in a 'uniformish' manner in between dimensions.

    And arent we just another 'Brane' anyway?

    *Just in*

    With particles existing in 2 (or perhaps more) places at once, could it be that in its 'counter part(s)', a particle has different form? Perhaps this would require a particle to be counter existing in seperate dimensions? The Gravitons major hangup appears that it produces gravity, yet has no mass. Could it's mass be elsewhere?

    Maybe this is what all dem' other dimensions are for.

  710. Madskillz

    It is almost 6am Australia/Invasion Day, so I'm gonna scrub up and get ready to go fishing with my big bro (fish extremist).

    I'll be back, like arnie, to make more stuff up.

    Ciao.

  711. jolulipa

    @Madskillz at #722

    You did not get my point... My point was, that Christians get offended (agreeing with you), but they do not go like a mob, fire bombing a foreign embassy or killing people for that.

    I've seen Christians committing heinous crimes like the dude that killed the abortion clinic's doctor, but I have not seen, thousands going on the streets to do that. So there is a difference.

    For a mere image. A caricature, groups of muslims (in many countries this happened) went on a mob.

    My point is that this is a special behavior only seen in muslims. Why is that?

  712. jolulipa

    and... not (for god's sakes)!!! :>)

    I am not a christian.

    I do not believe in anything supernatural.

    Well... maybe a little in jedi's and the force.

    But you would forgive a 44 yo man for those little indulgences... right?

  713. Madskillz

    @jolulipa

    Yeah. I'm just uber sh*tty at the moment. Angry at everything.

    I see the 'wholesale' picture, in regards to Christian damage to society, minds and lives. I don't feel either 'side' are justifyable in any way. Not in the majority sense. I doubt you really think otherwise too.

    And you are a jedi.

    So I cant be mad at you.

    Sorry.

  714. Saturnine

    @Madskillz, @Chyrch, @jolulipa

    I still think you guys are 'grown ups with religion' and thereby could do a very good job in the future global peace rally with a seriously constructive position concerning all Abrahamics.

    We need that.

  715. Saturnine

    Think about the bloody issue, guys!

  716. Chyrch

    Saturnine,

    And I still think you're using the word in error purposefully, so you can feel better about having such ridiculous beliefs. You're trying to justify to yourself that everybody is religious to a degree because you know that religions are bull.

    Don't insinuate that just because I disagree with you it means I haven't thought about the issue.

  717. jo mckay

    @ Everybody 4am my time; in expectation of mass erase I have copied this thread (up to now anyway); some of our comments are going past the reach of this doc, so I am moving self over (after I get about 10 hrs of sleep ... just finished marathon writing contract, now I am 'free') to a new doc just added titled What Is Reality - that's about my speed - and comments are beginning to heat up, lol... Thank you very much, sincerely; I did learn a LOT here (hence the copy)...and what I didn't get was entertainment ... Ciao, Auf Weidersehen, Merci...etc

  718. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    I don't insinuate anything. You decide on the itch for yourself. Also, what you see as ridiculous is mostly in your own mind. If you understand my view, then you see that the idea of religion is not ridiculous at all.

    You can have a real effect in all this if you take religion seriously when it's not contradicting your rationality (or integrity, as Madskillz has said).

  719. Saturnine

    I really think, that the notion of integrity as an overarching concept is very good.

  720. Saturnine

    I think Madskillz's #308 was perfectly to the point.

  721. Chyrch

    A separate post saying "Think about the bloody issue, guys!" isn't insinuating anything? Then what were we supposed to take from that?

    "Religion" (or idealistic symbols of any sort) force us to look backwards for our integrity. There is no symbol of the ideal way to behave. The notion of one is absurd, and the adherence to one shackles our social progress in place.

    What was ethical 2000 years ago isn't ethical now, and what is ethical now, won't be ethical 2000 years from now. Do you think people 2000 years from now will be looking at Mother Teresa as a moral symbol to follow?

  722. Chyrch

    Oh and Jo,

    Thanks for pointing out that Doc. It was just what I needed

  723. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    I was just being enthusiastic. Sorry, English really is not my first language, so my subliminal messaging probably sucks.

    I agree completely with what you say concerning the misuse of old symbols, and I think you're making a point that is (or should be) obvious. The nicest thing that I can say about regressive ethics is that it it wrong.

    But you know, I think it is clear, that the key issue here is the way people in fact think about ethics of any kind in the present tense. Briefly put: 1) It does not matter where the symbols come from, but what people are saying with them. 2) You have to have means to understand what people are saying in the present tense of their ethical language.

    It is possible to respect and correctly understand different ethical languages. The only thing that is necessary for this to work is participation. Without participation you cannot judge correctly whether an ethical language is being regressive or not. And, without participation you cannot (even try to) achieve an agreed view on stuff.

    I know this is no news to you. In your discussion with Asad, both of you already did all this, and almost succeeded. I think one reason you failed seemed to be, that you did not properly try to see the ethical position that he himself is occupying in the present tense.

  724. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #722 & jolulipa,

    In fact, Christians have developed the notion of 'icon' in order to have the concept of God that "does not draw images" while allowing a kind of special pictoral representation. There are some people (iconoclasts) who don't want to hear of it. Also, there are respectful images of the Prophet in some Islamic books. But I don't want bore you guys with a lecture, the stuff is out there.

    There have also been Christian mobs. One way to create mobs is to consciously insult people in some way that it is possible. It's not difficult. Burning flags, etc. make some people go bananas. Spitting on people does this as well. I think that if some Christians started spitting on known atheists with some ardor, or created a slash-campaign against such a people, there would soon be "atheist" mobs attacking Christians. It's nothing but pack-mentality, nothing to do with anything that is wise, smart or beautiful.

  725. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    The logic of an insult that appeals to pack-mentality is insidious, but also instructive. If you are insulted, you are likely to start showing how bad the face of your reference group can be, hence alienating people from "your people". If you are not insulted at all, you indicate that you are not part of the group.

    I think most ethically mature people are always insulted when they notice that a pack-mentality -type insult is being carried out, no matter if they regard themselves as belonging to that group. But they never show this, thereby never showing that they belong to any group _in this way_.

    This is what I interpret you as saying in #722. How close was I?

  726. Chyrch

    It absolutely matters where symbols come from, because a vast portion of people care about truth.

    There are major problems when looking at a symbol for guidance. The American Civil War was largely fueled by a division of modern ethics. It was deemed unethical to have slaves by the North. The South took issue with this because frankly, they liked having slaves. But they can't just say that, so they justified having slaves by pointing out that slavery was accepted and expected in the Bible. The North can't exactly argue with that, since the Bible is pretty clear about it. So a long and bloody battle ensues.

    Symbols set out an ideal to strive for, but in reality, there should never be an ideal. All social issues have to be seen, and recognized, as constantly progressive. This will avoid having people refuse to accept new social norms because their symbol of ethics said it's wrong.

  727. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Look. re: helping save religion from itself?

    No.

    It is not religion anyway. It is people. The majority of people. Whether they are religious or non, it is their fear of facing their own ignorance which is the actual issue.

    Christianity perpetuates ignorance, in that it creates 'full stops' on certain matters. In the same way the average person does regardless of religion. This destroys people. It forms a broken mind. A stagnant mind. An unevolving mind.

    It is inter-generational.

    *Institutions* such as Christianity are my worst enemy. I hate them. They are evil, corrupt, filthy and wrong. They are ignorance.

    I know some Christians who before all else place faith in their integrity; they are fine. They are loveley. It is not their religion which makes them so, and they acknoweledge that. But they are a minority. As are integral people in general. I will not support anything which makes becoming integral more difficult to the individual.

    I am already contesting ignorance head on @Saturnine. I do it for a career. I have chosen my field in Aboriginal Affairs, and breaking down the cultural ignorance within 'white' Australia is my goal in life. It may be for all of my life. It is an apalling reality. But I will and already have made some difference, along with others in the field, past and present. I intend to continue.

    What are your plans? If you intend to tackle ignorance, you CANNOT do it via Christianity @Saturnine. The problem here is that Christianity by most is believed to BE integrity. Not seperate notions. One and the same. You must tear a huge part out of peoples faith and put it where it belongs; above it. Most will not appreciate you trying this.

    They are afraid.

    I really mean this; good luck.

  728. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #747

    Along those lines, I suppose. But no. That is 'group mentality 101'.

    I dont buy in to any of that cr*p. I am not of 'the group'.

    I am team Madskillz. I am my own group. I selectivley choose those, whom I'd find benefit in sharing time and loyalty with. They do not have to be 'perfect' by any means, but interest wanes over time if they show no personal growth potential.

    That is all.

  729. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    Ok, but:

    You're misrepresenting facts if you say, that you cannot argue against slavery with the Bible. You can, the question is only whether you do it or don't. This is well known. Will you acknowledge that?

    I agree with what I think you're saying about ethical ideals. They have an existential life-span. But I gather that you mean by an 'ideal' something timeless. This is obviously not right, but you know that the meaning of ideals changes with history (that has to be made). And you see, I was not speaking about ethical ideals in #715, just symbols. You can set up ethical ideals with symbols, but that's not the only thing that people do with them in ethics. What I mean by ethical language is simply that you speak your mind with it. The thing that matters is what people are actually doing in the present tense. I think it is clear, that you can argue for anything in any (ethical) language.

    I also want people to wake up to this fact.

  730. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #749-50

    I think you must win.

    But I also think that the struggle against religious regressiveness and the stagnation that you have identified can be very really done within the religions themselves. That's what I'm going to do.

    You are doing the same thing while staying outside organized religion. For that I have nothing but true respect.

  731. Chyrch

    It would be dishonest to use the Bible to argue against slavery, the book not only says it's okay, but always sets out rules about how to keep your slaves. It's like people attempting to use the Bible to argue against homosexuality. Cherry-pick the "love thy neighbour" scriptures all you want, the book is pretty damn clear on the subject.

    And yes, you can set up ethical ideals with symbols. You can also set up ethical ideals without them. And the people who don't use symbols in such a way, will have a better time coping with a changing society.

  732. Saturnine

    Chych, #753

    I think that your notion of dishonesty is plainly absurd, and you should stop using it before it backfires on you. No-one can use the Bible by cherry-picking stuff, if he is to make a serious point with it. Cherry-picking is an error, everyone in his right mind knows this. You in fact fall to it, when you choose to speak only about the passages that treat explicitly on the issue of slavery. So did the South.

    When you say, that the book is "pretty damn clear" on subject x, you're basically making a fundamentalist argument. This is wrong, no matter how you see it. Everyone in his right mind knows this as well. When you argue for God approved homosexuality for instance, you start this by arguing against the fundamentalist reading. It's not really difficult.

    It's not.

    If only you guys were with me and saw this.

  733. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    The 'solution' really is quite simple.

    At the very beginning of a Bible, VERY CAREFULLY write in a few pages of what Integrity actually is. How it works and why. Run it by sources other than yourself or religious creed as proof-read. Bring to light the conscience method that I have described above (inner lie detector). Make absolutely NO referrence to the bible itself, except to say at the end; One needs this to truly understand the following texts. To be close to God. To be human.

    Print as many as you can. 'Convert' as many as you can. The resulting group would likely be the sort I'd be happy to hang out with (provided that they dont insist that I need their bible!). That message needs to be made clear too, religion is purely optional and makes nobody less of a person for choosing not to have it. DO NOT INDICATE THAT ANY OTHER RELIGIONS ARE WRONG.

    It would create an uproar (I like these), and you would face adversity on nearly all fronts from your respective religious counterparts. However, this can just be good advertising. I think that many Christians would see (or know) the sense in it, and may be willing to support it.

    Do not engage outright with your 'attackers'. They will do near ANYTHING to discredit you. Most people are sheep, and if you are seen as an alcoholic/homosexual/drug addict/aldulterer etc. or merely even just as not having a sucessful relationship with a partner, it can come crashing down. That is how f****d up things often are.

    Key is, whether or not any of those things are true, simply say along the lines of 'so what? I'm human. I accept who I am and work on the parts that I am not'.

    Again, good luck. I'm not holding my breath, but it cant hurt to try yeah?

    Nothing is to hard.

  734. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    For the sheer fun of it, please give one or two examples of an ethical ideal, that has not been built up with symbols.

    : )

  735. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Nobody has to be with you re: the bible.

    Many of us have no need for it.

    Ever.

  736. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    And 'anyone in their right mind'....

    Not a whole lot of them around matey. Especially in the religious circles.

  737. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    I'll make it happen. (I mean it.) It only takes two parts of honesty and a dash of stubbornness. I already know a lot of people who think in these lines, man.

  738. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    I know them. I am one of them.

  739. Saturnine

    Ignorance that has been insisted on is just an illusion, that really disappears in a blink of an eye.

    Need I say more?

  740. Saturnine

    (I really need that Shakespeare.)

  741. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    But even after printing the 'Integral Bible';

    Hoo-ee. There is gonna be some pushing sh*t up hill there getting peoples heads around some of the bigger bits.

    Matthew 7:1a: “Judge not, that ye be not judged”

    WTF? I judge and WANT to be judged in return. Thats what friends are for. Thats what constructive critisism is for. Often thats how we know that we are doing something WRONG. Or right. Jeeeeeeezus.

    You could of course, simply say that this is exactly what it means.

    However MOST will read it; if you dont judge, perhaps nobody will judge you.... How nice. Let's all bury our heads in the sand and just get subtely evil about what we REALLY think about certain 'sorts' etc. Apealing to the weak, and the dishonest I'm afraid.

    And THEN, of course, you will have inumerous factions in the pro-judge crowd, on the same issue, picking bits and pieces from the bible to support THEIR judgement. Bye bye integrity.

    Good times, good times.

    Besides printing an 'Integral Bible', you may have to knock over all the institutions and just let people work it out for themselves.

    Thats what Integrity is all about.

  742. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Hmm, there was a distubing image in my mind just now....

    A priest, at church, reads out a bible passage. He askes the atendees what they think it means?

    Nobody is 'wrong'. The priest only says what he thinks it means, but makes it clear that this is just him. He merely facilitates the discussion thereafter (stop it ending up with casualties).

    If they put a bar in, I would probably turn up for the occasional service. Just to be a smartarse, mind you.

    And to get a holy sanctioned beer on a Sunday morning, obviously.

  743. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    You don't really need to use the bible. However, when you pick up Matthew 7:1a, it's a good idea to read 7:1-5 as well. It turns out, that the notion of judging that is described here is nothing but very simple moral teaching, nothing really fancy. It says that if you think about the faults of others, you must be ready to think about all of the faults that you yourself are also guilty of. It's really just a rule against profound as*h***ness. I mean, of course we need to be able to handle it when we get into proper conversation. (Once, after a terrible row with my father, he described this as "the way grown ups discuss things". I was stunned. But at least it explained properly why my uncles have not actually killed each other.)

    I think this can be said to be about integrity, or at least I think that can be said to be the wise interpretation.

    My style of protestantism is about subtle anti-institutionalism, where the priests and teachers are not allowed to rule over people's interpretations.

  744. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #764

    Did I just convert you?

  745. Saturnine

    (I'm not being serious.)

  746. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #766

    LOL! (I use in moderation).

    Naw. I completely agree with what you are saying in #765. The thing is, I got this all by myself, whilst actually hating and avoiding Christianity. Thats my point really.

    See, as I've been pipin' on about Integrity, you learn all this stuff naturally. Like, really really. It's just a part of growing up.

    But yeah, sure I'll convert. Just install a bar and let me rubbish the bajesus out of people.

    Church needs to be fun.

  747. Saturnine

    Further explanation regarding rows: I mean that the profound as*h***ness kicks in when you're angry the issue sort of sizzles to your subconsciousness and becomes bitterness. My father just said that thing about "the way grown ups speak sometimes" to calm me down. But I'm not really sure if that has much to do with what was said in Matthew. Maybe the as*h**e -aspect is some kind of link here, but I don't really know.

  748. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #765

    Um, not trying to be picky or nuffin', but you were saying your dad taught you to let up on your own faults when dispalying angst at anothers?

    That is a message of love dude.

    For whatever else he may have lacked in, that's more than many get from dads.

  749. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    A local problem around here is that the protestant Churches are really not interesting enough to be anything more than a joke in the eyes of the people who in fact get the right ideas. This has led to the situation, where a minor lot of kirkliche neo-cons have been successful in convincing some people, that the very good ideas of modern protestantism have been dying out. But it's not going to take long before the next synthesis wins over. However I'm not sure how it's going to make Churches interesting. Frankly, that is not my job.

  750. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Hmmm, another bug re: Conversion;

    Are all those 'bouncy' Christian sinalongs really necessary? I fell personally embaressed just being witness to such.

    Perhaps chuck in a good does of Chilli Peppers and Metallica? That sort of thing?

    That would help draw the crowds.

    And the beer.

  751. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #770

    True. That incident was about the language of love on his part. Enough on that point. : )

  752. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    And 'hallaeluja feints' should only occur after several beverages.

  753. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    You'd be amazed when you saw all the strange s*** they're trying to pull off.

    However, among the young bunch, those circle-dances are just absolutely brilliant in a lot of ways.

  754. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #761

    You wrote;

    Ignorance that has been insisted on is just an illusion, that really disappears in a blink of an eye.

    Need I say more?

    **To me;

    Yeah, you do.

  755. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #775

    re: Circle dances;

    So is singstar.

    (Personal Disclaimer; not my cup o' tea)

  756. Madskillz

    @Saturnine #775 also

    re: pulling off on strange stuff;

    I have seen it any amount of times. Many of the 'vulnerable' mob I grew up around LOVED it.

    Many thought it was better than actual medical assistance (physical/mental).

    - Which they somewhat negated.

  757. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    And two or three of the 'preachers' thought they'd do a further service and bring a pound or so of weed out bush with them when conducting services.

    To flog off at around X5 the usual ammount as to the closest built up area (which in itself was expensive).

    Ho. Ho. Ho.

    I don't care on 'THEY ARENT REAL CHRISTIANS!'

    They certainly thought they were.

  758. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #776

    Yes, that is a serious philosophical point, I just mangled the words in that one. To me it's mostly about straightening out the kirkliche neo-cons, really. And you, know I'm being serious about all this. I've studied the lot. Much of what they are doing is just patting the fundamentalist elements in the back.

    I think it is very true, that if you insist on a thought that is based on ignorance, you will end up with a notion that is at heart already broken. It only takes a little while to fish out the notion from the person who has it, and then another little while to show that it is in fact based on ignorance. After this, it disappears at once if the person stops insisting on it.

  759. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Christianity is just a label. A label that trys to say to everyone else 'I am a good person. You can trust me'.

    And quite often that is BS.

    Possibly the NASTIEST people I have EVER met were 'whole hearted Christians'. Lots of them.

    They were racist, sexist, depraved or just simply obnoxious (usually all of the above).

    It's a label. It means nothing. We dont need it. People know this now, which is usually why they declare atheism.

    It's a correctly moral stance.

  760. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #781

    I see exactly what you mean. That's where we seem to be at this time and this place. People who understand religious language and get the right ideas are being silent because they don't want to show that they belong to "that crowd". In a better world, the situation will be different. A lot of mistakenness will have to be shown to be mistakenness.

  761. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Look. I know Christianity is a bit more special than that to you and your circle of friends whatnot. This is fine. As far as I can tell I dont think that you are a bad person.

    But there is a reality you must acknoweledge;

    Integrity is all one needs to be a good person.

    Christianity is most often used as a 'loop hole' for absolute foul character.

    The bible is just philosophy, with some historical links. There are any number of better books on how to be a better person.

  762. Madskillz

    Personal Dislaimer;

    I am not against weed. I am not even against paying a bit for it, as the grower puts themselves at the true risk in prosecution (when local law isnt too BARBARIC)

    I am however, against it being sold to vulnerable types, at extornionalist rates, who should otherwise be getting their sh*t together rather that sitting on thier arse not doing anything with themselves. Like buying food, for one.

    I rarely smoke it, as it slows me down in the work I do.

    And it most certainly is not good for kids.

    Teenagers are gonna be teenagers though.

    Whatever.

  763. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    In the sense, that I think you mean what you say, I think I accept almost every bit of it.

    The Bible suffers greatly from all the wrong stuff that has been justified with it. In such times when people are completely unable to make good and calm religious sense of it, I think it would not be such a bad idea to prohibit the religious use of the Bible altogether. I seriously think that God could approve of this.

    But you know, religions go deep to the good things too. I think there's a lot of proper use for it. Mystical theology is not always bad reading either.

  764. Saturnine

    (I of course meant #785 to refer to #783. I'm against all misuse of drugs and all illegal drugs but this is not the place to discuss that.)

  765. Chyrch

    Okay I'm done. My interest has been waning for a while now, post 754 made me lose it all.

    Sorry Saturnine, but this has become entirely pointless. Do you know why I keep bringing up Logic? It's Laws are what help us discern a valid argument from an invalid one. It's important, and I suggest to anyone who wishes to argue for their beliefs should first familiarize themselves with it. It's the spinal cord of debate.

    Just one more thing though,

    This paragraph:

    "No-one can use the Bible by cherry-picking stuff, if he is to make a serious point with it. Cherry-picking is an error, everyone in his right mind knows this. You in fact fall to it, when you choose to speak only about the passages that treat explicitly on the issue of slavery"

    is hugely contradictory and hypocritical, and is a great example of your mindset in regards to this subject.

    I've enjoyed our discussion. I wouldn't have been so vocal in this (soon to be erased) thread if I hadn't. But right now we're at a point where it feels like talking to just another apologist who feels they have some insight to religion no one else has.

    I'm sure I'll see you on other boards. Until then, keep well. I'll be hoping for a serious joint venture between psychologists and philosophers to help cure people of their religious delusions.

    Many apologies to Vlatko for taking these comments so far off track, and thanks to him as well for humoring us long enough to continue the discussion.

  766. Saturnine

    Chyrch,

    One of the first interpretative principles in reading the Bible is that it every detail must be measured with the whole book in mind. My mindset is merely correct. Too bad you have a problem with it. You parade logic in front of me as if you know something about it. It's been a bit annoying. You've defended the atheist position well. You could do even better by being a little less pretentious.

    Maybe then there will be a proper joint venture.

  767. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    Besides local law, what constitutes an illegal drug? Whatever. Dont care.

    Soooo, beyond your own personal needs, what good is Christianity?

    If a person is taught integrity, what use is religion in the conversion sense? What is a person to gain by becoming one of the flock? What is the point?

    I can think of several places to hang out with like minded people. None of them are in a Church.

    Social workers, drop in centres, youth programs - These all help people (Some INSIST on being religious... FKNGRRRR)

    Psychologists, Mental health workers, Spiritual centres - These all provide internal well being assistance.

    Parks, rivers, forrests etc. - These are all good for the human soul.

    Why Christianity??

    And Christianity IS mystical theology. Just coz it's a 'top dog' and says otherwise, doesnt change the fact that it is.

    I just dont get it.

    What for need?

  768. Saturnine

    Madskillz,

    It doesn't have to be Christianity, I'm really not trying to sell it to you, man. I'm just saying. Maybe it's sufficient to say that the world needs people to know enough so that they can battle the ones who are stifling humanity. Both within and without churches and creeds.

    I'm just thanking God that there's at least some proper sense in Christianity, so that the people who become Christians will have a way to get it right. That's all.

    Thank God you get the right idea. And I really mean it. You do. You prove to me that there's a point to all this rambling.

  769. Saturnine

    (And if anyone thinks that I think that Madskillz is a convert, that one is just st**d. I don't want Madskillz to be one. Realize that.)

  770. Madskillz

    @Saturnine

    But yet... Religion creates alot of confusion and harm, no?

  771. Saturnine

    Madskillz, #792

    Yes, it does. A lot.

  772. Jo mckay

    So, jest' back from watching and commenting on WHAT IS REALITY. It was great ... now will have to wait to see if anyone wants to get 'into it'... @ Madskillz & @ Saturnine; looks like conversation is concluding, Just like to say it was good. Integrity over ignorance is brilliant ... (good luck with the book :) @ Chrych # 744. Your very Welcome... @ Saturnine # 762... (Let's see if I can remember some: "Let me not to the marriage of true minds, admit impediments - Love is not Love, if it alters when it alteration finds - or bends with the remover to remove; it is an ever fixed mark, that looks on tempests and is not shaken..."etc -Shakespeare (the rest is good too, just can't get the lines right, so enjoy). I am wrapped up here, see ya'll

  773. toddy

    another well done documentary by the BBC. I'm begining to think I need to go to documentary's anonymous. Hi my name is "toddy" and I'm addicted to documentary's.haha

  774. Jo mckay

    Oops, forgot to clear up one thing. @Madskillz ... when or 'how' did I "make you cry"... good cry...or bad cry...? :) Ciao

  775. jolulipa

    (sorry to be so light on things but, you know i'm done)

    @Saturnine
    I swear to god that you are some kind on hybrid between a Jedi and a Christian. Or at least live in Norway.

    Otherwise, you have some fu**D up mind. I would really hate Christians turning in what you want. Where is the fun if I cannot enjoy a discussion with a fundamentalist bible wielding protestant?

    geeeezz, man! don't be so cruel. :>)

  776. Madskillz

    @Jo McKay

    Good cry. About bad stuff.

    Was all wound up wiv the Integral thought jigga and then fiddling with the singularity first thought being in a void, in your mind, just as in pre-space. One and same. The Iroquois creation yarn was EXACTLY what I was thinking/feeling. There is much alike left still in Australias first as well. Christianity is devouring its remnants as I write this.

    The world just got real loneley for a moment there. I wish people were more like that still.

    Whatever, totally over this yarn. I've done my damage. I'm gonna head over to What is Reality.

    My posts would possibly hold more water there...

  777. Saturnine

    @jolulipa, @Jo, @Mad, (even @Chyrch), @everyone

    You guys are absolute genius. : )))

  778. Madskillz

    800! YES!

    THE END.

  779. DArko

    I build the Earth!

  780. Eupackardia

    This is how i see the world:

    Spirituality (Notion of sacred)
    Religion
    Science
    Philosophy

    I'll try to describe it somehow i understand it using my views:
    Spirituality is a belief of something sacred, something that has no scientific value but leads to spirituality.. A simple example is for example: The toy given to you by your your long deceased mother that you have kept your life. To you, this is sacred, but it's not scientific (But it is on a personal level)It has notion else but sentimental value. This kind of thinking may lead to religion (again on a personal level). I'm not talking about the history of the existence of religion..

    Religion: regroupment of people sharing a same outline thought of sacred/spirituality. But to make it more unified and strong, Dictates all ideas into a database (book/bible/koran/w.e) so to institutionalize the thought. And the book becomes a sort of: Answer to everything. The notion of ''GOD'' is for them what the definition of spirituality. Spirituality became an invisible old beardy man in the sky (for christians).

    Science: The everyday reality. The search for answers. The physical world we live in. Religion has no reason to be in this realm. Facts, how the world works.

    Philosophy (Personal level): I'm Not talking here about the great thinkers or any epoch. Can combine Science and Spirituality in guiding priorities in our own life. Guides our life on a personal level, setting our values and convictions, how we react to problems etc... For example: to Epicurius, having friends was sacred for him. To Socrates, critical thinking and not being a sheeple was the most enlightening thing there is...

    Conclusion:
    Must not use Spirituality or Religion to explain the physical world. Its like arguing that an orange can come out of an apple tree because you happen to find an orange in a field of apple trees.. Spirituality and Religion are guidelines for moral standing.. Religion is an Institutionalized -For Sheeple (the masses)- and accesible way to gain spirituality. However it is not wrong nor heretic(hehe) for anyone to build their own beliefs through the dictates of any said religion.

    In this case i simply say: Science explains the mathematical laws of the universe. The information of the universe, the cause to effect of reality. Science has can not try to explain spirituality. It can not try to explain, nor Guide us to follow an objective in life, nor can it explain why i keep any object anyone consider to be sacred, or my view on life. It can however explain which neurones and synapse connection where used (or which part of the brain is the god spot) to make these ideas possible hehehe.

    But same goes with spirituality / Religion: They can Not interfere in trying to explain how the world works. Its not their job. Their Job is to guide us in doing what we believe in. (Again, on a personal level)

    I'm an atheist, but i believe in the notion of sacred. I'm definitely not Christian and i do not follow any other religion there is. I don't believe in ''GOD'' or w/e.

    There hope some of ya might understand :P

  781. James del Valle

    I think there is absolutely no point in proving that placebos work to reduce pain etc, is there any scientific gain in taking away peoples beliefs if what they are doing is not doing anyone else any harm, totally sadistic work.

  782. GodmanEnki

    "Science" uses fact and logic. "Religion" uses superstition, imagination, and a book of which no one can prove it's age or author. To believe the Universe is only 6000+ years in existence, is complete, blind, stupidity and ignorance. Multiplied by Ego, narcissism, and utter-foolishness.

  783. Daniel

    I believe God is the reason for what we experience. Whether that reason is absolutely nothing, a magical connection between all living and nonliving things, a coincidence, a creator in another dimension (or quite possibly up in the sky) that determined everything from the beginning, a gigantic reflection of something whole, a seemingly endless universe which contains everything etc etc. Any reason is a legitimate one for what we are going through right now. I think most any person who may call themselves spiritual or religious, at the core, is REFERRING to this reason that they can't describe or understand. Christianity is plagued with all kinds of nasty things that have happened throughout history, so I think most of present man has a stigma against it (which may be rightly so). Everyone wants to know if there is something going on or nothing going on, and either way there is an answer. People have been trying to figure this out since they've been able to think for themselves, so I think it is also a legitimate question.

  784. GrittyKat

    Yes, It Does!

  785. Daniel Berdichevsky

    Your right, but to believe God does not exist is also blind, stupid, ignorant foolishness....etc

  786. Daniel Berdichevsky

    I think this whole bull s*** atheist movement is just based on mans desire to bulge out their ego so that they can feel that they are God. You say o evidence evidence evidence, look at yourself in the mirror, there is the evidence! life without God is boring, empty, and pointless in my opinion. I believe the entire purpose of our existence is to learn to love our fellow man, to appreciate Gods creation, and to know yourself. To try to stamp out God out of science, or in general, IS THE MOST SELFISH THING EVER IMAGINABLE, AND BY THE WAY YES, SCIENCE AND GOD GO HAND IN HAND, AND CONSCIOUSNESS IS INDEED INFINITE.

  787. Epicurus

    actually its more egotistical for you to think that this universe was made just for us humans by some magical being that cares for us specifically. THAT is egotistical. you trying to say that you are evidence of some god THAT is egotistical. maybe you should go back to school and study some biology.

    also science and god are on the very opposite ends of the spectrum. science studies what is natural and god by definition is supernatural.

  788. Epicurus

    no it isnt. and what god are you talking about? why dont you believe in the hindu god? or other gods? what makes you think you are right?

  789. Matthew Drane

    That is because there is no answer to why, we just are and we have to accept that and make the most of it rather than think we are so important as to have a purpose.

  790. ORLY

    Why do you need God to love yourself and others?

  791. Carsten Saradeth

    As atheist, I never consider life to be boring. On the contrary, I value life by far more since I don't have a static world view. In religion everything is done after a blue print for the humans and must be accepted as is. From the atheist view life is mystery to be discovered and understood. Something less from being boring.

  792. dhavalkumar1984

    i think this guy daniel bullberdichevsky should watch last word of this documentary, it was just made for people like him.

  793. Paul Currie

    barking mad. is it a god per universe? or god per multiverse? and the most selfish thing ever? surely expecting people to accept your word without any real evidence other than the scribblings of men without real scientific reasoning that there is a god is selfish. and to say we need god to be good and to know yourself is just nuts. if you need the feeling of being constantly watched to stop yourself from doing bad things then fine but keep it to yourself. and the whole point of science is to know not just ourselves but, but where we came from/going to etc. people who believe in god have held us back scientifically by hundreds of years all ready. keep god out of schools, and certainly out of science. and over the millenia how many god have been worshipped? are you sure yours is right? what if you're just as foolish as all those peolple thousands of years ago who worshipped gods that turned out to be wrong? you die, expect big st peter and its horus and you're told,"sorry mate the answer was ra, do not pass go." believing is not knowing.

  794. His Forever

    Not so with I. When I was taught evolution in school, I felt a deep sense of ultimate worthlessness and the meaninglessness of life. I don't think elementary age kids should be taught that carp! Looking forward to an eternity with God--now THAT is exciting. And comforting.

  795. His Forever

    Because our basic nature is selfish. God pulls us away from that utter selfishness that we war against natually.

  796. Paul Currie

    but they are doing harm. look around you. watch the news maybe. there are a couple of docs on here about crusades i'm sure. religion is divisive, science is inclusive.

  797. Tai

    Faith is intrinsically belief despite lack of, or contradicting, evidence. Don't you think that if you could produce evidence for belief in god, faith would be pointless? Faith's very nature means that you've shunned all reason and logic and believe only what you wish to believe.

    To those who have chosen to make decisions based on truth, logic, and reason, the path you have chosen is unfathomable, confusing, and pitiful. I am glad I am not you.

  798. Tai

    Reply to C_and_N:

    So you believe because it is exciting and comforting? You have chosen based on emotion, regardless of what is true or plausible.

    Take this little conversation

    Me: I'm going to buy 2 mansions!
    You: Where are you going to get the money?
    Me: Oh, I have this diamond the size of a dump truck in my backyard!
    You: Really!? How do you know? You dug it up? You put it there?
    Me: No, none of those... but imagine how sad it would be if there wasn't a massive diamond in my backyard. Believing it's there is so much more exciting and comforting! Isn't it?

    Isn't it?

  799. Adam J. Gillis

    The only factor that "C_and_N" fails to explain, is that the most non-religious countries, have the lowest crime rates, and the self proclaimed "Christian America" seems to have the highest and most violent crimes in the western world. Would love to know how that factors into the whole God brings love and selflessness...

  800. Adam J. Gillis

    There are many religious and scientific minds out there, and many Atheist and non-scientific. Atheism does not imply that they all have degrees in science and biology, and do not always subscribe to every scientific theory. And I doubt that people go towards Atheism to live a life excluded of moral rules, if they did wouldn't you hear things in the news about Atheists killing and maiming people. Morality is part of the human experience, and can be explained organically, it is not a divine right.

  801. Guest

    @C_and_N:

    And what are you going to do with your god? Charles, be his right hand man? are you going to help him and moniter all the trillions of request/demands, from the religee's? or formulate blueprints to make infinite new worlds?
    Or just continue to worship and grovel at the feet of your jealous god? Hmmm?

  802. His Forever

    Wow. That's a good quesiton. Have you heard the song, "I can only imagine" by Mercy Me? I'm not sure, Mr. Razor, what I will do in Heaven, but worship for me is my nature. I do it every day in some way automatically. We view worship in totally different ways. I don't see it as "groveling" at all. You "grovel" at the feet of a tyrant dictator; you worship at the feet of a righteous King.

    The Bible says that we will "rule and reign" with Christ, so yes, there will be administrative responsibilities in some capacity, that is up to God to decide. I know there will also be time to learn and understand the mysteries of the universe and I hope (I'm sure) to explore even the furthest reaches of the universe.

  803. Guest

    WOW! is right, all I can say is I am completely
    "flabbergasted"!! on your reply to me on this doc. and "The end of god; a horizon guide to science and religion" also "Foundational falsehood of creation" and others.

    You definitely march to the beat of a different drummer!
    But at least you are a good sport about it, and I don't mind conversing with you, at least we can agree to disagree!

  804. His Forever

    Mr. Razor: We do seem to be on opposite sides of the religious experience. I deleted part of my post; I didn't mind you reading it (it was a reply to you), but it's a very personal thing how I imagine Heaven to be, and sometimes it's better to be a little self-guarded in a public domain.

    Peace to you.

  805. Gsaman

    Judging from the video online, this is simply a repeat of various historically inaccurate information on various topics. Its explanation of the "Galileo incident" is misleading and inaccurate. The same is true of how they depict the debate of Darwin's Theory of Evolution. All in all this is not worth much because it comes from an extremely biased viewpoint in favor of science over religion rather than truly examining how science and religion have worked together over the centuries.

  806. Gsaman

    Judging from the video online, this is simply a repeat of various historically inaccurate pieces of information on various historical topics. Its minimal explanation of the "Galileo incident" is misleading and inaccurate. The same is true of how they depict the debate of Darwin's Theory of Evolution. All in all this is not worth much because it comes from a biased viewpoint in favor of science over religion rather than truly examining how science and religion have worked together over the centuries. Yes, that is what I said: they have worked together over the centuries. The only clash is when someone from the extremes of either side tries to make that side the final word in the matter.

  807. Gsaman

    Sorry about the repeat in the comments. I apparently was too impatient when verifying my email.

  808. 0zyxcba1

    @ Gsaman

    I cannot take issue with your comments concerning the doc's handling of historical events. I am too ignorant.

    However, an epistemology based upon faith, and an epistemology based upon the scientific method, are opposed(yes, I did say 'opposed'!), such as to be mutually exclusive and wholly incompatible.

    Simple logic:
    A body of beliefs derived from Revelation and serving as the foundation for Absolute Knowledge, the veracity of which, by its very definition, can never be verified and, therefore, must never be questioned, is a body of beliefs with which science(or anything else) had better not mess(if it knows what's good for it!).

    Science, as OPPOSED to religion, has, in effect, done away with the very notion of Knowledge(with a capital 'K"). In science, NOTHING is 'known'. From the scientific perspective, knowledge(with a lowercase 'k') is a crapshoot based on the best calculatable odds as derived from evidence.

    If an epistemology (the underpinnings of which include the notion that knowledge can never, in essence, even exist) can successfully serve to derive and present likelihoods that directly contradict 'The Absolute Truth, then the proposition that "science and religion have worked together over the centuries" becomes laughable. The best the two can do is to stay out of each other's way. That was possible when science didn't really exist. But when the scientific method got out of its toddler stage and began to walk upright, all bets were off.

    Science cannot try to stay out of religion's way by exploring only those phenomena the results of whose investigations are least likely to contradict the 'TRUTH'. Neither can religion compromise its reliance upon Absolute Knowledge as derived from Faith and Revelation. To do so, religion would need to redefine itself out of existence.

    This has actually occurred within the Church of England. In the Church of England, you can believe pretty much anything you like, so long as you can throw together a good jumble sale. Maybe The Church of England is ahead of its time. Maybe its fate will prove to be the fate of all the major religions(though I do struggle with such a vision for Islam).

    When religion and science clash, which is absolutely unavoidable, religion will not bend because religion CANNOT bend.

    Faith is non-negotiable.

    When accords ARE arrived at, it is only because religion(not science) redefines a tiny bit of itself out of existence. Another way of putting it is that science cannot loose, and that religion can never win. Religion has never profited from any scientific discovery, and never will. Conversely, science gets zip! from religion.

    Religion must, and will, die. The only questions are 'how' and 'when'.

    The 'when' question is yelling out loud SOON!(which is one cause of Islam's paranoia). The 'How' question, on the other hand, speaks softly, and ambiguously. Religion can shoot itself in the head; or religion can drink the Hemlock, redefining itself out of existence.

    Either way is fine with me.

  809. Saturnine9

    I'll go with the redefining out of strawman-existence.

  810. ainne_g

    In this video in my opinion the scientist explanation about God (Jesus) or relgion are not given the right explanation. Additionally they can’t give as define answer about everything. Themselves they don't know when the world created and when will be end. We like it or not God (Jesus) is the first creator who creates the world and universe. In this video the person mansion about three question 1. Why things are exist? My answer is because God (Jesus) said it and created it with given natural order. Therefore no human can be able to create, order and understand the creation of the world and universe. That is for God (Jesus) only for him and his might knowledge show as whom he is a powerful Creator and no one can be able reach and understand. 2. Why do we here? Because God (Jesus) is might he want as to believe him and we all human need to warship him and obey his word and make our future to be worthy in this earth as well as in heaven. Then God (Jesus) will give as internal life with him in heaven not in hell. 3. What is all for? It is a War and battle also it is all about a chose believe or not believe and who will win the battle the power of God (Jesus) or the devil power. It is not right to push people not to believe and teaching them God (Jesus) is not exist because by doing that we make them to go to hell for eternity. If we give them a chance to choose themselves it is for their own advantage and freedoms. If we Human choose to make our life believe and commit with God (Jesus) while we are in this hearth we can be able live peaceful life, loving life not being selfish, compassionate life, not to harm anyone but love, and protect ourselves from evil work that jeopardise our internal life. The devil never ever have a chance to inter and inherit heaven. So that devil want as not to believe, because he cannot be a belver and inter in heaven so that he don't want as to inter as wall. So all human we need to be clever and understand the devil secret. One day individually will be dead after we are dead we cannot have choice to believe or not to believe. The only chance and place we have in this hearth to believe and make the most of it. This is our chance to be wise and make the right choice for ourselves to be on the safe side. About this world, we are not alone the devil are a lire, predator, murderer and hidden himself from all human for the time being. Soon, when Jesus cames for future everything will be clear. People please don’t be unbeliever be a believer and win the battle it is for all human good.

  811. Norm

    @Daniel Berdichevsky

    "I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours." ~ Stephen Roberts

  812. Marie

    scared little children.

  813. Marie

    Thats man...man did those things. You are angry and I do not blame you. Faith is not religion. God is not religion.

  814. minoas.info

    really good doc

  815. 1Jeti

    That'll getcha thinkin!! Bravo!!!

  816. gmf

    you are very sad. clearly uneducated too... I feel sorry for you... pathetic waste of life

  817. jonathan jackward

    google this .....unified field of consciousness

  818. ainne_g

    I am replayed the comment that I have received about top documentary Science and religion. Most of the comment that I have seen was not documented in a good manner, it was added personal insulated comment.

    There is no need to insulate each other instead respect each individual idea and comment in a better manner.

    It is important to know that all humanity will be end one
    day from this world. That is natural low, or we like it or not each individual person will be dead in a different case.

    But Science can’t protects as from dying or not to be end this world, If all humanity understand the entire knowledge of believing in Jesus Christ that he died for
    our sins and raised being a winner that will save all humanity and protects as from dying for eternity.

    Many people thinking that is foolishness but believe me it will concords all humanity and knowledge and science. All
    Technology and knowledge and understanding came from Jesus Christ (GOD) and it is his own because Jesus Christ is alpha and omega.

  819. AlfBeta

    I imagine that a good atheist would find this post of zero value, for reasons which are clear enough. But look again?,I think it has value for even a good atheist, or at least any atheist who can see the value in a dream, even WITHOUT translating it into undream

  820. AlfBeta

    "Faith's very nature means that you've shunned all reason and logic and believe only what you wish to believe"

    No... I see this repeated around the place. You can say that YOUR experience of what you call 'faith' is just that.
    People sometimes describe their conditioning as 'faith' (if arrogant enough they describe it as knowledge, political, scientific or religious)
    You ever feel something, someone's staring at you, and they are? Repeated enough, you'ld have some _faith_ in that feeling, even without 100% reliability.
    BTW,there's nothing intrinsically absurd about a superhuman level of consciousness to which we are connected, as far as I can see anyway. The most interesting thing after all about the "most evolved" creature, is perhaps not our bodies, but our thoughts and ideas, our consciousness, invisible and barely provable?

  821. AlfBeta

    "From the atheist view life is mystery to be discovered and understood"
    but only within prescribed limits, i.e. superhuman space-time-pervading consciousness is out? The possibility that glimpses of this over the ages have been the cause of religions (and their attendant problems) - is out? That mystics everywhere and always are merely foolish and ignorant? It won't do!
    From the spiritual point of view, life is mystery to be discovered and understood.

  822. AlfBeta

    Nice one Eupac, this would be good at the top of each atheist/theist discussion, just to get some of the basics in order, and the discussions could focus on GENUINE agreements and disagreements. It so often seems a debate between Sunday School and the Communist Youth Association,I'm really interested to see what some of my acquaintances in TDF think of the hierarchy etc in your post.

  823. AlfBeta

    This forum has such an intelligent level of argument that i'm driven to use some of my precious restricted gigabytage to actually watch the film. I do wonder, it must be unusual.

  824. AlfBeta

    Pressed 'Like' accidentally. If there were a How Rude! button...
    Why you don't appreciate her fine efforts with second language? she's only stating her belief. Even tho I regard her equating the Supreme Principle ("God") with a Manifestation of It (Yeshua aka Jesus) as heretical (erroneous from First Principles), and you think she's talking total sh**, she may be superior to both of us in the kindness of her manner.

  825. AlfBeta

    o well, got bored after lil while, but stand by remark on good discussion

  826. wcb123

    There is no debate. Religion/God is all Bs

  827. jurica

    no debate /no dialogue/no thought/no brain- not your fault mate too much indocrination /too much BLIND faith.

  828. jurica

    exceptional dialogue - I think you should be nominated for canonisation -
    I will personally speak to to the POPE so that you can get your just rewards.

  829. jurica

    shame on you - don't go down on the man's ignorance - he only knows what he knows from the teachings of his elders - sad yes but it is the way of the world until he becomes enlightened - (might happen/might not)

  830. jurica

    ya right someone got in there to attack your language-
    having said that - if you want to make a contribution - GET IT RIGHT

  831. wcb123

    You dont need a debate or dialogue to know Religion is full of shit. I go by facts not faith. Of course, if i am wrong, you could always prove it to me ? Get your brain out of lala land boy.

  832. amialive

    while we all live in a not understand world, it is very unclean to say who has the right, GMF u need becareful what u say to dont turn to be a unwise human form

  833. amialive

    THere is a debate, but right now there is not true right, except for those things sciency has proved .

  834. woolybully8423

    This outstanding documentary presents a sweeping view of the current level of man's understanding of his place in the universe. it ultimately suggests that there may exist an "infinity of infinities" and that it is this that we may think of as 'God.'

  835. Madskillz99

    Who am I kidding, there is no apparent end to such...

    AlfBeta - you are absolutely right - This docco wasn't earthshaking by any means, it's just the concept/questions that arise from it which take serious note. Certainly nothing new lol. Interesting though, yeah? I personally didn't watch it all the way through untill making about 200 posts... Oh, and kudos on picking up on english as a second language from recent poster/s (even though I disagree with content).

    P.S. Heloooo Saturnine...

  836. Madskillz99

    And following my illustrious commenting, I MUST say- look up 'Pantheism and Panentheism... you may qualify (;

  837. Saturnine9

    There's absolutely no way I'm returning to this topic. : D I do remember some quality ramblings, though. With the regrettable fact of some pirate-tongue -evidence on my part.

  838. Guest

    By the way, there is plenty of lawful in chaos.

  839. Anthony Eliason

    I'm quite sure, that all Technology and knowledge came from man, and science. And science came from man. As well as anything that isn't a natural element. MAN should be your god. The human species, and developing and nurturing its growth. I'm positive that jesus had absolutely nothing to do with any technology.

  840. Mantid

    Once again ''Christ'', is merely a title not your god's name, if anything it should be Christ Jesus not Jesus Christ.

  841. Sugarshane68

    No longer available

  842. whitt23

    I guess you would follow God to the "ends of the earth"!Came from Bible means Earth is Flat.Sphere has no ends.If the guy who created it didnt know its shape then you shouldnt put all your faith in him.Maybe you would lead a life with meaning.If you stopped trying to impress a deity from a folklore.

  843. whitt23

    Yes it is exciting to "believe" its there.How upset are you going to be when it comes time to buy that mansion?Knowing the whole time you lived a lie and cant afford that mansion now lol.

  844. whitt23

    You would rather them to believe there is an invisible man in the sky?Sad so Sad

  845. whitt23

    Selfishness???God says we should only worship HIM!!!Please define selfishness for me?

  846. whitt23

    On day one...Man created God!!!