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Archive for July 29th, 2007

The finer points of Hypocrisy…

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 29, 2007


This poster really doesn’t see her own hypocritical approach – and it’s painful to watch.

I have noticed that some of my friends don’t capitalize God, instead they spell his name g-o-d. This offends me and it is very offensive to God, Himself. I believe some of you are getting confused between the mythological gods who-don’t capitalize the word god-and the “real thing.”

A member here has a disturbing page icon, at least it is to me, that reads “All Gods Are One God.” She/he is a good person-I’m sure-and has the right to express her/his oppinoin however they choose, but Christians-like myself-believe in ONLY ONE GOD.

Thank you XX, for allowing me this opportunity to express myself. I welcome all oppinions I’m sure to get.

Love & Light,


Don’t you just like it when people demand certain religious practices and forget to extend the same courtesy to others and their practices? It makes for such perfect noose curls.

Curl #1: “I have noticed that some of my friends don’t capitalize God, instead they spell his name g-o-d. This offends me and it is very offensive to God, Himself.”

Who died and made you G-d so you can read G-d’s mind and decide what offends Him/Her? Ok, so it offends YOU, but you are not G-d, so you cannot decide if G-d is offended.

Curl #2: “I believe some of you are getting confused between the mythological gods who-don’t capitalize the word god-and the “real thing.””

Again who died and made you the judge of what is the “Real Thing”? The G-d of the Greek Scriptures is a mythological creature to me – should I therefore spell Yeshu ben Miriam “yeshu ben miriam” to indicate that he is nothing but a mythological figure to me – on par with Zeus, Vishnu, Innana etc.?

Curl #3: “Just remember when it’s a character like Zeus god of lightning, it’s a small g but when it comes to The Creator of Life, it’s spelled with a capital G.”

How do you know Who is the Creator of Life? – For all we know it might just be Zeus, or Ganesha, or Shiva or Baal. You really cannot know that.

Curl #4: A member here has a disturbing page icon, at least it is to me, that reads “All Gods Are One God.” She/he is a good person-I’m sure-and has the right to express her/his oppinoin however they choose, but Christians-like myself-believe in ONLY ONE GOD.

Exactly – she has the right to believe and express that belief anyway she pleases. That you are a Xian and believe as you do should have no bearing on anyone else’s behavior – but yours, and you just managed to tie yourself a nice little intellectual noose made up of 4 curls – happy hanging!

Besides, being a Xian, you actually believe in three G-ds – you just roll them into one so they “fit” into scriptures you stole from the Jewish People.

A hypocrite and a thief…hm.

Posted in G-d | 2 Comments »

Sanctimonious Bullshit

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 29, 2007


Prayer For Muslims

This morning, as I was listening to my local Christian radio station, they were announcing the coming of Ramadan, the Muslim holy month. The Christian community was being encouraged to pray for the Muslim people during this time.

That struck me as being very interesting. I understand that many people believe Islam to be a religion of peace, but I do not agree. I think most Muslims want to live at peace with the world, but the growing radical movement wants the destruction of all other religious groups. So here’s a religion in which many of its followers are seeking to kill Christians, but Christians are being asked to pray for them.

Sounds like the upside-down kingdom Christ talked about while on earth. Let’s pray hard!

“But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:44)!


*lol*What a load of sanctimonious bullshit! Coming from an adherent of one of the most murderous religions on earth. Next he will be saying that we cannot judge Xtianism by a “few bad eggs” during the last 2000 years – yet that is exactly what he is doing with Islam.He is judging an entire religion and all its adherents as “not peaceful” on account of a fraction of 300 million Muslims…How about reading about not judging instead of praying?“Mat 7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged. ”

Posted in Islamophobia | Tagged: , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Fundamentalism Second Take

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 29, 2007


My first take is here: Fundamentalism

 

From Dale’s Blog

2000 years ago, J*sus warned his early followers: “Not everyone who calls to me, ‘Lord, Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do my Father’s will may enter. On the Judgment Day many will say to me, ‘Lord, didn’t we prophesy, cast out demons, and do many miracles in your name?’ But I will say to them, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you that do evil!’ ” (Matthew 7:21-23)

I would suggest that the thing which will condemn someone to hell, even though they profess to believe in J*sus, will be the person’s placing the Bible above God Himself. Fundamentalists have claimed for over a century that the Bible is the Word of God and is therefore infallible. This claim has no support whatsoever. Attempts to support it by references to the Bible are circular reasoning. Only God Himself should ever be seen as infallible, and since we have no direct contact with Him, we have nothing that may be considered infallible. The Bible, the Q’uran, and other religious books may be inspired by faith in God, but they are still human products, and are thus prone to error like all other human products. The Q’uran itself condemns the tendency of man to make partners with Allah, so should it be acceptable for any Muslim to make the Quran a partner with Allah?

In this physical world, there is NOTHING and NO ONE that may rightfully be called infallible!”

To which Harry responded…:

  1. Posted July 24, 2007 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    Soooo…..if the Bible is just a collection of men in past times idea of what God was trying to say, then – what? Surely without the acceptance that the Bible is handed by God to man through divine inspiration, as God’s infallible word to His creation, then any old oddball doctrine – say gold plates from Joseph Smith, Jim Jones Socialism or Reverend Moon oddballness can simply claim God tells me things and this is truth. We have to have a measure by which doctrine is measured, or else we have the mess which people such as yourself who preach atheistic materialism. You’ll be telling us next we’re all stardust, LSD is good and we should hug a tree for Gaia (because God tells you so).


I would like to commend Dale on his excellent exposition of Matthew 7:21-23! It has rarely been said so well :-).

I also agree with Dale on the rest. Only G-d is infallible and has the right to judge.

Let me respond to Harry point by point:

“Soooo…..if the Bible is just a collection of men in past times idea of what God was trying to say, then – what?”

Indeed then what? Only a person who needs the threat of hell over him to act ethically and righteously would have to ask. The rest of us have no trouble living by what Torah says, because it makes sense or because it’s a good idea in itself. To us it really doesn’t matter if Torah came down directly from G-d to Moshe, or if it is a collection of edited rules for good living – what matters to us is G-d.

“Surely without the acceptance that the Bible is handed by God to man through divine inspiration, as God’s infallible word to His creation, then any old oddball doctrine – say gold plates from Joseph Smith, Jim Jones Socialism or Reverend Moon oddballness can simply claim God tells me things and this is truth.”

Of course, and they have every right to do so – because G-d is merely interested in what you DO – not how you came about what to do. Torah doesn’t need to be “handed by God to man through divine inspiration, as God’s infallible word to His creation” – because in the end it’s all about what we believe it to be, and what we do with it.

“We have to have a measure by which doctrine is measured…,”

The bitch about any Holy Scripture – be it Xtian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu or Buddhist – is that the only measure we have by which to measure it is BELIEF/FAITH. All we can scientifically establish about religious scriptures is an approximate time period of when it was first put to paper, where it was put to paper, and some times also by whom – but the actual objective truth or values of it’s contents cannot be established by science.

“…or else we have the mess which people such as yourself who preach atheistic materialism.”

So by what measure are you measuring yourself after you violated Torah witnessing false against your neighbor? It sure isn’t Torah.

“(Exo 20:16) (20:13) Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.

(Deu 5:20) (5:17) Neither shalt thou bear false witness against thy neighbour.”

I have known Dale for several years – and he does not preach atheistic materialism – nor has he ever done so as long as I have known him. He professes to be an agnostic – i.e he claims that the existence of G-d cannot be either proven or disproven. Rather than being a materialist he is very much an ethical/spiritual sceptic, which is far from being an atheist materialist.

You, Harry, on the other hand is a dreadful example for your badly hidden beliefs – actually proving Dale’s point right with every word you utter here.

—-

So far what’s happening on another Blog that I found interesting.

Posted in Q'uran, Religion, Religious Fundamentalism | 3 Comments »

Science – Can it dictate Ethics?

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 29, 2007


Three opponents, three different results

This entire discussion is a very good example of how a respectful, friendly and fruitful discussion on heated topics should be conducted. It also proves that Scientific-Religious matters can be discussed without all the over and undertones that so often enter into matters that touches on personal experiences and matters of beliefs.

This is a very interesting discussion – I have excluded the arguments that were simple ad hominems and thus had to exclude one of the debaters – nevertheless the arguments deserve consideration and additional rebuttals 🙂 I do hope you do not mind, Dale.

Dale Husband: “Religion was the ONLY basis for ethics in most ancient societies because there was no conception of science or scientific methods in them back then. So religion served a good purpose then. My argument is that we need to go beyond that now.”

It is true that religion was the basis for ethics in ancient times, but I am not sure it was the only one – the Ancient Greeks would probably disagree with that statement. Stating that there was no conception of science or scientific method back then, while it might be a correct assertion by subjective standards today, it would be, IMO, incorrect from an objective standard – we do not know what kind of empirical data religious Laws were based on in those times.

One such example could be the Biblical prohibition against mixing different species of garments – something that has later shown to be a not so good idea, as garments made of animal products (wool and silk) have shown to be less durable if they are sewn or mixed together with plant products (flax and cotton) – it is fully possible, and probable that the Ancients through observation determined this to be true. That they then gave this empirical data divine origin doesn’t detract from the scientific method by which they arrived at the conclusion. Same with breeding different species of animals – the observation that the off-spring did not breed in turn (like mules and sheep goats) would have in the same manner given them empirical data to support the prohibition against cross species breeding. Again that they gave this a divine origin does not detract from their empirical scientific conclusion.

That we decide that decisions, prohibitions, ethics etc in Ancient times were based in religion, without any scientific data to back them up can be asserted if we at the same time judge Ancient times to be less evolved than our times – but what is our basis for such judgment? Each time and culture has its needs, each time and culture has its sociological structure for which it attempts to provide the best solutions to issues challenging that specific time, culture and structure.

CheWorks: “Maybe you are mixing up religion with spirituality, Dale. Science proves there are ethical standards such as recycling. Would God tell us to recycle? No.”

In the beginning of this Blog entry it is determined that CheWorks is a Marxist Atheist, which explains his disparaging comments about religion and G-d.

He asks a question: “Would G-d tell us to recycle?” He then answers his own question: “No“. Whether G-d tells us to recycle or not is actually a matter of debate. The concept of Tikkun Olam – “healing the world” and the various commandments in regards to how to treat animals, fertile land, how to dispose of various waste products certainly indicate that the authors of Torah had a natural cycling and care for natural resources in mind. There are several passages where we are warned about what will happen if we do not care for the Earth and it’s natural resources, and the consequences of misusing are stated as harsh indeed. So stating that G-d does not tell us to recycle is at best ignorant, at worst it’s an Atheist propagandist statement made for the effect and nothing else.

CheWorks:“Nowhere more than in the Judeo-Christian tradition do I see a pathetic God trying to gain respect. This has nothing to do with ethics. Nowadays religion supports wealth at any cost, which means enslaving 99% of the human population. This is hardly ethical.” (sic)

It is interesting that this debater chooses to attack Judaic and Xtian Traditions, but excludes Islamic Tradition, which from his point of view should be just as unethical. Note how he makes a statement about religion and wealth attaching to religion values that cannot be asserted objectively, without any supportive argument of his, and then makes the assertion that what he just said is unethical – that is a straw man, and I am surprised that it wasn’t caught by by the initiator of the debate.

CheWorks:“Can you please explain how science can help homophobes? Is it by showing that they are of the same chromosomes as heterosexuals?”

Interwoven comment by Dale: Interesting that he accepts my premise as valid and moves the discussion forward by bringing in an issue for which it would be a good demonstration of the truth of my idea.

Not really surprising – because Dale is, to CheWorks’ mind, attacking religion, and Judaic and Xtian Traditions in particular, it is only logical that he would accept Dale’s premise and move the discussion on to a subject where he can further attack those “loathesome” traditions. The problem is that the discussion doesn’t take the desired turn – no-one comes in and gets all worked up over what he says – in fact no-one even addresses the low points of his contribution. So he silently crawls back to his hole.

Dale Husband: “Science is still investigating the causes of homosexuality, but if a physical cause was indeed found, it would blow away forever the notion that gays follow a lifestyle that is their free choice, and then there would be no legal basis for them to be punished for expressing their true nature. Homosexuality could no longer rightfully be called a “sin”. But since so many people do not accept evolution as true for religious reasons, they won’t accept those findings either.”

I didn’t catch this the first time around: “But since so many people do not accept evolution as true for religious reasons, they won’t accept those findings either.

I am not sure accepting evolution would automatically imply acceptance of scientific findings that indicate homosexuality is not a choice – I know plenty of people who accept the premise that being homosexual is not at choice, but acting homosexual is, and who as a result of this, IMO, rather strained split of people’s personalities, demand celibacy as the only way to be homosexual. Now one can certainly debate the moral and ethic values of splitting people into beings and actions, but it is a solution that indicate that the people doing so have accepted the idea that homosexuality might not be a choice.

Finally, my third opponent arrived. This one was known as Shadow Bear or Silly Old Bear. Unlike the first two, this one was a friend of mine. He is also Jewish.

To understand my comments below – we have to include the comments by Dale that I was responding to, it might have been excluded from the discussion in Dale’s Blog for whatever reason – in any case it needs repeating here, I hope Dale does not mind.

 

DH: “If you are referring to a criminal, that is a matter for testing as well, by comparing societies that have thedeath penalty with those that don’t. If you mean people like Terry Schivo, it was made clear after her death that she had no possibility of recovery. To keep her body alive would have been wasting resources that would have been better used on people that were more likely to recover.”

SOB:This has me a little concerned – because this reduces a person down to what he or she can produce in terms of what is beneficial to Society. It opens a whole lot of cans, I’d rather see kept closed. It raises the question “Who is to decide what is beneficial to Society?” That has been tried – it didn’t work from a Humane point of view – both the Nazis and the Fascists used this “touch stone” in their politics, and it destroyed a lot of knowledge, experience and human history. The idea that what is good for Society is what a human is worth only works if Society’s basic ethical and moral standards are such that they take into account that we do not always know what is good for Society. What then should be the scientific test to determine this? How do you scientifically measure that which cannot be measured?”

DH: “As I see it, the Nazis and fascists made a point of judging other races of people as inferior without any empirical justification. That was the opposite of scientific thinking and led to their downfall when they were proven wrong. It is true that we do not know the potential value of people and it cannot be measured empirically. But if we do not come up with an empirical reason to prohibit murder, what can we say to a person who rejects all religion and wants a reason to justify whatever he wishes to do, including murder? And keep in mind that many senseless killings have been done in the name of religion. There is the potential for corruption in all things, which is why free inquiry is so important. If we cannot question authority, it can destroy us.”

SOB: “That is not quite true – both the Fascists and the Nazis based their ideas about races of people, disabled – both mental and physical , homosexuals, political and religious beliefs on what they considered to be empirical evidence – such as homosexuals not being likely to reproduce, Jews being a genetic contamination, mental and physically disabled not being productive etc. All based on the science they had access to. Those empirical evidence might not be satisfactory to you and me, but that is only because you and I are measuring the evidence using another scale – based in what we consider ethical. Not because of the science as such.”

“Religion is not necessary for making sound ethical decisions or f.i not to murder. I have not always been a religious man – still I have always held the opinion that all people are equal with equal rights to life. This can be arrived at by simple logical deduction. Atheists and Secular Humanists are not unethical, murderous or amoral. It doesn’t exclude that there certainly do exist such atheists or secular humanists, just as there are unethical, murderous or amoral religious people. Let’s not make Science another religion, Dale – it is quite defendable without needing all the trimmings of religion. Simple logic is enough.”

I would like to here further address one of Dale’s Statements:

DH: “If we cannot question authority, it can destroy us”

As can be seen in many countries, democratic or not, where Freedom of Speech(as it was once created – to safeguard the People’s right to criticize their government without fear of reprisals) is in any way suppressed. Authority that goes unscrutinized will in the end lose all democratic resemblance and become the enemy of that which it was presumably once implemented to protect – the People.

Dale left out another portion, that to my mind is important:

DH: “No one individual should ever have that power[to decide what is beneficial to Society?], but a collective consensus can gradually be reached as a result of people performing observations and experimental tests repeatedly to establish a pattern of benefits among people as a result of following ethical codes.”

SOB: This assumes that

  1. all agree on what are the ethical codes that should be followed, and already you and I are disagreeing on whether science in itself holds ethical merit or not.

  2. scientific evolution always leads to a step higher than previously arrived at, and that is not always the case.

  3. the goals set for the scientific evolution are the same for all at all times. That is not always the case.

DH: “There are indeed limitations to what experimentation and empiricism can do, but the alternative is to do nothing and allow oppressive dogmas that people are so often made to follow to go unchallenged.”

SOB: I agree on the limitations, and that is where I choose to take a step beyond that which can be measured, and presuppose that with or without empirical data, the human mind is capable of creating ethical codes that do benefit the most people without putting a scientific “price-tag” on them. I agree on the oppressiveness of dogmas, if imposed on people without sound reasoning, and I do believe that such dogmas should be questioned. But that is a choice we make, not something that is necessarily scientific – it is still sound though.

Next comment is an example to illustrate the my point:

SOB: Example:“Scientifically it cannot be proven that Homosexuality is not a choice, so if all I had to go on was science I might be inclined to agree with the fundamentalists that homosexuality is indeed a sin according to Torah. There would be nothing to tell me otherwise. But because I do indeed choose what dogmas to incorporate in my ethics I have gone out of my way to find other ways to view homosexuality and Torah, so that the two do not contradict each other. Where there are no scientific data, we still have to make a choice as to how to act ethically.”

I truly enjoy discussing with Dale – he is fun, educated, well spoken and respectful of his opponents.

Posted in Debate, Religion, Science | Tagged: | 9 Comments »

 
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