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  2. thormas

    Heathens! 2

    You're on a roll - good stuff.
  3. No idea what hypothesis you mean Eastern traditions, then you really do need to read Hart who quotes frequently from Hinduism. And yet you never answered the questions about Campbell.
  4. While I like Campbell ... I don't by and large buy in. I have read a lot his stuff. Though he is more into the Eastern traditions .... which to my mind are more sensible. But ... no I was referring to what you wrote.
  5. No complains about Campbell though?? Is he just flowery language? Is his a hypothesis or belief? I mean you did quote him! What hypothesis is not helpful? Campbell?
  6. If we call God ... what we don't know what we are talking about, then fine. You will have no argument from me. I'll be a little skeptical about that one too. But to me it is not God; but whatever it is, it is dressed up in flowery language. A hypothesis that is not helpful in any meaningful way.
  7. Joseph is not the only great theological thinker. And, we must say of Joseph what we say of all religious or theological thinkers, is that his is a belief statement - we do not know, there is no absolute certainty. So Joseph's depiction of the 'ultimate' is his belief. I like Campbell and I like what he says here. I allow for the transcendence of duality and I allow for the dissolving of self* into the ground of being (actually such dissolving of self is referred to as selflessness in everyday life) and I have already said that theologians speak about the human experience of God as opposed to God in himself. Therefore, and of course, our images are metaphor - (a favorite book by John Hick is 'The Metaphor of God Incarnate'). So, our metaphors refer to ultimate mystery (an idea sacrosanct in theology). So, I am in agreement with a good deal of Joseph's belief but then we diverge a bit (believing somewhat different things) or we simply give the same 'ultimate' different names. I agree that there is 'one - the mystery of our being and the being of the world.' And, that (the various and diverse human) images for god give way in the experience of the ultimate mystery, I also agree that there is nobody there (and also no there), no god, no you. Because you, me, god, there, nobody, anybody are objects and in uniting with mystery, there are no objects among other objects, there is one, the mystery. Where I differ, respectfully, very respectfully with Joseph is that for me, there is no god (understood here as human image of god, metaphor), there is only the Ultimate Mystery (from which we come, in which we are, to which we unite or re-connect). It is precisely Campbell's ultimate mystery that theism calls "God." Not a supreme person, not part of the universe, not Jesus Christ, not an object capable of being explored - rather, in Campbell's words: "the ultimate mystery of your own being, which is the mystery of the being of the world as well." It is this mystery, that I refer to as "God." The ultimate mystery is unnameable and unknowable (for Campbell who never names it and states that all our images/names are metaphor that never fully touch the reality). The mystery is not an object, not one of us, not part of the universe - the mystery is that to which all that is, tends (goal), the mystery of our being. So is the mystery prior to our being, is it the source of our being, of all being- especially since for Campbell, it is our destiny/goal? Rom, you quoted Campbell: so I assume you agree in whole or part with him (or were you just throwing ontological)? If you are in agreement, then you are agreeing with his belief statement- is there evidence for the specifics of what he has said? Do you believe there is ultimate mystery which is our goal and source? If all dissolves in the ultimate mystery which is the source of the being of the world, it is also the source of the being of the universe- so is it the universe? Anyway, it is this mystery, that I refer to as "God." So, with Joseph I am in good company.
  8. romansh

    Heathens! 2

    Surely it was eleven?
  9. Joseph Campbell ... a great theological thinker.
  10. To me these two statements are contradictory ... the substrate effectively is the universe so how could it not be part of the universe? Frankly this does not make sense to me. Plain language please. Your use of ontological does not make sense. Are concepts objects? Are concepts within the scope of scientific inquiry? Does God have an effect in this universe. If "yes" then God is subject to inquiry. If no then God is totally irrelevant. That is how the word is used. Most dictionaries claim that the etymology of the word comes Latin Re Ligare ... re has the common English use, again and ligare is connect as in ligament or ligand. The question reconnect to what? Society, community church, nature, the universe? Then why do we insist on a upper case G? And can you show me the working as to how we get to this point? I don't think they are disregarding the difference, they are just hoping for a discussion based on some rational basis. Otherwise we throw in a few ontologicals and epistemologicals for good measure and quote good theological thinkers who have thought about that which cannot be thought about or at least any conclusion they may come to is without basis ... ie stuff that is not part of this universe.
  11. The scope of science is the entirety of the universe; science posits theories, offers descriptions and delves into secrets of the universe. However, as said, we can debate its accuracy: there is no absolute certainty with science. Many of us, (atheists, agnostics, theists, humanists, pantheists and panentheists) agree that science gives us more and more accurate descriptions of how the universe ticks and also that it has limitations. It is because we 'don't actually know anything' (although I prefer to say everything) that I have referred, numerous times, to opinions or beliefs, however, I think this statement needs a clearer explanation. I want to make two simple points (meant to be explanatory not argumentative). First, science: we do have facts, hypotheses and theories about the universe and the things, laws and processes in the universe, so, on one hand, we do know some-things. However, there currently seem to be two possibilities (perhaps there are others), either seemingly acceptable: if all is illusion then, then the objects of scientific inquire are illusory and, we portray the universe as it seems while speculating on what is real. Conversely, if we accept that the universe is real, then, the vast range of scientific tools, is giving us greater insights about the universe, as it is. If those who are more versed in science care to elaborate, please do. Most of us appreciate the sciences and, seemingly, all of us rely on the sciences. Furthermore, many people (me included) see no contradiction or problem(s) with science as it relates to religious belief (some obviously do, but they are not the present concern). For me, and if you read Hart's 1st chapter, you'll see that 'believers' or religious persons, should have no issue with science (nor fear it). The point is that, for me, for Hart, for many others, science describes the universe and we are better for it: the universe (illusion or real) is the object(s) on which science focuses and postulates. Second, religion: "God" is not believed to be part of the universe. Or, to use language from this thread: "God" is the reality, the substrate/ground of all objects (be they not as they seem or as they seem). "God" is not the universe or the multiverse; not in or part of the universe or multiverse, as one object among others. Rather, "God" is the very possibility of every-thing: "God" is ontologically prior to and the continuing ontological possibility of the universe, of creation, of all. "God," so understood, is not an object and, as such, is not within the scope of scientific inquiry. This is why I have referred to "God" as the subject of faith - different from the objects of science. You will see, in this paragraph that I have continually use the word, believe. Religion, by definition is belief and for all theistic religions, that belief is (in) "God." Religion, the best of religion and its best thinkers is not (should not be) anti-science. The primary focus (although not the only one, since its adherents are inhabitants of the universe) of religion is not the universe (in the way it is for science) but the ultimate meaning of life and the living of that meaning. It believes that meaning is found in "God," or the meaning is "God." "God" says Hart is not a proper name (his use of quotes signifies this and also that he is not talking about gods). The best religious thinkers talk about the human 'experience' of 'God" - realizing they cannot talk about what is referred to as "God" in himself. So too, when I say “God” is Love, it is a belief statement, a human insight, of the "Reality" that is experienced in creation. I fully accept that some do not accept this explanation of religion or “God” and I have no problem with that. I fully accept that some people do not believe there is anything ontologically prior to the universe or creation (i.e. what some call “God”). I fully accept some people believe that creation, whether it is real or illusory, is all there is and, I assume, they believe this because there is no evidence to prove there is anything other than the universe - even at the same time they acknowledge there is no certainty either way or any way! However, if some others posit there is no “God” (as understood above) but that there is a reality 'beyond' the universe or 'behind/ beyond or transcending' illusion, and since they cannot know this with certainty, this seems to be a statement of belief. Moreover, for someone to ask for evidence of “God” is to disregard (which is their right) the difference between science and religion (see above): it disregards that there can be no evidence, for or against, that which is not an object; it disregards that there is, there can be no certainty. And, such requests can be disregarded. Finally, I don’t have a problem with ‘illusion’ although I sometimes felt it was not always clear – especially when coupled with free will as illusion and the meaninglessness of life (the first two I can see as valid lines of scientific inquiry , the last is, regardless of what side you come down on, a statement of belief). Be that as it may, I believed the concept of ‘illusion’ could be linked to a Christian understanding (cf. an earlier post in this thread).
  12. I have been using that meaning, actually wrote a couple of larger posts on it after Joseph's comments. Interesting idea but the jury is out for me. And if by unmentionables, you mean what I think you mean, a good step. But it is not a quid pro quo. Of course we still comment on "God" while at the same time stating he is not an object. It is human nature to try to grasp, to say something of that which some believe is and is in their midst. Isn't this similar (not identical) for those who think all is illusion (defined above) but posit a 'as it is' that underlies, if you will, the illusion? Is there proof, certainty, for such a supposed reality? Can such a supposed reality be analyzed or, if it is indeed, reality, is it beyond the tools and efforts of being who live in and actually are illusion?
  13. Last week
  14. Then treat the word illusion as not as it seems And I won't need to give examples of the unmentionable. It would appear "God" is not an object; but we still can comment on?
  15. Two comments only: On delusion: So just walk away: stop the comments! Opinion or not - they are unnecessary, especially on a site like this. on God: You have just nailed the difference: you speak of gods, I and others speak of "God" quotes and uppercase intentional (cf Hart). The gods, not "God" are objects that we can comment on.
  16. What did you think of Krauss's A Universe from Nothing? where the sum total of energy in the universe is hypothesised to be zero. Interesting no?
  17. I am thanks. The agitation you sensed was an illusion on your part. So post modernism rules. So when I point out the illogic you use (an opinion admittedly) there is no problem. Good. Double down? Really I tried to walk away from my comment yet you insisted a few times on an explanation. Really thormas. I was giving an example of what might be considered on bordering on delusion. I left to the reader to which side it is. Plainly you think of it as delusional. Interesting? I don't care what modern writers think. I was thinking of a nice lady (my opinion) who demonstrated her ability. I sat through the episode politely and expressed my doubt politely. There was no point on pressing the issue. Again it is you who pressed for an explanation ... I tried to walk away. You still are pressing. Opinion? Based on evidence. Based on assertion. But are we using it to the full? Are we ignoring the way the universe appears to tick.? But there is evidence against Gods if we give them properties like loving. There is no evidence against Roman and Norse Gods. Really? Quite. But is there evidence? Then it becomes more than just opinion. If everything is opinion and belief can be discounted as that, then why on Earth express your opinion? Are all opinions equally invalid? This is a debate and discussion forum. If we are simply going to stick to our opinions no matter how much contrary evidence is brought to bear, and we simply discount the evidence and effectively say ... there is no evidence for what I believe and that is OK. This is OK as a personal belief but in a debate and discussion forum?
  18. Rom, you really have to remain calm. I already said I referred to them as statements (or if you prefer, assertions - who cares) so I was simply and repeatedly asking you to respond. Not that hard. So, sure people disagree and sometimes it is easy (at least supposedly) to say one is mistaken and the other correct, However if, as admitted, there is no absolute certainty, then who is mistaken and who correct is probably difficult (and increases in difficulty in given the topic) - actually impossible to determine. And it is obvious the delusional comment is not nonsense - since you doubled down, plus we are not talking about speaking in tongues (but even this one - what did the biblical writer mean, what does a modern mean by speaking in tongues?) is not as easy as it might seem. We, or you, have been through this before concerning ignorance. And even Joseph pointed out "better left unsaid when it comes to the word ignorant or inference that a view is pinned to just our perceptions as if that is inferior to our own on a particular matter. Don't you think so ?. As it doesn't seem to me to play out very well in a conversation or civil discussion that way." So, substitute, "Separateness is bordering on delusion in my opinion." If another person believe there is separateness (which seems to fall under opinion especially since we can't be certain) and you say it (that opinion/beliief) is bordering on delusion, you have implied and one may infer (again) you have said the person who holds such a belief is...... deluded or delusional. All Joseph was saying was such comments were better left unsaid; all I'm saying is you (we) should be a little more careful with our words. Okay, that's settled. So we are agreed that science is limited, that the scientific method has value - and no one is trashing science. One issue at a time, but you do realize, don't you, that not everyone has to jump through torturous pathways (catchy though) concerning God. Also, you impose your reliance on (demand for?) evidence on others yet some others believe (operative word) that "God" is not an object and, therefore, there is no evidence against .......or for "God." Even with evidence and scientific tools, you have stated that there is no absolute certainty; that science has no answer. Therefore you have opinions, you make 'rational' arguments and you present 'evidence' however there is no certainty: when you make statements that life has no meaning, when you make statements that "god" is not and/or is not Love, or everything, being, unconditional reality, etc. - these are opinions, these are your beliefs. This is not to deny science, it is only to agree, with you, on its limits. The religious believer also does not have absolute certainty, when they say, "God" is........it is a belief statement. The assumed delusion of another is in the eye of the beholder, in other word, it is opinion - so, the suggestion is to keep these kinds of opinion on the down low or simply mute them.
  19. Note these are not questions Thormas ... For the most part assertions. For example: Depending on the context possibly true. Do you believe two people can hold diametrically opposing views and at least one of them is not mistaken? The delusional comment is pure nonsense. But certainly I do think certain views are bordering on the delusions. eg the ability to speak in tongues is one of the milder ones. To be clear ... I did not say they [people] were delusional. Yes science is limited ... but it [scientific method] is a really good method to test our intuitions. Again you will have to explain ... unconditional reality ... if you mean bits of the universe that don't respond to cause and effect, then I am at a loss unless you are referring to a universe where there is no cause and effect. And that too has some implications. Where did I call anyone deluded? I think certain positions are deluded. Possibly some of mine. But I can put a rational argument for most of mine. For example saying God is Love. And God is in everything. One has to jump through tortuous pathways and exclusions to try and make any sense of it. If we look at the evidence, the evidence is against such propositions. I also understand that the positions we hold can be extensions of ourselves sometimes very deeply held extensions. Now I can see how someone might come to such a position and whether that position is deluded is in the eye of the beholder and to some degree a semantic debate.
  20. Well, just to show I did try (and I referred to the following as a question (perhaps implied) but also, a statement and I was awaiting your response. So here is the relevant part: ........ in effect you are saying anyone who disagrees with what you believe is delusional: mistaken, misunderstanding, misapprehending. ....... I'm saying is be a little more careful with your descriptors. You must realize that many people (present company excluded) might be offended by having their beliefs called delusional and, by extension, being called deluded themselves. You say, if positions were reversed, you would weigh the evidence - but you rely for everything on evidence. You must realize, that not everybody relies on it as you do and not all believe (the) evidence is conclusive, ........plus, some/many others simply believe that science studies the universe, has a limited (but expanding) array of tools to assess (judge, gauge, estimate, appraise, analyst, determine) the universe and that this work is on the objects in, the laws of, the energy of universe - in other words, all that is part of the universe (or even the multiverse); they believe the universe is continent (fortuitous), objective reality and, as such, is the proper focus of scientific study. However, they believe, to put it in classical terms, there is unconditional, necessary reality by which all continent reality -. every-thing, every object - is dependent. Given 'unconditional reality' and given what science is, there is no-thing, no object for it to assess, gauge or analyze. I know you do not, will not - ever -accept this - and not only am I fine with that and respect (but disagree with) your position - I have no need to call you deluded. Such would be a fruitless comment and a waste of time. Plus, in the best way, I simply don't care: your beliefs, your reliance on evidence I take as sincere, and I accept that never the twain shall never. And there you go!!
  21. Which question? ... I searched the question marks and replied to them.
  22. you seem to be avoiding the question on the table You were asked and I await your response....
  23. Perhaps ... it appears you missed my two points too. Yes I have views about certain opinions. Don't you? My second point ... there appears to be a contradiction between separateness and "contingent reality".
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