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PaulS

Deleting 'god'

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2 hours ago, PaulS said:

There is no contradiction - I slowly began to believe something different, not because I chose to but because the new information 'made' me believe the way I did.  This is precisely what I am saying about belief not being a choice.  Evidence or data speaks to you and you do or don't believe.  You don't get to choose what you believe.  The illusion is that you think you are making a choice - you're not.  I never put old data aside but was open to new data which made me change my beliefs, but not because I chose to change them.  They changed because they were required to with he new information.  A true choice would be ignore what you believe and go with something you don't believe, but say you believe it.

Not sure why you would feel depressed about not having an existence after this one, but I would argue that just because we don't like something is not a good enough reason for it not to exist.  I expect religion is very much a product of people not wanting to die, rather than the other way around.  Perhaps the evolution of mankind's intelligence is a curse in this regard.

Apologies Paul as your writing is more clear than some. I wasn't looking at is as a contradiction but a further statement, particularly the statement, "other data and evidence and slowly began to believe something different."   I simply see the choice to read new information as part of the process leading to a new belief. There is an actor, the individual human being and he/she - perhaps feeling restless with the old, perhaps in a spirit of discovery - decides to look at new information, new data, gather and get new insights and something 'speaks to you.' This choice leads, especially in the case of God/no God, meaning/no meaning, to a new belief. Simply one now believes something other or different than he previously did.  I think the individual actor set this in place; if not for his/her choice, if not for his/her openness, there would be nothing to speak to him and no new belief.

I am under no illusion: 'I' made the decision, 'I' did the work, 'I' therefore have a new belief.  Chest moi!  No illusion, I simply disagree with the other position - as you do with me.

As for ignoring what you believe and saying you believe something you don't believe: it is not realistic, not practical, and quite impossible in real life with meaningful beliefs. Belief prompts one to, or conditions one for, action: for those who, in the normal course of life, accept and believe a red light means STOP,  to go with something one doesn't believe but they say they do, i.e. the red light means Go (if it is true belief and not a game), is not realistic, certainly not practical, and in real life, absurd. It would not be believed because all the data, all the evidence does not resonate and no one would choose this belief. 

I think we have now beat all the horses in the stable to death!

The depression, if such a view was taken to heart, if one chooses to believe this position, is not about an 'afterlife' - it is about the meaninglessness of life. As previously discussed, in such a belief, in spite of efforts to make it meaningful or have meaningful relationships - it is still sound and fury and means nothing. It just happened, it might have even been an accident and all effort ultimately means nothing - it had no meaning to begin (or end) with. The Rock after all eternity, remains where it began - all effort, all plans, all determination to make something of 'this' - is all for naught. If it happened, if it never happened - it is the same. Without meaning, it is absurd, it is less than absurd: it is Nothing! As one author put it: "the secret to a happy life then is either not to notice or not to let it bother one overly much."

I simply don't buy that life is happenstance, rather I think it is purposeful. Thus there is meaning and we (can) make a difference. It means Everything! 

Again, this is my opinion or my belief after the choice to read, research, think and consider and I continue to choose to believe it :+}

Edited by thormas

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1 hour ago, thormas said:

Apologies Paul as your writing is more clear than some. I wasn't looking at is as a contradiction but a further statement, particularly the statement, "other data and evidence and slowly began to believe something different."   I simply see the choice to read new information as part of the process leading to a new belief. There is an actor, the individual human being and he/she - perhaps feeling restless with the old, perhaps in a spirit of discovery - decides to look at new information, new data, gather and get new insights and something 'speaks to you.' This choice leads, especially in the case of God/no God, meaning/no meaning, to a new belief. Simply one now believes something other or different than he previously did.  I think the individual actor set this in place; if not for his/her choice, if not for his/her openness, there would be nothing to speak to him and no new belief.

But we are agreeing here Thormas.  Yes, one chooses to investigate new avenues and expose themselves perhaps to uncomfortable information that may contradict beliefs they hold, I'm just trying to say that when the 'penny drops' or 'it clicks' for them that the new information holds a new truth for them, that one doesn't 'choose' that belief, it just happens naturally as a result of the new information seeming now apparently as the truth.  You can choose to ignore that information, but like it or not, if it rings true for you then you will believe.  That is what I am saying we have no choice over.  Clear as mud?

1 hour ago, thormas said:

I am under no illusion: 'I' made the decision, 'I' did the work, 'I' therefore have a new belief.  Chest moi!  No illusion, I simply disagree with the other position - as you do with me.

You only made the decision to review the information, not accept it as true.  That bit you had no control over.  Yes, you did the work of reading it, but the illusion is thinking you 'chose' to believe rather than understand it as simply unstoppable either way - you would have believed or not whether you wanted to or not.  

1 hour ago, thormas said:

As for ignoring what you believe and saying you believe something you don't believe: it is not realistic, not practical, and quite impossible in real life with meaningful beliefs. Belief prompts one to, or conditions one for, action: for those who, in the normal course of life, accept and believe a red light means STOP,  to go with something one doesn't believe but they say they do, i.e. the red light means Go (if it is true belief and not a game), is not realistic, certainly not practical, and in real life, absurd. It would not be believed because all the data, all the evidence does not resonate and no one would choose this belief. 

Once you hold a belief you may action it, but whilst those actions may be choices as a result of belief, I don't think one chooses the belief itself.  As you point out it is not realistic to ignore what you believe, which is precisely why I say belief is not a choice.  You cannot 'choose' belief.  You have it in something or you don't.  You may change your beliefs (as we all do) but that is because something speaks to you as the new truth, not because you consciously said I will believe this now over that.

1 hour ago, thormas said:

I think we have now beat all the horses in the stable to death!

Well, it wouldn't be the first time people have continued to flog a dead horse! :) (or is that just an Aussie saying?)

1 hour ago, thormas said:

The depression, if such a view was taken to heart, if one chooses to believe this position, is not about an 'afterlife' - it is about the meaninglessness of life. As previously discussed, in such a belief, in spite of efforts to make it meaningful or have meaningful relationships - it is still sound and fury and means nothing. It just happened, it might have even been an accident and all effort ultimately means nothing - it had no meaning to begin (or end) with. The Rock after all eternity, remains where it began - all effort, all plans, all determination to make something of 'this' - is all for naught. If it happened, if it never happened - it is the same. Without meaning, it is absurd, it is less than absurd: it is Nothing! As one author put it: "the secret to a happy life then is either not to notice or not to let it bother one overly much."

I simply don't buy that life is happenstance, rather I think it is purposeful. Thus there is meaning and we (can) make a difference. It means Everything! 

Life isn't happenstance but has purpose, because you are alive.  There is meaning and we can make a difference, even though it's lights out at the end of it and there is no afterlife (if I am right that is).

Are the things around us that don't have a consciousness meaningless simply because they don't carry on after this life?  Are flowers, waterfalls, mountain ranges,and even rocks meaningless?  I suspect not.  They shape our lives and the lives of people to come.  The influence you have on your children and the planet are not meaningless simply because you cease to exist after 80 or so years.  Whether one believes in an afterlife or not, usually their 'memory' lives on after they are gone.  We talk about holding the deceased 'in our hearts' after they are gone.  I don't think we think their lives are meaningless even if we think we are never going to see them again.

But I understand the attraction of wanting to live forever (in some way, shape or form and perhaps with a little bit of variation so we don't get too bored).  I think that's where faith and hope maybe got started then later became terms for some sort of certainty about the afterlife (i.e rather than just being terms for hopeful thinking that one's existence will continue on in a good way, they often now are terms used as something to be 'required' in order to get to the afterlife - i.e. one MUST have faith/hope in Jesus).

Look, if there is an afterlife then maybe you will get to tell me "I told you so' and we can finally share that bottle of red.  If I'm right, then you won't know about it anyway. :)

 

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7 minutes ago, PaulS said:

Life isn't happenstance but has purpose, because you are alive.  There is meaning and we can make a difference, even though it's lights out at the end of it and there is no afterlife (if I am right that is).

I'll respond to the last part now, the rest tomorrow, after all it is a bit late.

We simply have a philosophical difference. I go back to Sisyphus: he is alive but any purpose is illusion: it mattered not that he was. If he were not, nothing would be different. This is happenstance. Sisyphus did not make a difference - at all. It was a valiant struggle, a great act of defiance, an effort to matter, of trying to influence - but again, nothing.  It is illusion. 

Are the things around us that don't have a consciousness meaningless simply because they don't carry on after this life?  Are flowers, waterfalls, mountain ranges,and even rocks meaningless?  I suspect not.  They shape our lives and the lives of people to come.  The influence you have on your children and the planet are not meaningless simply because you cease to exist after 80 or so years.  Whether one believes in an afterlife or not, usually their 'memory' lives on after they are gone.  We talk about holding the deceased 'in our hearts' after they are gone.  I don't think we think their lives are meaningless even if we think we are never going to see them again.

That is exactly it, in this scenario, it is all is meaningless. In the scenario I accept (and I am not arguing it is better because I accept it), all has meaning, all is caught up in the meaningfulness, the ultimate purposefulness of creation. Again, in my scenario, one's influence, one's life is not at all meaningless, no matter if you live for a day, 12 years, 50 or 90. And all has meaning in itself and as part of All. Again, it is not about after-life. You concentrate on the 'end' while my focus is on the on-going beginning: the Why of it all. If I understand you correctly, you have no reason why, it just it (accident, happenstance?); it has no meaning. In my scenario, it does!.

But I understand the attraction of wanting to live forever (in some way, shape or form and perhaps with a little bit of variation so we don't get too bored).  I think that's where faith and hope maybe got started then later became terms for some sort of certainty about the afterlife (i.e rather than just being terms for hopeful thinking that one's existence will continue on in a good way, they often now are terms used as something to be 'required' in order to get to the afterlife - i.e. one MUST have faith/hope in Jesus).

Again, it is not wanting to live forever or getting bored; it is first and foremost about the Meaning/Purposefulness -  of being at all. There is either Purpose or there is not (unless there is another scenario that somebody else has that we should consider). And, to try to clarify, let me add (for lack of a better description) I am referring to an ultimate or overarching Purpose/Meaning and not simply the purpose that a Sisyphus tries to make when he recognizes there is no Meaning.  If there is such Meaning, is it such that I become It (so to speak) now and will continue to participate in the All? Well, I have faith (in the purpose or better the One who is Purpose (again for lack of a better way to phrase it right now) and therefore, I have hope that I will be (that's what faith and hope is, no certainty).  Simply, if there is no God (and I don't mean a theistic, supernatural version) there is only absurdity. I admire Sisyphus but don't want to be him.

Look, if there is an afterlife then maybe you will get to tell me "I told you so' and we can finally share that bottle of red.  If I'm right, then you won't know about it anyway. :)

Don't worry, if we continue, I won't say I told you so - but we will drink our wine.

 

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Well it is lunchtime here and I have a day off, so no sleep issues for me right at this point in time (which clearly will be the opposite in about 12hrs time)!

We simply have a philosophical difference. I go back to Sisyphus: he is alive but any purpose is illusion: it mattered not that he was. If he were not, nothing would be different. This is happenstance. Sisyphus did not make a difference - at all. It was a valiant struggle, a great act of defiance, an effort to matter, of trying to influence - but again, nothing.  It is illusion. 

I'm not sure you and I are any different to Sisyphus.  How could his purpose be any more an illusion than anybody's purpose in this life?  If there is a more, even if one doesn't believe in such, are they not living out just as much a purposeful life as somebody who thinks there is a more?  Clearly it did matter that Sisyphus lived or else we wouldn't be talking about him today.  So whilst he may not believe in a more, nonetheless his life still had purpose and meaning.  Perhaps he was just too miserable in is own philosophy to realise it!

That is exactly it, in this scenario, it is all is meaningless. In the scenario I accept (and I am not arguing it is better because I accept it), all has meaning, all is caught up in the meaningfulness, the ultimate purposefulness of creation. Again, in my scenario, one's influence, one's life is not at all meaningless, no matter if you live for a day, 12 years, 50 or 90. And all has meaning in itself and as part of All. Again, it is not about after-life. You concentrate on the 'end' while my focus is on the on-going beginning: the Why of it all. If I understand you correctly, you have no reason why, it just it (accident, happenstance?); it has no meaning. In my scenario, it does!.

My focus is not on the after life but I fail to see the difference in living a life without thinking there is a 'more' versus living a life wondering about the 'why of it all' along the way.  End result - the same non-existence (unless you do think there is an afterlife?).  You get to the end of your life as do I - is the meaning of our lives any different because you thought there was a 'more' to life whilst i did not?  Do our lives stand for any more than the other's did?  If not, then are they meaningless lives?

Again, it is not wanting to live forever or getting bored; it is first and foremost about the Meaning/Purposefulness -  of being at all. There is either Purpose or there is not (unless there is another scenario that somebody else has that we should consider). And, to try to clarify, let me add (for lack of a better description) I am referring to an ultimate or overarching Purpose/Meaning and not simply the purpose that a Sisyphus tries to make when he recognizes there is no Meaning.  If there is such Meaning, is it such that I become It (so to speak) now and will continue to participate in the All? Well, I have faith (in the purpose or better the One who is Purpose (again for lack of a better way to phrase it right now) and therefore, I have hope that I will be (that's what faith and hope is, no certainty).  Simply, if there is no God (and I don't mean a theistic, supernatural version) there is only absurdity. I admire Sisyphus but don't want to be him.

Your afterlife may not be sitting on a cloud playing a harp, but you seem to promote an existence in some manner by becoming part of or contributing to said 'more'. Unless you exist in some degree after your mortal body and consciousness ceases, then you seem to be saying your earthly existence was meaningless. Is the 'more' you are proposing no different to the current period that I say I am contributing to also? Once I'm gone I'm gone, but my contributions to the 'more' continue on? How is that any different to what you're proposing?  You need to think there is a more or you think you're not contributing in this life?

Having now looked into Sisyphus a little bit more, it would seem to me that your view of his rock rolling task does seem to be toward the negative end of viewing his actions of any benefit.  You might think his task of rolling the rock repeatedly up that hill only to have it roll down again was fruitless, as Albert Camus did to some degree, but Camus also concluded that "one must imagine Sisyphus happy" as "The struggle itself towards the heights is enough to fill a man's heart."  There is Sisyphus' meaning and purpose right there - the struggle itself.  Nothing outside of the struggle of this existence is required.  Enjoy and contribute to it for what it is.

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9 hours ago, PaulS said:

I'm not sure you and I are any different to Sisyphus.  How could his purpose be any more an illusion than anybody's purpose in this life?  If there is a more, even if one doesn't believe in such, are they not living out just as much a purposeful life as somebody who thinks there is a more?  Clearly it did matter that Sisyphus lived or else we wouldn't be talking about him today.  So whilst he may not believe in a more, nonetheless his life still had purpose and meaning.  Perhaps he was just too miserable in is own philosophy to realize it.

Individual purpose and meaning in a meaningless world (if one truly buys your scenario) is meaningless; it is absurd and no more significant than the purposeless life or no life (again in this scenario). Again, that's if one really buys into this. I wonder if one decides for purpose, to make an impact - does their truest self know what their mind does not?Sisyphus' philosophy, as depicted by Camus, is that life is absurd, meaningless yet he revolts agains the absurdity by pushing the rock (his purpose): his philosophy is yours, correct??

Camus' philosophy - of the absurd. With no God, with, therefore, no Eternal Truth, the world is senseless and man's search for meaning is for naught. Rather than suicide in the face of the absurd (which might also be a finger in the face of the Nothingness), Camus boldly suggests we revolt, we struggle: he presents Sisyphus and imagines him happy. To revolt is noble (if there is such a thing in a meaningless world) and we can imagine a bit of a smile on the lips of Sisyphus in his revolt - but it is all still absurd, it means nothing and man's suicide, revolt, smile - is all the same: it is and means nothing!

But in answer to your question: one's (who accepts your scenario) life might have purpose but even they know/belief (deep down) that it is ultimately meaningless. So, just following the logic of their own philosophy - one's life is not simply more an illusion, it is all illusion; it is not 'just as much a purposeful life' given their own philosophy.  Camus brings us Sisyphus to make his point, that's why he 'matters.' But if one's firm belief is that there is no 'God,' if there is no ultimate meaning - then any meaningful purpose is their own construct in the nothingness and it may be their revolt (which might be better than the alternative) but their 'happiness', their purpose occurs because they don't let it bother them. And that is nice and good but if they truly buy this philosophy, they know (or believe) in their heart of hearts that they are still Sisyphus: it is meaningless, all action absurd, all means nothing. If they don't accept this, they probably don't in their heart of hearts buy this philosophy. The other, the one who accepts a philosophy that there is God, that there is Value, that Life has Meaning - then, in their heart of hearts knows Sisyphus effort, struggle is worth it and his smile is not one of revolt, it is one of accomplishment: there is a top, the rock will reach the summit because of man: there is rhyme, reason and Meaning.

 My focus is not on the after life but I fail to see the difference in living a life without thinking there is a 'more' versus living a life wondering about the 'why of it all' along the way.  End result - the same non-existence (unless you do think there is an afterlife?).  You get to the end of your life as do I - is the meaning of our lives any different because you thought there was a 'more' to life whilst i did not?  Do our lives stand for any more than the other's did?  If not, then are they meaningless lives?

It is not that my philosophy does encompass an 'afterlife.' It is, as noted, not the 'end' or the 'next world' but the ultimate purposefulness, the intentionality of being that is the crux of the matter (for me).  My philosophy says there is a Reason, a Why, while (if I understand it correctly) your's has no why. If I accept the ultimate purposefulness of being, I believe it might suggest a fullness of life,a full participation of being, in the intentionality of being/God. Whether this is the case, what it might mean, I have no idea, nor do I dwell on it, I leave any and all details to.....God. But the difference in philosophies (again, if taken to heart, if truly accepted) is that yours lives knowing there in no meaning while mine lives knowing it is all meaning. You accept non-existence at death but that flows from the acceptance that is is ultimately meaningless. I accept the meaningfulness of Life and hope the Fullness of that life is never ending. Note: I always wonder along the way (thus this site and my readings).

 

Your afterlife may not be sitting on a cloud playing a harp, but you seem to promote an existence in some manner by becoming part of or contributing to said 'more'. Unless you exist in some degree after your mortal body and consciousness ceases, then you seem to be saying your earthly existence was meaningless. Is the 'more' you are proposing no different to the current period that I say I am contributing to also? Once I'm gone I'm gone, but my contributions to the 'more' continue on? How is that any different to what you're proposing?  You need to think there is a more or you think you're not contributing in this life?

I am trying to present my priority (above) and not the past mistake of (some) Christians who look past this life because they look for the prize in the sky. In my philosophy, there is not just the 'more' - I am of the 'more' and therefore my contribution makes an impact.

Having now looked into Sisyphus a little bit more, it would seem to me that your view of his rock rolling task does seem to be toward the negative end of viewing his actions of any benefit.  You might think his task of rolling the rock repeatedly up that hill only to have it roll down again was fruitless, as Albert Camus did to some degree, but Camus also concluded that "one must imagine Sisyphus happy" as "The struggle itself towards the heights is enough to fill a man's heart."  There is Sisyphus' meaning and purpose right there - the struggle itself.  Nothing outside of the struggle of this existence is required.  Enjoy and contribute to it for what it is.

Yes, we can imagine Sisyphus happy but that is the revolt against the absurdity and meaninglessness of existence. Smile of no smile, the rock is at the bottom, all is Absurd! The struggle fails, it might fill a man's heart but struggle or no struggle, full heart or no heart - Nada, Nada, Nada - Absurd! 

Note: let me add, this is difficult work, trying to talk about this subject and also understand an opposite view. I fully support your position but I simply and fully disagree (as you do with me). And I just try to take this philosophy, your (and my friend's) philosophy to the fullest degree and what I get is documented above. However. as he and I enjoy going into NYC, browsing a few great bookstores and then finding a pub, usually McSorley's, to down a few pints while we peruse our books and talk - so too, since we might not meet in this life, I will greet you at the table of the Father and bring some of your wines - but if you forget,there's always water and you know what we can do with that :+]

I have enjoyed this but now, in addition to beating all the horses to death, we have started in on the cows.

tom

 

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Why does everyone find 'belief' and 'choice' to be such binary terms?  

Even in undergrad psychology there are four basic types of choices, and that hardly explains all choices.

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1 hour ago, Burl said:

Why does everyone find 'belief' and 'choice' to be such binary terms?  

Even in undergrad psychology there are four basic types of choices, and that hardly explains all choices.

Okay, when time permits either enlighten us or present your un-binary take. Would be appreciated.

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4 minutes ago, thormas said:

Okay, when time permits either enlighten us or present your un-binary take. Would be appreciated.

4 basic types of choice: choice between 2 expected positive outcomes, choice between 2 expected negative outcomes, choices where outcomes are uncertain but the person choosing is primarily motivated by either fear or reward.

The lesser of two evils choice is particularly interesting as it often leads to search for additional choices.

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Cheers Tom.  I think we have had our run.  My 'more' is this life and what I don't know about it.  It's my children, my wife, my friends, my work, my experiences.  I step away from all that knowing (in my head) that one day the lights will go out and I will cease to have any sort of consciousness.  All i can say is that does not translate into meaninglessness for me.  Clearly it does for you and so you need to find whatever it is that gives your life meaning.  All power to you and the ancient greek myths! :)  Clearly this has been a conundrum for humans ever since our brains evolved to this point.  Maybe one day they will evolve past this point too.

Peace & goodwill

Paul

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I have found what gives life meaning and thanks. And, even though I borrowed from Sisyphus and Greek myths, it's more accurate to say, "all power to you and panentheistic (or even progressive) Christian theology." 

Twas fun!

 

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On 2/26/2018 at 6:48 PM, PaulS said:

t's not the first time somebody who has it 'right' is telling me I am 'wrong', that I am refusing to believe that which is so plainly correct for others,

No, I said that if one assumes (i.e. believes) that Jesus (i.e. what he taught) was right, then (given such assumption) you have it 'wrong'. I was questioning whether ThomasM's saying that he thought you may be pleasantly 'surprised' was in keeping with "Point 1' of the 8 points listed as 'axiomatic' to what is being postulated as being a "Progressive Christian" philosophy and outlook - and suggested that the thought that you me UNpleasantly 'surprised' by what you experience and realize after the 'death' of your body.

You are perfectly free to not subscribe to any or all of Jesus' teachings and (so), by operational definition, to not be a "Progressive Christian" (as  'defined',  that is, by the "8 Point" 'manifesto').

I fully recognize and 'accept' the fact that you are not one such. My comments were addressed to ThomasM who, by implication at least, identifies himself as a "Progressive Christian", thinking that perhaps (given the way I understand Jesus' teachings) he was not being 'true' to said principles. He has since clarified that he thinks and is acting on the basis of thinking he is, which I am also fully 'accepting' of.

Edited by Davidsun
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7 hours ago, Davidsun said:

No, I said that if one assumes (i.e. believes) that Jesus (i.e. what he taught) was right, then (given such assumption) you have it 'wrong'. I was questioning whether ThomasM's saying that he thought you may be pleasantly 'surprised' was in keeping with "Point 1' of the 8 points listed as 'axiomatic' to what is being postulated as being a "Progressive Christian" philosophy and outlook - and suggested that the thought that you me UNpleasantly 'surprised' by what you experience and realize after the 'death' of your body.

You are perfectly free to not subscribe to any or all of Jesus' teachings and (so), by operational definition, to not be a "Progressive Christian" (as  'defined',  that is, by the "8 Point" 'manifesto').

I fully recognize and 'accept' the fact that you are not one such. My comments were addressed to ThomasM who, by implication at least, identifies himself as a "Progressive Christian", thinking that perhaps (given the way I understand Jesus' teachings) he was not being 'true' to said principles. He has since clarified that he thinks and is acting on the basis of thinking he is, which I am also fully 'accepting' of.

Your narrow definition of the 8 Points and your assumptions about the teachings of Jesus are your personal opinion.  People like myself regard themselves as in agreement with the 8 Points although I have different opinions to you about Jesus' teachings and what they may mean.

Your 'recognition' and 'acceptance' of the 'fact' that I do not belong to Progressive Christianity is misplaced.  You are entitled to an opinion David but I would suggest you keep it to yourself when you want to put others down because you feel you hold the only interpretation of the truth.  A little bit of meekness as Jesus would say probably wouldn't go astray.

And as for you not understanding 'for the life of you' how Thormas may hold similar interpretations or agreement about me being pleasantly surprised, again I would say that you possibly need to reconsider what Jesus was teaching. Or not, after all it is really just opinion.  

Your voice is not unusual and I have heard most of it before - "I know the truth, I'm right - you're wrong'.  As we have seen so far in our interchanges, that approach very quickly ends any discussion.  Which is fine if what you are seeking is not discussion and sharing alternate views, but wanting to be agreed with.

 

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Thomas,

I took it that  he meant JosephM, i just didn't bother to correct him.

Joseph

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37 minutes ago, JosephM said:

Thomas,

I took it that  he meant JosephM, i just didn't bother to correct him.

Joseph

Yeah - me too :+}

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Davidsun,

It seems to me that not everyone who relates to the label of Progressive Christian is at the same progression in their journey. Hence there is bound to be some confusion on points. Perhaps they will never be stated to satisfy all. The 8 points are very general in nature and subject to change as they did in 2011 . Each time they change people seem to be alienated but that is the nature of change and progressiveness. In my view,  individuals seem to either grow or prefer to  remain fixed and comfortable in their current place in their journey.

Anyway, David,  it is good to review our etiquette here    because  we allow people to self label themselves without being told different or that they are not a Christian or PC. (That is taboo here) That may be your understanding or misunderstanding but it is best left unsaid. Many here have come from painful backgrounds where they have been told all manner of accusations from sometimes well meaning people who themselves thought they had a corner on truth only to find later that it is a growth process. I think people grow in their journey not when they are told they are wrong or mistaken but rather when they hear something that has real meaning or truth in it and that they are able to  relate to and are ready to receive.

PaulS has in my view, come a long way and has had great progression in his journey since i have know him.  He seems to me to have committed himself to study, learning and to be comfortable with both uncertainty and change which can be a difficult path at times. I admire his purposefulness and dedication to growth and trust him explicitly in his understanding and ability to run this forum as Moderator and Assistant Administrator according to our purpose or charter.

JosephM (as Admin)

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14 hours ago, thormas said:

say who now - ThomasM????????

That's another example  of 'gap's and 'goofs' in my writing resulting from my getting 'carried away' by the intensity of my thoughts:D

In case it was beyond your capacity to figure out what I really meant from the context (of everything else I said), I was thinking of and relating to JosephM's statements, but only got the "M" part of it right.

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13 hours ago, JosephM said:

Davidsun,

It seems to me that not everyone who relates to the label of Progressive Christian is at the same progression in their journey. Hence there is bound to be some confusion on points. Perhaps they will never be stated to satisfy all. The 8 points are very general in nature and subject to change as they did in 2011 . Each time they change people seem to be alienated but that is the nature of change and progressiveness. In my view,  individuals seem to either grow or prefer to  remain fixed and comfortable in their current place in their journey.

Anyway, David,  it is good to review our etiquette here    because  we allow people to self label themselves without being told different or that they are not a Christian or PC. (That is taboo here) That may be your understanding or misunderstanding but it is best left unsaid. Many here have come from painful backgrounds where they have been told all manner of accusations from sometimes well meaning people who themselves thought they had a corner on truth only to find later that it is a growth process. I think people grow in their journey not when they are told they are wrong or mistaken but rather when they hear something that has real meaning or truth in it and that they are able to  relate to and are ready to receive.

PaulS has in my view, come a long way and has had great progression in his journey since i have know him.  He seems to me to have committed himself to study, learning and to be comfortable with both uncertainty and change which can be a difficult path at times. I admire his purposefulness and dedication to growth and trust him explicitly in his understanding and ability to run this forum as Moderator and Assistant Administrator according to our purpose or charter.

JosephM (as Admin)

No quibble with what you have concluded and said for the reasons that you have so concluded, JosephM. I hope you 'got' the fact that I have concluded that placing the 'etiquette' you speak of on the 'altar' of whole-iness is in effect derailing the real meaning of Jesus's message and teachings to the point of being 'sacrilegious' - analogous to the way Jesus thought of and so reacted to what the money-changers were doing and the scribes and pharisees were 'administratively' endorsing in the temple.

Now, I am not interested in making a 'scene' so as to 'take stage' (so to speak) as Jesus did. I just want to clearly my 'criticism(s)' as stated to be 'heard' (to whatever extent that may be 'in the cards' for, i.e. possible by, anyone here) whether their import is appreciated or not, before moving on.

Here is another of Jesus' teachings which I believe (as Paul has stated all 'conclusions', even Jesus', are basically just personally arrived at 'opinions') is functionally pertinent: "And when ye come into an house, salute it. And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it:  but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you.   14 And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shale off the dust of your feet." (Matthew 10) IMO, it would be remiss for me to simply 'make peace' with those who (in my opinion) desecrate the 'truth' about Life (even is the do so 'in the name' of goodness/Christ/Life).

If I thought  there was a reasonable chance of my words making a positive difference here, I would stick around and keep sharing.

Anyone now or in the future reading this who wishes to stay in touch with me or just 'follow' what I am up to may do so via my website.

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10 minutes ago, Davidsun said:

No quibble with what you have concluded and said for the reasons that you have so concluded, JosephM. I hope you 'got' the fact that I have concluded that placing the 'etiquette' you speak of on the 'altar' of whole-iness is in effect derailing the real meaning of Jesus's message and teachings to the point of being 'sacrilegious' - analogous to the way Jesus thought of and so reacted to what the money-changers were doing and the scribes and pharisees were 'administratively' endorsing in the temple.

Now, I am not interested in making a 'scene' so as to 'take stage' (so to speak) as Jesus did. I just want to clearly my 'criticism(s)' as stated to be 'heard' (to whatever extent that may be 'in the cards' for, i.e. possible by, anyone here) whether their import is appreciated or not, before moving on.

Here is another of Jesus' teachings which I believe (as Paul has stated all 'conclusions', even Jesus', are basically just personally arrived at 'opinions') is functionally pertinent: "And when ye come into an house, salute it. And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you. And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shale off the dust of your feet." (Matthew 10) IMO, it would be remiss for me to simply 'make peace' with those who (in my opinion) desecrate the 'truth' about Life (even if they do so 'in the name' of - that is thinking and believing that they thereby 'aligned' with - real goodness/Christ/Life).

If I thought  there was a reasonable chance of my words making a positive difference here, I would stick around and keep sharing.

I think indiscriminate (for the sake 'feeling good') 'inclusiveness' will be the 'death' of the 'Progressive Christianity', that is, if those in it can't/don't get around to truly appreciating the spiritual practicality of Jesus' teachings in all their complexity.

Thank you for the 'open' door which I exit hereby. Anyone now or in the future reading this who wishes to stay in touch with me or just 'follow' what I am up to may do so via my website (URL is in my profile).

 

Edited by Davidsun

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57 minutes ago, Davidsun said:

That's another example  of 'gap's and 'goofs' in my writing resulting from my getting 'carried away' by the intensity of my thoughts:D

In case it was beyond your capacity to figure out what I really meant from the context (of everything else I said), I was thinking of and relating to JosephM's statements, but only got the "M" part of it right.

Actually it wasn't, as indicated - just pointing it out - so we are on the same page :+}

And, in case you missed it:

14 hours ago, thormas said:

Yeah - me too :+}

a little humor amid the intensity........

And, with you comment, "beyond your capacity" it seems you have violated a number of the points of etiquette.

 

Edited by thormas

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38 minutes ago, Davidsun said:

 

I disagree: I don't think the rules of etiquette for the site violate the teachings or the real meaning of the message of Jesus.

And this house "is worthy."

Edited by thormas
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1 hour ago, thormas said:

I disagree: I don't think the rules of etiquette for the site violate the teachings or the real meaning of the message of Jesus.

And this house "is worthy."

I didn't say they 'violated' anything. Talk about 'capacity' to comprehend! I said that Jesus' teachings and 'actions' (verbal and otherwise) indicated that he and his teachings were at variance with the notion and value of 'etiquette' so centrally placed on the 'altar' here - and thus, of course, implied that what's going on here is not in keeping with what I consider 'Christianity' (Jesus' kind at lest) to really be.

IMO, everyone is 'worthy' of being spoken to and what anyone say is 'worthy' of being considered. You think I haven't listened to/hears and considered what Paul, you, Joseph et al. have said? And given you the truth (as I see it)  in response because I considered (past tense, now) you 'worthy' of being 'given' the truth as I see it to do or not do with whatever you will?

Regarding my putting that in the past tense, please know that what a person deems 'worth' relating to and engaging with is always a relative assessment, and that anyone/everyone with any sense of what practicality really entails, instead of aiming to just live in a nice-nice-in-relation-to-everyone feel-good 'fantasy', will choose to make 'judgment calls' as to what may or may not be 'worth' expending his or her (limited amount of) personal energy attending to, nurturing, buddying up with, etc.

Thank you for engaging and thereby giving me the opportunity to (hopefully) more clearly explain what has gone into my decision to depart from this (IMO, real-meaning-of-Jesus'-teachings-ignoring, unrealistically fantasy-based) we are all 'worthy' POH-BAHs arena.

This is not to say that I endorse any other 'Christian-label-using "church's" or "social movement's" value system, mind you. Just that I think that the one that's been established here will, if it just continues in its present fashion, prove to have been (past tense!) creatively dysfunctional (based on my understanding of Jesus' teachings, of course).

Edited by Davidsun
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18 minutes ago, Davidsun said:

I didn't say they 'violated' anything. Talk about 'capacity' to comprehend! I said that Jesus' teachings and 'actions' (verbal and otherwise) indicated that he and his teachings were at variance with the notion and value of 'etiquette' so centrally placed on the 'altar' here - and thus, of course, implied that what's going on here is not in keeping with what I consider 'Christianity' (Jesus' kind at lest) to really be.

IMO, everyone is 'worthy' of being spoken to and what anyone say is 'worthy' of being considered. You think I haven't listened to/hears and considered what Paul, you, Joseph et al. have said? And given you the truth (as I see it)  in response because I considered (past tense, now) you 'worthy' of being 'given' the truth as I see it to do or not do with whatever you will?

Regarding my putting that in the past tense, please know that what a person deems 'worth' relating to and engaging with is always a relative assessment, and that anyone/everyone with any sense of what practicality really entails, instead of aiming to just live in a nice-nice-in-relation-to-everyone feel-good 'fantasy', will choose to make 'judgment calls' as to what may or may not be 'worth' expending his or her (limited amount of) personal energy attending to, nurturing, buddying up with, etc.

Thank you for engaging and thereby giving me the opportunity to (hopefully) more clearly explain what has gone into my decision to depart from this (IMO, real-meaning-of-Jesus'-teachings-ignoring, unrealistically fantasy-based) we are all 'worthy' POH-BAHs arena.

This is not to say that I endorse any other 'Christian-label-using "church's" or "social movement's" value system, mind you. Just that I think that the one that's been established here will, if it just continues in its present fashion, prove to have been (past tense!) creatively dysfunctional (based on my understanding of Jesus' teachings, of course).

Right so you are saying, IYO, the site derailed or ...........  violated what you think are the teachings/actions of Jesus. So we agree violate or derail: either works. Although, I disagree with the assessment.

'Worthy' - and now comes judgement - a violation or derailment of the teachings of Jesus.

Not really clearer (poh-bahs?) and I would remind you of the etiquette (capacity to comprehend?) but as you said : "I (i.e. you) exit hereby?" Don't derail or violate your word. 

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1 hour ago, thormas said:

Not really clearer (poh-bahs?) and I would remind you of the etiquette

Ooops, I meant to write POOH-BAHs. Here's link which will (hopefully) render the meaning of the reference "clearer":  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_Poobah

And I would remind you of my comments regarding the value of placing 'etiquette' at the center of the 'altar' of one's 'sacred' value-scheme, as well as of the fact Jesus' verbal engagements (which I've present many examples of) weren't always nice-nice advocating but often quite rough-n-tumble, the latter as a 'way' of communicating true-to-spirit (as opposed to conventional-social-moray) truths.

I am neither violating violating not derailing my decision and intention to 'exit' from your presence, thormas. I am simply 'taking' the 'baiting' comments which you  address meward and using them to further my truth-sharing mission and purpose in the course of doing so.

Lob some more pitches my way if that suits your purposes, man - I enjoy engaging in repartee as a medium of revelation - and I'm in no hurry to go anywhere (else) in particular ...

Edited by Davidsun
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