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romansh

Agnosticism

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13 hours ago, thormas said:

If, as indicated in the bubble, strong means that one knows and knows means proof /evidence - then there is no strong ism. 

Strong is sort of synonymous with the "philosophical" positive belief. ie a strong atheist would believe there is no god, a strong agnostic would believe we cannot know. Gnosticism would be about knowing ... a gnostic atheist knows there is no god. a gnostic agnostic (should such an animal exist) knows we cannot know. And Jung was an example of a gnostic theist, albeit apparently a pantheist.

13 hours ago, thormas said:

You believe most are agnostic atheists........................ 

I am suggesting that most atheists that I have experienced are of the agnostic variety. They may be strong or gnostic with respect to Roman, Greek, Abrahamic gods, etc. And they even may be quite derisory of such positions. The deistic type gods, strong atheists would just wonder where one gets the evidence for unless they goin for some form of fideism. 

13 hours ago, thormas said:

An agnostic believes they cannot know whether god exists or does not exist.  The theist, on the other hand, believes that 'god' exists.

I am not claiming these positions are necessarily coherent ... here you describe a strong agnostic, 

13 hours ago, thormas said:

'Knowing for sure' suggests proof or evidence and there is no proof for any belief.  However, many/most are sure of their beliefs: aren't you sure that you're an agnostic and that your agnostic stance is correct?  So too, I am sure of my belief and that my stance is correct.* If one were not sure of their belief, it would be meaningless: he could not live it. and living it is the whole point of belief/faith.

Am I sure? I would describe myself as a weak agnostic in that I am not really sure of anything. But there are things that make sense to me and things that don't. I am a little sceptical about the nature of consciousness,  My life is meaningless ... in that I don't ascribe meaning to every aspect and the bits I do, I wonder about. When one loses belief in free will, then it is very easy to be unsure.  I will accept living life meaningfully being the whole point of faith is your own particular confabulation.

13 hours ago, thormas said:

*my stance is correct for me but I also believe it is correct for all;  this recognizes that there is only one way to be human but the One Way is seen in many ways, particular to where it finds different men and women. 

For me your stance is not coherent. Love being everywhere except when it is not. Love being god viewed through the eyes of no actual evidence and seeming resonance does not cut it for me. If by One Way you mean the universe (the multiverse or whatever) I could buy into that. And if in your exchanges with agnostic atheists. they have been derisory of your position, perhaps they can't get past, what for them are, the logical inconsistencies in your position.

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2 hours ago, romansh said:

Well then I would argue your original guess was wrong. Theism per se does not refer solely outside of the observably material. Thanks Burl for owning up.

Pantheism posits a supreme being composed of the entirety of reality.  This supreme being can willingly alter itself by creating disasters or plucking people out like stray nose hairs.

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Funny, I wonder if [all] pantheists posit a supreme being or do they think when we talk of things like God, divine, holy etc we are actually referring to the universe? Perhaps vice versa?

Interestingly the Wikipedia page doe not mention the word Supreme.

I suppose my point ... not all pantheists think of "God" as something supreme. I can't help thinking you are throwing your perception of God on to other people's perceptions.

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And Dawkins on agnosticism ... though he is more harsh on agnostics in The God Delusion

 

 

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And whilst we are at it Dawkins on Deism and Pantheism

Quote

Pantheists don't believe in a supernatural God at all, but use the word God as a non-supernatural synonym for Nature, or for the Universe, or for the lawfulness that governs its workings. Deists differ from theists in that their God does not answer prayers, is not interested in sins or confessions, does not read our thoughts and does not intervene with capricious miracles. Deists differ from pantheists in that the deist God is some kind of cosmic intelligence, rather than the pantheist's metaphoric or poetic synonym for the laws of the universe. Pantheism is sexed-up atheism. Deism is watered-down theism. 

.and note Dawkins' use of the word theism is distinct from deism.

Edited by romansh

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The Gaia hypothesis is a true pantheism.  We are but cells in the all encompassing, sentient deity of Gaia.  Definite not synonymous with atheism.

Plainly you do not understand the hypothesis. No sentience involved. Wrong. 

No gods involved in the Gaia hypothesis ... definitely atheistic.

Just because the hypothesis is named after the requisite deity is irrelevant.

Back to the drawing board for you I am afraid. Spiritually speaking.

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Dawkins is an atheist incorrectly reducing pantheism to a tautology.  He even says pantheism and atheism are synonyms, which is ample evidence he does not know what he is talking about.

Burl ... So what you are saying your idea of what pantheism is does not match Dawkins', I could go for that. If you go to https://www.pantheism.net/atheism/ 

you will find:

  • Richard Dawkins, in his book The God Delusion, has described Pantheism as “sexed-up atheism.” That may seem flippant, but it is accurate. Of all religious or spiritual traditions, Pantheism – the approach of Einstein, Hawking and many other scientists – is the only one that passes the muster of the world’s most militant atheist.
  • So what’s the difference between Atheism and Pantheism? As far as disbelief in supernatural beings, forces or realms, there is no difference. World Pantheism also shares the respect for evidence, science, and logic that’s typical of atheism.
  • However, Pantheism goes further, and adds to atheism an embracing, positive and reverential feeling about our lives on planet Earth, our place in Nature and the wider Universe, and uses nature as our basis for dealing with stress, grief and bereavement. It’s a form of spirituality that is totally compatible with science. Indeed, since science is our best way of exploring the Universe, respect for the scientific method and fascination with the discoveries of science are an integral part of World Pantheism.

Now of course Pantheists may not know what pantheism should mean to them, at least according to the Gospel of Burl.

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4 hours ago, romansh said:

Strong is sort of synonymous with the "philosophical" positive belief. ie a strong atheist would believe there is no god, a strong agnostic would believe we cannot know. Gnosticism would be about knowing ... a gnostic atheist knows there is no god. a gnostic agnostic (should such an animal exist) knows we cannot know. And Jung was an example of a gnostic theist, albeit apparently a pantheist.

I disagree as the bubble says 'knows' there is no god and the positive belief above says 'believe' there is no god - so according to the bubble that is not strong

Am I sure? I would describe myself as a weak agnostic in that I am not really sure of anything. But there are things that make sense to me and things that don't. I am a little sceptical about the nature of consciousness,  My life is meaningless ... in that I don't ascribe meaning to every aspect and the bits I do, I wonder about. When one loses belief in free will, then it is very easy to be unsure.  I will accept living life meaningfully being the whole point of faith is your own particular confabulation.

See, I was about to say you were being very open, then you blow it with..........particular confabulation.

For me your stance is not coherent. Love being everywhere except when it is not. Love being god viewed through the eyes of no actual evidence and seeming resonance does not cut it for me. If by One Way you mean the universe (the multiverse or whatever) I could buy into that. And if in your exchanges with agnostic atheists. they have been derisory of your position, perhaps they can't get past, what for them are, the logical inconsistencies in your position.


Lucky it is coherent for me. But again with the need for evidence when the topic is belief.  I don't have exchanges with agnostic atheists (see above).

 

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42 minutes ago, thormas said:

I disagree as the bubble says 'knows' there is no god and the positive belief above says 'believe' there is no god - so according to the bubble that is not strong

You may well disagree, but the atheist who knows there is no god can be classed as a gnostic atheist ... notice that particular atheist is strong in that she could either disbelieve in god or knows that god does not exist. The gnostic agnostic knows we cannot know and strong agnostic believes we cannot know. Take a look at what the diagram says again.

50 minutes ago, thormas said:

See, I was about to say you were being very open, then you blow it with..........particular confabulation.

Well to be fair I confabulate all the time or at least I think I do. [free will thread]

51 minutes ago, thormas said:

Lucky it is coherent for me. But again with the need for evidence when the topic is belief.  I don't have exchanges with agnostic atheists (see above).

Yes you may well, think so. Perhaps you could have a go at dismantling the blog post on Pantheism 101. You are having an exchange with an agnostic atheist when you discuss with this with me.

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2 minutes ago, romansh said:

You may well disagree, but the atheist who knows there is no god can be classed as a gnostic atheist ... notice that particular atheist is strong in that she could either disbelieve in god or knows that god does not exist. The gnostic agnostic knows we cannot know and strong agnostic believes we cannot know. Take a look at what the diagram says again.

Well to be fair I confabulate all the time or at least I think I do. [free will thread]

Yes you may well, think so. Perhaps you could have a go at dismantling the blog post on Pantheism 101. You are having an exchange with an agnostic atheist when you discuss with this with me.

I do disagree but no need to travel that road and once again cites its flaws and now you have moved to gnostic atheists.

I don't accept the validity of agnostic atheism - when in an exchange with you I am assuming you are a self confessed confabulist :+}

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I just confabulated: I don't accept the validity of panentheism. Does not get us very far, does it?

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9 minutes ago, romansh said:

I just confabulated: I don't accept the validity of panentheism. Does not get us very far, does it?

Maybe not you but you tend toward pantheistic agnosticism or is it agnostic pantheism. See what I did there?

Typically a self-confessed confabulist can't get out of his own way :+{

Whereas,  the panentheist is in with god :+}

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On ‎2017‎-‎12‎-‎31 at 3:19 PM, thormas said:

I don't accept the validity of agnostic atheism - when in an exchange with you I am assuming you are a self confessed confabulist :+}

It is not what you accept that matters (if anything actually does). The point of a discussion is to exchange coherent ideas. 

One can have an agnostic theist ... ie somebody who understands they don't know god exists with some degree of certainty but believe in god anyway. It is not that dissimilar to your point there is little evidence for god but you believe in some version thereof. An agnostic atheist will not pass judgement on some unrevealed god other than to say I have no need to believe in that god.

This poorly thought out straw man makes the mistake also. But in another sense it is logical ... we should sceptical of the existence of Sweden, that is until we have collected enough evidence about the existence of Sweden and understand the definitions that generally make up the concept of countries. In another sense the article is right also ... many if not most atheists, agnostic or otherwise, actively disbelieve in many gods, eg Roman, Norse Greek, Baltic, Abrahamic, Zoroastrian etc. But they can still be agnostic to some vague unrevealed god like that you believe in. Technically I would consider myself agnostic regarding panentheism, but once you start giving it properties like love, I start becoming very sceptical. (answers on the last sentence in Panentheism 101, please).

Edited by romansh

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3 hours ago, romansh said:

It is not what you accept that matters (if anything actually does). The point of a discussion is to exchange coherent ideas. 

One can have an agnostic theist ... ie somebody who understands they don't know god exists with some degree of certainty but believe in god anyway. It is not that dissimilar to your point there is little evidence for god but you believe in some version thereof. An agnostic atheist will not pass judgement on some unrevealed god other than to say I have no need to believe in that god.

This poorly thought out straw man makes the mistake also. But in another sense it is logical ... we should sceptical of the existence of Sweden, that is until we have collected enough evidence about the existence of Sweden and understand the definitions that generally make up the concept of countries. In another sense the article is right also ... many if not most atheists, agnostic or otherwise, actively disbelieve in many gods, eg Roman, Norse Greek, Baltic, Abrahamic, Zoroastrian etc. But they can still be agnostic to some vague unrevealed god like that you believe in. Technically I would consider myself agnostic regarding panentheism, but once you start giving it properties like love, I start becoming very sceptical. (answers on the last sentence in Panentheism 101, please).

If nothing matters, why  do you write anything? By writing anything you seem to be suggest something matters. Self contradictory?

Regardless, I simply disagree with your definitions. For example, a theist is one who accepts there is no proof, no evidence for or against the existence of God - yet believes God exists and holds certain beliefs about the 'nature' of God or, better, how man experiences God. An agnostic theist is redundant and, as such, unnecessary.

There is evidence that a place, that has the name Sweden, exists. To find someone who is skeptical that Sweden exists is to have bigger problems that this site can handle. As my great aunt use to say of such a person, "poor dear."  I suggest most people assume that we are not talking about many gods, so the 'god' that seems to be in play (or not) for the atheist or the agnostic is your vague unrevealed god. Would such a vague, unrevealed god be something like the One that some of us discussed on this site months ago? 

Speaking of unrevealed (or revealed) and to complicate the matter even more: I don't accept the classic theistic understanding or the generally accepted understanding of revelation.  I do not believe there is revelation from God, if by that we mean information about God (that he shares) or, for example, laws that he gives so men can abide by their relationship with him. I have a panentheistic take (belief) on revelation: God or, if you prefer, the One, or Reality, reveals (him)Self.

In our most intimate human relationships (with the lover, with a child, with friends) we do not merely or even primarily give 'information' -  we give 'self.'  This self giving is the revealing (disclosing, making known) of self.  There is no revelation from (or about) God, there is only the Self-revealing, the giving of Self to creation, to man. Further, I believe that throughout history, men and women, out of their particular situations and circumstances, have developed 'insights' about the God (they believe) they experience in life. And such insights (may) resonate with others: they enable others to say something, to make sense, to 'name' what they experience. So, in a real way, the 'God' I believe in is both unrevealed (as explained above) and a bit vague. Thus a previous point I made that some religious/spiritual people are very comfortable with uncertainty. 

One such 'insight' in Christianity (not to say it is not in other religious expressions but this is the one I am familiar with) is that God is ...........Love.  Further, the insight is that God is the giver of life, is immanent in everyday life, is the destiny of life (Alpha & Omega): that God is Life. So the Christian insight is that God, Life It-Self (so to speak) is Love. So not a mere property, rather the essence, the being of I AM or God.

If you don't believe it I have no issue with that (your choice) but it is a religious insight of a particular (and again not exclusive to them) religious community that goes back a bit (gospels) and back a bit more (Jesus) and back a bit more (Judaism).

 

 

Edited by thormas

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1 hour ago, thormas said:

Regardless, I simply disagree with your definitions. For example, a theist is one who accepts there is no proof, no evidence for or against the existence of God - yet believes God exists and holds certain beliefs about the 'nature' of God or, better, how man experiences God. An agnostic theist is redundant and, as such, unnecessary.

This might be your definition of a theist, but essentially practically no one else uses this type of definition. A theist very simply is a person who believes in a god and perhaps knows there is a god. The term theism is often specific (but not always) to revealed gods.

 

1 hour ago, thormas said:

There is evidence that a place, that has the name Sweden, exists. To find someone who is skeptical that Sweden exists is to have bigger problems that this site can handle. As my great aunt use to say of such a person, "poor dear."  I suggest most people assume that we are not talking about many gods, so the 'god' that seems to be in play (or not) for the atheist or the agnostic is your vague unrevealed god. Would such a vague, unrevealed god be something like the One that some of us discussed on this site months ago?

OK ... you missed the point of the blog completely. 

 

1 hour ago, thormas said:

Speaking of unrevealed (or revealed) and to complicate the matter even more: I don't accept the classic theistic understanding or the generally accepted understanding of revelation.  I do not believe there is revelation from God, if by that we mean information about God (that he shares) or, for example, laws that he gives so men can abide by their relationship with him. I have a panentheistic take (belief) on revelation: God or, if you prefer, the One, or Reality, reveals (him)Self.

This thread is not about whether you accept other people's understanding of what god is or isn't.

 

1 hour ago, thormas said:

 Thus a previous point I made that some religious/spiritual people are very comfortable with uncertainty

Then these people who are comfortable with uncertainty can be given the adjective of agnostic. 

 

1 hour ago, thormas said:

One such 'insight' in Christianity (not to say it is not in other religious expressions but this is the one I am familiar with) is that God is ...........Love.  Further, the insight is that God is the giver of life, is immanent in everyday life, is the destiny of life (Alpha & Omega): that God is Life. So the Christian insight is that God, Life It-Self (so to speak) is Love. So not a mere property, rather the essence, the being of I AM or God.

Sorry this is a derail ...  incidentally immanent you have not defined ... 

 

1 hour ago, thormas said:

f you don't believe it I have no issue with that (your choice) but it is a religious insight of a particular (and again not exclusive to them) religious community that goes back a bit (gospels) and back a bit more (Jesus) and back a bit more (Judaism).

Again it is not so much I don't believe it as it does not make sense to me.  If you go to your ignosticism definition you define God as Love  ... so if you could do me a favour go and define Love without using the word God.   Thanks

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2 hours ago, romansh said:

This might be your definition of a theist, but essentially practically no one else uses this type of definition. A theist very simply is a person who believes in a god and perhaps knows there is a god. The term theism is often specific (but not always) to revealed gods.

We both say that the theist believes in (a) god. You then say, "perhaps (they) know there is a god." You are the one who wants proof or evidence in most/all matters, so if the theist knows, what is the proof or evidence? I say there is none for the existence of (a) God; belief doesn't have proofs. A believer who understand this, "accepts there is no proof, no evidence for or against the existence of God, yet believes God exists...."  The definition is not mine but I agree with it and it is acceptable and used. 

This thread is not about whether you accept other people's understanding of what god is or isn't.

That part was about revelation and of course I can give a theistic understanding and then a panentheistic understanding and of course I can say whether I accept one understanding or the other.

Then these people who are comfortable with uncertainty can be given the adjective of agnostic. 

Hardly, the theist or panentheist believes there is God and knows there is no certain proof - thus comfort with uncertainty: often called the leap of faith. The agnostic doesn't seem to believe or not believe so I guess there is never a leap (of faith).

Sorry this is a derail ...  incidentally immanent you have not defined ... 

No, still on track and merely presenting the historical, Christian insight of God - so not some 'property' I gave God, rather the Christian belief about God - that I accept.

Transcendent: God beyond or, non spatially speaking, 'more' than the world (i.e. not the world). Yet, immanent: the God who is 'more' is 'in and with" man in the ordinary, everyday, life of man. Further, the mode of God is incarnation: present - here, now - in and through humanity. Or conversely, the we live, move and are - in God.

Again it is not so much I don't believe it as it does not make sense to me.  If you go to your ignosticism definition you define God as Love  ... so if you could do me a favour go and define Love without using the word God.   Thanks

Forget God and try this for now. Love seems to be many things and there is emotion but for now it is best understood as compassionate concern: the same compassion, the same concern that (hopefully) is experienced (given and received) "In our most intimate human relationships - with the lover, with a child, with friends."

 

Edited by thormas

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22 hours ago, thormas said:

We both say that the theist believes in (a) god. You then say, "perhaps (they) know there is a god." You are the one who wants proof or evidence in most/all matters, so if the theist knows, what is the proof or evidence? I say there is none for the existence of (a) God; belief doesn't have proofs. A believer who understand this, "accepts there is no proof, no evidence for or against the existence of God, yet believes God exists...."  The definition is not mine but I agree with it and it is acceptable and used. 

To be accurate ... before I believe in stuff I seem to need some evidence.  Now I am not claiming a theist knows anything, but I gave you an example of Carl Jung (evidence) claiming he knows. As an agnostic I can observe I might not "know", but I can't say Jung does not "know"; I have no way of interrogating his perceptions (even if he were alive). All I can say is he claims he "knows".  And a reminder you have more or less agreed that there is no evidence and yet you believe for your version of god.

 

22 hours ago, thormas said:

That part was about revelation and of course I can give a theistic understanding and then a panentheistic understanding and of course I can say whether I accept one understanding or the other.

What actually would be relevant is a theistic understanding of agnosticism.

22 hours ago, thormas said:

Hardly, the theist or panentheist believes there is God and knows there is no certain proof - thus comfort with uncertainty: often called the leap of faith. The agnostic doesn't seem to believe or not believe so I guess there is never a leap (of faith).

You definitely not getting the hang of this agnosticism business are you thormas or at least my version of it. Agnosticism is not about belief or lack of belief in gods. Again Huxley coined the term with respect to other unconfirmed aspects of nature including gods. For example science is agnostic regardless of what you have read. A theory is like a piñata. Eventually it will succumb to hungry little scientists with evidence. 

22 hours ago, thormas said:

No, still on track and merely presenting the historical, Christian insight of God - so not some 'property' I gave God, rather the Christian belief about God - that I accept.

Again --- if you actually gave a Christian insight into agnosticism that would be on track. Agnosticism is not solely about god!

 

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16 minutes ago, romansh said:

To be accurate ... before I believe in stuff I seem to need some evidence.  Now I am not claiming a theist knows anything, but I gave you an example of Carl Jung (evidence) claiming he knows. As an agnostic I can observe I might not "know", but I can't say Jung does not "know"; I have no way of interrogating his perceptions (even if he were alive). All I can say is he claims he "knows".  And a reminder you have more or less agreed that there is no evidence and yet you believe for your version of god.

Exactly, you want the evidence and you are not claiming a theist 'knows' anything. Perfect, so you disagree with your bubbles (so called strong theism) and citing a person who claims he knows (and of course you disagree that Jung can know anything) - is just that a citation, even an appeal to authority but it is not evidence. Thank you - you finally made the connection!

What actually would be relevant is a theistic understanding of agnosticism.

As a theist or panentheist, I have given an understanding. Beyond that while I fully respect the agnostic's position, the atheist's position and other positions for the individuals who hold these positions, I disagree with them: they are not my position. And, you're welcome.

You definitely not getting the hang of this agnosticism business are you thormas or at least my version of it. Agnosticism is not about belief or lack of belief in gods. Again Huxley coined the term with respect to other unconfirmed aspects of nature including gods. For example science is agnostic regardless of what you have read. A theory is like a piñata. Eventually it will succumb to hungry little scientists with evidence. 

I am, thanks - but what you don't have the hang of is that I disagree with your bubble and your definitions.

Again --- if you actually gave a Christian insight into agnosticism that would be on track. Agnosticism is not solely about god!

I am specifically talking agnosticism about god and (as a Christian) I have covered it - even if you don't get the 'hang of it.'

Again, your welcome.

 

 

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1 hour ago, thormas said:

Exactly, you want the evidence and you are not claiming a theist 'knows' anything.

I want evidence for what exactly?

Some theists claim they do know.

1 hour ago, thormas said:

Perfect, so you disagree with your bubbles (so called strong theism)

Not at all. A strong theist believes god exists and perhaps even knows god exist (gnostic theist). You have not burst my bubbles at all. 

 

1 hour ago, thormas said:

citing a person who claims he knows (and of course you disagree that Jung can know anything)

This of course is nonsense ... in fact I more or less said the opposite here:

1 hour ago, romansh said:

but I can't say Jung does not "know";

 

1 hour ago, thormas said:

is just that a citation, even an appeal to authority but it is not evidence.

No it is evidence that people claim they know god exists. 

1 hour ago, thormas said:

Thank you - you finally made the connection!

To what exactly?

I will eventually get to the rest of the post ... I hope it will depict my replies more accurately. You are welcome

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3 minutes ago, romansh said:

I want evidence for what exactly?

I can't help you if you don't know what you want.

Not at all. A strong theist believes god exists and perhaps even knows god exist (gnostic theist). You have not burst my bubbles at all. 

Please read more carefully - you burst the bubble!

This of course is nonsense ... in fact I more or less said the opposite here:

No it's not and of course you didn't.

No it is evidence that people claim they know god exists. 

But to your point it is not evidence of the theistic belief.

To what exactly?

Indeed.

I will eventually get to the rest of the post ... I hope it will depict my replies more accurately. You are welcome

My pleasure.

 

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