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General Chat Thread, Atheism will eat itself in General; Originally Posted by mark Questionable beliefs have to stay that, I'm not endorsing the use of questionable beliefs as moral/ ...
  1. #211

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    Quote Originally Posted by mark View Post
    Questionable beliefs have to stay that, I'm not endorsing the use of questionable beliefs as moral/ whatever guidance.
    Hang on a second, you said earlier that as a christian you're meant to question your beliefs. By that same measure, you're now saying that those very same beliefs shouldn't be used as a moral compass. So if you don't have firm belief in the bible, and refuse to endorse its moralities, just what kind of christian are you? :P

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    Quote Originally Posted by mark View Post
    You must draw the line somewhere though gwendes. There must be a point where you have firm beliefs. We've mentioned the obvious ones, but you can't be including those I think?? Questionable beliefs have to stay that, I'm not endorsing the use of questionable beliefs as moral/ whatever guidance. But the same as you, I think, that questioning and doubt are important values too.
    Why would I do that? Every one of my beliefs is just that - a belief. I live my life on the assumption that I am right about my beliefs but every one of them is equally open to being shown to be false.

    It's the only way to fairly deal with any given question- making a judgement based on ever-changing knowledge and experience.

    Absolutes are pointless.

    What, for example, were you thinking I might firmly hold to be true? Remember, I don't believe in an ultimate good or bad.

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    Quote Originally Posted by fafster View Post
    Hang on a second, you said earlier that as a christian you're meant to question your beliefs. By that same measure, you're now saying that those very same beliefs shouldn't be used as a moral compass. So if you don't have firm belief in the bible, and refuse to endorse its moralities, just what kind of christian are you? :P
    I believe this is ok if you're the sort of Christian that accepts that the Bible must be interpreted. Right?

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    I got a funny look from the Woman at the swimming pool the other day, under the Councils over zealous data gathering questions there was one on religion, she didn't get the whole church of the flying spaghetti monster thing.

    </drive by post>

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    Quote Originally Posted by ICT_GUY View Post
    I got a funny look from the Woman at the swimming pool the other day, under the Councils over zealous data gathering questions there was one on religion, she didn't get the whole church of the flying spaghetti monster thing.

    </drive by post>
    LMFAO! Nice one - I'd have done the same...

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    Personally I'd have gone down the whole satan worship route.

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    Quote Originally Posted by fafster View Post
    Personally I'd have gone down the whole satan worship route.
    But I have been touched by his noodley appendage.

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    Quote Originally Posted by fafster View Post
    Personally I'd have gone down the whole satan worship route.

    People have heard of that - so boring!

  9. #219
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    @ fafster : touche

    Quote Originally Posted by gwendes
    Why would I do that? Every one of my beliefs is just that - a belief. I live my life on the assumption that I am right about my beliefs but every one of them is equally open to being shown to be false.

    It's the only way to fairly deal with any given question- making a judgement based on ever-changing knowledge and experience.

    Absolutes are pointless.

    What, for example, were you thinking I might firmly hold to be true? Remember, I don't believe in an ultimate good or bad.
    & here we enter into pointless semantics.

    So you have no stance that anything that may be right or wrong at all? Murder, rape, pedophilia etc etc, are all acceptable as you can't ever say you ever would hold a firm opinion on them?

    You trash wisdom and experience of your elders for example. To you there is no reason at all to respect anyone or anything, as it's all in flux. Everything you do, everything you say, at any moment in time is entirely without foundation. You can have no foundation because that would contradict your logic.

    You don't agree with society and it's rules. You want there to be no rules.

    I think you're doing a great job of trashing non belief. I think you should admit to everyone that you're a raging Christian now gwendes

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    Quote Originally Posted by mark View Post

    So you have no stance that anything that may be right or wrong at all? Murder, rape, pedophilia etc etc, are all acceptable as you can't ever say you ever would hold a firm opinion on them?
    No. I've come to conclusions that I live my life by. I believe that there are things that can be described as good and bad. I don't accept absolutes.

    Murder is not always 100% wrong for example - I see greys.

    Quote Originally Posted by mark
    You trash wisdom and experience of your elders for example.
    I don't see a reason for tradition or 'wisdom' to be held as higher than other beliefs - If I subject it to my personal barometer of morality then I might find any belief to be one that I agree with or one that I don't.

    It all depends where and when you live(d).

    Quote Originally Posted by mark
    To you there is no reason at all to respect anyone or anything, as it's all in flux. Everything you do, everything you say, at any moment in time is entirely without foundation. You can have no foundation because that would contradict your logic.
    I don't have absolutes but I don't live my life without reasons to respect others! Everything is open to the question but I don't live my life on the assumption that nobody else exists!

    I think there's a single basic rule (for the sane) - Do to others as you would have them do to you. Early writers noticed this was a positive human trait and noted it down in one of the religious texts - it actually became quite popular!
    You don't agree with society and it's rules. You want there to be no rules.

    Quote Originally Posted by mark
    I think you're doing a great job of trashing non belief. I think you should admit to everyone that you're a raging Christian now gwendes
    You think that not having a firm set of unchanging rules makes people bad? I think it means that they are able to be flexible and therefore as good as it is possible to be.

  11. #221
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwendes View Post
    No. I've come to conclusions that I live my life by. I believe that there are things that can be described as good and bad. I don't accept absolutes.
    No you don't hold firm opinion on anything? That's what I'm saying... with your belief system that's exactly the right conclusion, and an extremely damaging one.
    You're confusing this talking about absolutes. That's a redundant argument.

    Quote Originally Posted by gwendes View Post
    I don't see a reason for tradition or 'wisdom' to be held as higher than other beliefs - If I subject it to my personal barometer of morality then I might find any belief to be one that I agree with or one that I don't.
    I like the way you sneaked in 'tradition' there. You don't accept wisdom so you try to belittle it by association with out of date ritual. Nice.

    Your barometer is bent - it can't measure because it accepts no constants.

    Quote Originally Posted by gwendes View Post
    I don't have absolutes but I don't live my life without reasons to respect others! Everything is open to the question but I don't live my life on the assumption that nobody else exists!
    Everything is also open to question to me, but I also accept some probabilities as true unless evidence arises to the contrary. From this I can derive certainties of varying strength. What you seem to be saying is that you can't 'trust' in anything anywhere near certainty.

    Quote Originally Posted by gwendes View Post
    I think there's a single basic rule (for the sane) - Do to others as you would have them do to you. Early writers noticed this was a positive human trait and noted it down in one of the religious texts - it actually became quite popular!
    So you're justifying an absolutist statement?

    Quote Originally Posted by gwendes View Post
    You think that not having a firm set of unchanging rules makes people bad? I think it means that they are able to be flexible and therefore as good as it is possible to be.
    Again you bring up negative absolutes to justify your correctness. When did I ever say that?

    So you're saying people who can't know what's right and wrong in the world are more capable of 'goodness'? How is that ever logical or possible?

  12. #222
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    Quote Originally Posted by mark View Post
    No you don't hold firm opinion on anything? That's what I'm saying... with your belief system that's exactly the right conclusion, and an extremely damaging one.
    You're confusing this talking about absolutes. That's a redundant argument.
    I suppose it comes down to the fact that I don't think that we now live in an enlightened age where we have come up with timeless rules that will determine the behaviour of mankind forever. We need to look at why we think things are right and wrong and not just accept them because that's the way things have always been. I didn't use the word 'tradition' in a negative way - tradition is sometimes good but it shouldn't be automatically accepted as good or right - we just need to look at other cultures and it's clear that one of us is wrong (if there is an ultimate good or bad).

    Quote Originally Posted by mark
    I like the way you sneaked in 'tradition' there. You don't accept wisdom so you try to belittle it by association with out of date ritual. Nice.

    Your barometer is bent - it can't measure because it accepts no constants.
    I do think there's a great deal of worth in 'wisdom' and I also think it's very useful to study historical beliefs and compare and contrast.

    I think that there are biological tendancies - desire to be a member of a tribe or group for example but I think that many things that are 'good' and 'bad' are decided by those groups. I think that murder can be justified in certain circumstances today. In the past murder has been encouraged by many cultures - human sacrifice was very important - it is only wrong by the standards we happen to have set today in this part of the world.

    Quote Originally Posted by mark

    Everything is also open to question to me, but I also accept some probabilities as true unless evidence arises to the contrary. From this I can derive certainties of varying strength. What you seem to be saying is that you can't 'trust' in anything anywhere near certainty.
    I'm just saying that there is no ultimate certainty to be measuring against - it all depends on so many things - that doesn't mean I live my life against the grain of the society I live in - I just attempt to assess situations based on evidence over what others have decided.

    Quote Originally Posted by mark
    So you're justifying an absolutist statement?
    It's something I think is important. I don't think it's a rule that we've been given or plucked from the universe - I like to be treated well and it seems logical to treat others well in anticipation or response.

    Quote Originally Posted by mark
    So you're saying people who can't know what's right and wrong in the world are more capable of 'goodness'? How is that ever logical or possible?
    Not that they don't know right and wrong. We all know right and wrong (hopefully). Our individual right and wrong is based on our biology and experiences, so, had we been raised in a culture that did things that we don't agree with in our culture we would believe these things to be right.

    Somebody that was raised in a culture we would consider to have 'bad' morals that was prepared to question and doubt the tradition and 'wisdom' would be equipped to move that society forward - anarchy can swing both ways.

    We must accept Abortion-related violence if we want African-American Civil Rights Movement - see how right and wrong are subjective?
    Last edited by gwendes; 6th February 2009 at 09:58 AM.

  13. #223
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwendes View Post
    I'm just saying that there is no ultimate certainty to be measuring against - it all depends on so many things - that doesn't mean I live my life against the grain of the society I live in - I just attempt to assess situations based on evidence over what others have decided.
    Only there ARE certainties, and you agree with them. You're re-inventing the wheel. Nearly all of what you've said in this post is straight Christianity. All of us are on a journey of discovery. Throwing away the compass may or may not be a better road, but it leads to the same destination.

    Quote Originally Posted by gwendes View Post
    It's something I think is important. I don't think it's a rule that we've been given or plucked from the universe - I like to be treated well and it seems logical to treat others well in anticipation or response.
    Funny, Jesus agrees with you

    Quote Originally Posted by gwendes View Post
    Not that they don't know right and wrong. We all know right and wrong (hopefully). Our individual right and wrong is based on our biology and experiences, so, had we been raised in a culture that did things that we don't agree with in our culture we would believe these things to be right.
    You're talking about cultural moral standards and not global moral standards.

  14. #224
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    Quote Originally Posted by mark View Post
    Funny, Jesus agrees with you
    Hey, he's only human!


    (I also think he might suggest that God (also himself) determined the rules...)



    Quote Originally Posted by mark
    You're talking about cultural moral standards and not global moral standards.
    Isn't the difference defined simply by everyone agreeing? I don't know that there are too many examples... Certainly not if you look at history as well as geography...
    Last edited by gwendes; 9th February 2009 at 01:08 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gwendes View Post
    Hey, he's only human!

    (I also think he might suggest that God (also himself) determined the rules...)

    The rules of physics/ the makeup of this existence - simple spiritual language that you deliberately bastardise.

    Society's laws determine what works for that society. Moral rules are something different that underlie secular law.

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