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What Was the Church of England?

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What Was the Church of England?

Old 11th Sep 2018, 22:11
  #121 (permalink)  
 
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On the contrary, Gertrude, most of the theology I've been involved with has stressed the folly of trying to understand the nature of God by applying human logic and reason. After all, the very idea of "spirit" is not easily understood by humans.

As we see here in this thread, those who profess atheism usually appeal to human logic and thought processes to support their view. "Faith" is a different matter.
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Old 11th Sep 2018, 23:33
  #122 (permalink)  
 
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And thus I believe that his work extends further back and forward in time than is covered by this Earth, and extends beyond the physical confines of this Earth.
Ken V, you are welcome to believe that JC was doing stuff for milennia before he was born. Pardon some of us for not believing such.

And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for isigns and for jseasons, and for days and years, and let them be lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth.”

And he plonked these stars into their positions, and pushed them to make the universe start to expand, but he forgot that the nearest star, Proxima Centauri, is 4.2 light years away, so the light didn't even start to hit here until 4 years later, the sky was black as the inside of a cow, with the rest of the starlight following over the next few million years.
Or... did he play with our minds and have the light already on the way for millions of years even before Day 3.
Or.. it is a fairy story...
And who wrote Genesis anyway? It was a darn long time before any human was able to write anything down, a long time to memorise a fairy story without embellishing it a little.
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Old 11th Sep 2018, 23:39
  #123 (permalink)  
 
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religion and science are neither contradictory nor in opposition to each other and in countless ways complimentary to each other.
You have to be joking.
Creationism/Evolution, Genesis/Astrophysics, Noah's Ark/Archeology etc.


No, not simplistic at all. And a correct assessment. He is ultimately responsible for all such natural misery and suffering. But experiencing such misery and suffering are necessary to gain an understanding of justice and injustice, of redemption and damnation, of punishment and mercy, of compassion and revenge, of life and death, of sickness and health, of exhaustion and vigor, of empathy and apathy, and lots more. And accompanying and in the midst of all this suffering and misery, we can experience great joy and happiness.
Nonsense. I don't need to stand in front of a moving truck to know it will bloody hurt when it hits me.

But there's more. Much more. He has promised that this period of suffering and misery are "but a moment" and will pass. And they will be done away. And he has promised that the experience so gained will be of inestimable and eternal value and make possible infinite growth. And because of the infinite growth these conditions make possible, each of us eagerly accepted these experiences as a necessary step to that infinite growth.]
'He has promised...' No! A book written hundreds of years ago when science wasn't even in nappies has 'promised', that is all. You have been told to believe that this book is the word of your god and you believe it without question. Madness!



KenV, get help, preferably soon. You are so deluded or have become so indoctrinated you cannot see the wood for the trees.

No one believes in Odin, Thor, Zeus or Jupiter anymore so why should we believe in God, Allah, Jehova etc? And don't say, "because it is written in Job" FFS!

The difference between an athiest and a (insert religious of choice here) is that an athiest adds (insert religion of choice here) to the list of unbelievable and discredited religions that have fallen by the wayside over the past few thousand years.
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 02:20
  #124 (permalink)  
 
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So, Turin, why are you and your fellow sceptics so bitter? If you don't believe this stuff, so be it, it's up to you. But you don't seem able to carry on a discussion with someone who believes differently without a load of derogatory rubbish.

If anyone needs to "get help" it's people who are so insecure in their belief or lack-of-belief that they spend their time attacking others.
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 06:19
  #125 (permalink)  
Ecce Homo! Loquitur...
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Pattern seeking monkeys. The brain designed to find patterns in poor peripheral vision to identify threats and understand the world about us.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/gregsat...e-of-patterns/

https://www.newscientist.com/article...n-of-religion/

https://www.scientificamerican.com/a...gful-patterns/



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Old 12th Sep 2018, 08:11
  #126 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Gertrude the Wombat View Post
Might I refer Sir to the Anthropic Principle? - the TL;DR is that if all the random coincidences hadn't turned out the right way then we wouldn't be here arguing about it, so far from being very unlikely they turn out to be pretty well certain.



“Imagine a puddle waking up one morning and thinking, ‘This is an interesting world I find myself in, an interesting hole I find myself in, fits me rather neatly, doesn’t it? In fact it fits me staggeringly well, must have been made to have me in it!’ This is such a powerful idea that as the sun rises in the sky and the air heats up and as, gradually, the puddle gets smaller and smaller, it’s still frantically hanging on to the notion that everything’s going to be alright, because this world was meant to have him in it, was built to have him in it; so the moment he disappears catches him rather by surprise. I think this may be something we need to be on the watch out for.” - Douglas Adams
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 11:57
  #127 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by obgraham View Post
So, Turin, why are you and your fellow sceptics so bitter? If you don't believe this stuff, so be it, it's up to you. But you don't seem able to carry on a discussion with someone who believes differently without a load of derogatory rubbish.
Bitterness is their nature. They read Job and see nothing but anguish and completely miss the message of hope and certain and sure justice it contains. They read Jonah and all they see is a sea voyage gone wrong and a guy swallowed by a whale. They completely miss the message of compassion, empathy, and redemption it contains. Bitterness is their nature, and unless they are careful, will be their end.

Nonsense. I don't need to stand in front of a moving truck to know it will bloody hurt when it hits me.
What does a moving truck hitting you tell you of justice and injustice, of redemption and damnation, of mercy and punishment, of compassion and revenge, of life and death, of sickness and health, of exhaustion and vigor, of empathy and apathy, and so much more. Answer: nothing. Your bitterness caused you to miss the point entirely.

Ken V, you are welcome to believe that JC was doing stuff for milennia before he was born. Pardon some of us for not believing such.
Two comments:
1. You missed the point. I was specifically addressing what the texts call "the atonement." That happened in Gethsemane and on the cross in a roughly 24 hour period. That work did not just apply to the folks who lived then, but extended back in time to cover all the folks who had previously lived and forward in time to cover all the folks who would live afterward. And it did not just cover the folks who lived in Palestine, but all the folks who lived anywhere and everywhere.

2. The being we call Jesus and who was physically born about 20 centuries ago existed well before he was born. Indeed it was he who figuratively flipped the switch that triggered the big bang, and he who continued to guide developments afterwards to fashion this Earth and many many like it. That too was a part of his work, but different from the atonement. And 20 centuries after his death he continues to exist and continues his work. His work includes a physical return to this Earth.
Many await that return, some with joy, others with dread.

You are so deluded or have become so indoctrinated you cannot see.....You have been told to believe that this book is the word of your god and you believe it without question. Madness!
How typically bitter of you. You know nothing about me but imagine you can plumb my mind and my heart and publicly declare my mental and emotional state. For the record, no one "has told me to believe" anything. NO ONE. And "the word of my god?" NO! They are the writings of men but whom I trust to have stated the truth to the best of their ability. And "without question?" How false and utterly blind!!! I have had and continue to have countless questions and countless doubts. And Madness? My faith is based on the writing of people I have taken great care to come to trust. The faith of the atheist is based on comical notions of a multiverse of infinite universes that permit infinite impossibilities. Now there is madness.

Why are you so fearful of your position that you resort to bitter and baseless personal attack? How typically and predictably bitter.

Last edited by KenV; 12th Sep 2018 at 18:02.
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 12:50
  #128 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by BehindBlueEyes View Post
But, surely ‘a Loving Father’ does all he can to protect his children against as much as he is able? No caring parent deliberately exposes those in his care to danger, misery, suffering and death, just so they appreciate his love and understand the value of the good times - seriously, that would be considered emotional abuse if committed in a civilised society and the victims removed to safety!

Yes......but. Parents protect their children from as much as they are able. And generally do a good job. But eventually, after but a few short years they allow, nay expect, their child to leave the protection of its parents of their home and go to school, play sports, cross streets, drive, etc etc and much more which exposes them to all sorts of dangers both physical, emotional, and spiritual. Why do such an evil thing?! Surely it would be better to keep them safely at home, protected from the countless dangers and evils of this world. Clearly not. Good parents want their children to experience ALL of life, both the good and the bad. Our god, who is literally our parent, is the same in that way. The difference is that in the end he can set everything right for each of his children no matter how bad things got for them here. And they will have learned and grown. Had he kept them "at home" they would be safe forever. But forever limited and stunted.
It seems that He has been promising a lot for a very long time; clearly, many of his former followers are fed up with waiting.
That appears to be true. And sad. And why patience is a virtue and one of the many virtues we came to this earth to develop. Could we develop that virtue if we were protected from all evil and from all suffering?
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 13:25
  #129 (permalink)  
 
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To be fair to you, KenV, I turned away from my religion a long time ago and have become more and more sceptical of it as I grow older, having seen more and more injustice and horror committed in the name of a god. However, I truly admire (and I promise this is in no way patronising you) your faith and commitment. You’ve not become aggressive or confrontational when many of us have challenged your belief and calmly explained your stance in a rational, logical way.

Even though we are poles apart in our personal outlook, I respect you Sir, and applaud your conviction.
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 13:41
  #130 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by KenV View Post
My faith is based on the writing of people I have taken great care to come to trust. The faith of the atheist is based on comical notions of a multiverse of infinite universes that permit infinite impossibilities. Now there is madness..
You're very presumptuous about what atheists "believe". There isn't really a universal rule of what you should believe, if anything, to call yourself an atheist, except obviously that you don't believe the claims about supernatural gods. One could technically be an atheist and still believe in ghosts or any other unfounded superstitions though that would be fairly inconsistent in terms of having an evidence based world view.

I consider myself an atheist but I certainly don't have much faith or belief in the multiverse and neither do most astrophysicists for that matter. That's just one of many possible theories which are constantly being tested and hopefully one day we will be able to establish with some level of certainty how the universe actually world. Until then, the words I don't know are very useful. Not every question that we can come up with has an answer available, in which case leaving it blank is the best solution. Except humans don't feel very comfortable with that. Religions have been filling in blanks throughout the ages and have mostly been wrong about as often as anyone who is just taking a blind guess based on no information would be.

Making exceptions for religion in terms of critical thinking and burden of proof is why religion has persisted for millennia and will continue to exist probably for as long as there are humans. If we were not capable of isolating superstitious/religious thoughts from our own logical and critical thinking then there would be no religion. If you can convince anyone that blind faith is somehow a virtue and skepticism is negative then you can have a religion. Which is fine.

But there are many, many religions and none can make a credible claim of their deity being more real than any other. The overwhelming majority of religious people simply ends up with the religion that the people around them had. It doesn't take much critical thinking to see the correlation between religion and geographic location. So the thing one ends up believing is not because it's any more plausible or better founded than other religions, but because you were born into it. Not too many exceptions to that rule. For this reason alone I find it hard to see why anyone, in this day and age where information is everywhere, would believe very literally what their holy book says. Believing that there is such a thing as a deity, whilst not evidence based, is understandable up to a point. But believing the specifics of one of many competing stories that were written in an age of massive superstition and ignorance before being edited and translated with a specific end result in mind is a step too far if you want to be called reasonable. Just look what some people are still capable of believing in the year 2018 and imagine the kind of ideas that would be accepted in a world where not much was known (by the savants) outside of some geometry and basic algebra.

We know many things for sure these days which directly contradict religious claims. Religious "knowledge" has retreated immensely in the past century and all that there is left are the parts that are logically impossible to disprove by their very nature. If the atheistic position is to not believe in unlikely things without evidence and as a result treat all religions as equally unlikely in the meantime then I don't think that is an unreasonable position. If someone walks up to you in the street who you've never met and tells you a random incredible story your position is likely to be one of skepticism unless he has some pretty strong evidence. Apply the same standard to those long dead people you've never met and you'll be an atheist in no time.
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 14:14
  #131 (permalink)  
 
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One day, when my nephew was about 7 or 8yo, he asked me "Uncle, does god exist?".

This was not something I was expecting, but I grasped the bull by the horns and said to him:

"Some people think the world and life and people must all have come from somewhere, and that the simplest, most plausible explanation is that a god created it all and put us here."
"And some people think that saying that god created it all just adds to the problem, because then you've got to figure out where god came from."

And I left it at that.

He's 33 now, completely uninterested in religion, and says he doesn't remember the conversation at all.

Gods just add complication; there's no evidence to suggest they exist, they're a cultural phenomenon, not a natural phenomenon.
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 16:16
  #132 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by BehindBlueEyes View Post
To be fair to you, KenV, I turned away from my religion a long time ago and have become more and more sceptical of it as I grow older, having seen more and more injustice and horror committed in the name of a god.
Turning away from religion because of what you see around you is perfectly rational. In my view god does not mind you doing so. This is not a "sin." He will however be sad if you turn away from him. There is a vast difference between turning away from religion and turning away from god. I might be completely wrong about this, but you strike me as someone who has not turned away from god. And in my mind that is a very very good thing.
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 16:21
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Originally Posted by JCviggen View Post
You're very presumptuous about what atheists "believe".
My apologies. I misspoke. I meant to say "The faith of an atheist on this thread". I was referencing a specific atheist, not all atheists everywhere. Clearly, atheists are as diverse in their belief systems as theists and I did not intend to imply otherwise.

Last edited by KenV; 12th Sep 2018 at 16:44.
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 16:25
  #134 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by under_exposed View Post
So are you saying Christians have less of an issue going out to kill people?
No, you're saying that. (you're not Cathy Newman, are you?)
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 16:34
  #135 (permalink)  
 
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KenV.
Reference your post of11/9 at 19:43.
As normal I have read your input relating to God having existed for more than the 13.7 bn years of our Universe and sending his sons to many planets.

The real problem I have with this is as I mentioned earlier. The Earth is about 4.5 bn years old and has been populated by endless different species.
Q. So why does the Christian faith always focus on Humans.
Now I expect a response could be - how do we know that he didn't send other species of his children to save other species...
But why does Christian faith always focus on a human God and his human son??
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 16:34
  #136 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by TURIN View Post
Dotted around the UK (and many other parts of the world) are castles and forts. No longer serving the purpose for which they were built, but now tourist attractions maintained by governments and private enterprise. I imagine the churches of the world will eventually go the same way.
Marvelous. May it continue and we can lose the scourge of organised religion forever.
The Church of England was once the biggest landowner in the country.(1960s/1970s).
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 16:38
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Originally Posted by JCviggen View Post
But there are many, many religions and none can make a credible claim of their deity being more real than any other.
Probably true, but only depending on what one accepts as "credible." If a religion is founded on the notion of a significant number of individuals having actually conversed/communicated with a deity and I come to trust these individuals, then I would find that religion credible. And I have come to trust the individuals who made this claim by (among other things) putting into practice what they teach and observing others who put into practice what they teach. My personal study (which includes much more than the Bible) convinces me that a great deal of Zoroastrianism, Judaism, and Christianity is exceptionally credible. Some of Islam is likely also, but I have studied Islam much less.

And separately, when I say Christianity I include Christ centered faiths that do not just rely on the Bible as their textual authority.

Making exceptions for religion in terms of critical thinking and burden of proof is why religion has persisted for millennia and will continue to exist probably for as long as there are humans.
In my personal studies I have made zero "exceptions for religion in terms of critical thinking." If the belief or belief system is not rational, I reject it.
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 17:25
  #138 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Buster15 View Post
The Earth is about 4.5 bn years old and has been populated by endless different species.
Q. So why does the Christian faith always focus on Humans.
Now I expect a response could be - how do we know that he didn't send other species of his children to save other species...
But why does Christian faith always focus on a human God and his human son??
Glad you asked. This is a big subject, but I will endeavor to keep my explanation short and simple. NOTE: The following is NOT traditional Christian belief.

The god I have faith in IS a human. He was once very much like the humans we see around us. In other words very finite and mortal. He once lived on an Earth similar to ours. He BECAME god. He has a wife who has also become as he is. They have immortal bodies that look like ours and they have children. We (humans) are their literal off spring. We left the safety of their presence to enter a very dangerous world to gain knowledge that could only be gained by personal experience. I have listed a few of those experiences and knowledge in a few previous posts. The purpose of him doing this is so that we could gain the experience necessary to eventually become like him. That is his work and his glory, to make us like him.

The nature of humanity and this world is such that EVERY one of his children (save one) will make bad choices. It is the nature of this place. Justice requires there be a penalty for those bad choices. But he his loving and merciful and he wishes to extend mercy to his children and forgive them their bad choices. But that would require he rob justice, and he is a perfected being who is perfectly just. He is in a conundrum not even he can resolve himself: how does he pay the demands of justice while extending mercy to his children? Answer: He involves an other. He asks for a mediator: one of his children who will pay the demands of justice for all his other children. His son Jehovah volunteered for the mission. His mission is (among other things) to pay the demands of justice for every bad choice ("sin") committed by every human everywhere and everywhen. This is called the atonement. It required a perfect human willing to sacrifice himself to accomplish this. Jehovah was known as Jesus after he was born.

Other species do not require this atonement because they, like little human children, cannot "sin." They will have an afterlife as well, but with a very significant difference. They are not his offspring and they cannot progress further to the point that they become as god is. I believe the afterlife for these other species will be full of joy and glory, but limited in the sense that they cannot become as god is.

Hope this answered your question. If not, please let me know how I can provide further clarification.
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 17:30
  #139 (permalink)  
 
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Buster wrote:
Q. So why does the Christian faith always focus on Humans.
Now I expect a response could be - how do we know that he didn't send other species of his children to save other species...
But why does Christian faith always focus on a human God and his human son??
That's not a difficult one, but I have a slightly different take from KenV. Because we are, for the most part, "humans". Christian faith is a matter of relationship between Man and God. There is not a lot of discussion about alternative setups.

Now if it turns out that Ants are actually God's favored creatures, and he has a relationship with Ants beyond that of humans, so be it. That is not discussed in Christianity, and is a matter for the Ants.

Where I find this interesting, though most of my other religious friends do not, is in the question of extraterrestrial life. If sentient life forms are discovered "out there" what does that say about we humans and God? Obviously there is no answer except that it is up to God to work it out his way. Conversely, if it turns out that there are ZERO cases of sentient ET life (as some renowned atheistic scientists are starting to believe recently), does that strengthen Christian belief, flying in the face of the standard scientific view that there must be billions of other life forms?
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Old 12th Sep 2018, 17:46
  #140 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by obgraham View Post
Where I find this interesting, though most of my other religious friends do not, is in the question of extraterrestrial life. If sentient life forms are discovered "out there" what does that say about we humans and God? Obviously there is no answer except that it is up to God to work it out his way. Conversely, if it turns out that there are ZERO cases of sentient ET life (as some renowned atheistic scientists are starting to believe recently), does that strengthen Christian belief, flying in the face of the standard scientific view that there must be billions of other life forms?
Interesting. I believe that there are literally countless other worlds similar to ours populated by sentient humans. And this is not a new teaching. It was taught way back when man's view of the cosmos consisted of only our solar system.
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