Monday, July 08, 2013

John Paul II Diminishes the saintly exchange rate



The Australian dollar is finally in reasonably sharp decline.  It is, however, not the only devalued currency in the world.  The value of sainthood has taken an absolute battering with it current worth being flushed down the toilet.
Two living Popes, Benedict XVI and Francis, are collaborating to shift their immediate past president, JP2, up the canonisation ladder.  John Paul II has now passed the biggest hurdle for a non martyr, beatification on the basis of a couple of miracles.  He is a dead set cert for the big ST as a pro nominal. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-07-05/pope-francis-says-brotherhood-without-god-destined-to-fail.html
Canonisation has in the past been a glacial and deliberate process.  It once took decades of slow movement through the 4 stages of Servant of God, Veneration, Beatification and Canonisation. 
The big change to the process came in 1983 when the Devils’ Advocate, the Promotor Fidei was abolished.  This office would argue against canonisation.  After that filtering system was gone, then canonisation picked up.
The quickest way to sainthood is martyrdom.  For those who us who don’t crave the opportunity to die for the faith, the other way up is to cause a couple of miracles.  Once again, the rules, once tough, are now easy peasy.  A miracle now includes an unexpected medical recovery from an untreatable disease after the invalid has prayed for assistance to the candidate for sainthood.  So if someone prayed to me for recuperation and they spontaneously recuperated, I would have one miracle under my belt in my quest for sainthood! Lucky me!
This is a photo of me being blessed by John Paul II in 1985!  A long and touching relationship.

This photo, taken by the Vatican staff, shows me in the red jacket and rat tail haircut and my wife next to me with the camera poised to take the snap above.  I think that you can just discern her smile under the camera.
The ridiculousness of this test is obvious. Many devout people are going to be praying to the Pope of the day to save them from their illnesses.  The more ill they are the more prayerful they are likely to be.  And of course, medical science has yet to achieve perfection and so some spontaneous “medical miracles” are beyond understanding.  Take this example of a window washer surviving a 47 story fall.  http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/03/nyregion/03cnd-fall.html?pagewanted=1&_r=2&hp&   There are heaps of the unexplained recoveries. Cancers go into remission.  Accident victims resume breathing. Coma victims suddenly sit up in bed.  All of these are mysteries but are they miracles??
Faith always prospers with the unexplained.  But to attribute unexpected survival not to even to God but to some person named in a prayer is a stretch of the imagination.  The person so named didn’t solicit the prayer, needn’t know about the prayer or even have claimed that they made the prayed for outcome happen.  All that the candidate for sainthood needs is to be named. 
For a Pope, this is a ridiculously easy test.  Popes probably get named in the prayers of millions every day. It would be amazing if a Pope couldn’t rack up gazillions of examples where people who prayed to him and then spontaneously recover from some real or imagined fatal illness.
A quick perusal of the list of saints by pontificate indicates an explosion in the numbers in recent years.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_canonizations#Modern_canonization.  The popes used to canonise a couple throughout their whole pontificate.  Then too the Saints were more often than not, dead for a few centuries or so.  Now we are less patient.  John Paul II went on an orgy of canonisation.  If only he spent as much energy on sexual abuse scandals, the Vatican financial scandals, the women and gay ordination issues and etc.  The man loved a party and canonised accordingly. 
There seems to be a not so hidden agenda.  As secularisation and the Vatican’s own greed and incompetence threatened the faith, they embarked on a canonisation campaign to change the narrative around the place.  Who needs talk about abuse victim suicides or financial scandals when we have a canonisation party to look forward to?  It is myopic distraction from the elephants in the room.  It is the most obvious strategic response to institutional attack.
Thus the saintly currency is utterly debased. Could anything be more debasing that giving a gong to Pope John Paul II who opposed contraception even in the face of the AIDS crisis?  Even Jesuit Professor Jose Maria Castillo and Italian theologian Giovanni Franzoni have their reservations.  Pope JP2 should be judged harshly by history and not beatified.
Admittedly the Papacy is not alone.  The Brits are debasing knighthood by giving one to a man who won a bike race in France and another is bound to get it for winning Wimbledon when these sports stars also earn millions as compensation for their unique talents.  Is this the monarchy, another institution under pressure, leveraging off celebratory to gain popular support?
Non Catholics and atheists must look at this canonisation development bemused.  I think it indicates the place in Rome is rotten to the core.
What is your view?
Should JP2 get a gong?
Is the test of miracles are joke or a farce (the choices are narrow deliberately)?
Is the explosion in the numbers of saints a response by the Vatican or just merely a symptom of the modern impatience, modern addiction to celebrity or a modern response to problems?  Is it all three?  If it is all three, would you care to make a weighting on the most important???
Over to you guys.

375 comments:

  1. Heres my favourite saint.

    from: http://www.subgenius.com/bigfist/answers/ARTICLES3/X0006_Calendar_of_SubGeniu.html

    St. Simeon the Stylite lived on top of a pillar for 30 years, stood on one leg for a year, tied a rope around his waist to make his lower body putrefy and become infested, after which
    he ate the maggots.
    He should be the patron saint of Internet
    chat.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ... and wouldnt you know it.

      Todays saint is :

      July 9th - St. MojoDick Nixon

      Let us prey

      Delete
    2. Lived on top of a pillar in any case.

      I am not sure where the rest of that comes from.

      Delete
    3. Heretic.

      Quote:
      The stupider it looks, the more important it probably is.
      J.R "Bob" Dobbs

      So there

      Delete
    4. Very inspirational stuff.
      Sounds like the appropriate Saint to contact in relation to pest eradication matters.

      Delete
  2. "There are heaps of the unexplained recoveries. Cancers go into remission. Accident victims resume breathing. Coma victims suddenly sit up in bed."

    I agree.
    These unexplained events are obviously a waste of a perfectly good miracle.

    Also, you forgot to mention all those amputees whose limbs have been restored through the power of prayer.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lakshmi_Tatma

      I guess its possible to overdo these things

      Delete
  3. Hmm... for a currency to be debased would include the assumption that it had any value in the first place.

    For example giving a Nobel Peace Prize to Kissinger debased the currency of the Nobel Prizes.

    No, the currencies of sainthood is not debased because it was always meaningless.

    But, just a note, the process for sainthood is not quite as straightforward as you suggest. It is not just *any* unexpected medical recovery that qualifies - there has to be some expert opinion that it is not just a run of the mill unexpected recovery. Or at least that used to be the case, it may have changed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes Robin. A good point. Thanks very much. Dick

      PS the Nobel Laureate is a great example of debasement.

      Delete
    2. MalcolmS7:09 PM

      Oh, I dunno.

      According to Ralph I was born to become an angel.

      Yet here I am, stuck on Venus, herding cattle.

      Delete
    3. Everyone loves the peace prize. IMO its almost as wacky and way out as the economics prize.

      All the commenters here seem to think so as well.


      http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/poll/2013/jul/02/dennis-rodman-nobel-prize-poll

      Delete
    4. RalphH 09/076:45 AM

      “According to Ralph I was born to become an angel.

      Yet here I am, stuck on Venus, herding cattle.” (MalcolmS7:09 PM)

      Do a good, honest job Malcolm and you're still in there with a chance.

      Delete
    5. MalcolmS8:54 PM

      "Do a good, honest job Malcolm and you're still in there with a chance"

      Actually, I did a "good, honest job" in my professional life, Ralph.

      Yet you keep saying I have no chance :)

      Are there special divine favours for Venusian cattle herders?

      Delete
    6. RalphH 10/0711:45 PM

      “Actually, I did a "good, honest job" in my professional life, Ralph.

      Yet you keep saying I have no chance :)” (MalcolmS8:54 PM)

      Actually, it was you who inferred that you had no chance - by being tucked away on Venus. (Incidentally the discussion has been about Mercury, not Venus. Maybe the mixed-up pseudo-pirate confused you.) My words were, “you're still in there with a chance". Having done a good, honest job in your professional life is a big boost but you still need to rightly attribute the source of that goodness and honesty.

      “Are there special divine favours for Venusian cattle herders?”

      Not that I'm aware of. God doesn't play favourites. He is completely impartial; His blessings are universally available to everyone (See Matthew 5:45). It's all up to their choices – what they decide they want - how they decide to think and act. As Dumbledore said to Harry Potter (in 'The Chamber of Secrets' movie I think) when pointing out that he needn't fear becoming like Lord Voldemort, “ It's not your abilities that make you who you are, it's your choices.” It's a universal principle.

      Delete
    7. MalcolmS1:10 AM

      RalphH: "Having done a good, honest job in your professional life is a big boost but you still need to rightly attribute the source of that goodness and honesty"

      That's an easy one! The source was me.

      Delete
    8. RalphH 10/075:00 AM

      “That's an easy one! The source was me.” (MalcolmS1:10 AM)

      Not an unexpected response Malcolm, given the ideology you espouse on these pages.
      Assuming that nothing is ever completely black or white, let's suppose that an individual exists that is a mixture of goodness and badness, honesty and dishonesty (i.e. your average human being), can you envisage these opposites originating from the same source i.e. the one individual in question?

      More generally, can good and evil be produced by/from the one source, given that good and evil are diametrically opposed?

      Delete
    9. MalcolmS8:49 AM

      RalphH: "... can good and evil be produced by/from the one source, given that good and evil are diametrically opposed?"

      Yes, of course they can! What on Earth makes you think otherwise.

      Delete
    10. Short John Silver3:39 PM

      Nothing on Earth makes hinm think otherwise - it's those interplanetary spirits putting stupid ideas in his head.

      Delete
    11. "More generally, can good and evil be produced by/from the one source, given that good and evil are diametrically opposed?"

      God says he creates chaos and he allows bad things to happen. A totally good being can't do that.

      Delete
    12. RalphH 11/075:39 PM

      “RalphH: "... can good and evil be produced by/from the one source, given that good and evil are diametrically opposed?"

      Yes, of course they can! What on Earth makes you think otherwise.” (MalcolmS8:49 AM)

      Common-sense! Logic! Isn't one of your sayings, “ 'A' is 'A' and not 'not A'? It's obvious that good and evil can exist (on a temporary basis) together in one entity but that's very different from one entity being the source for both. If 'A' is 'A' it can only produce 'A' type things. It cannot produce 'B' type things where 'B' is the opposite of 'A'.

      The Bible puts it this way, “Do men gather grapes from thorn-bushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.” (Matthew 7:16-17)

      The logical conclusion is that neither good or evil are intrinsic. Both are sourced from outside the entity by following certain learned principles and acting accordingly.

      This also explains how people can change from one to the other – by ceasing to be influenced by one set of principles and sourcing their inspiration elsewhere.

      Delete
    13. RalphH 11/075:45 PM

      “Nothing on Earth makes hinm think otherwise - it's those interplanetary spirits putting stupid ideas in his head.” (Short John Silver3:39 PM)

      A sensible comment would be appreciated SJ. It may even help you to grow in stature.

      Delete
    14. 8x
      Isn't one of your sayings, “ 'A' is 'A' and not 'not A'? It's obvious that good and evil can exist (on a temporary basis) together in one entity but that's very different from one entity being the source for both. If 'A' is 'A' it can only produce 'A' type things. It cannot produce 'B' type things where 'B' is the opposite of 'A'.
      x8

      What mallypops fails to realise is that while "A" is "A", "notA" doesnt actually "exist" at the same "level" as "A".
      It's a category and not of the same logical type.

      What CAN be said to exist in the category "notA" is "BCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ"

      So his wackydoo little "law of identity" is just another pointless tautology painted up as wisdomyness

      As for A vs B (good verses evil) I'll draw your attention to the fact that both A and B are letters and not in any way opposites at all.

      Good comment huh? ( It was inspired by "Z" ) ;)


      Delete
    15. RalphH 11/077:18 PM

      “What CAN be said to exist in the category "notA" is "BCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ"

      Good comment huh? ( It was inspired by "Z" ) ;)” (Billy The Magic Cat6:15 PM)

      Are you, by any chance, a fan of 'Sesame Street', Billy?

      “As for A vs B (good verses evil) I'll draw your attention to the fact that both A and B are letters and not in any way opposites at all.”

      What, never heard of algebra little Billy? Maybe you will when you get into big school.

      Delete
    16. "The Bible puts it this way, “Do men gather grapes from thorn-bushes or figs from thistles?"

      Blackberries, pineapples etc. The bible writers were ignorant of a great many things.

      Delete
    17. "A sensible comment would be appreciated SJ."

      When are you going to start Ralph

      Delete
    18. MalcolmS8:06 PM

      RalphH: "The logical conclusion is that neither good or evil are intrinsic"

      I thought you believed that good was intrinsic to God and evil was intrinsic to the devil.

      Never mind you're wrong anyway.

      Virtue is not intrinsic to anything - virtue is chosen.

      Delete
    19. MalcolmS8:35 PM

      idiotcatfetishist: "Good comment huh? ( It was inspired by "Z" )"

      Wacky doo!

      Really cranked up the "abstract mental tool" for that one huh.

      ROFLMAO

      Delete
    20. Tool cranking is more your style there twerpenburger.

      Thought you would have known that ;)

      Delete
    21. Stranger wrote: "Blackberries, pineapples etc. The bible writers were ignorant of a great many things."

      Well yes, there were.

      But I have already pointed out that there is no contradiction between the Christian idea of the incarnate God and Jesus not knowing some stuff.

      However in this case I am somewhat puzzled as to what you think that he didn't know. As far as I can tell grapes don't grow on bramble bushes and figs don't grow on thorn trees.

      Reading the sentence, Jesus does not say those other plants don't have fruit, he say they have different fruit.

      I imagine that if he spent a lot of time in the wilderness he would have quite a good idea of what sort of fruit grew on what sort of plan.

      Delete
    22. stranger wrote: "God says he creates chaos and he allows bad things to happen. A totally good being can't do that."

      Why not?

      Delete
    23. "But I have already pointed out that there is no contradiction between the Christian idea of the incarnate God and Jesus not knowing some stuff."

      Are you saying Jesus wasn't omniscient?

      Delete
    24. MalcolmS11:18 PM

      goblin shark: "Are you saying Jesus wasn't omniscient?"

      Excellent question GS.

      Now just sit back and await the obfuscation :)

      Delete
    25. MalcolmS11:40 PM

      idiotcatfetishist: "Tool cranking is more your style there twerpenburger"

      I'm afraid "abstract mental tool" is your baby loonyhead - you're stuck with it.

      Delete
    26. stranger wrote: "God says he creates chaos and he allows bad things to happen. A totally good being can't do that."

      Why not?

      Because it wouldn't be totally good by allowing or even creating evil.

      Delete
    27. "But I have already pointed out that there is no contradiction between the Christian idea of the incarnate God and Jesus not knowing some stuff.

      Well no all you've done is claim it, you haven't shown there isn't a problem just said there isn't one.

      "However in this case I am somewhat puzzled as to what you think that he didn't know."

      I was commenting on the photosynthesis comment initially but as far as that saying about grapes goes it was about not getting good things from bad things.

      Delete
    28. Short John Silver2:01 AM

      "A sensible comment would be appreciated SJ."

      A SENSIBLE COMMENT?! YOU CAN'T HANDLE A SENSIBLE COMMENT!!

      Delete
    29. RalphH 11/072:42 AM

      “Blackberries, pineapples etc. The bible writers were ignorant of a great many things.” (Stranger7:26 PM)

      I'm sure they were Stranger but there is much evidence that they had a pretty good handle on grapes. Mentions on the Biblical search engine I use: grape 8; grapes 38; vine 60; vineyard 70; vineyards 43; wine 236. Nary a mention of blackberries or pineapples though. Are you suggesting that they're types of grapes?

      Delete
    30. RalphH 11/073:13 AM

      “ RalphH: "The logical conclusion is that neither good or evil are intrinsic"

      I thought you believed that good was intrinsic to God and evil was intrinsic to the devil.” (MalcolmS8:06 PM)

      I was speaking about human beings, I find it hard to realise that you treat God (even the concept of God) as just another entity of Nature. I do believe that good is intrinsic to God – that God is the being and source of all good. Evil is a little trickier . Evil is the negation and inversion of good. It is not intrinsic to anything but is produced and exists in beings that negate and invert good.

      “Never mind you're wrong anyway.”

      I may be wrong. I don't claim infallibility.

      “Virtue is not intrinsic to anything - virtue is chosen.”

      If by “virtue” you mean good, you might have to explain why (a few posts ago) you declared yourself the source of your own good. This could hardly be the case if it is chosen.

      Delete
    31. RalphH 11/073:29 AM

      “A SENSIBLE COMMENT?! YOU CAN'T HANDLE A SENSIBLE COMMENT!!” (Short John Silver2:01 AM)

      The 'long' and 'short' of it is that I doubt you'd know one if you fell over it. If you did you might be a bit more circumspect about posting so many that aren't.

      Delete
    32. Stranger wrote: "Because it wouldn't be totally good by allowing or even creating evil."

      You are simply making the same claim in different words. I am asking you to show your reasoning.

      Why can't a totally good being allow evil?

      Delete
    33. goblin shark wrote: "Are you saying Jesus wasn't omniscient?"

      That is right - according to Christian beliefs the man Jesus who walked on the Earth was fully a man. He wasn't omnipotent or omniscient.

      The Gospels depict him saying that there are things he does not know. The Gospels depict him as being terrified at his coming ordeal.

      The incarnate Jesus is fully a man. But the Incarnation is not the totality of Jesus - who is also Eternal and God.

      Delete
    34. Stranger wrote: "Well no all you've done is claim it, you haven't shown there isn't a problem just said there isn't one. "

      And you haven't shown that there is a problem, just said that there is one.

      You say that you understand Christian beliefs, so explain to me why the fact that Jesus didn't know everything during the period when he walked on Earth contradicts the Christian belief that he was fully man during that time?

      Delete
    35. Stranger wrote: "I was commenting on the photosynthesis comment initially but as far as that saying about grapes goes it was about not getting good things from bad things."

      No, the quote is not about things, it is about people.

      Delete
    36. "No, the quote is not about things, it is about people."

      And yet he uses fruit they know of as an example.

      Delete
    37. "That is right - according to Christian beliefs the man Jesus who walked on the Earth was fully a man. He wasn't omnipotent or omniscient."

      According to the beliefs of Christians I have conversed with Jesus was fully God too.

      "The incarnate Jesus is fully a man. But the Incarnation is not the totality of Jesus - who is also Eternal and God."

      So you do think he was omniscient or he cant be God as well who is omniscient.

      Delete
    38. "Why can't a totally good being allow evil?"

      Because evil isn't good. Kind of obvious.

      Delete
    39. MalcolmS7:31 AM

      Robin: ".. explain to me why the fact that Jesus didn't know everything during the period when he walked on Earth contradicts the Christian belief that he was fully man during that time?"

      Because, according to the myth, Jesus was also supposed to be the omniscient God.

      It is for the Christian to make sensible the Trinity which, of course, he cannot do.

      Delete
    40. RalphH 12/077:38 AM

      “*"Why can't a totally good being allow evil?"* (Robin)

      Because evil isn't good. Kind of obvious.” (Stranger6:45 AM)

      That's an obvious answer Stranger but it doesn't solve the conundrum. I'll give you a tip, think free-will and the greater good.

      Delete
    41. MalcolmS8:12 AM

      RalphH: "“Virtue is not intrinsic to anything - virtue is chosen.” If by “virtue” you mean good, you might have to explain why (a few posts ago) you declared yourself the source of your own good. This could hardly be the case if it is chosen"

      Why not? It is the choice of virtue which makes man the source of his own good.

      Contrary to the Christian view virtue is not its own reward. Virtue is the action by which one gains and keeps a value. I am the source of my own good if I choose to be virtuous in order to gain/keep a value.

      Delete
    42. @Robin "That is right - according to Christian beliefs the man Jesus who walked on the Earth was fully a man. He wasn't omnipotent or omniscient."

      If Jesus was the result of immaculate conception then He was the Son of a divine being.

      He obviously had some supernatural powers as He performed miracles.

      Why would he have some godlike powers and not others?

      Delete
    43. Stranger wrote: "And yet he uses fruit they know of as an example"

      Example? Have you heard of a metaphor?

      Delete
    44. goblin shark wrote: "If Jesus was the result of immaculate conception then He was the Son of a divine being.

      He obviously had some supernatural powers as He performed miracles.

      Why would he have some godlike powers and not others?"

      No, he didn't have any supernatural powers. That part is quite clear. According to the Gospels the miracles are performed by God through his faith and this is supposed to be something that any human can do.

      For example Peter briefly walks on water before sinking. Later the apostles can perform miracles themselves due to their increased faith following the resurrection.

      Delete
    45. Stranger wrote: "Because evil isn't good. Kind of obvious."

      If it is obvious then you should have no trouble showing the reasoning that demonstrates this.

      Basically you are saying "A is not B therefore if X permits the property B to be examplified then X cannot have the property A"

      That does not follow.

      Delete
    46. @Robin "According to the Gospels the miracles are performed by God through his faith ...."

      So, what you're claiming is that Jesus was not divine because He needed God's assistance when demonstrating supernatural powers.



      Delete
    47. RalphH 12/075:10 PM

      “Because, according to the myth, Jesus was also supposed to be the omniscient God.

      It is for the Christian to make sensible the Trinity which, of course, he cannot do.' (MalcolmS7:31 AM)

      What do you mean by “the Christian” Malcolm? Do you mean one particular Christian, a group of Christians or every Christian? I suspect you mean every Christian and suggest that there is no way you can know that.

      The trinity is quite sensible provided it is not seen as tri-personal (i.e. not understood literally). Three persons obviously implies three Gods (which is impossible). Jesus was God incarnate/God in the flesh/in the world of Nature. He was a man but with one unique difference. He had a divine (i.e. uncreated) soul. The soul (metaphorically called the Father) is what builds the body. Jesus as to his body was fully man but as to his soul was divine. That's why the terminology of father and son is used.

      During his earthly life he went through a process called glorification (one can see from the gospels that this was an ongoing process) which culminated with his death and resurrection by which time the physical/natural part (called Jesus or the son) had also been made divine. God had not changed but had extended his reach so to speak by entering His created realm personally and overcoming it's limitations.

      Subsequently to that historical event, the record of Jesus' life/teaching and victory provides a permanent and living example of how we too, by harnessing the power of good, can overcome our limitations, weaknesses and tendency towards selfishness or evil.

      Delete
    48. 8x
      Three persons obviously implies three Gods (which is impossible).
      x8

      Why impossible?

      8x
      ...we too, by harnessing the power of good, can overcome our limitations, weaknesses and tendency towards selfishness or evil.
      x8

      I thought you said "good" was some kind of an algebra-ey doohdah.

      Now its like a horse?

      I'm pretty confident that you wouldn't know what "good" was if it fell on your head.

      Doesnt that ignorance give "evil" an easy in?


      Delete
    49. RalphH 12/077:20 PM

      “*“Three persons obviously implies three Gods (which is impossible).”* (RalphH)

      Why impossible?” (zedinhisbigflyinghead5:42 PM)

      Well zed, if you follow the line that words can mean whatever you want them to mean (in which case there wouldn't be much point in getting an education or attempting to learn anything) then you can make up any numbers of possibilities or delusional realities.

      However if you accept that words have definite meanings and God is the source of all existence and all power in the universe there obviously can be only one. Without the unity of one will and purpose, there would be complete chaos which would self-destruct (e.g. the Roman triumvirates)

      “I thought you said "good" was some kind of an algebra-ey doohdah.”

      “Algebra” is simply a tool to aid understanding. “doodah”, I recall has much usage in the Negro spiritual, 'The Campdown Races' http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VXE_PfcXtYE
      Is that where the horse came from? I couldn't see any other connection to horses.

      “I'm pretty confident that you wouldn't know what "good" was if it fell on your head.

      Doesnt that ignorance give "evil" an easy in?”

      Ignorance does give evil “an easy in” but, IMO, a generalised faith in good can trump ignorance and lead to learning which dispels ignorance.

      Delete
    50. "Basically you are saying "A is not B therefore if X permits the property B to be examplified then X cannot have the property A""

      No, You are adding another entity where there isn't one in the case of good and God.

      Delete
    51. 8x
      ...a generalised faith in good can trump ignorance...
      x8

      Are we playing 500 now? If so, where do the left and right bowers fit into this theory?

      Delete
    52. "That's an obvious answer Stranger but it doesn't solve the conundrum. I'll give you a tip, think free-will and the greater good."

      We can have free will but not the ability to do bad things, just like we have free will but not the ability to breathe underwater unaided if we wanted to.

      Delete
    53. "Well zed, if you follow the line that words can mean whatever you want them to mean (in which case there wouldn't be much point in getting an education or attempting to learn anything) then you can make up any numbers of possibilities or delusional realities."

      Oddly enough that's what you have done Ralph.

      Delete
    54. "The trinity is quite sensible provided it is not seen as tri-personal (i.e. not understood literally)."

      Yes it is. You automatically have two people with Jesus and God.

      "The soul (metaphorically called the Father) is what builds the body. "

      Repeating bullshit doesn't make it true. Soul has more definitions than the one you use too you know.

      "That's why the terminology of father and son is used."

      Not by other Christians it isn't.

      " God had not changed but had extended his reach so to speak by entering His created realm personally and overcoming it's limitations."

      God is already supposed to be everywhere.

      Delete
    55. RalphH wrote: "The trinity is quite sensible provided it is not seen as tri-personal (i.e. not understood literally). Three persons obviously implies three Gods (which is impossible). "

      But three persons and one God is how the Trinity is traditionally understood.

      Yours is basically the Unitarian interpretation.

      Delete
    56. "Ignorance does give evil “an easy in” but, IMO, a generalised faith in good can trump ignorance and lead to learning which dispels ignorance."

      You mustn't have faith in good as your ignorance has not been dispelled. So how does faith trump ignorance?

      Delete
    57. MalcolmS11:00 PM

      RalphH: "The trinity is quite sensible provided it is not seen as tri-personal (i.e. not understood literally). Three persons obviously implies three Gods (which is impossible"

      The Trinity is seen as BOTH "tri-personal" AND as *One.*

      Which means it is seen as A and non-A.

      Which means it is seen as nonsensical by the rational and "miraculous" by the irrational.

      Delete
    58. Long John Silver12:58 AM

      "Peter briefly walks on water before sinking."

      It's not much of a miracle if you sink. Even non-divine people can learn to swim. A brief moment before sinking is almost as impressive as being able to fly (until you plummet to the ground). As the philosophers say - I sink, therefore I am.

      "Is that where the horse came from? "
      Didn't we agree that they came from Jupiter?

      Delete
    59. RalphH 12/074:09 AM

      “But three persons and one God is how the Trinity is traditionally understood.” (Robin9:10 PM)

      It is, but it's not Biblical and was not introduced until the first Council of Nicaea in the fourth century A.D. The Apostolic concept/understanding is espoused by Paul in Colossians. “For in Him (Christ) dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; ...” (2:9) There is not one place in the scriptures that speaks of more than one person of God. The traditional Trinity concept is all about inventing facts to fit the theory of the vicarious stonement. It was introduced because there was a danger of Jesus' divinity being denied. It may have temporarily staved off that problem but has cause other far deeper problems ever since it's inception.

      “Yours is basically the Unitarian interpretation.”

      Not really, the Unitarians don't believe that Jesus is God even though he clearly states that he is (John 8:58; John 10:30-33). My belief is more like Paul's statement above.

      Delete
    60. RalphH 12/075:29 AM

      RalphH: "The trinity is quite sensible provided it is not seen as tri-personal (i.e. not understood literally). Three persons obviously implies three Gods (which is impossible"

      “The Trinity is seen as BOTH "tri-personal" AND as *One.*

      Which means it is seen as A and non-A.

      Which means it is seen as nonsensical by the rational and "miraculous" by the irrational.” (MalcolmS11:00 PM)

      Which is why I don't believe in that idea Malcolm. However a trinity can exist within one being/entity e.g. a person consists of soul, body and mind/spirit or more mundanely, every spatial object has length, breadth and height.
      IMO, God (like us who are made in God's image) also has a triune nature:
      1. soul (also called the Father, Yahweh/Jehovah within the Judeo-Christian tradition)
      2. body (also called the Son, Jesus Christ within the Christian tradition)
      3. spirit (also called the Holy Spirit within the Christian tradition)

      That probably seems confusing to anyone who has not seen it before. My aim here is simply to show that a trinity can be understood other than 3=1 or as you put it A=non-A.

      Delete
    61. RalphH5:36 AM

      “Didn't we agree that they came from Jupiter?” (Long John Silver12:58 AM)

      I don't think "we" agreed on anything Long John (I see you've morphed back again). My impression is that you are a great embellisher/story-teller with very little attention to detail.

      Delete
    62. RalphH 12/075:50 AM

      “You mustn't have faith in good as your ignorance has not been dispelled. So how does faith trump ignorance?” (Stranger9:16 PM)

      Even if one is ignorant, they can have faith in another who has demonstrated that they are good and loving (as a child has faith in a parent/carer). When the ignorance is dispelled and the person has their own understanding, they will have even more faith in their mentor if they have been correct and taught the right message.

      Delete
    63. Stranger wrote: "No, You are adding another entity where there isn't one in the case of good and God."

      I am not sure what you mean. Each of the A,B and X just stood for terms in your argument.

      So do you now want to restate your claim without the third term?

      Delete
    64. " Each of the A,B and X just stood for terms in your argument."

      No they didn't. Good is not separate from God.

      Delete
  4. Long John Silver1:32 AM

    If enough atheists pray to the ghost of Christopher Hitchens, eventually some of them are going to get better. Would the Catholics then have to declare him a saint, or does his atheism (while he was alive) rule him out?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah Pirate, Hitch was far too naughty to be saintly. Indeed you are being far too naughty suggesting such a thing. Shame! Shame! Shame (C/- of Hunch not Hitch)

      Dickie

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    3. On the contrary I think that Hitch would make a great Saint.

      All the Saints were sinners according to Christian belief.

      Delete
  5. RalphH 09/076:54 AM

    I think your stance on this issue is completely justified Dick not only as regards the degrading or devaluing of sainthood (because of the relative ease of attaining it) but also as it applies to the concept of sainthood itself. It reflects what has come to be a traditional Christian concept (one that I don't sub-scribe to) of mediation or the need for a mediator between people and God. This idea has arisen because of the unpalatable idea of Christ being believed to have been a mediator or intercessor between an angry Father God figure seeking retribution and fallible, sinful mankind.

    Add to that the idea that the first pope was deemed a successor to Jesus - becoming leader of the church and mediator with all his minions being smaller scale intercessors for the lay or common people and you have the breeding ground of all sorts of abuse and avoidance of personal responsibility as finite, fallible men/humans attribute to themselves an infinite, authoritarian power that belongs to God (who is infinite love/goodness and hence beyond any possible corruption) alone.

    Many, many saints (and priests) have not abused their position and power. They have recognised that they are merely conduits for the love and power of God and have been good and faithful servants in God's vineyard. I believe many saints would deplore having that accolade placed on them because their main aim had been to lead people directly to God and not to themselves.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Ralph. Yes the former rarity of canonisation really represented a world view that God knew of one's goodness and that earthly accolades were unnecessary. It might be possible to see that the explosion of canonisation is evidence of the Papacy being unable to believe with the same level of conviction that Popes in the past believed.
      What do you reckon?
      Dick

      Delete
    2. RalphH 11/074:01 AM

      “Thanks Ralph. Yes the former rarity of canonisation really represented a world view that God knew of one's goodness and that earthly accolades were unnecessary. It might be possible to see that the explosion of canonisation is evidence of the Papacy being unable to believe with the same level of conviction that Popes in the past believed.
      What do you reckon?” (Dick Gross1:39 AM)

      I don't know Dick. Maybe initially sainthood was just the celebration and example of a well lived Christian life. What I object to is saints being evoked and worshipped and being thought of/used as lobbyists to God. I don't know the extent to which that is still being done. IMO the very idea of such a process belittles the idea of God as being totally loving, omniscient and infinitely powerful. IOW, from my perspective it's based on a false idea of God i.e. that God could be angry, vengeful and punishing.

      Delete
    3. "it's based on a false idea of God i.e. that God could be angry, vengeful and punishing."

      God says he gets angry is vengeful jealous and punishes people.

      Delete
    4. RalphH 12/079:26 PM

      “God says he gets angry is vengeful jealous and punishes people.” (Stranger6:38 AM)

      Stranger, this demonstrates the folly of interpreting the Bible literally. Technically such statements are an 'appearance' i.e. it appears to be the case from a particular perspective but the reality/truth is the exact. e.g. a child's perspective of a parent preventing them from doing something they want that is actually wrong and harmful. Presenting a rational argument won't work because the child's rational faculty has not yet developed.

      Just so adults also can be in a completely irrational state of mind where nothing short of threats and force will prevent the injury. All the time the prevailing attitude is one of love for the person and a desire to keep them from harm. Hopefully when the person returns to a rational state they will be able to see the rationale of the action and be grateful.

      When these statements were made the human race was at a pretty low ebb because of it's almost universal addiction to evil. You might note that Jesus did not make similar statements because some progress had been made in bringing some at least back to a rational and moral compass enabling them to understand and follow his teachings.

      Delete
    5. RalphH 12/0710:05 PM

      Correction to my above post (9:26 PM) - line three should read "....but the reality/truth is the exact opposite." Apologies - one of the hazards of cutting and pasting and insufficient proof-reading.

      Delete
    6. "Stranger, this demonstrates the folly of interpreting the Bible literally."

      The parts of the Bible that show God in a bad light you insist are not to be taken literally yet you are quite happy to take other parts of it literally.

      "Just so adults also can be in a completely irrational state of mind where nothing short of threats and force will prevent the injury."

      An omnipotent God of love doesn't need to, nor would, resort to violence.

      "When these statements were made the human race was at a pretty low ebb because of it's almost universal addiction to evil."

      Why do you keep lying?

      Delete
    7. 8x
      the human race was at a pretty low ebb because of it's almost universal addiction to evil.
      x8

      So good is like algebra or a horse or a high card, whereas evil is like nicotine or opium.

      I'm with you so far!! -- two thumbs up - grins --

      Delete
    8. RalphH 12/073:21 PM

      “The parts of the Bible that show God in a bad light you insist are not to be taken literally yet you are quite happy to take other parts of it literally.” (Stranger2:00 AM)

      The Bible, in various places is written from two different perspectives - God's and man/mankind's. Where a literal interpretation does not agree with the essential nature of God (as infinite love, wisdom, forgiveness, mercy, justice etc) it is obviously being written from mankind's perspective.

      “An omnipotent God of love doesn't need to, nor would, resort to violence.”

      I agree, that's why I say this is not the reality but the way people trying to self-justify their own evil, recalcitrancy, see it.

      “Why do you keep lying?”

      I stopped lying this morning the minute I got out of bed.

      Delete
    9. RalphH 13/073:36 PM

      “So good is like algebra or a horse or a high card, whereas evil is like nicotine or opium.

      I'm with you so far!! -- two thumbs up - grins --” (zedinhisbigflyinghead2:35 AM)

      Go zed, I suggest you buy yourself a maths text, a horse and a pack of cards and take off on the gambling trail. If you're a smoker, quit, wipe that grin off and start practising the poker face. Good luck!

      Delete
    10. "Where a literal interpretation does not agree with the essential nature of God (as infinite love, wisdom, forgiveness, mercy, justice etc) it is obviously being written from mankind's perspective."

      Except of course the words are coming from God himself. Not only do you have to deny reality to feel good you have to deny the words of your god.

      "I stopped lying this morning the minute I got out of bed."

      No you are still lying.

      Delete
    11. RalphH 13/076:23 PM

      “Except of course the words are coming from God himself. Not only do you have to deny reality to feel good you have to deny the words of your god.” (Stranger4:44 PM)

      Pretty neat trick eh Stranger. God pretends to be agreeing with us so he can get our attention and then start changing us from within – tricking us into using our intellect/rational faculty in the way it was designed to be used i.e. to affirm the truth or reality rather than what we want or think we want and putting our free-will to work choosing the good and sensible path that leads to long-term, eternal happiness rather than short-term bodily luxuries and pleasures.

      If He didn't use this methodology (allowing us to believe that we are saving ourselves by our own intellect and efforts), he would have to use external force - remove our rationality and free-will which would destroy our humanness and turn us into robots without the ability to achieve eternal happiness by understanding and reciprocally connecting with the Creator.

      IOW, He acts for the greater good of mankind just as we, if we are good parents guide rather than force our children to make sensible decisions and become responsible, reliable adults.

      “No you are still lying.”

      You really should get that broken record fixed or throw it out and get a new one.

      Delete
    12. "Pretty neat trick eh Stranger..."

      None of that had anything to do with my comment, you really a insane.

      If you want me to stop telling you to stop lying I suggest you stop lying.

      Delete
    13. RalphH 13/075:33 AM

      "None of that had anything to do with my comment, you really a insane.

      If you want me to stop telling you to stop lying I suggest you stop lying." (Stranger10:37 PM)

      Well Andrew/Stranger, I guess it's time to apply the old saying, "You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink. I don't think I could have led you any easier but you still refuse to think. Your call.

      Bye the way, (Biblical metaphor) horse stands for the intellect/understanding and water stands for the truth.

      Delete
    14. " I don't think I could have led you any easier but you still refuse to think."

      What you think you do and what you actually do are very different. Your post still had nothing to do with what I actually wrote.

      "Bye the way, (Biblical metaphor) horse stands for the intellect/understanding and water stands for the truth."

      You just made that up, why do you keep lying?

      Delete
    15. RalphH 14/078:07 AM

      “What you think you do and what you actually do are very different. Your post still had nothing to do with what I actually wrote.” (Stranger6:32 AM)

      As usual Stranger no argument, no explanation just a blind, meaningless negation. My post completely addressed what you said but you obviously don't like it so make no effort to understand.

      “You just made that up, why do you keep lying?”

      The problem is your ignorance and unwillingness to learn. The rule for Biblical metaphor is that the natural thing mentioned does for the body what it's spiritual counterpart does for the mind/spirit.

      Water is a good simple example. When water is mentioned in the Bible the subject being discussed is truth or something truth related. Water slakes the thirst and cleanses the body; it's mental counterpart (truth) slakes the thirst for knowing and cleanses the mind of false ideas. Even a child can understand this. Why do you have trouble?

      Delete
    16. 8x
      So good is like algebra or a horse or a high card, whereas evil is like nicotine or opium.
      x8

      8x
      Bye the way, (Biblical metaphor) horse stands for the intellect/understanding and water stands for the truth.
      x8

      So a "good" brain is like a card counting hippopotamus.

      Got it.

      Dont worry, Im keeping notes

      Delete
    17. "My post completely addressed what you said"

      No it didn't, it had nothing to do with what I wrote.

      "The problem is your ignorance and unwillingness to learn."

      Says the most ignorant person on here. Tell us Ralph does dog-like still mean dog in your deluded world?

      "Water is a good simple example. When water is mentioned in the Bible the subject being discussed is truth or something truth related."

      Why do you keep making things up? You wouldn't know truth if it introduced itself to you and had references. You are only interested in your insane delusions.

      Delete
    18. RalphH 14/078:32 PM

      “Says the most ignorant person on here. Tell us Ralph does dog-like still mean dog in your deluded world?” (Stranger4:17 PM)

      So you really think that qualifies as delusion. Come-on Stranger, get real.

      Why do you keep making things up? You wouldn't know truth if it introduced itself to you and had references. You are only interested in your insane delusions.

      Name just one “insane delusion” - and leave the dogs and the dog look-a likes out of it. Do you actually know what insane means? Do you even know what delusion means? There are ways of finding such things out but it require effort not mindless name-calling.

      Delete
    19. "So you really think that qualifies as delusion. Come-on Stranger, get real."

      So you still think dog-like is the same as dog.

      "Why do you keep making things up?"

      I don't, that's what you do.

      "Name just one “insane delusion” "

      Cows on Mercury.

      "Do you actually know what insane means? Do you even know what delusion means?"

      Yes, but I doubt that you do seeing you think Swedenborg wasn't insane or that your beliefs aren't delusions.

      Delete
  6. I'm waiting for the Ashes Wednesday miracle of St Michael of Pratten Park and the gospel according to Boof (the other Boof that is)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. MalcolmS8:40 AM

      9 for 215, that's no miracle and I'm going to bed.

      Delete
    2. MalcolmS8:42 AM

      Oops... all out for 215.

      Delete
    3. 4 for 75. There'e a lot of waiting in this miracle business. Looks like its onto St Stephen now. Is there a limit to the number of saints we can make, 11, 12 or the whole squad.

      Delete
    4. St Ashton take a bow.
      A brilliant night's entertainment. A new name for the hallowed firmament.
      St Phil of Pratten Park did alright too.

      Delete
    5. MalcolmS1:34 AM

      St Ashton Agar for skipper.

      Delete
  7. Stranger wrote: "Because, according to the myth, Jesus was also supposed to be the omniscient God."

    So where is the contradiction? Why can't an omnipotent, omniscient God choose to become incarnate as a human with human limitations.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 8x
      Why can't an omnipotent, omniscient God choose to become incarnate as a human with human limitations.
      x8

      Because he doesnt exist.
      Pretty simple really

      Delete
    2. Whoops, I mean "Malcolm wrote:" Sorry about that.

      Delete
    3. "So where is the contradiction? Why can't an omnipotent, omniscient God choose to become incarnate as a human with human limitations."

      That's no what we are told happened though. Jesus is said to be both human and God at the same time.

      Delete
    4. Are you saying that we were not told that the *incarnate* Jesus had human limitations?

      We are explicitly told in the Gospels that the *incarnate* Jesus had human limitations, that he was scared and that there were things he didn't know.

      Do I really need to quote chapter and verse for that?

      So, yes, we are told by the most important source that the *incarnate* Jesus had human limitations.

      So according to Christian beliefs Jesus is God.

      Jesus became incarnate in this world and during the incarnation he had human limitations.

      Jesus died and was resurrected and became fully God.

      So the belief is that Christ now is fully God and fully man.

      Delete
    5. "Jesus died and was resurrected and became fully God.

      So the belief is that Christ now is fully God and fully man."

      And I've had Christians say he was fully God before the resurrection.

      Delete
    6. Yes, as I said he is God.

      But he became incarnate in the world and during that time did not have Godly powers - according to the Gospels, instead he had human limitations.

      After the resurrection he no longer had those limitations and became fully God.

      Now there is debate about whether he was fully God during the incarnation.

      But even this would only be a contradiction, as I said, if it is not possible for a God to become incarnate and for his incarnation to have human limitations.

      I can't see any actual contradiction there and I don't know of any rules about being a God as to what you can and can't do.

      I don't believe it myself - it seems a sort of messy compromise to make the scriptures consistent.

      But I can't see any actual contradiction there.

      Delete
    7. As I said before, the contradiction comes much earlier - with the concept of the Triune God as normally defined.

      Delete
  8. Zed wrote: "Because he doesnt exist.
    Pretty simple really"

    An Aristotlean logician I see.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 8x
      An Aristotlean logician I see.
      x8

      Oh, pshaw.
      You and your funny little labels...

      Why cant something just be? ;)

      Delete
    2. MalcolmS12:28 AM

      zedinhisbigflyingloonyabstractmentaltoolshead:

      "Why cant[sic] something just be?"

      According to Aristotle all somethings just be :)

      Delete
    3. 8x
      According to Aristotle all somethings just be :) [sic]
      x8

      Whatever. Who cares?

      Delete
    4. 8x
      Whatever. Who cares?
      x8

      Oh right... I forgot

      Russian druggies and their twerpy cult followers

      Sorry 'bout that.

      Delete
    5. MalcolmS1:38 AM

      zedinhisbigflyingloonyabstractmentaltoolshead:

      "Whatever. Who cares?"

      LOL Whatever. Who cares?

      Delete
  9. goblin shark wrote: "So, what you're claiming is that Jesus was not divine because He needed God's assistance when demonstrating supernatural powers"

    Maybe you can point out where I said that.

    Are you saying that if the incarnate Jesus could not perform miracles any more than any other human then he was not divine?

    Do you have any reasoning to support that premise?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Malcolm S wrote: "It is for the Christian to make sensible the Trinity which, of course, he cannot do."

      I think that is a separate issue.

      I agree that no sense can be made of the Trinity but for different reasons.

      The Trinity requires a relaxation of the identity axiom ie "A is X and B is X and C is X but A is not B and B is not C" etc.

      Without that axiom no reasoning is possible.

      Delete
    2. And I have no idea why this comment ended up here - I posted it in a different branch.

      Delete
    3. @Robin "Maybe you can point out where I said that."

      @Robin 3:25 PM "No, he didn't have any supernatural powers."

      Did someone mention obfuscation?

      I AM saying that if Jesus could not perform miracles without assistance then He definitely was not divine.

      Delete
    4. goblin shark wrote: "Did someone mention obfuscation?"

      So stop obfuscating and back up your assertion. Let me remind you of your assertion:

      goblin shark claimed: "So, what you're claiming is that Jesus was not divine because He needed God's assistance when demonstrating supernatural powers."

      So back it up and show me where I claimed this.

      Don't show me where I said that Jesus didn't have supernatural powers.

      Show me where I said he was not divine because he didn't have supernatural powers.

      You can't. Because I didn't say that.

      You said it.

      And then you thought you would sneakily attribute it to me.

      And then when I caught you out you tried to bluster your way out of it, ironically by accusing me of obfuscation.

      Did you really think that I wouldn't spot such stupid dishonest tactics?

      Delete
    5. Let's have a look at the other part of your post.

      I asked: "Are you saying that if the incarnate Jesus could not perform miracles any more than any other human then he was not divine?"

      You answered: "I AM saying that if Jesus could not perform miracles without assistance then He definitely was not divine."

      I like you carefully leave out the word "incarnate" in your answer. Thought I wouldn't spot that too didn't you?

      Oddly enough you did not answer my last question as to whether you had any reasoning to support the premise?

      Do you? Or do you think that it is true just because you say so?

      Delete
    6. @Robin "I like you carefully leave out the word "incarnate" in your answer. Thought I wouldn't spot that too didn't you?" etc.

      If He was divine He wouldn't need any assistance to perform miracles.

      Because it has been proven that He wasn't omniscient you are attempting, by the use of gobbledygook, mumbo jumbo and semantics, to make out that it doesn't matter.

      If He was divine, then by definition, He is a god and therefore does not have any limitations.

      He would therefore possess the full set of omni powers such as omnipotence, omniscience etc.

      You can shape shift His identities all you like, but it will not change the fact
      that if He was divine then He also had be omniscient.





      Delete
    7. goblin shark wrote: "Because it has been proven that He wasn't omniscient..."

      What are you talking about, the Gospels explicitly state that the incarnated Jesus was not omniscient.

      That has been part of Christian belief for 2 millenia.

      goblin shark wrote: "...you are attempting, by the use of gobbledygook, mumbo jumbo and semantics, to make out that it doesn't matter."

      On the contrary I have been trying for some time now to get you to tell me why you think it matters.

      goblin shark: "If He was divine, then by definition, He is a god and therefore does not have any limitations.

      He would therefore possess the full set of omni powers such as omnipotence, omniscience etc. "

      So if he is omnipotent then why can't he produce a manifestation of himself in a particular environment that has limitations?

      That sounds like a limitation. Why do you think God would have no limitations and yet have limitations?

      goblin shark wrote: "You can shape shift His identities all you like..."

      Why would I want to shape shift? I don't believe Jesus was God.

      goblin shark wrote: ", but it will not change the fact that if He was divine then He also had be omniscient. "

      Stating something again and again does not make it a fact.

      Just tell me why you think that an omnipotent and omniscient God cannot produce an incarnation of himself that has limitations.

      How would that imply that God himself had limitations?

      Delete
    8. @Robin "I don't believe Jesus was God."

      @Robin 10:07 PM "After the resurrection he no longer had those limitations and became fully God."

      Like I said, semantics & shape shifting.
      Appears to be a lot of alluding and implying going on without too much commitment.

      Care to define your particular god so that we know what exactly is motivating your posts?


      Delete
    9. OK, let me put your tactic in reverse goblin shark.

      goblin shark said|: "He obviously had some supernatural powers as He performed miracles"

      So tell me. Does your statement above imply that you mean that Jesus had supernatural powers and performed miracles?

      No, so why do you assume that my description of Christian belief implies that I share that belief?

      goblin shark wrote: "Care to define your particular god so that we know what exactly is motivating your posts?"

      You are making an assumption, based on no evidence at all, that my belief about God is motivating my posts here.

      And you are making the genetic fallacy that the motivation behind making a statement must be a factor in deciding the truth or otherwise of the statement.

      No, the argument stands or falls on it's own. Currently I have asked you why it is that you think that an omnipotent and omniscient God cannot produce an incarnation of himself that has limitations.

      That claim seems to be your main point and I would like to know how you reached that conclusion.

      All this talk of shape-shifting and semantics and gobbledegook etc is nothing more than dust kicking.

      Delete
    10. @robin "No, so why do you assume that my description of Christian belief implies that I share that belief?"

      Like I asked before, what exactly are your beliefs?

      If you don't want me to make assumptions you will have to be more specific about what you are referring to.

      If a god wanted to produce an incarnation with limitations it would not be called the Son of God as God has no gender and gods have no limitations.

      Would a being who is not fully(sic) god still be suitable for the salvation mission?





      Delete
    11. "If a god wanted to produce an incarnation with limitations it would not be called the Son of God as God has no gender and gods have no limitations."

      Most gods do have limitations, it's only the Abrahamic deity that has been given omnipotent status.

      Delete
    12. @stranger

      You're right, I should have been more specific. I've picked up some of Robin's bad habits. Any god associated with infinity, immortality, eternity etc, cannot have limitations otherwise it would have restrictions and therefore become finite.

      Delete
    13. goblin shark wrote: "Like I asked before, what exactly are your beliefs?"

      I have discussed my beliefs and the reasons for believing them before and probably will do again. But not as an excuse to change the subjects. Your beliefs or mine have no bearing on the subject.

      goblin shark: "If you don't want me to make assumptions you will have to be more specific about what you are referring to."

      Seriously? You want me to take responsibility for you assuming stuff without evidence?

      goblin shark wrote: "If a god wanted to produce an incarnation with limitations it would not be called the Son of God as God has no gender and gods have no limitations."

      But as I said before you are putting a limitation on God right there - that he can't produce an incarnation with limitations.

      What you are failing to demonstrate is that the incarnation having limitations implies God has limitations.

      Delete
    14. goblin shark wrote: "I've picked up some of Robin's bad habits"

      Oh dear, smugness yet.

      And so little to be smug about.

      Delete
    15. Stranger wrote: "Most gods do have limitations, it's only the Abrahamic deity that has been given omnipotent status."

      What is your point?

      It is obvious, given the context, that we are talking about the Abrahamic God here.

      Are you suggesting that we stipulate "Abrahamic" every time we use the term God, given that the discussion does not involve any other concept of God?

      Is there really anybody paying attention who has not worked that out from the context?

      Delete
    16. "Are you suggesting that we stipulate "Abrahamic" every time we use the term God"

      The post I was commenting on did not use God, but god. You are an idiot.

      Delete
    17. Stranger wrote: "The post I was commenting on did not use God, but god."

      He was talking about the incarnation of Jesus. That was what the whole conversation was about. Who was he going to be referring to - Loki?

      Get a grip. Both of you.

      Delete
    18. Put it this way:

      Helen designed and built the universe.
      Helen can see what is happening anywhere in the universe
      Helen can make any changes in the universe irrespective of the laws of physics.
      Joe can only do things permitted by the laws of physics and the mechanics of his own body.
      Joe can only know about things that he can perceive with his senses and does not know about things beyond the range of his senses.
      Joe is a man and Helen is a woman.
      Joe is Helen.

      Is this possible?

      Delete
    19. MalcolmS9:22 AM

      Robin: "Joe is a man and Helen is a woman. Joe is Helen. Is this possible?"

      Get a grip. Both of you :)

      Delete
    20. "He was talking about the incarnation of Jesus."

      No he wasn't.

      ""If a god wanted to produce an incarnation with limitations it would not be called the Son of God as God has no gender and gods have no limitations.""

      Delete
    21. "Is this possible?"

      No, if Joe is Helen he can do all those things.

      Delete
    22. @Robin "The incarnate Jesus is fully a man. But the Incarnation is not the totality of Jesus - who is also Eternal and God."

      "Jesus died and was resurrected and became fully God."

      "Yes, as I said he is God."

      "Now there is debate about whether he was fully God during the incarnation."

      "I don't believe it myself - it seems a sort of messy compromise to make the scriptures consistent."

      "So the belief is that Christ now is fully God and fully man."

      "Are you saying that if the incarnate Jesus could not perform miracles any more than any other human then he was not divine?"

      "I don't believe Jesus was God."

      "Please show me where I have insisted that God exists."

      "If a theist is someone who insists that God exists then I am not a theist."

      "As I have stated in the past I think that God is the best interpretation of the facts at hand."

      "And yet I have consistently put my position in the previous incarnation of this blog that God is the best interpretation of the facts."

      Huh?

      Please provide your definitions of "divine" & "incarnate" so that I can attempt to make sense of your rantings?

      Also, what exactly are these "facts" that you are interpreting above?

      Delete
    23. Hmm.. so much bluster and dust kicking just to avoid backing up your claim GS.

      Delete
    24. goblin shark wrote: "Also, what exactly are these "facts" that you are interpreting above?"
      Above? GS, this may be a little hard for you to understand but the fact that you did a cut and paste job and put my words from a one debate below a random selection of my words from another debate does not make one refer to the other.

      Delete
    25. Speaking of which - are you entirely satisfied that cutting out bits and pieces of what I have said and pasting them together out of context is a rational thing to do?

      Delete
    26. Sadly you probably do.

      Delete
    27. When the dust settles, can you please provide the info requested in my previous post?



      Delete
    28. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    29. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    30. goblin shark: "When the dust settles, can you please provide the info requested in my previous post?"

      You are expecting me to respond as though your preposterous cut and paste job was something even remotely rational.

      If you want to know something then ask properly.

      Delete
    31. "You are expecting me to respond as though your preposterous cut and paste job was something even remotely rational."

      We respond to you irrational comments about God so you could at least try.

      Delete
    32. Stranger wrote: "No, if Joe is Helen he can do all those things."

      goblin shark, do you agree?

      Delete
    33. Also, quick question GS, do you believe that Jesus had supernatural powers and could work miracles?

      Delete
    34. Stranger: "We respond to you irrational comments about God so you could at least try"

      An example?

      Delete
    35. Any post where you mention God (as existing) is irrational as the notion of God is irrational.

      Delete
    36. Stranger: "Any post where you mention God (as existing) is irrational as the notion of God is irrational."

      And your reasoning behind that assertion is?

      Delete
    37. It has no basis in reality. Unless of course you're the first person to actually provide evidence that God exists.

      Delete
    38. @Robin "You are expecting me to respond as though your preposterous cut and paste job was something even remotely rational."

      "If you want to know something then ask properly."

      I hereby humbly beseech you to disclose your definitions of "divine" & "incarnate" ?

      "goblin shark, do you agree?"

      Is Joe aware that Helen exists?

      "Also, quick question GS, do you believe that Jesus had supernatural powers and could work miracles?"

      I don't believe that the Bible is a reliable historical record.

      Delete
  10. MalcolmS12:14 AM

    Robin: "So where is the contradiction? Why can't an omnipotent, omniscient God choose to become incarnate as a human with human limitations"

    and later

    "Just tell me why you think that an omnipotent and omniscient God cannot produce an incarnation of himself that has limitations. How would that imply that God himself had limitations?"

    The principle contradiction is that such an entity does not exist.

    What is asserted without evidence[the arbitrary] can, likewise, be rejected without evidence.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. MalcolmS12:17 AM

      Furthermore Robin

      If I was to continue to play your particularly silly game I could also point out[amongst other things] that your alleged "omnipotent and omniscient God" is also allegedly *omniperfect.*

      Which means that She is immutable since any *change* would result in reduction of perfection.

      So that means that a perfect, omnipotent and omniscient God could not create the world, become incarnate or judge souls!!

      Now pick the bones out of that contradiction :)

      Delete
    2. MalcomS: "If I was to continue to play your particularly silly game ..."

      It was not me who started the game as I recall. So it may be silly but it is not my game, I just joined in.

      MalcolmS :"Now pick the bones out of that contradiction :)"

      But the contradiction works against you, that is any being that was perfect under your definition would be imperfect (ie it would be impotent) which means that your definition does not describe perfection.

      Delete
    3. MalcomS wrote: "The principle contradiction is that such an entity does not exist"

      You need to check a logic book there. The two statements:

      Ax & Bx
      and
      not exists x ( Ax )

      Do not form a contradiction.

      Delete
    4. MalcolmS6:33 AM

      Robin: "But the contradiction works against you"

      The contradiction does not work against me since I do not accept the existence of such a being.

      It works only for the being you have arbitrarily asserted.

      Delete
    5. MalcolmS6:56 AM

      Robin: "You need to check a logic book there. The two statements.... Do not form a contradiction"

      You are still missing the point.

      You cannot apply logic to the arbitrary or the nonexistent.

      Logic is the *method* the human mind must use in order to establish truth about the world.

      Applied to the arbitrary or the nonexistent it is meaningless.

      Delete
    6. This is a misunderstanding that comes up again and again in this blog.

      Suppose I have a statement "If x has property A then X has property B"

      Then the truth of that statement depends in no way upon the existence or otherwise of an entity that has property A.

      It is simply not logical to assert that this holds if there is some x with property A, but doesn't hold if there is no x with property A.

      Delete
    7. MalcolmS wrote: "You cannot apply logic to the arbitrary or the nonexistent"

      Of course you can apply logic to the non-existent.

      That is fundamental to logic.

      Delete
    8. MalcolmS7:32 AM

      Robin: "Of course you can apply logic to the non-existent"

      Er... and your conclusion is...?

      Delete
    9. MalcolmS7:58 AM

      Robin: "Suppose I have a statement "If x has property A then X has property B" Then the truth of that statement depends in no way upon the existence or otherwise of an entity that has property A"

      If x is nonexistent, then, your statement is neither true nor false.

      It's arbitrary.

      Furthermore, truth applies primarily to reality[existence] - only secondarily to "statements."

      Delete

    10. 8x
      any being that was perfect under your definition would be imperfect (ie it would be impotent) which means that your definition does not describe perfection.
      x8

      Its funny because its true

      8x
      Logic is the *method* the human mind must use in order to establish truth about the world.
      Applied to the arbitrary or the nonexistent it is meaningless.
      x8

      You mean like an "arbitrary or nonexistent" "perfect being" who cannot move? lol


      8x
      "Of course you can apply logic to the non-existent"
      x8


      Why yes you can. The application of "logic" to a whacked out fantasy is called "blogical reasoning" rofl


      8x
      If x is nonexistent, then, your statement is neither true nor false.
      It's arbitrary.
      x8

      8x
      Furthermore, truth applies primarily to reality[existence] - only secondarily to "statements."
      x8

      Ahem - didnt you just say:
      8x
      What is asserted without evidence[the arbitrary] can, likewise, be rejected without evidence.
      x8

      Deuce.

      Sorry boys, I've forgotten.
      Who's serve is it again?

      lol

      Delete
    11. MalcomS wrote "What is asserted without evidence[the arbitrary] can, likewise, be rejected without evidence."

      Indeed, this is just what I have been telling you and goblin shark. Things are not true just because you say them.

      Like this nonsense:

      MalcomS wrote: "If x is nonexistent, then, your statement is neither true nor false."

      That is simply not true. You need to learn logic.

      Since you have asserted your claim without evidence I could, according to your rules, dismiss it without evidence.

      However in this case I could dismiss it with every logic book written since the 19th century.

      Or, more simply, I could dismiss it with a counter example.

      If someone says that there is an obelisk on Pluto inscribed with the algorithm to enumerate the digits of a Chaitin Constant then I can logically conclude that no such obelisk exists because I can prove that the algorithm is non existent.

      Now you would say that it is neither true nor false that the obelisk exists, even though it's existence is demonstrably logically impossible.

      Do really not see how absurd your claim is?

      Delete
    12. "Things are not true just because you say them."

      You're the one doing that Robin when you insist God exists.

      Delete
    13. Please show me where I have insisted that God exists.

      Delete
  11. "Please show me where I have insisted that God exists."

    You say you are a theist.

    "I have also found them less than convincing but I am a theist."

    So are you saying you're a theist who doesn't believe God exists?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Please don't walk away from your words - you said "you insist God exists".

      If a theist is someone who insists that God exists then I am not a theist.

      As I have stated in the past I think that God is the best interpretation of the facts at hand.

      In the past I have discussed some of those reasons from time to time.

      Delete
    2. MalcolmS7:17 PM

      I wouldn't worry too much about consistency Stranger.

      Robin believes he can be A and non-A at the same time and in the same respect.

      Like his imagined God he has disqualified himself from the laws of logic.

      Delete
    3. MalcolmS wrote: "Robin believes he can be A and non-A at the same time and in the same respect."

      Do you have any evidence to back up that absurd claim?

      As usual I will get no answer to this.

      MalcolmS wrote: "Like his imagined God he has disqualified himself from the laws of logic"

      So says the man who claims that logic cannot apply to the non-existent.

      Let's face it Malcolm, you don't have even the beginning of a clue about the laws of logic.

      Delete
    4. MalcolmS7:46 PM

      Robin: "As I have stated in the past I think that God is the best interpretation of the facts at hand"

      Facts do not require "interpretation." Facts simply are. Facts are ontological. Facts are the stuff of reality.

      If you meant *explanation,* then, an arbitrary God doesn't do it. God *explains* nothing.

      Delete
    5. And please, Malcolm S, feel free to show me how I have been inconsistent.

      Seriously - I look forward to the time when someone provides even a scintilla of a basis for the relentless ad hom in this blog.

      Delete
    6. What is inconsistent is Stranger telling me that I "insist" that God exists and when called up on it he arbitrarily alters the word to "believe".

      And then - to add insult to injury - it is I who am accused of being inconsistent.

      And yet I have consistently put my position in the previous incarnation of this blog that God is the best interpretation of the facts.

      Delete
    7. MalcolmS8:31 PM

      Robin: "Let's face it Malcolm, you don't have even the beginning of a clue about the laws of logic"

      OK, let's talk of beginnings! The axiom at the base of the laws of logic is the Law of Identity which states: to be is to be something, to have a nature, to possess identity. A thing is itself; or, in the traditional formula, A is A.

      Now, that does NOT leave any room for nonexistence!! Nonexistence is not a special kind of stuff. Nonexistence is the absence of stuff. Logic has nothing to say about nonexistence except that it's nothing.

      Nothing follows from the nonexistence of a nonentity. Now get over it.

      Delete
    8. If you are still insisting that logic cannot apply to the non-existent then you will have to convince every mathematician in the world to get over it.

      Oh and also to rewrite all logic books, re-prove just about every mathematical theorem we have. Actually they won't need to worry about that because they won't be able to reprove squat if they take your advice.

      Now let's look at your inconsistencies here:

      "Logic has nothing to say about nonexistence except that it's nothing."

      Which implies that logic has something to say about non-existence.

      Now you say that the axiom of identity leaves no room for nonexistence.

      Really? So if nothing existed at all would there be dancing girls? Lots and lots of dancing girls?

      No - because there would be nothing. So even if nothing existed at all then the axioms of identity and non-contradiction would hold. Isn't that interesting?

      Finally - you are doing what you accuse Richard Dawkins of doing - reifying nothing.

      If that obelisk on Pluto does not exist then it does not mean that it becomes something called non-existence. It is just that it does not exist.

      Now I have given you examples of reasoning about non-existent objects.

      In your "omniperfect" argument you, yourself, are trying to reason about something you claim is non-existent, so you are contradicting yourself.

      Seriously - your position is hopeless.

      Delete
    9. MalcolmS10:00 PM

      Robin: "So even if nothing existed at all then the axioms of identity and non-contradiction would hold. Isn't that interesting?"

      Once more, an arbitrary claim! "If nothing existed at all" there would be no logic, noncontradictions or axioms! Logic does not exist in the world in the absence of human beings let alone in the absence of everything! Logic is a *method* which must be used by the human mind in order to attain truth and which must be discovered by him. No human beings means no logic. Like Dawkins you are reifying nothingness.

      Far more relevant[and amusing] is the fact that you have to use the Law of Identity in order to attempt to validate nothing! However, nothingness does not have identity. It is the absence of identity!

      Now, isn't that interesting?

      Delete
    10. "If a theist is someone who insists that God exists then I am not a theist."

      Yet you go on to say you think God does exist, making you a theist. God does not fit any facts at hand, thus you insist he exists.

      Delete
    11. 8x
      Seriously - I look forward to the time when someone provides even a scintilla of a basis for the relentless ad hom in this blog.
      x8

      My card counting hippopotamus tells me its because 99% of the "debate" here is ridiculous twaddle unworthy of being treated seriously.

      Do I win a prize?




      Delete
    12. Stranger wrote: "Yet you go on to say you think God does exist, making you a theist. God does not fit any facts at hand, thus you insist he exists."

      And that is what you think of as reasoning it is?

      You are quite happy that what you just said was rational are you?

      Delete
    13. "You are quite happy that what you just said was rational are you?"

      Yes, because it was. You think mentioning God is rational so don't be surprised if I don't think your opinion is worth anything.

      Delete
    14. OK, just as long as you think that unsupported assertion and non-sequitur is rational, then I guess that is all that counts.

      Delete
    15. What unsupported assertion? And there was no non-sequitur, try getting some advanced reading comprehension skills.

      "What is inconsistent is Stranger telling me that I "insist" that God exists and when called up on it he arbitrarily alters the word to "believe"."

      Try looking up insist sometime.

      Delete
    16. OK, here:

      Verb
      Demand something forcefully, not accepting refusal.
      Demand forcefully to have or do something: "she insisted on answers"; "boots he insisted on wearing".

      Now what piece of torturous illogic that you are going to use to shoehorn that definition into your absurd claim?

      Delete
    17. That's not the only definition Robin. Now what piece of torturous illogic that you are going to use to make it seem like it's the only definition, or the one that I was using?

      Delete
  12. I mean - seriously! Can anyone on this blog recall a time that I have ever *insisted* that God exists?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. MalcolmS8:59 PM

      That's the point! You "insist" on squat. For sceptics such as yourself everything can be doubted, is uncertain and knowledge is impossible. That's the problem with the Heraclitian flux in which you live. You are up to your neck in murky doo-doos of which you claim no knowledge whilst "insisting" that you must take seriously the nonexistent. Like the sophists of old you talk nonsense.

      Delete
    2. Again you are making stuff up. It is simply not true that I insist on squat. I insist on quite a lot. I get criticised for it.

      I insisted that there is no possible version of reality in which there is an algorithm to enumerate the digits of a Chaitin Constant.

      If we don't know that then we don't know anything at all, including all of maths and science.

      And yet people claimed that I was somehow claiming Godlike knowledge saying that.

      And I didn't insist that we must take seriously the non-existent. "Taking seriously" is not a function of logic. I, along with every logician in the world, insisted that logic can apply to non existent objects like that obelisk on Pluto.

      I insist on things when there is reason to insist on it. For example because it is true.

      Delete
    3. But I do not, and have never, insisted on the existence of God.

      Delete
    4. MalcolmS10:25 PM

      Robin: "I, along with every logician in the world, insisted that logic can apply to non existent objects"

      There is no such thing as "non existent objects."

      I repeat: Nothing follows from the nonexistence of a nonentity.

      I suggest you commit it to memory.

      Delete
    5. MalcolmS10:30 PM

      Robin: "But I do not, and have never, insisted on the existence of God"

      Your needle appears to be stuck.

      I answered that @ MalcolmS 8:59 PM.

      Please try to remain in focus.

      Delete
    6. MalcolmS11:21 PM

      Robin: "I, along with every logician in the world, insisted that logic can apply to non existent objects"

      "non existent objects"???

      So, now you are insisting that logic applies to contradictions??

      Yawn! Ho-hum!

      Delete
    7. Of course logic applies to contradictions. Ever hear of Reductio ad absurdum?

      And in any case "non-existent object" is not a contradiction.

      Delete
    8. 8x
      For sceptics such as yourself everything can be doubted, is uncertain and knowledge is impossible.
      x8

      Doubt and uncertainty preclude knowledge?

      lol.. On what planet?

      Oh wait!

      8x
      What is asserted without evidence[the arbitrary] can, likewise, be rejected without evidence.
      x8

      ROFLMAO

      Delete
  13. Quite a long set!!

    Would any spectators like strawberries and ice cream?

    Yummy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. RalphH 14/079:35 PM

      “Would any spectators like strawberries and ice cream?” (zedinhisbigflyinghead3:16 AM)

      Are you offering real or virtual (hypothetical/potentially non-existant) “strawberries and ice-cream” zed?

      Delete
    2. They are as real as God.

      Delete
  14. I asked this on another board

    "Was Jesus divine (fully God) before the resurrection or only after. "

    And got a reply

    "Always 100% God - before, during and after His time on earth."

    Robin would you care to explain to them why you are right and they are wrong?

    ReplyDelete

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