Discussion:
Are We True Believers - Or Are We Atheist ?
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Gary
2017-08-03 19:52:37 UTC
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When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".

I think Stephen Jay Gould summed it up best:

"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
rumpelstiltskin
2017-08-03 21:18:34 UTC
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Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
Is it just as reasonable to believe that the story of Snow White
and the Seven Dwarfs is true as to believe it's not true? After
all, we can't prove it either way. Do we therefore have to
at least partially believe that it might be true, and be sure to
note that we have reserved judgment if the matter comes up
in conversation?
Gary
2017-08-03 22:19:13 UTC
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Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
Is it just as reasonable to believe that the story of Snow White
and the Seven Dwarfs is true as to believe it's not true? After
all, we can't prove it either way. Do we therefore have to
at least partially believe that it might be true, and be sure to
note that we have reserved judgment if the matter comes up
in conversation?
It's been so long -- I cannot recall how that story went.

Personally -- I think the stories of religion are not a lot different from what
we call "mythology". And it has always been my theory that most of mythology
is based on things that really happened. But ... they happened a little
differently than what the myth story says. For lack of a better word -- let
us say "exaggerations".

For instance -- I have no doubt there was a flood that upset Noah and his
community. But ... how large was it ?

Another for instance --- the "Exodus" of Moses. The great historian Tacitus
(about 100 AD) visited Egypt and learned that they also told the story of the
Jews leaving. Only they said it was an expulsion. They kicked them out
because they thought the Jews were undesirable. Both stories based on a real
happening -- viewed from different perspectives and with different outcomes.
rumpelstiltskin
2017-08-04 00:05:08 UTC
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Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
Is it just as reasonable to believe that the story of Snow White
and the Seven Dwarfs is true as to believe it's not true? After
all, we can't prove it either way. Do we therefore have to
at least partially believe that it might be true, and be sure to
note that we have reserved judgment if the matter comes up
in conversation?
It's been so long -- I cannot recall how that story went.
Personally -- I think the stories of religion are not a lot different from what
we call "mythology". And it has always been my theory that most of mythology
is based on things that really happened. But ... they happened a little
differently than what the myth story says. For lack of a better word -- let
us say "exaggerations".
For instance -- I have no doubt there was a flood that upset Noah and his
community. But ... how large was it ?
The Noah story sounds very, very foolish. Two
of every animal on an ancient boat - elephants
and giraffes and whatnot? Not bloody likely.
Post by Gary
Another for instance --- the "Exodus" of Moses. The great historian Tacitus
(about 100 AD) visited Egypt and learned that they also told the story of the
Jews leaving. Only they said it was an expulsion. They kicked them out
because they thought the Jews were undesirable. Both stories based on a real
happening -- viewed from different perspectives and with different outcomes.
The exodus is probably also just a myth.
On the other hand, there definitely was a Troy.
There's plenty of evidence for that.
Gary
2017-08-04 11:46:58 UTC
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Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
Is it just as reasonable to believe that the story of Snow White
and the Seven Dwarfs is true as to believe it's not true? After
all, we can't prove it either way. Do we therefore have to
at least partially believe that it might be true, and be sure to
note that we have reserved judgment if the matter comes up
in conversation?
It's been so long -- I cannot recall how that story went.
Personally -- I think the stories of religion are not a lot different from what
we call "mythology". And it has always been my theory that most of mythology
is based on things that really happened. But ... they happened a little
differently than what the myth story says. For lack of a better word -- let
us say "exaggerations".
For instance -- I have no doubt there was a flood that upset Noah and his
community. But ... how large was it ?
The Noah story sounds very, very foolish. Two
of every animal on an ancient boat - elephants
and giraffes and whatnot? Not bloody likely.
About 4,000 years ago, Noah lived by the side of a lake. One day it came a
big rain -- and his (and his neighbors) yards flooded. They all rushed over to
his hut because they knew he had a log raft. They all jumped on the raft --
and carried their dog and cat with them. The next day -- everything was back
to normal.

They told their children about the "flood". And their children told their
children. And with each generation -- the story was exaggerated a little more.
1,000 years later -- (40 generations later)-- the Jews wrote it down.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Another for instance --- the "Exodus" of Moses. The great historian Tacitus
(about 100 AD) visited Egypt and learned that they also told the story of the
Jews leaving. Only they said it was an expulsion. They kicked them out
because they thought the Jews were undesirable. Both stories based on a real
happening -- viewed from different perspectives and with different outcomes.
The exodus is probably also just a myth.
On the other hand, there definitely was a Troy.
There's plenty of evidence for that.
As I said, in about 100 AD, Tacitus heard a version of it from the
Egyptians. It differed from the Jewish version -- so it must have happened.
We'll never know the details of Moses anymore than we'll know the details of
Ulysses.
GLOBALIST
2017-08-04 11:24:49 UTC
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Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
Is it just as reasonable to believe that the story of Snow White
and the Seven Dwarfs is true as to believe it's not true? After
all, we can't prove it either way. Do we therefore have to
at least partially believe that it might be true, and be sure to
note that we have reserved judgment if the matter comes up
in conversation?
It's been so long -- I cannot recall how that story went.
Personally -- I think the stories of religion are not a lot different from what
we call "mythology". And it has always been my theory that most of mythology
is based on things that really happened. But ... they happened a little
differently than what the myth story says. For lack of a better word -- let
us say "exaggerations".
For instance -- I have no doubt there was a flood that upset Noah and his
community. But ... how large was it ?
Another for instance --- the "Exodus" of Moses. The great historian Tacitus
(about 100 AD) visited Egypt and learned that they also told the story of the
Jews leaving. Only they said it was an expulsion. They kicked them out
because they thought the Jews were undesirable. Both stories based on a real
happening -- viewed from different perspectives and with different outcomes.
The Exodus narrative was not a spectacular event. The Jews
went to Egypt because of a severe drought. The Egyptian had stored grain and feed everyone. "You have to have a job" You did public
service work..road building, building houses, maybe some
major projects like public buildings. Like some tenants today
the Jews left in the middle of the night.
Being a religious people they attributed absolutely
everything to the providence of God. Which is not a
bad way to be. They trudge across the "REED SEA"
a marsh. The Egyptians could not follow them in
their chariots or their wheels would be mired in
mud. However one sees their life as blest and
everything works out of the best their wanting
to be independent and have their own country
was a good thing.
Gary
2017-08-04 12:29:54 UTC
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Post by GLOBALIST
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
Is it just as reasonable to believe that the story of Snow White
and the Seven Dwarfs is true as to believe it's not true? After
all, we can't prove it either way. Do we therefore have to
at least partially believe that it might be true, and be sure to
note that we have reserved judgment if the matter comes up
in conversation?
It's been so long -- I cannot recall how that story went.
Personally -- I think the stories of religion are not a lot different from what
we call "mythology". And it has always been my theory that most of mythology
is based on things that really happened. But ... they happened a little
differently than what the myth story says. For lack of a better word -- let
us say "exaggerations".
For instance -- I have no doubt there was a flood that upset Noah and his
community. But ... how large was it ?
Another for instance --- the "Exodus" of Moses. The great historian Tacitus
(about 100 AD) visited Egypt and learned that they also told the story of the
Jews leaving. Only they said it was an expulsion. They kicked them out
because they thought the Jews were undesirable. Both stories based on a real
happening -- viewed from different perspectives and with different outcomes.
The Exodus narrative was not a spectacular event. The Jews
went to Egypt because of a severe drought. The Egyptian had stored grain and feed everyone. "You have to have a job" You did public
service work..road building, building houses, maybe some
major projects like public buildings. Like some tenants today
the Jews left in the middle of the night.
Being a religious people they attributed absolutely
everything to the providence of God. Which is not a
bad way to be. They trudge across the "REED SEA"
a marsh. The Egyptians could not follow them in
their chariots or their wheels would be mired in
mud. However one sees their life as blest and
everything works out of the best their wanting
to be independent and have their own country
was a good thing.
Whether we are a believer or not -- I have no doubt the Exodus actually
happened. The details of the story may be in question -- but I have no doubt
the Jews were in Egypt and they did leave and go into Asia.

Tacitus mentions that the Jews had entered Egypt -- not from the north (Asia) --
but from the south (Ethiopia). The Jews don't like that story. Because it
suggests they were originally (3,500 years ago) black :-)
rumpelstiltskin
2017-08-04 15:01:07 UTC
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Post by Gary
Post by GLOBALIST
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
Is it just as reasonable to believe that the story of Snow White
and the Seven Dwarfs is true as to believe it's not true? After
all, we can't prove it either way. Do we therefore have to
at least partially believe that it might be true, and be sure to
note that we have reserved judgment if the matter comes up
in conversation?
It's been so long -- I cannot recall how that story went.
Personally -- I think the stories of religion are not a lot different from what
we call "mythology". And it has always been my theory that most of mythology
is based on things that really happened. But ... they happened a little
differently than what the myth story says. For lack of a better word -- let
us say "exaggerations".
For instance -- I have no doubt there was a flood that upset Noah and his
community. But ... how large was it ?
Another for instance --- the "Exodus" of Moses. The great historian Tacitus
(about 100 AD) visited Egypt and learned that they also told the story of the
Jews leaving. Only they said it was an expulsion. They kicked them out
because they thought the Jews were undesirable. Both stories based on a real
happening -- viewed from different perspectives and with different outcomes.
The Exodus narrative was not a spectacular event. The Jews
went to Egypt because of a severe drought. The Egyptian had stored grain and feed everyone. "You have to have a job" You did public
service work..road building, building houses, maybe some
major projects like public buildings. Like some tenants today
the Jews left in the middle of the night.
Being a religious people they attributed absolutely
everything to the providence of God. Which is not a
bad way to be. They trudge across the "REED SEA"
a marsh. The Egyptians could not follow them in
their chariots or their wheels would be mired in
mud. However one sees their life as blest and
everything works out of the best their wanting
to be independent and have their own country
was a good thing.
Whether we are a believer or not -- I have no doubt the Exodus actually
happened. The details of the story may be in question -- but I have no doubt
the Jews were in Egypt and they did leave and go into Asia.
I don't see why you're so sure of that, considering that
a large group of people were supposed to have migrated
across the Sinai for 40 days yet not even a broken piece
of pottery has ever turned up.
Post by Gary
Tacitus mentions that the Jews had entered Egypt -- not from the north (Asia) --
but from the south (Ethiopia). The Jews don't like that story. Because it
suggests they were originally (3,500 years ago) black :-)
Tacitus lived 1500 years after the exodus was supposed
to have happened, so he was just repeating old legends
that had been transmitted by word of mouth for at least
30 retellings from one person to the next, with the
changes, errors, and embellishments that are inevitable
in a chain of vocal transmission.
Gary
2017-08-04 19:50:28 UTC
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Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Post by GLOBALIST
The Exodus narrative was not a spectacular event. The Jews
went to Egypt because of a severe drought. The Egyptian had stored grain and feed everyone. "You have to have a job" You did public
service work..road building, building houses, maybe some
major projects like public buildings. Like some tenants today
the Jews left in the middle of the night.
Being a religious people they attributed absolutely
everything to the providence of God. Which is not a
bad way to be. They trudge across the "REED SEA"
a marsh. The Egyptians could not follow them in
their chariots or their wheels would be mired in
mud. However one sees their life as blest and
everything works out of the best their wanting
to be independent and have their own country
was a good thing.
Whether we are a believer or not -- I have no doubt the Exodus actually
happened. The details of the story may be in question -- but I have no doubt
the Jews were in Egypt and they did leave and go into Asia.
I don't see why you're so sure of that, considering that
a large group of people were supposed to have migrated
across the Sinai for 40 days yet not even a broken piece
of pottery has ever turned up.
Given 3,500 years, maybe anything of value was picked up by passing thieves.
And think of all the winds that have blown across Sinai in those years. That
would have buried a lot.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus mentions that the Jews had entered Egypt -- not from the north (Asia) --
but from the south (Ethiopia). The Jews don't like that story. Because it
suggests they were originally (3,500 years ago) black :-)
Tacitus lived 1500 years after the exodus was supposed
to have happened, so he was just repeating old legends
that had been transmitted by word of mouth for at least
30 retellings from one person to the next, with the
changes, errors, and embellishments that are inevitable
in a chain of vocal transmission.
That's exactly what I've been saying. The "DETAILS" of the exodus are in
doubt. But I think there is no doubt that Jews left Egypt about that time.
Tacitus was a great historian. He was not a Christian or Jew -- and had no
reason to lie. So I think what he wrote was told him by the Egyptians.
rumpelstiltskin
2017-08-04 20:24:45 UTC
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Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Post by GLOBALIST
The Exodus narrative was not a spectacular event. The Jews
went to Egypt because of a severe drought. The Egyptian had stored grain and feed everyone. "You have to have a job" You did public
service work..road building, building houses, maybe some
major projects like public buildings. Like some tenants today
the Jews left in the middle of the night.
Being a religious people they attributed absolutely
everything to the providence of God. Which is not a
bad way to be. They trudge across the "REED SEA"
a marsh. The Egyptians could not follow them in
their chariots or their wheels would be mired in
mud. However one sees their life as blest and
everything works out of the best their wanting
to be independent and have their own country
was a good thing.
Whether we are a believer or not -- I have no doubt the Exodus actually
happened. The details of the story may be in question -- but I have no doubt
the Jews were in Egypt and they did leave and go into Asia.
I don't see why you're so sure of that, considering that
a large group of people were supposed to have migrated
across the Sinai for 40 days yet not even a broken piece
of pottery has ever turned up.
Given 3,500 years, maybe anything of value was picked up by passing thieves.
And think of all the winds that have blown across Sinai in those years. That
would have buried a lot.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus mentions that the Jews had entered Egypt -- not from the north (Asia) --
but from the south (Ethiopia). The Jews don't like that story. Because it
suggests they were originally (3,500 years ago) black :-)
Tacitus lived 1500 years after the exodus was supposed
to have happened, so he was just repeating old legends
that had been transmitted by word of mouth for at least
30 retellings from one person to the next, with the
changes, errors, and embellishments that are inevitable
in a chain of vocal transmission.
That's exactly what I've been saying. The "DETAILS" of the exodus are in
doubt. But I think there is no doubt that Jews left Egypt about that time.
You have more "faith"than I do.
Post by Gary
Tacitus was a great historian. He was not a Christian or Jew -- and had no
reason to lie. So I think what he wrote was told him by the Egyptians.
A great historian can't see back 1500 years by himself.

Do you think there's any doubt that Jason sought the
Golden Fleece, or that Beowulf slew Grendel?
Gary
2017-08-05 11:45:25 UTC
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Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Given 3,500 years, maybe anything of value was picked up by passing thieves.
And think of all the winds that have blown across Sinai in those years. That
would have buried a lot.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus mentions that the Jews had entered Egypt -- not from the north (Asia) --
but from the south (Ethiopia). The Jews don't like that story. Because it
suggests they were originally (3,500 years ago) black :-)
Tacitus lived 1500 years after the exodus was supposed
to have happened, so he was just repeating old legends
that had been transmitted by word of mouth for at least
30 retellings from one person to the next, with the
changes, errors, and embellishments that are inevitable
in a chain of vocal transmission.
That's exactly what I've been saying. The "DETAILS" of the exodus are in
doubt. But I think there is no doubt that Jews left Egypt about that time.
You have more "faith"than I do.
Do you believe the Pilgrims landed in Massachusetts in the 1600s ? That takes
the same amount of faith as accepting the history of the Jews.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus was a great historian. He was not a Christian or Jew -- and had no
reason to lie. So I think what he wrote was told him by the Egyptians.
A great historian can't see back 1500 years by himself.
He had the help of the Egyptian historians. (The best alive -- at that time)
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Do you think there's any doubt that Jason sought the
Golden Fleece, or that Beowulf slew Grendel?
Who knows ? I would not doubt that whoever wrote the stories might have based
them on some tale they had heard.

I only wish our early caveman ancestors had been able to pass along more stories
about when they met the Ancient Astronauts. I believe what little they told
their grandchildren is where the early religious books originated. "And they
came down from heaven in a ball of flames !"
rumpelstiltskin
2017-08-05 16:15:07 UTC
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Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Given 3,500 years, maybe anything of value was picked up by passing thieves.
And think of all the winds that have blown across Sinai in those years. That
would have buried a lot.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus mentions that the Jews had entered Egypt -- not from the north (Asia) --
but from the south (Ethiopia). The Jews don't like that story. Because it
suggests they were originally (3,500 years ago) black :-)
Tacitus lived 1500 years after the exodus was supposed
to have happened, so he was just repeating old legends
that had been transmitted by word of mouth for at least
30 retellings from one person to the next, with the
changes, errors, and embellishments that are inevitable
in a chain of vocal transmission.
That's exactly what I've been saying. The "DETAILS" of the exodus are in
doubt. But I think there is no doubt that Jews left Egypt about that time.
You have more "faith"than I do.
Do you believe the Pilgrims landed in Massachusetts in the 1600s ? That takes
the same amount of faith as accepting the history of the Jews.
We have records that were written at the time they
happened by people who weren't barking mad. Both
those criteria are necessary.
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus was a great historian. He was not a Christian or Jew -- and had no
reason to lie. So I think what he wrote was told him by the Egyptians.
A great historian can't see back 1500 years by himself.
He had the help of the Egyptian historians. (The best alive -- at that time)
Not much in the way of written records. Chiseling stone
in pyramids is too time consuming except for recording the
deeds of pharaohs, such as when Ramses II was fighting a
neighboring army and his troops all ran away in fear, so
Ramses defeated the entire opposing army single-handedly.
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Do you think there's any doubt that Jason sought the
Golden Fleece, or that Beowulf slew Grendel?
Who knows ? I would not doubt that whoever wrote the stories might have based
them on some tale they had heard.
Like Jesus feeding a whole crowd of people with three loaves
and three fishes.
Post by Gary
I only wish our early caveman ancestors had been able to pass along more stories
about when they met the Ancient Astronauts.
I've heard of Bimbos from Outer Space, so it must be true.
Post by Gary
I believe what little they told
their grandchildren is where the early religious books originated. "And they
came down from heaven in a ball of flames !"
Much more recently than that, Joseph Smith met the
angel Mormon who gave him the Mormon Bible inscribed
on gold tablets and a special glass to read them by, so
that he could copy them onto paper. The gold tablets
disappeared after that, and so did the special glass. I
expect they were stolen by Muslims or perhaps by the
bimbos from outer space. Bimbos can be fun, but
don't leave your valuables around in plain sight.
Gary
2017-08-05 18:15:17 UTC
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Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Given 3,500 years, maybe anything of value was picked up by passing thieves.
And think of all the winds that have blown across Sinai in those years. That
would have buried a lot.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus mentions that the Jews had entered Egypt -- not from the north (Asia) --
but from the south (Ethiopia). The Jews don't like that story. Because it
suggests they were originally (3,500 years ago) black :-)
Tacitus lived 1500 years after the exodus was supposed
to have happened, so he was just repeating old legends
that had been transmitted by word of mouth for at least
30 retellings from one person to the next, with the
changes, errors, and embellishments that are inevitable
in a chain of vocal transmission.
That's exactly what I've been saying. The "DETAILS" of the exodus are in
doubt. But I think there is no doubt that Jews left Egypt about that time.
You have more "faith"than I do.
Do you believe the Pilgrims landed in Massachusetts in the 1600s ? That takes
the same amount of faith as accepting the history of the Jews.
We have records that were written at the time they
happened by people who weren't barking mad. Both
those criteria are necessary.
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus was a great historian. He was not a Christian or Jew -- and had no
reason to lie. So I think what he wrote was told him by the Egyptians.
A great historian can't see back 1500 years by himself.
He had the help of the Egyptian historians. (The best alive -- at that time)
Not much in the way of written records. Chiseling stone
in pyramids is too time consuming except for recording the
deeds of pharaohs, such as when Ramses II was fighting a
neighboring army and his troops all ran away in fear, so
Ramses defeated the entire opposing army single-handedly.
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Do you think there's any doubt that Jason sought the
Golden Fleece, or that Beowulf slew Grendel?
Who knows ? I would not doubt that whoever wrote the stories might have based
them on some tale they had heard.
Like Jesus feeding a whole crowd of people with three loaves
and three fishes.
I think the crowd only numbered three people.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
I only wish our early caveman ancestors had been able to pass along more stories
about when they met the Ancient Astronauts.
I've heard of Bimbos from Outer Space, so it must be true.
Post by Gary
I believe what little they told
their grandchildren is where the early religious books originated. "And they
came down from heaven in a ball of flames !"
Much more recently than that, Joseph Smith met the
angel Mormon who gave him the Mormon Bible inscribed
on gold tablets and a special glass to read them by, so
that he could copy them onto paper. The gold tablets
disappeared after that, and so did the special glass. I
expect they were stolen by Muslims or perhaps by the
bimbos from outer space. Bimbos can be fun, but
don't leave your valuables around in plain sight.
Now you introduce one of my favorite historical men. Joseph Smith has to be
one of the most intelligent men who ever lived. Back before mass
communications, Smith created a new religion. And he convinced tens of
thousands of people he could communicate with the divine one. Then he sat down
an wrote a new bible. With only his mother to help him. (It took many Jews
to write the Old Testament. And a lot of Christians to write Jesus' story)

Had he not been murdered at age 39 -- he would have joined his followers when
the settled a new state. Founded in his honor. Yes, Joseph started life a
poor boy. But he died a very rich man with many followers. And today -- 170
years later -- he is still honored by many millions.
rumpelstiltskin
2017-08-05 19:03:56 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Given 3,500 years, maybe anything of value was picked up by passing thieves.
And think of all the winds that have blown across Sinai in those years. That
would have buried a lot.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus mentions that the Jews had entered Egypt -- not from the north (Asia) --
but from the south (Ethiopia). The Jews don't like that story. Because it
suggests they were originally (3,500 years ago) black :-)
Tacitus lived 1500 years after the exodus was supposed
to have happened, so he was just repeating old legends
that had been transmitted by word of mouth for at least
30 retellings from one person to the next, with the
changes, errors, and embellishments that are inevitable
in a chain of vocal transmission.
That's exactly what I've been saying. The "DETAILS" of the exodus are in
doubt. But I think there is no doubt that Jews left Egypt about that time.
You have more "faith"than I do.
Do you believe the Pilgrims landed in Massachusetts in the 1600s ? That takes
the same amount of faith as accepting the history of the Jews.
We have records that were written at the time they
happened by people who weren't barking mad. Both
those criteria are necessary.
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus was a great historian. He was not a Christian or Jew -- and had no
reason to lie. So I think what he wrote was told him by the Egyptians.
A great historian can't see back 1500 years by himself.
He had the help of the Egyptian historians. (The best alive -- at that time)
Not much in the way of written records. Chiseling stone
in pyramids is too time consuming except for recording the
deeds of pharaohs, such as when Ramses II was fighting a
neighboring army and his troops all ran away in fear, so
Ramses defeated the entire opposing army single-handedly.
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Do you think there's any doubt that Jason sought the
Golden Fleece, or that Beowulf slew Grendel?
Who knows ? I would not doubt that whoever wrote the stories might have based
them on some tale they had heard.
Like Jesus feeding a whole crowd of people with three loaves
and three fishes.
I think the crowd only numbered three people.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
I only wish our early caveman ancestors had been able to pass along more stories
about when they met the Ancient Astronauts.
I've heard of Bimbos from Outer Space, so it must be true.
Post by Gary
I believe what little they told
their grandchildren is where the early religious books originated. "And they
came down from heaven in a ball of flames !"
Much more recently than that, Joseph Smith met the
angel Mormon who gave him the Mormon Bible inscribed
on gold tablets and a special glass to read them by, so
that he could copy them onto paper. The gold tablets
disappeared after that, and so did the special glass. I
expect they were stolen by Muslims or perhaps by the
bimbos from outer space. Bimbos can be fun, but
don't leave your valuables around in plain sight.
Now you introduce one of my favorite historical men. Joseph Smith has to be
one of the most intelligent men who ever lived. Back before mass
communications, Smith created a new religion. And he convinced tens of
thousands of people he could communicate with the divine one. Then he sat down
an wrote a new bible. With only his mother to help him. (It took many Jews
to write the Old Testament. And a lot of Christians to write Jesus' story)
Had he not been murdered at age 39 -- he would have joined his followers when
the settled a new state. Founded in his honor. Yes, Joseph started life a
poor boy. But he died a very rich man with many followers. And today -- 170
years later -- he is still honored by many millions.
Funny thing, I was just watching some videos
largely including Dawkins. He mentioned, much
to the annoyance of a (cute) Mormon defender,
that the book of Mormon is an obvious fake
right from step 1, as a 19th century book
written in 16th century English.

Mormon boys are often cute. Unfortunately,
they're Mormons.
Gary
2017-08-05 20:12:23 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Who knows ? I would not doubt that whoever wrote the stories might have based
them on some tale they had heard.
Like Jesus feeding a whole crowd of people with three loaves
and three fishes.
I think the crowd only numbered three people.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
I only wish our early caveman ancestors had been able to pass along more stories
about when they met the Ancient Astronauts.
I've heard of Bimbos from Outer Space, so it must be true.
Post by Gary
I believe what little they told
their grandchildren is where the early religious books originated. "And they
came down from heaven in a ball of flames !"
Much more recently than that, Joseph Smith met the
angel Mormon who gave him the Mormon Bible inscribed
on gold tablets and a special glass to read them by, so
that he could copy them onto paper. The gold tablets
disappeared after that, and so did the special glass. I
expect they were stolen by Muslims or perhaps by the
bimbos from outer space. Bimbos can be fun, but
don't leave your valuables around in plain sight.
Now you introduce one of my favorite historical men. Joseph Smith has to be
one of the most intelligent men who ever lived. Back before mass
communications, Smith created a new religion. And he convinced tens of
thousands of people he could communicate with the divine one. Then he sat down
an wrote a new bible. With only his mother to help him. (It took many Jews
to write the Old Testament. And a lot of Christians to write Jesus' story)
Had he not been murdered at age 39 -- he would have joined his followers when
the settled a new state. Founded in his honor. Yes, Joseph started life a
poor boy. But he died a very rich man with many followers. And today -- 170
years later -- he is still honored by many millions.
Funny thing, I was just watching some videos
largely including Dawkins. He mentioned, much
to the annoyance of a (cute) Mormon defender,
that the book of Mormon is an obvious fake
right from step 1, as a 19th century book
written in 16th century English.
Mormon boys are often cute. Unfortunately,
they're Mormons.
What I admire most about Smith -- besides being a great salesman -- is that he
could write a bible. I've never read the Mormon book -- but I have seen copies.
Have you ever tried to write a fictitious novel ? I started to once -- but
gave up. I was having trouble keeping the names of my characters straight.
And ... there were only about five or six of them.

To write a bible -- you've got to compose a pretty good story covering hundreds
of pages. But the tough part is making up hundreds of characters -- and
keeping their names right. And none of them are named "Billy" or "Judy".
More like Wilthodian and Jufrenocious. Say what you will about his beliefs.
But writing a book like that takes -- intelligence !
rumpelstiltskin
2017-08-05 23:43:56 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
On Sat, 05 Aug 2017 16:12:23 -0400, Gary <***@upn.com> wrote:
<snip>
Post by Gary
What I admire most about Smith -- besides being a great salesman -- is that he
could write a bible. I've never read the Mormon book -- but I have seen copies.
Have you ever tried to write a fictitious novel ? I started to once -- but
gave up. I was having trouble keeping the names of my characters straight.
And ... there were only about five or six of them.
I don't admire anything about Joseph Smith.
Post by Gary
To write a bible -- you've got to compose a pretty good story covering hundreds
of pages. But the tough part is making up hundreds of characters -- and
keeping their names right. And none of them are named "Billy" or "Judy".
More like Wilthodian and Jufrenocious. Say what you will about his beliefs.
But writing a book like that takes -- intelligence !
mg
2017-08-05 20:31:03 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Given 3,500 years, maybe anything of value was picked up by passing thieves.
And think of all the winds that have blown across Sinai in those years. That
would have buried a lot.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus mentions that the Jews had entered Egypt -- not from the north (Asia) --
but from the south (Ethiopia). The Jews don't like that story. Because it
suggests they were originally (3,500 years ago) black :-)
Tacitus lived 1500 years after the exodus was supposed
to have happened, so he was just repeating old legends
that had been transmitted by word of mouth for at least
30 retellings from one person to the next, with the
changes, errors, and embellishments that are inevitable
in a chain of vocal transmission.
That's exactly what I've been saying. The "DETAILS" of the exodus are in
doubt. But I think there is no doubt that Jews left Egypt about that time.
You have more "faith"than I do.
Do you believe the Pilgrims landed in Massachusetts in the 1600s ? That takes
the same amount of faith as accepting the history of the Jews.
We have records that were written at the time they
happened by people who weren't barking mad. Both
those criteria are necessary.
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
Tacitus was a great historian. He was not a Christian or Jew -- and had no
reason to lie. So I think what he wrote was told him by the Egyptians.
A great historian can't see back 1500 years by himself.
He had the help of the Egyptian historians. (The best alive -- at that time)
Not much in the way of written records. Chiseling stone
in pyramids is too time consuming except for recording the
deeds of pharaohs, such as when Ramses II was fighting a
neighboring army and his troops all ran away in fear, so
Ramses defeated the entire opposing army single-handedly.
Post by Gary
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Do you think there's any doubt that Jason sought the
Golden Fleece, or that Beowulf slew Grendel?
Who knows ? I would not doubt that whoever wrote the stories might have based
them on some tale they had heard.
Like Jesus feeding a whole crowd of people with three loaves
and three fishes.
I think the crowd only numbered three people.
Post by rumpelstiltskin
Post by Gary
I only wish our early caveman ancestors had been able to pass along more stories
about when they met the Ancient Astronauts.
I've heard of Bimbos from Outer Space, so it must be true.
Post by Gary
I believe what little they told
their grandchildren is where the early religious books originated. "And they
came down from heaven in a ball of flames !"
Much more recently than that, Joseph Smith met the
angel Mormon who gave him the Mormon Bible inscribed
on gold tablets and a special glass to read them by, so
that he could copy them onto paper. The gold tablets
disappeared after that, and so did the special glass. I
expect they were stolen by Muslims or perhaps by the
bimbos from outer space. Bimbos can be fun, but
don't leave your valuables around in plain sight.
Now you introduce one of my favorite historical men. Joseph Smith has to be
one of the most intelligent men who ever lived. Back before mass
communications, Smith created a new religion. And he convinced tens of
thousands of people he could communicate with the divine one. Then he sat down
an wrote a new bible. With only his mother to help him. (It took many Jews
to write the Old Testament. And a lot of Christians to write Jesus' story)
Had he not been murdered at age 39 -- he would have joined his followers when
the settled a new state. Founded in his honor. Yes, Joseph started life a
poor boy. But he died a very rich man with many followers. And today -- 170
years later -- he is still honored by many millions.
Funny thing, I was just watching some videos
largely including Dawkins. He mentioned, much
to the annoyance of a (cute) Mormon defender,
that the book of Mormon is an obvious fake
right from step 1, as a 19th century book
written in 16th century English.
Mormon boys are often cute. Unfortunately,
they're Mormons.
I always thought it was very suspicious, also, that the Book
of Mormon was written in King James English. However, there
are a lot more linguistic problems with the BM than just
that one:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linguistics_and_the_Book_of_Mormon
rumpelstiltskin
2017-08-05 23:43:56 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
On Sat, 05 Aug 2017 14:31:03 -0600, mg <***@none.nl> wrote:
<snip>
Post by mg
I always thought it was very suspicious, also, that the Book
of Mormon was written in King James English. However, there
are a lot more linguistic problems with the BM than just
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linguistics_and_the_Book_of_Mormon
Oh, good thing you clarified "BM" with "Book of Mormon"
in the URL line, since "BM" usually means something else
and I was wondering before that!

It's religion so it's all fakery though, and the Mormon
Bible even more so than others because people should
have known better by the 19th century. Many, perhaps
most, still don't know better though, it's true.
mg
2017-08-12 20:29:58 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by rumpelstiltskin
<snip>
Post by mg
I always thought it was very suspicious, also, that the Book
of Mormon was written in King James English. However, there
are a lot more linguistic problems with the BM than just
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linguistics_and_the_Book_of_Mormon
Oh, good thing you clarified "BM" with "Book of Mormon"
in the URL line, since "BM" usually means something else
and I was wondering before that!
It's religion so it's all fakery though, and the Mormon
Bible even more so than others because people should
have known better by the 19th century. Many, perhaps
most, still don't know better though, it's true.
My theory is that when people first came to the New World,
with their newly acquired religious freedom, they were like
children with a new toy and new religions were sprouting up
all over the place, like fires in old deserted warehouses.
The result was what they called the "burned-over"district:

----------------

"The burned-over district is the western and central regions
of New York in the early 19th century, where religious
revivals and the formation of new religious movements of the
Second Great Awakening took place.[1]"
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burned-over_district
GLOBALIST
2017-08-12 20:44:35 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by mg
Post by rumpelstiltskin
<snip>
Post by mg
I always thought it was very suspicious, also, that the Book
of Mormon was written in King James English. However, there
are a lot more linguistic problems with the BM than just
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linguistics_and_the_Book_of_Mormon
Oh, good thing you clarified "BM" with "Book of Mormon"
in the URL line, since "BM" usually means something else
and I was wondering before that!
It's religion so it's all fakery though, and the Mormon
Bible even more so than others because people should
have known better by the 19th century. Many, perhaps
most, still don't know better though, it's true.
My theory is that when people first came to the New World,
with their newly acquired religious freedom, they were like
children with a new toy and new religions were sprouting up
all over the place, like fires in old deserted warehouses.
----------------
"The burned-over district is the western and central regions
of New York in the early 19th century, where religious
revivals and the formation of new religious movements of the
Second Great Awakening took place.[1]"
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burned-over_district
Protestantism can be all over the map when it comes to
interpretations of the Bible. That was one of Luther's
main points, personal interpretation of the bible.
But on a personal note.....I find it amusing that
the atheists and agnostics in this group can talk
on and on and on about God and religion.
If I didn't believe in something I sure would not
be hashing it over and over.
But lots of folks love to study mythology.
I like to study it and you often can learn something
about human nature itself
Since the spiritual can not really be put into words
you have to use symbols to talk about it, which is
why there are hundreds of schools of theology. There
are still thousands of folks getting their Phd in Theology.
But Philosophy is not much better.
rumpelstiltskin
2017-08-12 22:39:03 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by mg
Post by rumpelstiltskin
<snip>
Post by mg
I always thought it was very suspicious, also, that the Book
of Mormon was written in King James English. However, there
are a lot more linguistic problems with the BM than just
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linguistics_and_the_Book_of_Mormon
Oh, good thing you clarified "BM" with "Book of Mormon"
in the URL line, since "BM" usually means something else
and I was wondering before that!
It's religion so it's all fakery though, and the Mormon
Bible even more so than others because people should
have known better by the 19th century. Many, perhaps
most, still don't know better though, it's true.
My theory is that when people first came to the New World,
with their newly acquired religious freedom, they were like
children with a new toy and new religions were sprouting up
all over the place, like fires in old deserted warehouses.
----------------
"The burned-over district is the western and central regions
of New York in the early 19th century, where religious
revivals and the formation of new religious movements of the
Second Great Awakening took place.[1]"
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burned-over_district
Religion calls itself an "awakening", eh? That's
funny, in a way.

GLOBALIST
2017-08-03 22:03:06 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
============================
I read some of his bio above and it dawned on me.
My first guess was right.

quote:

Raised in a secular Jewish home, Gould did not formally practice religion and preferred to be called an agnostic.[9] When asked directly if he was an agnostic in Skeptic magazine, he responded:

end of quote:

To me when I hear someone called a "secular Jew" it means he is
ashamed to be Jewish and rather than be called Jewish, it
is easier to just tell folks you are an agnostic or even
atheist. Many a Jewish immigrant tried to wash-off their
heritage and hope they were passable.
"I ain't no damned ole Jew".
There are even some blacks who attempt to do that
but their denial is too visible. But Jews have the
double whammy of being a practicing religious Jew or never
the less Jewish by race.

http://www.aish.com/atr/Race_or_Religion.html

You can argue til the cows come home that Jews are not a race,
where does the expression come from: "Funny he doesn't look
Jewish?" Jews can recognize other Jews faster than we can.
So be ashamed of the whole 9 yards of anti-antisemitism,
you can avoid all that by declaring you are an agnostic
http://www.isjewish.com/bill_maher/
Bill Maher has spent his entire "acting"comedian career
hating being Jewish, so he just claims to hate all
religions, so all the bases are covered.
mg
2017-08-04 00:42:51 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
We are all at the mercy of our language when it comes to
religion. If someone asks us what we believe in, for
instance, that person naturally expects an answer and the
person being asked feels obligated to provide one. Or, in
other words, the dictionary assumes that everyone has to
believe in something.

What if someone (like me) says that he doesn't believe in
believing so the question doesn't make any sense to him?
rumpelstiltskin
2017-08-04 03:16:03 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by mg
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
We are all at the mercy of our language when it comes to
religion. If someone asks us what we believe in, for
instance, that person naturally expects an answer and the
person being asked feels obligated to provide one. Or, in
other words, the dictionary assumes that everyone has to
believe in something.
What if someone (like me) says that he doesn't believe in
believing so the question doesn't make any sense to him?
Sounds like a good answer to me.

You could also say you believe that all our
brains are under the control of aliens.
Gary
2017-08-04 11:46:58 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by mg
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
We are all at the mercy of our language when it comes to
religion. If someone asks us what we believe in, for
instance, that person naturally expects an answer and the
person being asked feels obligated to provide one. Or, in
other words, the dictionary assumes that everyone has to
believe in something.
What if someone (like me) says that he doesn't believe in
believing so the question doesn't make any sense to him?
My point is this. For a person to say:

"There is absolutely nothing of a divine nature lives in this universe !"

That requires just as much faith in "things unseen" as does the belief in any
religion. Only a foolish atheist would make such a statement. How does he
know "there is nothing up there" ? Has he been up there and looked ? Does he
trust in someone who has told him ?

Me ? I'm not an atheist. I'm agnostic. I have no personal belief -- and I
doubt there is anything up there. But .... I do not know it for a fact.
Only atheist .... and other fools ... know such thing.
GLOBALIST
2017-08-04 12:34:29 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Gary
Post by mg
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
We are all at the mercy of our language when it comes to
religion. If someone asks us what we believe in, for
instance, that person naturally expects an answer and the
person being asked feels obligated to provide one. Or, in
other words, the dictionary assumes that everyone has to
believe in something.
What if someone (like me) says that he doesn't believe in
believing so the question doesn't make any sense to him?
"There is absolutely nothing of a divine nature lives in this universe !"
That requires just as much faith in "things unseen" as does the belief in any
religion. Only a foolish atheist would make such a statement. How does he
know "there is nothing up there" ? Has he been up there and looked ? Does he
trust in someone who has told him ?
Me ? I'm not an atheist. I'm agnostic. I have no personal belief -- and I
doubt there is anything up there. But .... I do not know it for a fact.
Only atheist .... and other fools ... know such thing.
=========================

An agnostic might be very honest in thinking the mind of man
can not comprehend a spiritual being, beyond the material
world.

But as scientists now can accept "other dimensions" that
is mind-blowing.If you can even allow yourself to think
of other dimensions, that we can not see, you have
already crossed over so to speak. That is exciting.
Gary
2017-08-04 13:43:41 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by GLOBALIST
Post by Gary
Post by mg
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
We are all at the mercy of our language when it comes to
religion. If someone asks us what we believe in, for
instance, that person naturally expects an answer and the
person being asked feels obligated to provide one. Or, in
other words, the dictionary assumes that everyone has to
believe in something.
What if someone (like me) says that he doesn't believe in
believing so the question doesn't make any sense to him?
"There is absolutely nothing of a divine nature lives in this universe !"
That requires just as much faith in "things unseen" as does the belief in any
religion. Only a foolish atheist would make such a statement. How does he
know "there is nothing up there" ? Has he been up there and looked ? Does he
trust in someone who has told him ?
Me ? I'm not an atheist. I'm agnostic. I have no personal belief -- and I
doubt there is anything up there. But .... I do not know it for a fact.
Only atheist .... and other fools ... know such thing.
=========================
An agnostic might be very honest in thinking the mind of man
can not comprehend a spiritual being, beyond the material
world.
But as scientists now can accept "other dimensions" that
is mind-blowing.If you can even allow yourself to think
of other dimensions, that we can not see, you have
already crossed over so to speak. That is exciting.
Do you ever watch the program on PBS -- Ancient Aliens ? I tend to believe
they are close to the Truth. I think the book of Genesis is an attempt to
describe man's creation. But remember the story was handed down (orally) from
generation to generation for 3,000 years. Then -- the Jews wrote down what
they had been handed down for 150 generations.

I think the Aliens came to Earth about 6 or 7,000 years ago and met our caveman
ancestors. (Who had been evolving for 40,000 years, but not got far) Somehow
-- the Aliens managed to activate the intelligence of the cavemen. And that is
when our history as intelligent humans began.
mg
2017-08-04 14:54:28 UTC
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Post by Gary
Post by mg
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
We are all at the mercy of our language when it comes to
religion. If someone asks us what we believe in, for
instance, that person naturally expects an answer and the
person being asked feels obligated to provide one. Or, in
other words, the dictionary assumes that everyone has to
believe in something.
What if someone (like me) says that he doesn't believe in
believing so the question doesn't make any sense to him?
"There is absolutely nothing of a divine nature lives in this universe !"
That requires just as much faith in "things unseen" as does the belief in any
religion. Only a foolish atheist would make such a statement. How does he
know "there is nothing up there" ? Has he been up there and looked ? Does he
trust in someone who has told him ?
Me ? I'm not an atheist. I'm agnostic. I have no personal belief -- and I
doubt there is anything up there. But .... I do not know it for a fact.
Only atheist .... and other fools ... know such thing.
I understand your point and, like you, if someone asks, I
tell them that I'm an agnostic like you do because I don't
want to get tied up in the language thing.

Note however, that the dictionary doesn't say that atheists
"know it for a fact". The dictionary merely says that
atheists lack belief in the existence of God.

Is a new-born baby an atheist or an agnostic according to
the dictionary?
Gary
2017-08-04 15:31:09 UTC
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Post by mg
Post by Gary
Post by mg
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
We are all at the mercy of our language when it comes to
religion. If someone asks us what we believe in, for
instance, that person naturally expects an answer and the
person being asked feels obligated to provide one. Or, in
other words, the dictionary assumes that everyone has to
believe in something.
What if someone (like me) says that he doesn't believe in
believing so the question doesn't make any sense to him?
"There is absolutely nothing of a divine nature lives in this universe !"
That requires just as much faith in "things unseen" as does the belief in any
religion. Only a foolish atheist would make such a statement. How does he
know "there is nothing up there" ? Has he been up there and looked ? Does he
trust in someone who has told him ?
Me ? I'm not an atheist. I'm agnostic. I have no personal belief -- and I
doubt there is anything up there. But .... I do not know it for a fact.
Only atheist .... and other fools ... know such thing.
I understand your point and, like you, if someone asks, I
tell them that I'm an agnostic like you do because I don't
want to get tied up in the language thing.
Note however, that the dictionary doesn't say that atheists
"know it for a fact". The dictionary merely says that
atheists lack belief in the existence of God.
Is a new-born baby an atheist or an agnostic according to
the dictionary?
I think the modern dictionary is wrong. In reality -- and I was taught in
school there are two kinds. A doubter (agnostic) and one who is a "true
dis-believer" - who truly believes nothing exists (atheist):-)

Like the ones I've seen so often in my life:

"I'm an atheist and I knoweth all things"

Seriously -- I'm agnostic because I really do not know. All the Norse gods
may be looking down on us. Or -- there may not be a single spirit at all ! I
knoweth not ! I've never been up there to see :-)
mg
2017-08-05 03:21:58 UTC
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Post by Gary
Post by mg
Post by Gary
Post by mg
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
We are all at the mercy of our language when it comes to
religion. If someone asks us what we believe in, for
instance, that person naturally expects an answer and the
person being asked feels obligated to provide one. Or, in
other words, the dictionary assumes that everyone has to
believe in something.
What if someone (like me) says that he doesn't believe in
believing so the question doesn't make any sense to him?
"There is absolutely nothing of a divine nature lives in this universe !"
That requires just as much faith in "things unseen" as does the belief in any
religion. Only a foolish atheist would make such a statement. How does he
know "there is nothing up there" ? Has he been up there and looked ? Does he
trust in someone who has told him ?
Me ? I'm not an atheist. I'm agnostic. I have no personal belief -- and I
doubt there is anything up there. But .... I do not know it for a fact.
Only atheist .... and other fools ... know such thing.
I understand your point and, like you, if someone asks, I
tell them that I'm an agnostic like you do because I don't
want to get tied up in the language thing.
Note however, that the dictionary doesn't say that atheists
"know it for a fact". The dictionary merely says that
atheists lack belief in the existence of God.
Is a new-born baby an atheist or an agnostic according to
the dictionary?
I think the modern dictionary is wrong. In reality -- and I was taught in
school there are two kinds. A doubter (agnostic) and one who is a "true
dis-believer" - who truly believes nothing exists (atheist):-)
"I'm an atheist and I knoweth all things"
Seriously -- I'm agnostic because I really do not know. All the Norse gods
may be looking down on us. Or -- there may not be a single spirit at all ! I
knoweth not ! I've never been up there to see :-)
I tend to agree with you that perhaps the dictionary has not
kept up with the times.
rumpelstiltskin
2017-08-05 05:25:37 UTC
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Post by mg
Post by Gary
Post by mg
Post by Gary
Post by mg
Post by Gary
When it comes to religion -- I am agnostic. IMO -- you have to be just as much
a "true believer" to be an atheist as you do to be a "southern baptist".
"...If you absolutely forced me to bet on the existence of a conventional
anthropomorphic deity, of course I'd bet no. But, basically, Huxley was right
when he said that agnosticism is the only honorable position because we really
cannot know. And that's right. I'd be real surprised if there turned out to be a
conventional God...."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Jay_Gould
We are all at the mercy of our language when it comes to
religion. If someone asks us what we believe in, for
instance, that person naturally expects an answer and the
person being asked feels obligated to provide one. Or, in
other words, the dictionary assumes that everyone has to
believe in something.
What if someone (like me) says that he doesn't believe in
believing so the question doesn't make any sense to him?
"There is absolutely nothing of a divine nature lives in this universe !"
That requires just as much faith in "things unseen" as does the belief in any
religion. Only a foolish atheist would make such a statement. How does he
know "there is nothing up there" ? Has he been up there and looked ? Does he
trust in someone who has told him ?
Me ? I'm not an atheist. I'm agnostic. I have no personal belief -- and I
doubt there is anything up there. But .... I do not know it for a fact.
Only atheist .... and other fools ... know such thing.
I understand your point and, like you, if someone asks, I
tell them that I'm an agnostic like you do because I don't
want to get tied up in the language thing.
Note however, that the dictionary doesn't say that atheists
"know it for a fact". The dictionary merely says that
atheists lack belief in the existence of God.
Is a new-born baby an atheist or an agnostic according to
the dictionary?
I think the modern dictionary is wrong. In reality -- and I was taught in
school there are two kinds. A doubter (agnostic) and one who is a "true
dis-believer" - who truly believes nothing exists (atheist):-)
"I'm an atheist and I knoweth all things"
Seriously -- I'm agnostic because I really do not know. All the Norse gods
may be looking down on us. Or -- there may not be a single spirit at all ! I
knoweth not ! I've never been up there to see :-)
I tend to agree with you that perhaps the dictionary has not
kept up with the times.
"Believes nothing exists" is awfully slipshod if that's
what that dictionary says. All one needs is eyes and
a brain the size of a mouse to see that the world at
least appears to exist, and even the appearance of
something, like the shadows on the wall of Plato's
cave, is not "nothing" even if we don't know what
kind of "something" it is.
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