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  1. #541
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    Re: Eyes of an Atheist

    Quote Originally Posted by Rodriguez View Post
    As far as this goes, why would an omnipotent god allow any translation errors to occur in his word to humankind when he could easily prevent this from occurring?
    Perhaps because of the similar reason we've been given free will: freedom has a necessary risk factor in a temporal envrioment but the benefits outweigh the risk. Regarding the Bible, the benefits of understanding the spiritual message of the Bible far exceeds the possible risk factor of not understanding it in the human conundrum.

    Since one of these views is profoundly mistaken, is there a good reason to believe that the mistaken view, be it Muslim or Christian, actually knows much about God?
    Both faiths actually share many similarities. The most important one I would say is: "There is only one God. He is the Creator and Sustainer of the universe." As far as "knowing much about God" verses knowing God, how do you know who knows what?

    Fiction
    What's fiction? I presume that's your opinion of the message of the Bible. What's the message?
    "The universe is immaterial-mental and spiritual.” --"The Mental Universe” | Nature
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  2. #542
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    Re: Eyes of an Atheist

    Quote Originally Posted by Rodriguez View Post
    Is there any reason to believe that an omnipotent God who wanted to communicate with all mankind in a clear and unmistakable fashion would choose an imperfect vessel (i.e., a messenger with limited language skills or a deficient language) through which to deliver a message to all mankind? If you have a reason to suspect this then what is that reason?
    I think it has little to do with perfection verses non-perfection. If you have an absolute stream of communication coming into a non-absolute environment, i.e., the human mind, it's understandable that the Almighty has to work within the given language pattern of the non-absolute environment. So, for example, ages and ages ago this type of communication would probably not have worked well in Genesis:

    In the beginning God said let there be the Neutrino, which is difficult to detect and can't be seen, yet it came into manifestation. On the second day God said let the neutrino possess a large amount of energy and every once in a while let it collide with another particle and release energy. On the third day God decreed again and the Quark manifested. On the forth day God assigned very unusual characteristics to Quarks such as Up and Down Quarks and Charm, Strange, Top and Bottom Quarks. On the fifth day God allowed Quarks to have an electrical charge that is either (+2/3) or ( 1/3). On the sixth day God coalesced energy and the blessed atom was formed which was made up of subatomic particles which men in white coats, many ages from now, will one day discover. And the Lord said the atom was destined for great and mighty things including having at least 12 subatomic particles. Thus subatomic particles, which men will not understand until many cycles, are particles that are smaller than the atom. And the atom consisted of protons, neutrons, and electrons. God then gave protons a positive (+) charge and Neutrons were not given any electrical charge.

    And on the seventh day the Lord rested and smiled warmly upon the goodness of neutrinos, quarks, atoms, protons, neutrons and electrons, as he deeply contemplated Schrodinger's cat to be or not to be.


    So it looks like God does the next best and most practical thing.

    You seem to be saying that an omnipotent God, for some reason, did not or could not ensure that the messages delivered by various speakers in the bible were virtually perfect pieces of communication. This makes sense if the messages were delivered by one fallible human to another. It makes almost no sense, however, if the messages were delivered by an omnipotent god to a human being acting merely as a vessel through which the omnipotent god chose to communicate with mankind.

    As far as this goes, why would an omnipotent god allow any translation errors to occur in his word to humankind when he could easily prevent this from occurring?
    Because the very nature of human language breaks down the absolute. However that's not the problem, Rod, because it looks like the Creator is OK with the next best option for the temporal world, even though your argument doesn't seem to like the next best thing.

    In fact, your argument brings to mind the story of Sidhartha Gautama from the Eastern culture. After his enlightenment and a long 40 days of intense trials, Mara (the devil) appears to him and basically presents him with a very persuasive temptation that somewhat resembles your argument. Mara says: "Who could be expected to understand truth as profound as that which the Buddha had laid hold of ? How could speech-defying revelation be translated into words, or visions that shatter definitions be caged in language? In short, how can you show what can only be found, teach what can only be learned? Why bother to play the idiot before an uncomprehensive audience? Why not wash one's hands of the whole hot world--be done with the body and slip at once into nirvana and forget conveying truth? " At which point the Buddha poignantly answered: 'There will be some who will understand.' And Mara was banished from his life forever.

    In other words, the benefits for some (perhaps the many), outweigh the risk.
    "The universe is immaterial-mental and spiritual.” --"The Mental Universe” | Nature
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  3. #543
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    Re: Eyes of an Atheist

    Quote Originally Posted by eye4magic View Post
    I think it has little to do with perfection verses non-perfection. If you have an absolute stream of communication coming into a non-absolute environment, i.e., the human mind, it's understandable that the Almighty has to work within the given language pattern of the non-absolute environment. So, for example, ages and ages ago this type of communication would probably not have worked well in Genesis:

    In the beginning God said let there be the Neutrino, which is difficult to detect and can't be seen, yet it came into manifestation. On the second day God said let the neutrino possess a large amount of energy and every once in a while let it collide with another particle and release energy. On the third day God decreed again and the Quark manifested. On the forth day God assigned very unusual characteristics to Quarks such as Up and Down Quarks and Charm, Strange, Top and Bottom Quarks. On the fifth day God allowed Quarks to have an electrical charge that is either (+2/3) or ( 1/3). On the sixth day God coalesced energy and the blessed atom was formed which was made up of subatomic particles which men in white coats, many ages from now, will one day discover. And the Lord said the atom was destined for great and mighty things including having at least 12 subatomic particles. Thus subatomic particles, which men will not understand until many cycles, are particles that are smaller than the atom. And the atom consisted of protons, neutrons, and electrons. God then gave protons a positive (+) charge and Neutrons were not given any electrical charge.

    And on the seventh day the Lord rested and smiled warmly upon the goodness of neutrinos, quarks, atoms, protons, neutrons and electrons, as he deeply contemplated Schrodinger's cat to be or not to be.


    So it looks like God does the next best and most practical thing.


    Because the very nature of human language breaks down the absolute. However that's not the problem, Rod, because it looks like the Creator is OK with the next best option for the temporal world, even though your argument doesn't seem to like the next best thing.
    Right... OR he could have said...

    In the beggining God said let there be snakes. On the second day God said let these snakes start evolving into more of what seems like a man Then on the third day God farted and the snake began looking like a man even more rapidly. Then on the fourth day God decided to make the snake that was transforming into a human start speaking a language, because you know, that's how all language started. On the fifth day, he thought it was almost perfect. On the sixth day a human was made from a snake. Then on the seventh day he rested.

    My point is you cannot possibly know what God said in the bible. You could interpret it a million ways. There must be a precise and inquestionable way to read the bible, but there certainly is not. One thing I know is there is some bible somewhere in Iran or some crap that has "the original" bible. Wonder why they never let us read it? Because, we wouldn't understand it.... by that I mean it's so full of miscommunication and so full of crap that it contradicts itself practically everywhere. I got this proof from logic, so don't even ask me to prove it because no offense but if you don't see that you're lying to yourself.

    ---------- Post added at 08:30 AM ---------- Previous post was at 08:04 AM ----------

    PRO 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.

    ECC 1:18 For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.

    1CO 1:19: "For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent."

    This contradiction amuses me greatly. He's basically saying "get smart" but not "too smart" because... well why? Because then we'll know the truth and it'll depress us. It's like... you guys find comfort in thinking you know there is an afterlife. It's so easy. An afterlife... oh well when I die, I'm just going to heaven. Yup. So there! It's SO EASY. As most have learned nothing in life is easy. Not even death. When you die, nothing happens. Try living with that reality? Oh what? It's hard... ohhh poor baby.

    And yes language does break down the absolutle but it also shows absolution. An example would be... a glove is something to wear on your hands for when you are cold, need to protect your hands and for breaking into a store and/or stealing something.

  4. #544
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    Re: Eyes of an Atheist

    Quote Originally Posted by Serand View Post
    My point is you cannot possibly know what God said in the bible.
    Why not?

    You could interpret it a million ways.
    It seems God considered this. That's why we have the Holy Spirit to help us out.

    There must be a precise and inquestionable way to read the bible, but there certainly is not.
    Why? The Bible is not a science book nor are we robots. It purposely speaks to people at an individual level, yet with common spiritual principles. Evidence of this is the fact that the Bible has been translated into about 470 languages within different cultures in complete form and into about 2500 languages with some portion of the Bible translated. There are about 6800 languages in the world, btw, and there are currently about 1500 new translation projects in progress.

    This contradiction amuses me greatly.He's basically saying "get smart" but not "too smart" because... well why?
    If you read the full context on the passage you might understand why. Because wisdom and knowledge are not physical destinations, they are moving points. We can't ever be too wise or too smart, despite what we think. Also wisdom and intelligence independent of God (framework of existence) doesn't serve us well in the long run. This principle is also found in other chapters. " Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise." 1 Corinthians 3:18
    "The universe is immaterial-mental and spiritual.” --"The Mental Universe” | Nature
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  5. #545
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    Re: Eyes of an Atheist

    Quote Originally Posted by eye4magic View Post
    Why? The Bible is not a science book nor are we robots. It purposely speaks to people at an individual level, yet with common spiritual principles. Evidence of this is the fact that the Bible has been translated into about 470 languages within different cultures in complete form and into about 2500 languages with some portion of the Bible translated. There are about 6800 languages in the world, btw, and there are currently about 1500 new translation projects in progress.
    I might be reading too much into what you are saying here. However, it sounds like you are saying that a thousand different people could read the Bible and get a thousand different interpretations of the Bible. I'm asking... not trying to put words in your mouth. Just want to make sure I'm understanding what you are saying here.

  6. #546
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    Re: Eyes of an Atheist

    Quote Originally Posted by libre View Post
    I might be reading too much into what you are saying here. However, it sounds like you are saying that a thousand different people could read the Bible and get a thousand different interpretations of the Bible. I'm asking... not trying to put words in your mouth. Just want to make sure I'm understanding what you are saying here.
    A thousand different people can read the Bible and its ageless spiritual principles and wisdom can resonate and speak to many people at an individual level. That's the amazing thing about the Bible with all its language translations, that its spiritual principles and wisdom (truth) resonates and speaks to millions of people individually. How we personally process, incorporate and interpret these principles and teachings in our life is up to us.
    Last edited by eye4magic; May 13th, 2013 at 07:19 PM.
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    Re: Eyes of an Atheist

    Quote Originally Posted by eye4magic View Post
    Why not?
    I think it's obvious "why not."


    Quote Originally Posted by eye4magic View Post
    It seems God considered this. That's why we have the Holy Spirit to help us out.
    Now you're just basing this off a spiritual belief, something that is not written anywhere but rather felt. That's fine. I don't feel it. And I know many others who don't either. To me, if I do not feel God's presence or the presence of something like a Holy Spirit or whatever, then I will simply not believe in it because it does not compute with me nor with others. If God is everywhere, and we're supposed to open our hearts to Him, how is it I have never felt nor heard of anyone that has, other than religious nutjobs. I almost always think with logic and reason, almost never with my emotions... and so far it has served me too well in life.


    Quote Originally Posted by eye4magic View Post
    Why? The Bible is not a science book nor are we robots. It purposely speaks to people at an individual level, yet with common spiritual principles. Evidence of this is the fact that the Bible has been translated into about 470 languages within different cultures in complete form and into about 2500 languages with some portion of the Bible translated. There are about 6800 languages in the world, btw, and there are currently about 1500 new translation projects in progress.
    If it speaks to people on individual levels than I think of it more as a Children's story so little kids don't get too scared about not going to Hell if they just behave themselves.


    Quote Originally Posted by eye4magic View Post
    If you read the full context on the passage you might understand why. Because wisdom and knowledge are not physical destinations, they are moving points. We can't ever be too wise or too smart, despite what we think. Also wisdom and intelligence independent of God (framework of existence) doesn't serve us well in the long run. This principle is also found in other chapters. " Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise." 1 Corinthians 3:18
    It does not state that knowledge and wisdom are not physical destinations and that they are moving parts though I do not entirely disagree with that. But sometimes, knowledge of something does halt at a certain point. Actually, a lot of the time it does. Actually... it does almost always.... actually... it always does halt. Metamorphic Rocks - created when existing rock is chemically or physically modified by intense heat or pressure. That's it there. The only part of knowledge and wisdom that do go on area ideas. And ideas are often fictional or they are made using materials within this planet's confines.

    ---------- Post added at 08:17 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:15 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by eye4magic View Post
    A thousand different people can read the Bible and its ageless spiritual principles and wisdom can resonate and speak to many people at an individual level. That's the amazing thing about the Bible wth all its language translations, that its spiritual principles and wisdom (truth) resonates and speaks to millions of people individually. How we personally process, incorporate and interpret these principles and teachings in our life is up to us.
    And sometimes we think God is telling us to kill our children. Great. You say it's wrong? Why? That's their interpretation.

  8. #548
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    Re: Eyes of an Atheist

    Quote Originally Posted by Serand View Post
    I think it's obvious "why not."
    Then please respond

    Now you're just basing this off a spiritual belief, something that is not written anywhere but rather felt.
    It is written. Are you familiar with the Bible?

    I don't feel it.
    That doesn't mean you can't come to feel it.

    If God is everywhere, and we're supposed to open our hearts to Him, how is it I have never felt nor heard of anyone that has,
    Ignorance is optional. A little academic objective study on the spiritual/religious lives of people past and present might help with your generalization fallacies.

    other than religious nut jobs.
    You're funny Serand. You make too many sweeping generalizations. Some of our best and brightest movers and shakers past and present were/are devout God believers.

    I almost always think with logic and reason,
    Well to be perfectly honest, ODN might challenge your personal assessment of your reasoning skills as well as maybe sharpen them. You might consider working on avoiding "hasty generalizations."

    If it speaks to people on individual levels than I think of it more as a Children's story so little kids don't get too scared about not going to Hell if they just behave themselves.
    If this is suppose to be an example of a reasonable claim, then you're going to have to clearly support it.

    And sometimes we think God is telling us to kill our children. Great. You say it's wrong? Why?
    Because unlike us, God can only always be reasonable.
    Last edited by eye4magic; May 14th, 2013 at 07:16 PM.
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  9. #549
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    Re: Eyes of an Atheist

    Quote Originally Posted by eye4magic View Post
    A thousand different people can read the Bible and its ageless spiritual principles and wisdom can resonate and speak to many people at an individual level. That's the amazing thing about the Bible with all its language translations, that its spiritual principles and wisdom (truth) resonates and speaks to millions of people individually. How we personally process, incorporate and interpret these principles and teachings in our life is up to us.
    Again, not to put words in your mouth but are you saying the following?

    1) The Bible can only be interpreted one way but the information in it can be applied/used in many ways.

    2) The Bible can be interpreted in many different ways and thus can be applied in many different ways.

    Or is there a 3rd option? Seriously not trying to make a big deal out of this. It's just that the way you keep wording it seems cloudy... at least to me. What you are saying sounds important though so I just want to make sure I completely understand it.

  10. #550
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    Re: Eyes of an Atheist

    Quote Originally Posted by Serand
    But sometimes, knowledge of something does halt at a certain point. Actually, a lot of the time it does. Actually... it does almost always.... actually... it always does halt. Metamorphic Rocks - created when existing rock is chemically or physically modified by intense heat or pressure. That's it there. The only part of knowledge and wisdom that do go on area ideas. And ideas are often fictional or they are made using materials within this planet's confines.
    That's either bad science or lazy science. What's a "rock"? What is "heat"? What is "pressure"? In order to understand what goes on in any physical system, everything boils down to fundamental forces, particle interactions, and so on--which is an active area of research, and which is not well understood (e.g., lack of theory harmonizing relativity with quantum mechanics). So just saying "herpderp lightning is when the bright stuff comes out of clouds" or "metamorphic rocks are what happens when other rocks are exposed to heat or pressure" are incomplete pictures of physical processes.

    We always have to collect new data, re-evaluate old theories, and even create new models within which to interpret the data. If you showed Aristotle (with his 5 primitive elements theory of science) the information about metamorphic rocks, he might interpret the data as supporting his 5-element theory--"Oh, when Fire and Air meet Earth, the Earth gets changed and incorporates these elements more" or something like that--whereas someone with a different model (like, say, plate tectonics and modern geophysics) would interpret the exact same data differently.
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  11. #551
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    Re: Eyes of an Atheist

    Quote Originally Posted by libre View Post
    Again, not to put words in your mouth but are you saying the following?

    1) The Bible can only be interpreted one way but the information in it can be applied/used in many ways.

    2) The Bible can be interpreted in many different ways and thus can be applied in many different ways.

    Or is there a 3rd option? Seriously not trying to make a big deal out of this. It's just that the way you keep wording it seems cloudy... at least to me. What you are saying sounds important though so I just want to make sure I completely understand it.
    Personally, I'm not one to accept the literalness of the Bible. However, I do recognize a common unifying truth that most Christians accept and is common to most interpretations: Salvation through Christ.

    I think the Bible is a spiritual story about God and man. Many of its allegories and parables seem to represent deep inner profound truths; many of which simply could not have been broken down into language but had to be told in the form of a story in order for human understanding. If we only look at the outer meaning of the Bible, then I think it's understandable how there can be different interpretations of its passages. But if we look for the deep inner meaning of its passages (if we accept the premise that it was divinely inspired, which I do) then I think this is where we might find common ground in interpretation: a ground that says "we're on a spiritual journey and this text is a valuable tool to help us navigate through the slings and arrows of the highways of life."

    It's difficult to use a worldly mindset to discern spiritual principles. Paul addresses this in 1 Corinthians:

    Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.

    These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. 1 Corinthians 2:12-14

    So I guess if I had to choose, I would choose a third option: The Bible should be interpreted spiritually.
    Last edited by eye4magic; May 15th, 2013 at 12:52 PM.
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