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#14017 - 03/24/06 04:44 AM Re: Existance of "Christ"
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
Dan wrote - "You are correct and for that I make no apology. My point which you have not and can not dispute is that the world has been an awful place. It follows from that directly that the death of Jesus Christ accomplished precisely what?"

- It is not a difficult relationship to understand. What Jesus has accomplished is in direct proportion to the amount of people who have really engaged and followed him. From my experience, far less of those professing faith than might at first be apparent.

I understand that you will reply that if Jesus was really divine he could ensure that people would follow him. This is a seperate argument. I am here only arguing for the sensible nature of his teachings.

Regards,

Blacknad.

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#14018 - 03/24/06 09:11 AM Re: Existance of "Christ"
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
Ok I'll bite.

You wrote:
"What Jesus has accomplished is in direct proportion to the amount of people who have really engaged and followed him."

So you can basically define all Christians that have ever run a red light or spit on the sidewalk or committed genocide as having "not really engaged and followed him." What a perfect solution of convenience. The ultimate waffle.

Rather than expecting Christ's teaching to have made a measurable difference on this planet you just define out of the realm of what matters 99.9% of the planet's inhabitants.

And yes if Jesus was truly anything more than a mortal trouble-maker he could have, should have, and would have done a far far better job. Poor ignorant slob didn't even know about penicillin. Had he known about it he could have had a real impact on people.

So based on actual lives saved and suffering alleviated I'll take my ex-sister-in-law over Jesus any day. She's real and the people she helps in her medical practice are not just stories in an authorless book. Plus, and it is a big plus, so far not one war has been fought over her.
_________________________
DA Morgan

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#14019 - 03/24/06 03:01 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
Dan wrote - "So you can basically define all Christians that have ever run a red light or spit on the sidewalk or committed genocide as having "not really engaged and followed him." What a perfect solution of convenience. The ultimate waffle."

- On running red lights or spitting on sidewalks - Jesus did not legislate for the finer points of human behaviour, so we listen to the promptings of our conscience (it is believed that those who never heard of Christ will be held accountable by how they have responded to their conscience). We also extrapolate biblical principles to find answers.

There are two levels of wrong behaviour:

Standard sin - selfishness, stealing, pub brawling, running red lights etc.

Evil - genocide, rape etc.

All evil is legislated against in Christ's teachings and built upon in Paul's teachings. Also, much sinful behaviour is legislated against - the rest we figure out.

Christians sin, but when they step into the realm of committing evil they can be shown, by the objective measure of Christ's teachings, to be corrupt or erroneous. They can be held to account, and in the end they cannot argue their way out of it unless they are willing to abandon their faith.

If what they do is seen to conflict with:

"Turn the other cheek"
"Love your enemies"
"Forgive all who wrong you"
"Go the extra mile for people"
"Serve one another, as I have served you"
etc.

then they are clearly in the wrong or are simply not even real Christians.

Another point about this is that there are objective markers for the Christian that you can hold us to.

There are no objective markers that we can hold you to.

Christians cannot in good conscience commit genocide because it violates the basic principles of Christ.

Atheists surely can commit genocide and rationalise it, and if you don't agree, it is simply a matter of your opinion versus theirs. You have absolutely nothing concrete to point to. When an independent Nation State decides to kill its entire disabled populace (as the Germans attempted) because they are a non-productive drain upon valuable resources, what is your argument? What, you don't like the idea? You have an emotional dislike of what they are doing? Well, they are making a rational decision for the betterment of their society, and remember, you have no basis for appealing to the sanctity of life.

Give them one good reason why they should not do what they are doing. People are only animals after all and by your own admission, nothing special and without any inherent worth.

You can hold me to account.

I cannot hold you to account.

This is why I fear atheism more than religion.

This is why atheism has a far greater capacity to commit atrocities (see 20th century).

It is possible that atheism will become the overwhelming worldview in time. What will restrain it? Who will hold its actions accountable? Reason? Rational thought?

It is rational thought that leads us to a fundamental reduction in the value and worth of humanity and makes even greater evils possible.

If IQ is held in such high esteem (see Uncle Al), and stupid people are seen to stand in the way of progress (for example they might not see the wisdom of stem cell research or mass abortion or any number of things) then why not take away their right to reproduce, and prevent them from polluting the gene pool by partnering with the more intelligent.

In effect we would have intellectual apartheid, and it would make perfect sense.

Breed out the stupid people, breed out the irrational religious, breed out cripples and those with sub-standard genetic stock. Eliminate any who stand in the way of progress and the building of a 'better' world.

If you don't agree we should do this, be careful, you wouldn't want to be seen as standing in the way of sensible progress would you?

Aldous Huxley saw you coming.

But of course you are free to continue your crusade against irrational religion and save the minds of the ignorant.

Blacknad.

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#14020 - 03/24/06 03:12 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
Dan wrote - "So based on actual lives saved and suffering alleviated I'll take my ex-sister-in-law over Jesus any day. She's real and the people she helps in her medical practice are not just stories in an authorless book. Plus, and it is a big plus, so far not one war has been fought over her."

- You can only state this with a flagrant disregard or ignorance of the actions of millions of people who have taken Jesus' words to heart and have served those around them and tried to alleviate suffering. He came to show us another way, and all those who have taken up his challenge have made a positive impact.

Feel free to continue ignoring this.

Regards,

Blacknad.

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#14021 - 03/24/06 03:47 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
Dan,

Because you have philosophical objections to God's actions that you cannot overcome (some of which seem to be driven from an emotional position), it does not for one moment disprove the existence of God. It just shows that God has not ordered the Universe as Dan Morgan thinks he should.

Because you cannot accept the historical scriptural evidence and actually take a position different to that of a great deal of Christian and non-Christian scholars, does not invalidate the scriptures. Just because you can make no sense of how they were selected and brought together does not invalidate the choices that were made.

Just because you cannot work out that they are sufficient to inform the believer's life, and you cannot understand their coherence and the fact that they are 'fit for the purpose', does not invalidate them - it just shows that they are not sufficient for you, based upon the life choice you have made.

Just because you contemptuously disregard the place of personal religious experience as a supporting factor to the evidence of scripture and a reliable secondary proof does not invalidate it one bit - it is your opinion.

I believe you have rejected God at a personal level (for whatever reasons) and just rationalise it all away and confirm the choice you have made to disregard God and any claim He may have on your life.

Sincere seekers and those willing to accept God's claim to their lives have been rewarded with an experience that you cannot even come close to knowing about. Because you disregard it as psychological phenomena only defines it as such in your own head.

Your constant railing against everything religious and your inability to concede even one point, but remain absolutely assured of your own infallibity has certainly made me consider my beliefs, but has not presented a cogent argument that effectively challenges them.

As Jim Wood rightly says, all I am doing by defending my beliefs is giving you a platform to belittle them.

Well I think whether I engage with you or not, you will still find an outlet for your dislike of anything not centred in 'scientific rational thought'. Well you are surely welcome to your god, and your misplaced faith in your own ability to have this 'reality thing' all nicely packaged.

Regards,

Blacknad.

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#14022 - 03/24/06 08:11 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
dvk wrote:
"There are two levels of wrong behaviour: Standard sin - selfishness, stealing, pub brawling, running red lights etc. Evil - genocide, rape etc."

Who decides where the line is drawn? You? Me? The voting majority? The king? The theologian? This is disingenuous. But lets just limit ourselves to genocide, torture, and rape to simplify it.

dvk then wrote:
"Christians sin, but when they step into the realm of committing evil they can be shown, by the objective measure of Christ's teachings, to be corrupt or erroneous."

Which differs from believers in every other religion or ethical or moral standard in what way?

dvk wrote:
"Christians cannot in good conscience commit genocide because it violates the basic principles of Christ."

Ah but they do. And you can not just paint the target after the arrow is shot and define them as non-Christians. To do so is essentially the same as saying "I am a good Christian right up until I rape my next door neighbor." Then alakazam I'm not a good Chrisitian. And my behavior just gets writen out of the books as though I never was one. Every Catholic priest that raped a young boy ... not really a Christian. Every member of the Nazi chain of command ... not really a Christian. The pastor's wife in Tennesse ... not really a Christian.

But all of the solves nothing but allow you to feel good about your choice. It does not stop the genocide. It does not stop the torture. It does not stop the rape. And those things continue because your lord Jesus Christ accomplished nothing in his life or death.

dvk wrote:
"You can hold me to account.
I cannot hold you to account.
This is why I fear atheism more than religion."

Your argument holds no water. There is no difference between being tortured by a Christian and tortured by a Hindu or tortured by a deist or tortured by an atheist. Your fear is irrational.

dvk asks:
"If IQ is held in such high esteem (see Uncle Al), and stupid people are seen to stand in the way of progress then why not take away their right to reproduce, and prevent them from polluting the gene pool by partnering with the more intelligent."

There are some among my friends who would be thrilled to make that happen. But I oppose it because I believe what Lord Acton said:

"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely"

And this is equally true for all including the self-annointed leaders of religions.

dvk wrote:
"You can only state this with a flagrant disregard or ignorance of the actions of millions of people who have taken Jesus' words to heart and have served those around them and tried to alleviate suffering."

Nonsense. Pure unadulterated 99% fat free nonsense. If millions of people had done what you suggest the world would be a different place. If that were true people like me would look out into the world and see the work of those millions and say "Wow I want to get me some of that stuff."

dvk wrote:
"Feel free to continue ignoring this."

I'm not ignoring it. It is just invisible unless, perhaps, you have an electron microscope.

dvk wrote:
"God has not ordered the Universe as Dan Morgan thinks he should."

No actually the universe is ordered exactly as it should be given quantum mechanics and relativity. There is nothing god can claim credit for except perhaps a genocidal flood, some genocidal plagues, and a lot of bloody warfare. If he doesn't exist then nothing has changed. But if he does he should be arrested and charged with crimes against humanity. Exhibit 1 for the prosecution: Smallpox.

dvk wrote:
"whether I engage with you or not, you will still find an outlet for your dislike of anything not centred in 'scientific rational thought'."

In this you are absolutely correct. I will never cease the fight against wilfull ignorance while I can still breathe air.

When your religion, or all religions, make as big an impact on life as the discovery of penicillin then you will have something to talk about. Right now all I see is justification for hatred and egotism blended with a heavy dose of hypocrisy.

Essentially we can distill it down to this:

Jesus Christ ... improved the lives of how many people?

Jonas Salk ... improved the lives of how many people?

Lets pray to Jonas.
_________________________
DA Morgan

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#14023 - 03/24/06 10:18 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
Anonymous
Unregistered


DA, i was wondering if you could provide the title of this book. It honestly sounds very interesting... (finaly a person whose opinions i agree with!)also i dont mean to be offensive i just do not personally know of any one else who shares my same views.

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#14024 - 03/24/06 11:31 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
What book did I reference? If you mean the "authorless book" it is commonly called The Bible.

It is a fascinating manuscript. No original copy. No evidence it was written by any known person or persons. Known to have been intentionally and repeatedly mistranslated.

I know many people that share my views. Not sure I know as many willing to overcome their fear of the Christian majority and say so out loud. Is was truly not that many years ago when to say what I've said would have landed me in jail or worse.
_________________________
DA Morgan

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#14025 - 03/25/06 02:20 AM Re: Existance of "Christ"
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
Well I am now taking SAGG out of my favourites and will no longer bother you. It has been a good source of science news and I have learnt much and enjoyed the people here. But I am now getting tired of reading posts and feeling insulted as the thing that is central to my life is trampled underfoot on almost a daily basis.

I think the following was the last straw and if it was intended to hurt and get Christians down then it was certainly successful in my case:

"Evicted, I presume, because god out father was a louse like so many fathers. Always blowing up in a rage, known for violent temper tantrums. Probably also a drunk."


This has nothing to do with reasoned debate.

Goodbye all.

Regards,

Blacknad.

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#14026 - 03/25/06 08:44 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
Anonymous
Unregistered


Religious answer is more satisfying .. to every there is always a superior soul.Just as there is and will always be a soul superior to me.
Christ was no doubt a grand success but there can be someone who is even superior to him or her.

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#14027 - 04/03/06 03:19 AM Re: Existance of "Christ"
jjw Offline
Superstar

Registered: 09/07/05
Posts: 636
Loc: USA
Shahn # 629 asks:

"Hi all, Im currently in Secondary School, and one of our major assesments in SOR (Studies Of Religion) is to provide an essay on the "Existence of Jesus." Historical, Political, Archaeological, Scientific and Gospel proof is needed."

Well Shahn, if you are still visitong this Forum you should have learned a few things.

To prove that Christ really existed I would need some serious up front retainer, about six good researchers, atleast 3 of which must speak and read 3 languages each, one specialized in bibical histroy and one atheist extra to argue with us about all the potential proofs we intend to offer, all charged to the inquirey.

Along the way depending on your ability to pay and how busy I am at that particular time, I may require you to explain why the issue is important enough for all of this focused effort?

So why is it important to PROVE Christ existed?
jjw

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#14028 - 06/01/06 02:44 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
Peter Bmn Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 35
Loc: Canberra
Dear DA,

lets face it - you are a religious zealot - its just that your religion is based on the belief that there is no God rather than the other way round.

You have been trying to convert others to to your beliefs - so you are activily evangelising for your faith.
Not only is your preaching arrogantly selfrighteous, but your arguments exhibit strong bias and inconsistent logic - which makes you a true hard core fundamentalist.
Compared to you the others are laid back, fairly balanced and reasonable, and their arguments are mostly realistic and consistant and they draw on a wide rang of sources rather than just rely on their religions texts.

You refuse to accept any source which does not say what you want it to say. You reject the Paul and Luke because they were written 30 or 60 years after the event, and Josephus who wrote another 20 year later, yet endorse the Quran which was written many centuries later by someone whose only source was the very thing you disparage - "the record essentially disappears for around 200-300 years until the story is merged with a substantial amount of 100% heathen nonsense...".
If Pliny, a historian and scholar with contacts in all the right places, is not trustworthy when writing about things which happened 80 years before (about 110 for Jesus birth) then why are you to be trusted to know what happened 16 to 18 centuries before your birth when you say "the record essentially dissappears for around 200-300 years".
Pliny was writing about events about as distant as WW1 is from us now - if in 2000 years someone came across a history book written now about WW1, would they reject it as evidence?

In one thing you are right - "The hyocrasy of religious zealots does know no bounds",
and fundamentalist Atheists are on top of the league.

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#14029 - 06/02/06 10:21 AM Re: Existance of "Christ"
dehammer Offline
Megastar

Registered: 03/23/06
Posts: 1089
ppl keep saying what has christ accomplished, yet they overlook a very vital thing.

before christ most of the religions were multi deity. if a storm brewed up and destroyed your crops it was because two gods were fighting.

after the church got into gear, the believe that there was only one god meant that there had to be another expliantion for the weather and other things.

in otherwords science, including Salk amoung others, are derived from the knowledge that things that are harmfull to humans are not the result of multiple gods.

so in essense, jesus paved the way for polio vaccine, and cancer treatment, and space flight.
_________________________
the more man learns, the more he realises, he really does not know anything.

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#14030 - 06/05/06 12:08 AM Re: Existance of "Christ"
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
dehammer wrote:
"before christ most of the religions were multi deity."

They still are. Just ask the father, the son, and the holy ghost, all of the different variations on the Buddhist/Hindu theme, and the countless extant animist religions.

Jesus paved the way for blood flowing like water in the Crusades, the Inquisition, and the countless wars in Europe.

Your reference to polio vaccine and cancer treatment is disingenuous. He created the diseases according to Christianity. If you intentionally shoot someone with a gun you don't get credit for calling 911 later.
_________________________
DA Morgan

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#14031 - 06/05/06 01:18 AM Re: Existance of "Christ"
dehammer Offline
Megastar

Registered: 03/23/06
Posts: 1089
Quote:
Originally posted by DA Morgan:
They still are. Just ask the father, the son, and the holy ghost, all of the different variations on the Buddhist/Hindu theme, and the countless extant animist religions.

Jesus paved the way for blood flowing like water in the Crusades, the Inquisition, and the countless wars in Europe.

Your reference to polio vaccine and cancer treatment is disingenuous. He created the diseases according to Christianity. If you intentionally shoot someone with a gun you don't get credit for calling 911 later.
1) according to what i know of Christianity, the son and the holy ghost are not considered gods. they are merely the path Christians are suppose to be able to talk to god.

2) he paved the way, but did not do anything more.

if i made a road and someone came along and killed someone in a drunken accident, would you claim i was responsible. if someone came along in a ambulance and saved a life, would i be responsible. the answer in both questions is no. the creator created life. according to some, disease and stuff like that are the devils work. according to others its one of the challanges god gave man to test him. (dont ask me why)
_________________________
the more man learns, the more he realises, he really does not know anything.

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#14032 - 06/19/06 08:56 AM Re: Existance of "Christ"
evil star genius Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/19/06
Posts: 7
Wow, Shahn.
That's a hard paper to write.
Practically nothing can prove the existance of Christ. I mean, it's all faith and what you believe in, it's almost impossible to prove anything.
Read the Bible, any religious books, perhaps. There are ancient relics, paitings, writings-they may all contain some proof, you never know.
But then again, you can't prove that any deity or god existed either-you just believe in it.
Good luck

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#14033 - 06/20/06 02:58 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
Peter Bmn Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 35
Loc: Canberra
Anyone who understands the Philosophy of Science knows that it is harder to prove that something deosen't exist than to prove that it does. Unfortunately most people are more interested in convincing themselves and others that what they believe is true, rather than wanting to beleive what is true.
When Scientists say that they love Science and hate Religion, it is a sad day for Science. First they don't mention truth, and it is the search for truth which makes the difference between good and bad science. Secondly, History showns that people tend to hate more strongly than they love. Without a love of Truth, these people will begin to distort Science as they seek to use it to attack religion.

While Science is quite good at resisting blatent pressure from outside (e.g. from Creation Science), it is much more vulnerable to more subtle attacks from within. I suspect that the whole ID movment would never have got going if it hadn't been for the flood of documentaries, etc, which present Evolution as a kind pseudo religion.

One example of religo/philosophical beleifs harming Science is in learning theory. LJ Skinner changed learning theory from being almost purely speculative into an experimental Science. However Skinner had strong beliefs about meaning (the lack there of), and this was projected into the Behaviourist movement which he started. Skinner insisted that learning be treated as a "black box" and only behavour could be studied. This hindered the development of other approaches the study of learning for several decades.

If you really do love Science then please don't mix it with religion, or anti religion.

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#14034 - 06/20/06 07:05 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
Peter I've yet to meet the scientist that "hates" religion. What I have met is scientists that hate hypocrisy (no matter its form), hate ignorance (no matter its form), and hate child abuse (in all its forms).

Don't flatter religion by trying to elevate it to some special place in the Pantheon. It is no better, or worse, than nationalism, gay bashing, anti-Semitism, and ethnic cleansing.
_________________________
DA Morgan

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#14035 - 06/22/06 03:28 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
Peter Bmn Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 35
Loc: Canberra
I was quoting a statement made by several contributers to this discussion group, and it is one which is strongly reflected in the letters section of several popular science magazines.

My aim is not to elevate religion, but to point out that strong anti religous beleifs (which are a kind of religion) can lead to a negative form of "Creation Science".

A balanced view of Religion would admit the possiblity of good as well as bad. When you can only see one extreme then this begins to distort everything else.
If you look at any Creation Science literature you will soon seen a distorted interpretaion of the Second Law of Thermodynamics which preclueds evolution. These peoples commitment ot creation in six days is such that they think thier interpretation is correct and don't recognize that it precludes life and crystal growth.
The same thing can happen with Anti Religion Scientists.

I notice that you did not provide any positive things for religion to be "no better or worse than", although many US citizens consider nationalism to be a positive thing.
Maybe you or someone you know has been badly hurt by religious people, and I know that there is a lot of bad religion out there. The challeng is to differenctiate between the bad and the (potentially) good. People do bad things then use religion, or politics, or even science to justify it. However there are also people who do good things, and then there are the rest of us in the middle who do some good and some bad.

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#14036 - 06/22/06 10:03 PM Re: Existance of "Christ"
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
Peter wrote:
"My aim is not to elevate religion, but to point out that strong anti religous beleifs (which are a kind of religion) can lead to a negative form of "Creation Science"."

I disagree. It is not a religion to refute Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. Why is it a kind of religion to refute religious nonsense?

You write:
"A balanced view of Religion would admit the possiblity of good as well as bad"

Oh I'll grant you the "possibility" of good as well as bad. But lets take a good look at historical reality. Take piece of paper and on one side write all of the good things that can be definitely attributed to religion: On the other all of the bad. Lets go good side / bad side.

G: Raises money to help the poor.
B: Spends billions on glorious churches.

G: Talks about the Golden Rule.
B: Supported most wars in the last 10,000 years.

G: Puts free bibles into hotel rooms.
B: Causes perfectly good trees to be cut down.

I'll grant "good" is possible if you'll grant that the overwhelming reality is that it has failed in that mission.

Why should I, or anyone, care what many US citizens think of nationalism? What is good is not a popularity contest.

Personally I have never been hurt by religion. Nor can I say that I have ever met any individuals hurt by it other than a friend who was sexually abused by a Catholic priest in the 1960s. My objection is based on 10,000 years of historical reality ... not some personal injury.

So far all of the religious organizations on this planet have not prayed their way to a cure for polio ... for smallpox ... for TB ... or obtained the favours of their creator to tell them about penicillin.

When the Pope or Father Jones or Imam Mohammed or Rabbi Goldberg delliver to humanity a cure for AIDS or war I'll change my mind.

Until then I see them as part of the problem not part of the solution.
_________________________
DA Morgan

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