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#20306 - 04/12/07 02:13 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: DA Morgan]
Revlgking Offline
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WORDS AND MEANINGs ARE ALWAYS RELATIVE AND OPEN TO INTERPRETATION
As I have already written: Dictionaries, IMO, are not infallible and fixed documents written in stone. Even they recognize that languages need to be free to grow and that new ideas/concepts need new words.

"spirit" "good" "evil" "love" are all complex terms.

Generally speaking, I agree with the way these comlex terms are defined in the standard dictionaries. However, because they arecomplex we need to allow individuals to be free to offer their own interpretation.

SPIRIT
For example, chemists will use the term to refer to any of various mordant (corrosive, biting) solutions, usually prepared from tin salts (tannic acids), in dyeing. Christian Science teachers capitalize the term and write 'Spirit' as a doublet for God. I use it to refer to anything that cannot be weighed or measuered in the usual way.

GOOD
It comes from the Old English, god, with a long o. Generally speaking, I like what the dictionary tells us it means--that which has the right and excellent qualities for most people. But I realize that relative values apply. What is good for one is not alway good for another. This is one of the reasons I have difficulty believing in a personal god who is anxious to communicate with His creatures.

EVIL
Another complex and relative term. I think of evil as being like chaos, it is good in the making. Pain and suffering can be redemptive. And redemption can begin when we understand the nature and function of love.

LOVE
Love is another and extremely complex term. It can be a noun or a verb. It can mean anything, from a strong affection for a person of the opposite sex, a close member of the family--parent, sibling--ones true friend, ones country, a hero, a movie star, alma mater, to a doublet for God, as it is in Christian Science.

Love can include feels of warm and tender attachment, but it can also mean the ability to give good will without such conditions. This is the root meaning of the Greek term agape, the one used 140 times in the Greek New Testament.

http://www.ccel.org/bible/phillips/CP07Cor1.htm

CHAPTER 13 of First Corinthians

Christian love - the highest and best gift
The Greek here is not eros (sensual love); not philia (love for a trusted friend), it is agape--love without conditions; the kind respect and fairness one can give even to an enemy.

13:1-3 - If I speak with the eloquence of men and of angels, but have no love, I become no more than blaring brass or crashing cymbal. If I have the gift of foretelling the future and hold in my mind not only all human knowledge but the very secrets of God, and if I also have that absolute faith which can move mountains, but have no love, I amount to nothing at all. If I dispose of all that I possess, yes, even if I give my own body to be burned, but have no love, I achieve precisely nothing.

13:4 - This love of which I speak is slow to lose patience - it looks for a way of being constructive. It is not possessive: it is neither anxious to impress nor does it cherish inflated ideas of its own importance.

13:5-6 - Love has good manners and does not pursue selfish advantage. It is not touchy. It does not keep account of evil or gloat over the wickedness of other people. On the contrary, it is glad with all good men when truth prevails.

13:7-8a - Love knows no limit to its endurance, no end to its trust, no fading of its hope; it can outlast anything. It is, in fact, the one thing that still stands when all else has fallen.

All gifts except love will be superseded one day

13:8b-10 - For if there are prophecies they will be fulfilled and done with, if there are "tongues" the need for them will disappear, if there is knowledge it will be swallowed up in truth. For our knowledge is always incomplete and our prophecy is always incomplete, and when the complete comes, that is the end of the incomplete.

13:11 - When I was a little child I talked and felt and thought like a little child. Now that I am a man my childish speech and feeling and thought have no further significance for me.

13:12 - At present we are men looking at puzzling reflections in a mirror. The time will come when we shall see reality whole and face to face! At present all I know is a little fraction of the truth, but the time will come when I shall know it as fully as God now knows me!

13:13 - In this life we have three great lasting qualities - faith, hope and love. But the greatest of them is love.


Edited by Revlgking (04/12/07 02:21 AM)
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#20308 - 04/12/07 02:38 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
terrytnewzealand Offline
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Revlgking wrote, as a definition of spirit:

"I use it to refer to anything that cannot be weighed or measuered in the usual way."

Well that's handy. The other day a survey was quoted on TV that said over 50% of people claim to be "spiritual". I wondered at the time what on earth that meant. Now I know. They can't be weighed or measured in any way.

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#20310 - 04/12/07 03:22 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: terrytnewzealand]
DA Morgan Offline
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Certainly not their IQs
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#20343 - 04/12/07 03:15 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: DA Morgan]
Revlgking Offline
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WHY WE USE HEART AS A METAPHOR FOR SPIRIT
==========================================
Out of the human heart, or spirit can come much good, or much evil. Will anyone deny with this?

It is self-evident that the human spirituality, which has no mass and does not occupy space or time, is capable of creating great works of art--physical and measureable things--or great wars of death and destruction.

Out of the human spirit also come what we call thoughts and words. If we choose negative words we can destroy the reputations of others by the use of slander and/or libel. This is what can be measured. The cost of doing so can also be costly to us, in term of dollars and cents.

THE PNEUMA FACTOR
Interestingly, the ancients equated air, wind and breath--the Greek word for which is 'pneuma'--with the spirit of God or the gods. To them air was a mysterious NO-thing. They reasoned that every time human beings take a breath it goes into the heart, the centre of all consciousness--the spirit within. Over and over again Jesus uses this term, in the Gospel of John--known as the Gospel of the Spirit. For example, see John 2 and 3.



Edited by Revlgking (04/12/07 08:27 PM)

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#20345 - 04/12/07 08:22 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
DA Morgan Offline
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"The loving human heart, or spirit, however, can be the source of much good"

And all we have to do is look back at history to see all of that love.

I suggest we start in Darfur and Rwanda. Then we can take a leisurely stroll into Bosnia. Visiting the victims of napalm, land mines, and cluster bombs we can hear the heartwarming stories of WWII, WWI, the Armenian Genocide, The Hundred Years War, the Inquisition, etc. etc. ad nauseum. Is my list too short? Perhaps you can add a few tens of thousands of others.

I hear there was a real tragedy up in Canada a couple of weeks ago. They ice melted by global warming caused the drowning of tens of thousands of seals so they couldn't be clubbed to death.
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#20347 - 04/12/07 08:34 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: DA Morgan]
Revlgking Offline
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Just a minute ago I finished writing the following:

Out of the human heart, or spirit can come much good, or much evil. Will anyone deny this to be true?

It is self-evident that the human spirituality, which has no mass and does not occupy space or time, is capable of creating great works of art--physical and measureable things--or great wars of death and destruction.

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#20348 - 04/12/07 08:43 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: terrytnewzealand]
Revlgking Offline
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Originally Posted By: terrytnewzealand

Now I know. They can't be weighed, or measured, in any way.
O yes, they can: They can be measured by whether or not they produce good or evil.
BTW, sarcasm used to make things worse than they are, does no one any good. Therefore, it is evil.

If you don't agree, let me know, why.


Edited by Revlgking (04/12/07 09:40 PM)

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#20349 - 04/12/07 09:36 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Revlgking Offline
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Terry, you quote me as saying: "They (spiritual qualities) can't be weighed or measured in any way."

Keep in mind, what I am saying is this:

Spirituality, like G?D is not something which can be measured in the same way we can measure physical property.

In the spirit of dialoguing, if this is not clear, ask questions which will help me to be clear.

In my opinion, intended sarcasm (stiping off the flesh), even when amusing, will not help anyone. If you are totally committed to materialism and find that anything to do with spirituality is totally irrational, please say so. If you prefer to debate, say so. Because it involves a win/win outcome, I prefer to dialogue. smile



Edited by Revlgking (04/12/07 10:01 PM)

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#20351 - 04/12/07 09:52 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
DA Morgan Offline
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Revlgking wrote:
"Spirituality, like G?D is not something which can be measured in the same way we can measure physical property."

Is that done in kilograms or ergs or in lives wasted pursuing the tooth fairy?
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#20362 - 04/13/07 02:07 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: DA Morgan]
terrytnewzealand Offline
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OK rev. I'll bite. What do people actually mean when they claim to be "spiritual"?

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#20363 - 04/13/07 02:13 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: DA Morgan]
Turner Offline
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This thread now sounds interesting.

Didn't someone try to have this thread killed smile I wonder why? Was it because of certain verbal bullies? I trust they have left the room. smile

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#20374 - 04/13/07 02:57 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: terrytnewzealand]
DA Morgan Offline
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I'll answer for him. It is code for condescension.

It means being superior to those of us who are not believers of whatever fiction is being sold.

It means not having to actually go out and do anything or make an effort because one is above doing real work.

It means having time to pr?sletyze and time to spend contemplating how spelling a word with a contrivance rather than actually leaving the house.

Going to a science website and talking about science requires actual work. So much easier to talk about love and spirits and g?ds and the t??th fairy.
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#20375 - 04/13/07 02:59 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: DA Morgan]
DA Morgan Offline
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I tried to get this thread killed Turner ... because it has zero value.

Why do I continue to be here then you might ask?

Because to quote Edmund Burke for the second time this evening:
"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."
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#20383 - 04/13/07 05:03 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: terrytnewzealand]
Revlgking Offline
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Originally Posted By: terrytnewzealand
OK rev. I'll bite. What do people actually mean when they claim to be "spiritual"?
Thanks for the question. As one who enjoys being a spiritual being I can only answer for myself.

I like what I find in:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spirituality

Here is a taste:
Quote:
Spirituality, in a narrow sense, concerns itself with matters of the spirit. The spiritual, involving (as it may) perceived eternal verities regarding humankind's ultimate nature, often contrasts with the temporal, with the material, or with the worldly.

A sense of connection forms a central defining characteristic of spirituality ? connection to something "greater" than oneself, which includes an emotional experience of religious awe and reverence.

Equally importantly, spirituality relates to matters of sanity and of psychological health. Like some forms of religion, spirituality often focuses on personal experience (see mysticism).

Spirituality may involve perceiving or wishing to perceive life as more important ("higher"), more complex or more integrated with one's world view; as contrasted with the merely sensual.



I also like what I read in:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soul
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
I love and respect nature and especially members of the animal kingdom. As a human being I think of myself as an animal being who has evolved to the point where I now have the ability to ask questions to myself, and others, about the nature and meaning of life. If I were just an animal--or an immature child--I would not ask the following:

1. Who am I? Especially as I relate to others?
2. What is the meaning and purpose of life--mine and others?
3. Is there more to life than can be perceived with the senses?
4. Is this experience temporary? Or eternal?
5. Am I a spiritual being with a mind and a body?
6. Or am I a body with a mind and a spirit?
7. If I am the result of evolution, now that I have evolved to consciousness, am I able to choose to play a role as to where I want to evolve in the future?
8. Or is the whole idea of spirituality and evolving into the future one big absurdity?
9. Are there human animals who look like conscious human beings who really do not have any interest in asking themselves, or anyone, the above questions?
10. If there are spiritual beings, as referred to in
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spirit are some evil as well as good?

Can anyone think of other questions?


Edited by Revlgking (04/13/07 05:07 AM)

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#20386 - 04/13/07 09:03 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
terrytnewzealand Offline
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Revlgking. The expression 'connection to something "greater" than oneself' may best sum up what you are getting at. Rastafarians believe we are all connected. They refer to "I and I" although there is a theory this developed from the Roman numeral in "Ras Tafari I".

It seems the concept is relatively new. I picked this up from your link:

"In the wake of the Nietzschean announcement of the "death of God" in 1882, people unpersuaded by scientific rationalism turned increasingly to the idea of spirituality as an alternative both to materialism and to traditional religious dogma."

From the site re spirit I extracted this:

"This concept of the individual spirit is common among traditional peoples."

Maori believed we each have what we could call a god looking after us. They called it the "wairua". You might like to use that term.

It seems most, if not all, of us always need something beyond ourselves to believe in.

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#20396 - 04/13/07 05:01 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: terrytnewzealand]
DA Morgan Offline
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Definitely not all of us TNZ.

I gave that up shortly after puberty.
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#20413 - 04/13/07 10:35 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: DA Morgan]
terrytnewzealand Offline
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I made a boo boo on my post. It's not Ras Tafari I, its Haile Selassie I. Silly me.

I found this which I'd be interested in having Revlgking comment on:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jah

Mix of OT and other spiritual ideas.

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#20416 - 04/13/07 11:05 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: terrytnewzealand]
Revlgking Offline
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Meanwhile, TNZ, take a look at the following story:
CATHERINE'S STORY OF HOW SHE HELPED HEAL HERSELF
=====================================================
The following first-person story is on the record and in the anthology: EXTRAORDINARY EXPERIENCES?Personal accounts of the para-normal in Canada, by John R. Colombo, a skeptic and an agnostic (1989).

The Endless Power of the Human Spirit

John R. Colombo is no one's fool. I met with him on more than one occasion, including participating with him on media panels. This anthology, which is a gold mine of well-researched stories was brought together by this well-known anthologist (See also Colombo's Quotations) in 1989. The facts in the story were examined by many people, including the religion editor of the Toronto Star.

In the winter of 1963-1964 my eight-year-old daughter, Catherine (Born April 1, 1956) ?ailing since she was two and a half?was seriously ill with her fifth bout of pneumonia that winter. Doctors at Children's Hospital, Toronto, told our doctor and my wife and me: "Catherine's lung problem is extremely serious. One more bout of pneumonia could kill her. Her lungs are extremely scarred. What she needs is new set of lungs." And since this was in the day before lung transplantation, all that was recommended was more of the same ineffective treatment.

ENTER PNEUMATHERAPY
The basic story in the anthology is about my interest, since my student days, in the relation between religion, faith, science and healing. Early on, I was influenced by the writings of religious psychologists such as Dr. William Parker and Elaine St. John (Prayer Can Change Your Life) and The Rev. and doctor, Leslie D. Weatherhead (Psychology, Religion and Healing) and others.

In my thirties at the time, with the help of, Allen Spraggett, then religion editor of the Toronto Star, I met the following great thinkers who were then on the cutting edge of research in science, faith and religion. I invited those I met to speak at the church I served, in what is now east Toronto. I followed their work, closely.

I remember meeting the researcher, The Rev. Dr. Frankiln Loehr. I invited him and his wife to my church and my home. I heard, first hand, from him how his experiments were conducted with close attention to details and the keeping of careful statistics.

I also met and studied with the Rev. Harold Crump, who visited and lectured in Toronto more than once, over the years. He was in his 80's, when I met him, and he was still dynamically alive and well.

Crump, a methodist minister, was actually trained as an electronics engineer. He had worked with the brilliant Charles P. Setinmetz--the wizzard of General Electric.
http://chem.ch.huji.ac.il/~eugeniik/history/steinmetz.html
Crump taught a spiritual/science philosophy which is still being taught. He was whiz at hypnosis. The program he taught is called Concept Therapy. I have much of the concept therapy literature.
http://www.concept-therapy.org/

WHAT I LEARNED FROM FATHER JOE HELPED SAVE MY DAUGHTER'S LIFE
Then I met the one who really helped me help my daughter, Catherine, recover from a potentially fatal disease. Now in the hereafter, Father Joe was then an American Episcopalian canon and priest. The Rev. Canon Joseph Wittkofski, Charleroi, Pa., told me that he had been drummed out of the Roman Catholic faith, by a narrow-minded bishop of his, because of his (Father Joe's ) "weird" ideas. However, he became a priest in the Protestant Episcopal Church of the USA?an open-minded religion, not unlike the United Church of Canada.

From him I took several private studies. Later, with a group of twenty students, I arranged to have him come and give a week-long?over thirty hours?seminar Following the seminar, he went back to his own church in Charleroi, Pa.

Before he left, I told him of my daughter's problem. His words to me, as he left for his home, were: "You now know how to use hypnotherapy within the context of spiritual, or faith healing. You can help your daughter, better that I can. Go to work. Because of the dumb law you have here in Ontario against non-medical therapists using hypnosis, it would be wise for you to speak to your family doctor. I would like to see you and your group get the law reformed."

With this knowledge, I approached our family doctor, Dr. Harold Hutchins. I told him about Father Joe's work, and what I had learned from him. Then I loaned him a copy of the book, by Father Joe: THE PASTORAL USE OF HYPNOTIC TECHNIQUE. Also, I told him that Father Joe was now back in Pa., but was willing to keep in touch, by phone.

Our doctor readily admitted to me that he was not skilled in hypnosis. Was I ever happy when he told me: "You will get no hassle from me. I happen to think that the law is a bad one. I have no objection to your following Canon Wittkofski's suggestion. Give hypnosis a try. I will be interested in what results you get.?

Then he added, "Anything you can do to help your daughter's immune system, to kick in, is okay with me. In the light of Children's Hospital prognosis, we have nothing to lose. The law, as I understand it, is toothless. I think it was brought into being for the convenience of a certain few with a vested interest in keeping control. I will not report you, and I will monitor your daughter's condition, as needed."

[BTW, years later, a group of us lobbied the provincial department of health. The law was reformed. Hypnosis is no longer considered a medical procedure. Thank GOD!]

Encouraged by this, and the desperate condition of Catherine, I went ahead. The details of what I said are in the anthology.

I used what now I call pneumatherapy?the spiritual application of hypnotic technique?hypnosis without the hype and the hocus pocus. It is similar to what is now called neuro-linguistic programming (NLP). One of the early developers of NLP was the father of North American hypnosis, psychiatrist Dr. Milton Erickson. In my opinion, Dr. Erickson was practicing what I now call pneumatherapy.

Wittkofski, who was also trained in biology, taught me that hypnotic suggestion can influence the will and the imagination of individuals. This guides the mind and the body to awaken the extremely valuable auto-immune system.

A FULL RECOVERY TOOK PLACE
To the amazement of all involved, overnight, Catherine, began to recover from a disease that had been poised to kill her. The doctor was as good as his word. He kept a close watch on, and monitored, her condition. Within a very short time, Catherine was well enough to go back to school. She was never bed-ridden again.

BTW, sometime later (in the early 1970's), it was discovered that the full-spectrum anti-biotic, prescribed by her doctors to fight Catherine's pneumonias, was quietly removed from general usage. It was discovered that it had a very negative effect on kidney functions and the immune systems all patients. Interesting.
==============================================================
THE SEQUEL
As Catherine began to get stronger and stronger, physically, I experienced the following internal dialogue. I asked myself: Why don't you work with your daughter and see if you can find out what is the root cause her illness? Maybe, there is a spiritual dimension to her illness.

When Catherine recovered sufficiently from her serious death-threatening somatic illness I explained to her the nature and function of the trance state and what I felt had happened, which helped her harness her own immune system.

Then I asked her: Catherine, how do you feel about exploring the root cause of what caused you to be so ill in the first place? She agreed to the exploration.

Within seconds, she went into the same kind of deep trance state into which she had gone when I first spoke to her about her physical illness and the problem with her lungs.

Then I told her: "Go back, in your memory, to a time in your present
life which you feel is of importance to you."

After a short period of silence, she started describing the time that we lived in Pointe Claire, Quebec, west of Dorval. She was about two and a half. She said: "We are at the shopping centre. I am asleep in my stroller, which you left just outside one of the stores. You and mom are inside the store. It is a sunny and warm day. I am asleep.

"I see myself being suddenly awakened by a rather large dog, which jumped up and looked at me in the stroller. At this point, all I see was a head, and the dog's paws. Not understanding what was happening, I felt terrified.

"Then, a woman appeared. She hit the dog with her purse... 'Get away, you nasty dogs. Leave that child alone...''

I started to howl. At that point you appeared and took control of things.

Interestingly, at Children's Hospital, Catherine was diagnosed as being very allergic to animals, birds, cats and, especially, dogs. This was my cue to suggest to her, while she was in the trance state: "Do not blame the dog. It was simply having fun. Birds and animals, in general, are there for you to enjoy. Be careful, but do not allow yourself to be be filled with fear."

From then, on, she was no longer allergic to animals, including dogs. From then on, we had birds and cats, and she associated, freely, with the neighbor's dogs. Since she married she had two beloved dogs, cats, and even hens.
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#20418 - 04/13/07 11:13 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Revlgking Offline
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I suspect that the cynics will pooh pooh the above story. But what else in new? It is to be expected. And I will.
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#20420 - 04/13/07 11:26 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Revlgking Offline
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Which poses some important questions such as: How does one do science and take a scientific approach to what is being proposed in a chat room such as this?

It is certainly not possible to conduct experiments, right?
What do we do then, do we just ask protagonists to tell stories to be accepted as true or false, and leave it at that?
How do we really go about it?
What are your suggestions?

Turner, this thread, thanks to you is a great one in which to discuss such questions. Thanks!


Edited by Revlgking (04/13/07 11:28 PM)
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