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#26843 - 06/23/08 07:00 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Tim Offline
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Registered: 08/16/06
Posts: 192
Loc: California
how exactly do you propose that all of this came to be, if not by Something (that some call god, but has been called many, many more). and even more importantly, how have we come to have developed this sense even of knowing what being 'ethical' or 'humane beings' are, and what the difference is between 'good' and 'bad' (regardless of whether those terms are subjective or objective)?
what theory do you have, or what theory is there, to explain this?

(sorry to change the subject, but this relates to the essence of this thread)

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#26845 - 06/23/08 10:14 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Revlgking Offline
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I presume that most of the readers of this thread are reading the companion thread: What Would We Choose To Do If... a thread about life after death.

It includes dialogue--BTW, it is non-judgmental and there is no dogma--about what we believe, and don't believe, about life after death, including what we think of REINCARNATION. Feel free to join us there, or add your comments in this thread.
===================================================
With an open mind regarding reincarnation, I told a story--and it is a story, not a history--about the kind of life I feel, intuitively, that I lived before this one. Then I concluded by relating it to the kind of life I have lived in this present time.

My recent comments are as follows: Thus I was born, Jan.14--it was a cold and crisp day--1930. We were in the midst of depression and on the verge of a world war in which, in 1940, We became part of the Battle of the Atlantic until 1945.

I was the seventh child of a family which had to live without many of the common comforts of life. My family was one which did not need another child to feed and care for at that time.

But I wasn't the last in the family. Number eight, a sister, was born in 1932. But it wasn't all a negative experience. I imagine that Life in the outdoors, during the depression, was much better than life in some crowded city was. We had one luxury which many other many out-port Newfoundlanders did not have: Courtesy the DOSCO mining company, we had electricity (just the basics: lights and radio). The privileged few had phones.

Courtesy the churches (Roman Catholic and Protestant), there were two movies houses. Interestingly, St. Patrick's Theater gave us the B Movies--the Cowboy movies (Gene Autrey, Roy Rogers and the like. Also, there were the serials. The Princess Theater, run by the Protestants, gave us the A movies--Mutiny On The Bounty, Gone With the Wind and the like.

THE USE? OF WAR
===============
World War II brought full employment to Bell Island. Before 1939, because of frequent slowdowns and layoffs, most of the 10,000 people (including 2,100 miners) on http://www.bellisland.net were forced to live in third-world conditions. We survived by our wits.

Guess what? Because we were smarter than the average salmon, cod, lobster and other ocean delicacies, we were "forced" to survive at their expense. And we had fun doing it. But red meat and pork, including the heavily salted kind, were considered luxuries.

Believe it or not: In the spring, my older brothers and I, used to hunt young sea gulls. If one liked the fish-like taste, the stews were great. The Kings did own a family-built boat. The brother who helped raise my younger sister and I--he died at 92 in 2004--knew a lot about a boat building. Frequently, I was called on to help. Ours had a five horsepower in-board motor. Many in the community shared the use of that boat.

At times, if we could afford the ammunition, there were wild rabbits to hunt. When ammunition was scarce we often snared them. It was expected that I do my share skinning the rabbits and the gulls. Also there were ducks and other species.

Over the years, the King family kept goats, pigs and hens as part of the food supply. I realized that it was necessary to kill these animals for food, but because I never had the instincts of a hunter, I alway dreaded it. For me, it was a cruel necessity.

I am not sure why; perhaps it was a matter of being able to afford the costs involved, but our family never owned a horse, a cow, a bicycle, or a car. A few others did. Milk, butter (we called margarine, butter) cream, cheese, and the like, were considered to be luxuries.

Looking back, my sister-- one and one-half years younger than I--and I agree: We both had fun growing up because of the help we got from our older siblings, after our parents died. Our oldest brother and sister died in their 20's.

I was the fifth son in our family. Our next older brother was ten years older than me, and our sister was older still. Both of us acknowledge that in our older siblings we had good teachers who showed us the art of surviving in tough times. My sister and I lost our parents while we were still children. We both appreciate our good fortune in having older siblings who kept the family together until we were old enough to look after ourselves.

It would be interesting to hear the story of others.


Edited by Revlgking (06/24/08 02:29 AM)
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#26850 - 06/24/08 02:23 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Tim]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
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Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
Originally Posted By: Tim
how exactly do you propose that all of this came to be, if not by Something (that some call god...?)....What theory do you have, or what theory is there, to explain this?
Tim, if you are asking me--and let me presume you are--I respond by asking: If you have a concept of a god, or of God, how would you answer a curious 12 year old who asked you, "Who is God?"

Let me assure you, I am a unitheist (panentheist), not an atheist. Note my signature. Check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panentheism


Edited by Revlgking (06/24/08 02:30 AM)
_________________________
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#26857 - 06/24/08 04:37 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Tim Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/16/06
Posts: 192
Loc: California
I never said or implied that you were an athiest, i have been reading (and used to participate on this thread a while ago) and know that.
But I must admit, your question is hard to answer. If it were me specficially, i would say that God is the one who created all this around us and gives us the ability to think about it (i.e., the abilitiy to understand that we are here and ask 'who is God?' in the first place), and that as a result he is worthy to be commended for that.
I dont know if that brings us anywhere but still. And that aforementioned statement is a direct result of my religious influences, and i know that somewhere else in the world a different perspective of 'God' is taught.

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#26860 - 06/24/08 07:22 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Tim]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
Posts: 2311
Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
Tim, you say that, for you
Quote:
God is the one who created all this around us and gives us the ability to think about it (i.e., the ability to understand that we are here and ask 'who is God?' in the first place, and that as a result he is worthy to be commended for that. And that aforementioned statement is a direct result of (the way I was raised)
Tim, I accept your definition of God for what it is: Your sincerely-held belief. I will never tell you that you are wrong.

I am sure you realize that what you believe in is the kind of God you were taught to believe in. Without any concrete evidence, you imply that, based on faith alone, you accept that God is a super, all knowing, all powerful, everywhere-present and all loving human-like masculine being, who is in control of all things, past, present and future, and that we are simply creatures of his will. This basic belief is known as theism.

A BRIEF SUMMARY OF THEISM
=========================
Christian theists say that the Bible is the word of God. For theists, the Bible (BOOK) contains the true story of how God created the earth, sun, moon, stars--the universe (in six days). This creation happened, according to theists, in 4004, B.C. It seems that, "In the beginning", God intended to set up a perfect kingdom on earth. However, because God gave our first parents--Adam and Eve--that is, Man and the Mother of all--the ability to make a choice, plans changed. Eve chose not to listen to God's command. Adam chose to go with Eve. This got them expelled from Eden.

Following the expulsion of Adam and Eve, from the Garden of Eden (The Pleasant place), things got so bad--despite God's warnings--that he had to send the Great Flood.
Only Noah, his wife, unnamed daughters, and his three sons--Shem Ham and Japheth--survived.

I will avoid going into detail, here. I will simply say: Despite God's personal involvement in the story of the times, history repeated itself and things, over the generations, went from bad to worse.

I remind you: THE ABOVE, AND FOLLOWING, IS THE POINT OF VIEW OF CHRISTIAN THEISM. It is not my view.
================================================================
According to theism, about 2000 years ago God, himself, decided to visit earth and to save all of us--that is, those who wanted salvation--from sin and death.

On what we call "Christmas", God came down in the form of his "only son", Jesus, and, literally, he later agreed to die for our sins. After which he rose from the dead, and made his final preparations for his next move. Before he took off and went back to heaven, he promised that he would come back and finally get rid of all, evil, sin, suffering and pain.

So here we are, today. While Christian theists--that is, thousands of different denominations of same--are waiting for the second coming, many pious Jewish theists--again many different kinds--are waiting for the first coming of THE Messiah.

ISLAMIC THEISM
==============
What about Islam? In 622, Islamic theism was born. Islam, too, has a book, the Koran--meaning the Recitation. It is really a long poem, and was created by its prophet, Mohamed. Tradition tells us that he received it while he was in a trance--self-imposed hypnosis? Because he was illiterate, others wrote down what he recited. Though Islam has one prophet and one book, it, too, has several kinds of Muslims.

Meanwhile there are Hinduism, Buddhism, etc., plus numerous other religion-based philosophies, also with ideas of gods, god and religion. Within all these there are, of course, agnostics and atheists--devotees of secularism.

We are aware that, recently, a certain few--For example Richard Dawkins & Christopher Hitchins-- who have made it known that it is their enthusiastic desire to get rid of all religion. They look on it as an evil and socially dangerous and destructive thing. They write and "preach" that it be replace with science-based secularism.

UNITHEISM
=========
Me? As a unitheist I want to avoid intolerant extremes--the kind of faith which is intolerant of all other faiths. Certain authorities in Theocracies like Saudi Arabia say: "We allow no dissent from the established and one true religion, and political system. We tolerate one, and only one, true system--the one we proclaim."

CHECK OUT http://www.pathwayschurch.ca a congregation of the United Church of Canada
http://www.united-church.ca/
http://www.ucobserver.org/
====================================
Based on the Golden Rule, I seek to find ways to respect a wide variety of faith positions, including Islam--the kinds of faiths which have a rational foundation and a respect for democracy and the sciences. I like to think of myself as openly, purposefully and lovingly, even radically, inclusive.


Edited by Revlgking (06/25/08 12:46 AM)
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26861 - 06/24/08 11:54 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Ellis Offline
Megastar

Registered: 01/08/07
Posts: 1490
Loc: Australia
Tim.-- You ask the nature of the difference between good and bad. Surprisingly this can be difficult to answer as cultural and ethnic differences can often collide, sometimes violently. However I agree with Rev when he says that the Golden Rule sums up the universal position that is sometimes swamped by dogma- that is 'treat others as you would like them to treat you.'

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#26866 - 06/25/08 01:32 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Ellis]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
Posts: 2311
Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
BTW, as one who is very interested in exploring and finding the best way to have families, communities and nations where individuals are free to be happy and live in harmony, unity and peace, this just came to me. Let me know how you feel about this:

The surest way, it seems to me, to create disunity, disharmony and a hostile, unhappy attitude in a family, community, or a nation, is for any individual, or a group of non-democratic and authoritarian individuals, to try to impose their philosophy of what makes for unity, harmony and peace, on others without consulting them and getting their consent.

For example, authoritarian parents will almost always raise a family of unhappy, dysfunctional children who will either become co-dependent wimps, or rebel.

What happened to the once powerful community of Sparta and other similar city states; to the "pax Romana", to the Church of Rome, and to all the nations, since then, dominated by Fascism/Nazism? What modern nations are heading in this direction? How are Canada and the USA faring?
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26867 - 06/25/08 05:57 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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Registered: 06/19/08
Posts: 1249
Loc: Everywhere and nowhere
Unity exists in and amongst appearances of disharmony, chaos, democracy, and relative social agreements that are unity of belief.

Only ones failure to recognize unity creates disharmony in ones self and their beliefs about the world.

I'll use this as an example:
Quote:
I use the symbol, GØD, to refer to the entire physical COSMOS and beyond. GØD encompasses and interpenetrates all "things"--physical, mental and spiritual.


If one knows God, and God is good, then its all God/Good.
If one makes this a belief, then the words do not reflect the inner reality of the person who believes it, because he/she looks for ways to improve God on the outside due to ones tendency to see something other than God and that which is other than good.
Unity then becomes an issue of creating alignment of thought and belief.

Psychologically speaking it would be difficult to imagine that anyone could maintain a thought indefinitely without moving away from the thought, or changing their beliefs about the thought. People tend to move around objects and as they do so they get different perspectives of the object. As they understand it better they evolve in both the knowledge of the object, and (if they are aware) themselves.

In the Bhagavadgita, Krisna (God) is teaching Arjuna of reality. In and amidst the warring factions and families, (of which Arjuna's family is split down the middle, fighting and killing each other) Krisna is dancing in and amongst the chaos singing "God God God everywhere is God."
Krisna explains that God is everything and that in order to experience God in everything, one must find God in themselves. Only then will one who has God in themselves see God in others.
Then depending on the currents of the river of life, one is moved to go here, or there, depending on the nature of the moment.That is the nature of surrendering to God.

In the world man tries to make the river stand still or to control its direction so that he can make the world in his own image. Often this results in man expending his energies to move against the currents of life rather than with them. This is what causes aging and sickness. Eventually the man who tries to control the world ages, gets sick and dies.
When a man realizes God within he begins to move with God on the outside. When man reaches this kind of spiritual union aging slows and health is maximum.

Humanity is like a developing forest. Some of its plants have prickly thorns and others are smooth. Some plants are fragrant and others not so much. Some plants by their nature tend to choke other plants out but nature has a way of creating conditions so that all plants grow and evolve according to their nature and nature seems to know best what each plant needs, and when to thin the forest, and when to plant.
Man who is not in the flow with nature doesn't understand nature and tries to manipulate nature at a level of understanding that is without knowledge and understanding of the evolutionary process of the forest.

Man has tried to create unity since man has existed and man has always been like a forest of different plants with no understanding of its nature. Different needs and the lack of awareness of God within has created a lack of unity in mans life.
Man forever seeks to find on the outside, in the appearances of diversity, and the nature of change that is an appearance of God, a non changing stable point of reference, which only exists inside all things.


Edited by Tutor Turtle (06/25/08 06:08 PM)
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#26869 - 06/25/08 06:26 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Tutor Turtle]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
Posts: 2311
Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
I do not claim that I understand the full meaning of all the above, but what I do understand sounds OK to me.
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26870 - 06/25/08 06:35 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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Registered: 06/19/08
Posts: 1249
Loc: Everywhere and nowhere
What don'tcha understand?
_________________________
I was addicted to the Hokey Pokey, but then I turned myself around!!





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#26872 - 06/25/08 08:04 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Tutor Turtle]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
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It is not clear whether you are adding on to what I have said about unitheism/panentheism, or critiquing it.

BTW, not one to impose my personal beliefs--about which I am open, flexible and inclusive--I never assume that there ought to be uniformity of agreement with me.

Are you a Christian, Jew, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist...?
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26873 - 06/25/08 09:36 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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Registered: 06/19/08
Posts: 1249
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Quote:

It is not clear whether you are adding on to what I have said about unitheism/panentheism, or critiquing it.

I wasn't referring to unitheism/panentheism, I was referring to a different state of conscious awareness rather than an ism.

Quote:
BTW, not one to impose my personal beliefs--about which I am open, flexible and inclusive--I never assume that there ought to be uniformity of agreement with me.

Then I'd be interested in how you experience Unity?
Quote:


Are you a Christian, Jew, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist...?

Yes and No.
_________________________
I was addicted to the Hokey Pokey, but then I turned myself around!!





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#26876 - 06/26/08 04:05 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Tutor Turtle]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
Posts: 2311
Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
ABOUT UNITY:
============
I wrote the following words to fit the tune,
THE HOMECOMING, by Haygood Hardy
http://youtube.com/watch?v=DfwonNQlFPI&feature=related
===============================
We are one with mother earth;
With the land the skies and seas;
One with the source of human birth;
We're one...with GØD.

We are one with father sky;
With the sun, moon, planets, stars;
One with the galaxies on high;
We're one...in GØD.

With the Golden Rule in mind,
We're for justice and for peace;
And with all of human kind,
We work...with GØD.

I feel at one with Christians, Jews,
And want to build a better world;
With Buddhists, Muslims, and Hindus
I choose to live ... in GØD
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26878 - 06/26/08 07:31 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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Registered: 06/19/08
Posts: 1249
Loc: Everywhere and nowhere
Quote:
I feel at one with Christians, Jews,
And want to build a better world;
With Buddhists, Muslims, and Hindus
I choose to live ... in GØD

Being one with God; I'm just making an observation, that God is not satisfied with the world and as such is moving through you to correct it, by building it better.
Since the world is always in fluctuation, and if it is evolving, where you leave off, someone will assume the responsibility to build a better world than you, and someone will want to build a better world than the one who succeeds you and so forth and so on.
Do you suppose God will just be sensitive for eternity to the dysfunctional aspects of its creativity by continually trying to do it better?

Is this your experience of Unity?


Edited by Tutor Turtle (06/26/08 07:47 AM)
_________________________
I was addicted to the Hokey Pokey, but then I turned myself around!!





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#26879 - 06/26/08 11:35 AM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Tutor Turtle]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
Posts: 2311
Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
Quote:
Is this your experience of Unity?
Let's dialogue. TT, if this is a rhetorical question, please feel free to give it a go and tell us what you think.
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26880 - 06/26/08 04:41 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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Registered: 06/19/08
Posts: 1249
Loc: Everywhere and nowhere
Ya can't dialogue if you make assumptions and avoid the questions.
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#26883 - 06/26/08 08:13 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Tutor Turtle]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
Posts: 2311
Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
Did I make a dumb assumption? How silly of me! If so, I certainly apologize. Now to your question about unity--and any others you might have.

I LOOK FOR UNITY WITHOUT THE IMPOSITION OF UNIFORMITY
=====================================================
For me, the kind of unity and harmony which leads to happiness is one which consciously seeks to understand and accept variety. I look for, and often find, enriching differences.

For example, the mother of my only three grandchildren, Farah, the wife of my son, is a Sufi Muslim. She was born in Teran. My son, a musician and a teacher, met her while attending York University, Toronto.

Within the family, we dialogue about religion, often and happily.
Do we always agree? No! But we always agree to disagree, agreeably.


Edited by Revlgking (06/26/08 09:56 PM)
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26884 - 06/26/08 10:14 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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I see, so your experience of Unity is determined, rather than universal and inherent.
Unity of God in everything depends on how God meets your limits of perception.


Edited by Tutor Turtle (06/26/08 10:15 PM)
_________________________
I was addicted to the Hokey Pokey, but then I turned myself around!!





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#26895 - 06/27/08 07:47 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Tutor Turtle]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
Posts: 2311
Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
Quote:
Philosophy of determinism

It is a popular misconception that determinism necessarily entails that humanity or individual humans have no influence on the future and its events (a position known as Fatalism); however, determinists believe that the level to which human beings have influence over their future is itself dependent on present and past.

Causal determinism is associated with, and relies upon, the ideas of Materialism and Causality. Some of the philosophers who have dealt with this issue are Steven M. Cahn, Omar Khayyám, Thomas Hobbes, Baruch Spinoza, Gottfried Leibniz, David Hume, Baron d'Holbach (Paul Heinrich Dietrich), Pierre-Simon Laplace, Arthur Schopenhauer, William James, Friedrich Nietzsche and, more recently, John Searle, Ted Honderich, and Daniel Dennett.

Mecca Chiesa notes that the probabilistic or selectionistic determinism of B.F. Skinner comprised a wholly separate conception of determinism that was not mechanistic at all. A mechanistic determinism would assume that every event has an unbroken chain of prior occurrences, but a selectionistic or probabilistic model does not.
Check out:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Determinism
I like to think that I am not the object of mechanistic determinism.

Of course there are somatologiocal (physical) factors; and there are also psychological (the influences of others, and of circumstances). However, there is, also, what I call the pneumatological factor. I am not just a puppet dangling on the strings, of nature and nurture, of my heredity and/or environment. I believe there is what I call pneumature. As a spiritual, or a pneumatological being, I have the power to choose how I will let the soma and the psyche factors affect me.
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26896 - 06/27/08 08:13 PM Re: Philosophy of Religions--all religions, includ [Re: Revlgking]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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Registered: 06/19/08
Posts: 1249
Loc: Everywhere and nowhere
Quote:
I like to think that I am not the object of mechanistic determinism.

Yeah well, good intentions don't always mean good results.

I like to think I have great things to say, while others feel I'm a bit verbose. wink
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