Tag Archives: argument

Troll or simply hard to discourage?

I, recently, got into a “discussion” with a reader on Michelle Styles blog about spirituality, faith, and religion vs concrete facts.  I could not decide whether the other person was a troll-type person or simply someone who loved discussion so much he could not let it go.  He does have a blog on WordPress.  In either case, I tried (at the end) to allow it to a natural conclusion.  I don’t know if he agreed to this as he has not had time to answer.  It will be done soon as I am tired of it and wish it done.  For your consideration, amusement, anger, and whatever else, here is the entire discussion up to a few moments before I started this.  As I said, I will only give him one more answer as it will be that I am done.

Let me know what you think:

“Arch”, huh? Arch-Bullsh*t if you ask me. I grow weary of people who drag you along in a discussion until you “prove their point.” That’s an argument.
He would have had a field day with my views, yessiree.
I liked your well-thought-out definitions and descriptions. Of course, you are right. The only time we even come close to a single idea consensuses is from the administrative viewpoint of organized religion. And, I think you know how I feel about organized religion. Not much for their administration either.
Scott

  • There is no argument, Scott. The point was established from the outset.
    There is no such thing as a real christian

    And if you need to put an asterisk to hide the fact you don’t like to wrote Bullshit, then don’t write it – it isn’t clever and makes you look contrived.

    Oh, and just what <em are your views?

    • I put the * in case it might offend others or upset someone in WordPress. I don’t mind doing it and don’t much care if it looks contrived.
      lol – as for the rest, that is all a relative thing. I leave it to the individuals to figure for themselves. My views have changed over the years. I began as an introductee to the United Methodist Ministry, but decided against it (for the wrong reason, but it worked out right- big surprise). Since that time, I have come to view organized religion as something I cannot be a part of. It becomes too much a business and more focused on keeping that business going and growing than on what I consider the more important matters of spiritual growth. I believe very deeply in God and leave others to view Him/Her/? as they will. I do not believe in Hell, the Devil, Sin, or Final Judgment. When we die, we return to the Sentient Energy Source (God). After that, I don’t worry about it. My beliefs are not really concerned with great details, so I can encompass many things. I feel that whatever a person has to believe at any given time is what is best for them at that time. We grow, we evolve, we, hopefully, become much more efficient (for lack of a better word) in living the life we choose and, hopefully, that life serves to help others in some way.
      Mantra – All things work together in the end; if it hasn’t worked out, it isn’t the end.
      I don’t argue about beliefs. Those are mine; yours are yours. I don’t mind discussions, but arguments are worthless.

    • So you are a deist? No problem with this. Bit odd, bit there is no doctrine or dogma, and therefore no crap that is indoctrinated into kids.
      Good for you.
      As for Christianity; yes, complete bullsh*t.

    • I don’t believe it is complete crap. There are many items I identify with. Hell, Devil, Judgment, Sin are the main things I don’t believe in. I don’t think you must atone and work to get to Heaven. It is there for all and all will go. This life is for something besides atonement. Not certain what yet. I am not worried about it.

    • Christianity is built upon false premise and false doctrine.
      That you might believe contrary to this and cherry pick some sort of version you like does not diminish the facts one iota.
      So, as you are not a proper Christian are you a deist? You didn’t say.

    • I don’t really care to associate myself with a specific set of religious beliefs. I will look in deist; perhaps, it may fit better.
      As for Christianity being built upon false premise and false doctrine, how so?

    • Really? You are unaware? Interesting.
      Well, first, the Pentateuch is considered historical fiction by all but Fundamentalists, so this throws the fulfilled prophecy claim for a loop.
      Then there is the etymology to consider for such things as Hell and even the laughable Virgin Birth nonsense the writer of Mathew ripped off from Isaiah.
      Surely you know these examples?

    • They are all speculative. It all boils down to faith. A true Christian merely has to have faith in the Gospels and in Christ and consider himself saved to be a true Christian. While I do not agree with most of these precepts, that doesn’t invalidate them simply because of that or that someone else says nay. Not trying to argue or fight, just converse.

    • Then as the Pentateuch has been shown to be historical fiction, how is it possible to attach veracity to Christian claims of fulfilled prophecy?
      How it is possible to base an entire religion on false premise: Original Sin, and Hell for example?
      If an adult chooses to believe such nonsense in the face of scientific evidence, etymological evidence and historical evidence to the contrary that is their choice , but surely such belief should not be allowed precedent? And more importantly, children should be protected from such insidious indoctrination.

    • This sounds to me to be a disagreement between concretism and and mythos. You want only facts to be put into the equation. The Christian goes above these facts. It’s not that they are not important, but in order to have faith, the truth cannot be concrete, else it would not require faith.
      I have an immense amount of faith. All of it is, partially based on science, but a lot is merely my beliefs and how I apply them to the universe.
      The Dali Lama once was asked what his religion would do if presented with some bit of science that rendered some of their religion obsolete. His response was that if science proves something, it must be incorporated into the religion. The religion cannot simply ignore it (that was the gist anyway).
      I feel the same. Christianity should keep science by their side. However, some of the “proofs” you mention are still being argued and not yet set as “Scientifically accurate”. In fact, the nature of some means they may never reach quite that point. Then, it is informed opinion. All people have rights to their opinions. And religion is high on this list. People should always have a right to believe what they will. My contention with most organized religions is there thinness when it comes to accepting others outside of their own religion has having worth or consideration. People need to be free to study, question, and choose.

    • I sense you are beginning to hand wave a little?
      If science has clearly demonstrated the falseness of many religious claims – and it most certainly has in a large number of instances – of a genuine historical foundation then it is crucial that this falsity be exposed for what it is, and especially where it is used to indoctrinate children and impact/influence society in general.

      No rational individual should tolerate such acceptance over Santa Claus, or the Easter Bunny etc – we know we made these characters up – so why make exceptions for Christianity -or, in fact, any religion?
      That smacks of hypocrisy of the highest order.
      Yes, people do need to be free to study, but the truth must be actively promoted, something that is not happening in the Abrahamic religions.
      Ask the secular archaeologists!

    • Wait wait! Stop trashing my Easter bunny! He brings me chocolate!

    • Oh, dear, so it’s not only religious ”truth” (sic) that needs to be addressed in some households.
      Maybe someone should have a quiet talk with you about Bunnies, Santa, Fairies, Psychics and similar stuff? 😉

    • We need to agree to disagree.

    • Well, facts are facts and evidence is evidence.
      It really matters not what you believe, but if this belief contradicts evidence then such belief is false.
      The foundational tenets of Christianity, all Abrahamic religions in fact, are built upon false premise.
      In other words, made up.
      Where you from here is your own business.

    • Yes, faith.

    • Faith is believing in something you know ain’t true. Mark Twain.
      It is wrong to impose faith dictum on people and especially children when it comes to such vile garbage as Hell and Original Sin.
      Therefore, why should any more leeway be given to such crap as Noah, Moses, and the god man Yeshua Ben Josef walking on water and coming back from the dead?
      Cherry Picking religion is what has resulted in over 40,000 different christian sects alone.
      If you are prepared to explain the reason for faith and why it should be inculcated into kids, I am prepared to listen to any reasoned explanation you may have.

    • I disagree with Mr. Twain (and he is one of my favs).
      While I do not believe in Hell and Original Sin, I did at one point and it helped to bring me to where I am now (satisfied), so I don’t condemn the notion, just more how it’s approached.
      You are not a religious person. I have not been able to see you as a spiritual person. While that is your choice, I wholeheartedly disagree with that.
      As for faith, it is a necessary component to a full life. Each time something new is discovered it is because whoever discovered it had the faith it would be so and continued when so many may have given up.
      I see most of Science as “best guess” and not as uncontroversial fact.
      Best example: “The world is fact”
      Next: The Sun travels around the Earth.
      Washing hands was not done before surgery because no one believed that there were such things as germs. This list could go on and on. Science takes what it believes to be the closest thing to reality it can comprehend and goes with it. However, there is always the one or the few who see past it (faith) and prove something new.

    • Again, whether you disagree with Twain is of no consequence to facts and reality.

      What you seem to ignore is that science is fluid and those that practice it acknowledge their own limitations and accept that it changes all the time.
      Are you suggesting that evolution, for example,is not fact?

      The use of faith in everyday life is far different in meaning ( and execution) as what one generally understands as ”faith” in any sort of religious or supernatural context.
      I have ”faith ” my dog will return when called – because I have trained her.
      I have faith the roast I prepare will turn out scrumptious, because know how to cook and trust the oven, based on experience.
      I have no faith that if I pray hard enough the missing leg on one of my cats will grow back.
      You are also confusing ”best guess” with what we know to be fact; and there are way too many simple every day examples one could list.

      However, if you think gravity is merely ”best guess” be my guest and jump out of a first storey window.

      The Abrahamic faiths have been the cause of more than enough misery and any good they may have instituted has been matched and bettered by secular humanism.

      To not condemn the doctrines of Hell and Original sin is to a) ignore the facts of their history and etymology and b) to tacitly approve of children being subject to such disgusting man-made dogma.
      This alone I find cruel and unnecessary and unwarranted in one who claims to be ”spiritual”.

    • Ah, you realize this is not a “winnable” argument because I don’t argue?
      I will simply state again that you are a very concrete person and I am not, therefore neither of us will sway the other because we both disagree coming from different aspects of life.
      I can state that this reality is all a figment of an imagination and none of it is real. This cannot be proven or disproven as you would have to leave the aspect of reality to do this.
      I respect your views on reality and life.
      I would ask you to do the same, but it appears you cannot do this.
      Believe in your concreteness, just know it is exactly that and will never ever fit into a world that has any spirituality in it because that demands faith.
      My real understanding is that we must agree to disagree.
      We have discussed this in a complete circle, are back at the beginning, and neither of us has altered their belief one iota, therefore, let it end reasonably.

       

    • Unlike you appear to do, I do not consider this a ”point-scoring” exercise.

      You are entitled to your belief and I respect this, even though I disagree. We are adults. This is how it should be.
      But you have a habit of not addressing certain issue that have been raised, which speaks volumes in itself.
      My ‘concreteness’ as you call it is not as rigid as you imply, it simply does not acknowledge the nonsense of the supernatural, and especially where it concerns religion nonsense that is subtly directed at the public sphere.
      But even this can, to an extent, be treated with the contempt it deserves and positive inroads are being made to change this somewhat blind acceptance.

      My real concern is your tacit approval of the teaching and indoctrination of Hell and Original Sin to children.

      This I find inexcusable.

    • I would like, in closing, to let you know – I had a major stroke about 5 years ago. It has played havoc with my memory and my fatigue levels. My refusal to not address certain issues means I am tired and/or I simply do not place too much importance on them as concerns my views. My object is not to play points (that is merely the way I approach a discussion – you make a statement, I make one, back and forth – i can see where you come up with that notion).
      I also agree we are adults and allowed our views.
      I am not particularly “for” advancing the notion of “Original Sin” and “Hell” or the “Devil”. The fact is it will be taught. I do speak up with my arguments as to why they are not correct (in my opinion) but I also know that people hold strongly to these beliefs and will not give them up until they are ready to do so. I generally listen to the other person, feel out where they are in the matter, then, if I feel they might be searching for “something else” I let them see how I live and what I believe in and why. It has been effective for me so far. I am sorry if I came across as belligerent or nasty. That was not my intent, but I tend to get that way when I am overly-tired (Which, I am).
      Children are always taught things that are not very nice or even realistic. Religious beliefs are full of this. The church usually tries to balance this with the children, but I find it usually comes across as confusing. This is fact. I am who I am and come across to children as someone they might want to listen to. I taught grades 6-12 and we had a lot of discussions about a lot of things. I am digressing here, so i will stop.
      Thank you for a very frank and long discussion.

    • So, no good reason then , I take it?
      *Sigh*
      ‘Tis ever the same story.

      (This was a separate statement made somewhere in the discussion.  I ignored it)

      ________________________________

      Namaste,

      Scott

Where’s the Beauty?

Not me, but you get the idea.

I was sitting here at the computer and thought of an incident that happened about 20 years ago.

After my first divorce (children’s mother), I joined a singles group, Parents Without Partners. I met quite a few friends there and, sometimes, we would go out as a group to a bar and just relax.

This one particular night, it was myself and two young ladies, good friends, and we were at a table talking. As was our custom, we were talking about the other people in the bar and who we would like to take out. I had mentioned a couple of them.

The girl to my right was a person who I told quite a time before that we could be friends, but would never get along as a couple (we wouldn’t). She was harping on me about my choice in women. It was quite funny and I decided to teach her a bit of a lesson. The other woman enjoyed it quite a bit I found out. The conversation went a little like this:

_
Her: “You always pick the same women! You always look at the little thin things with long blonde hair.” (Not true, by the way. She was way not this way and we seldom agreed on anything).

Me: “So?”

Her: “How to you know they are good for you? How do you know that someone not like that might not be better?”

Me: “I haven”t met them yet. All I have to go on is looks. That’s usually how it starts.”

Her: “You need to open up. You need to change the type of woman you go after.”

Me: “You see that guy at the bar?”

Her: “Which one?”

Me: “The one on the far left.” (The guy had a scraggly beard, ragged clothes, was quite a bit older, and looked a little like he spent a lot of time here at the bar.)

Her: “Yeah, I see him. What about him?”

Me: “Why don’t you go up there and ask him out?”

Her: “No way! He’s ugly!”

Me: “Then shut up and leave me alone.”

Conversation ended.

She was not happy, but quit arguing with me about it.

Have you ever had something similar happen?

How did you handle it?

I know that outward appearance is no where near all you need to find in someone you really want to spend time with. But, doesn’t it have to play some part? What part?

_
Namaste,
Scott

You are Kidding, Right?

William Shakespeare

William Shakespeare (Photo credit: Christopher Marks)

I have decided that we simply cannot leave well enough alone. Over the years I have watched as a lot of my basic understandings, those things that sat really well within me, have been fought over, made terribly controversial, and, some, just plain tossed out.

It is no wonder we grow up confused and searching all the time. Here is a short list of things that should be just left well enough alone:

Complete set of the seven books of the Harry P...

Complete set of the seven books of the Harry Potter series. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

1) Shakespeare wrote all his works
2) Harry Potter is not of the devil
3) Apples are good for you
4) It is okay to be a little overweight
5) Two things can’t exist in the same place at the same time.
6) People who die in the military deserve a quiet, respected funeral
7) Jail is not a comfortable place
8) If you get hurt robbing someone, you cannot sue them.
9) Church and State should be separate
10) Sports in schools are an extra-curricular activity
11) It is wrong to harass people
12) Some competition is good
13) Teachers teach; students learn
14) There are things kids shouldn’t see
15) Moderate disciplining of your child is okay
16) Owning the best cell phone is not a right
17) An honest, law-abiding citizen has more rights than a criminal
18) Teaching is not just testing
19) Simply not working is not a good enough reason for the government to support you
20) Just because you want something doesn’t mean you should have it
21) You should not receive millions of dollars because you spill hot coffee on yourself
22) Going to school should be a safe and learning opportunity
23) One trillion dollar debt was enough
24) Gaming is not a real world
25) Just because it was said on the Internet does not make it true

There you have the first 25 items I decided upon. There are so many more. Now, before you “really picky” people start in, I know full well that there is a lot of gray in many of the above issues; maybe even all of them.

It’s not that. It’s that, well, it seems to me any more that whatever you choose to do, say, or even think, there are at least two sides to the issue and it can get a bit ridiculous.

List of titles of works based on Shakespearean...

List of titles of works based on Shakespearean phrases (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You know, for some things, who really cares? Take the Shakespeare thing. Does it really matter if he actually wrote the material or stole it? I mean really? Yes, it’s wrong to steal (I imagine that depends, too), but whoever really wrote it didn’t jump up and say “Here I am! I did this!” So, why do we think, hundreds of years later, that we need to step in a “correct” something that, really may not matter to 99.9% of the world population?

Elevator jpg

Elevator jpg (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It’s like the study I had to read that stated that how many people are in an elevator directly figures if someone will help you pick up change you drop. The idea was that less people meant the others wouldn’t feel funny about helping a stranger. Hey! How about the fact that, after about 3 people, an elevator is too flippin full for people to bend over and help you pick up change? I mean really.

mcdonalds free coffee mug

mcdonalds free coffee mug (Photo credit: fsse8info)

The McDonald’s one has always gotten me. The coffee is hot?…really? It wasn’t like the person handing it to the lady threw it in her face. Now, we are suing and blaming McDonald’s because our kids are fat?! Don’t take them! Problem solved. They want to go?! Wow! You are the parent! Oh, that’s right…kids run the family now. Apparently, they are smarter than the grown-ups and are totally protected from harm and can do as they please.

Do I sound like I am whining? Am I on a rant?! Is any of what I am saying true?!

It’s not the individual thing I am against here. Perhaps, inmates are being treated poorly at some places and a little more humane treatment is necessary. Not my point. But, when it gets to the place that a person who has been convicted of a crime has a better life than the average Joe who is trying hard to make ends meet…? I just don’t know.

English: An Officer Big Mac jailhouse with a m...

We have stepped over some line and it doesn’t look like we have figured it out yet. This post started out to be satirical in nature, but, like other things in life, it has a mind of its own and grew to something else.

I can’t say that I am sorry. I really am passionate about some of the dumb things we have decided to do in the US. However, I know that others feel just as passionate about some of those “dumb” things, so I will still hope that we have “free speech” and I can continue to rant.

Free Speech

Is it going to come to this?

“I may not agree with what you say but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” – Voltaire

Nice thought – I bet someone would argue with it…

Namaste,
Scott

North Noir

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