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Mon Nov 12, 2012, 12:45 PM

What are "Biblical Values"?


Now that the election is over, most of us on DU having worked hard to secure the victory, we can step back and look critically at just what happened—for good and ill. Among the ill is the following.

Billy Graham is a respected evangelical who has helped millions of people turn their lives around. He, however, has gotten into trouble with a proclivity to seek the ear of powerful political figures. His support of Nixon was disastrous for him and for authentic religion. He has also suffered from a constricted notion of Christian ethics, which he has reduced to sexual concerns. The Sunday before the recent election, full-page Graham endorsements appeared in newspapers around the country in which he made both mistakes. They were clearly in support of Romney and aimed at encouraging voters to get behind a variety of fundamentalist candidates. It would be interesting to discover just who put this aged man up to it.

Graham’s point was that voters should support those candidates who hold what he called “Biblical values.” He, or whoever wrote the ad, went on to define that term. It had to do with two sexual issues, abortion and gay marriage.

So how do the Scriptures deal with those matters? The only thing the Bible says about abortion is a formula describing how to produce one! (Numbers chapter 5) As for marriage only being between one man and one woman, the Bible is replete with polygamous references. Solomon, for one, had seven hundred wives and three hundred concubines.

The Bible is clear that sexual acts in which the powerful dominate the weak—such as grown men sexually abusing little boys, or men abusing women—is immoral. But there is nothing in all the Bible which condemns relationships based on love between two persons of the same sex. After a long intimate relationship, David says of his friend Jonathan, “your love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women.” (2 Samuel 1:26)

The notion that morality is just about sex is a misreading of the basic thrust of the biblical imperative.

Caring for the poor—that’s a Biblical value.
Feeding the hungry—that’s a Biblical value.
Welcoming the stranger—that’s a Biblical value.
Taking in the left out—that’s a Biblical value.
Forgiving one’s enemies—that’s a Biblical value.
Making Peace—that’s a Biblical value.
Insuring justice for the oppressed—that’s a Biblical value.
Leveling the economic playing field—that’s a Biblical value.
Freeing prisoners—that’s a Biblical value.
Sharing resources—that’s a Biblical value.
Caring for the earth—that’s a Biblical value.
Faithful relationships—that’s a Biblical value.
Joyful sexuality—that’s a Biblical value.
Living healthy lives—that’s a Biblical value.
Offering tribute to Caesar and to God—that’s a Biblical value.
And much more.

To reduce Biblical morality to certain sexual matters is a serious distortion of what historically religions have held to be important. The larger notion of what makes for faithful living is detailed throughout the Biblical witness. There is no better statement than the way Jesus identified the substance of the commandments. Love God and love one another. It is even more explicit in his first sermon, as he outlined the nature of his ministry.

“The spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has send me to proclaim release to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free and to proclaim that this is the hour God has chosen.”
(Luke 4:18-19)

Religion at its best is always joined by the non-religious who have similar notions of what is right and good. This ethic is written in the hearts and minds of all those who seek the common good—religious and non-religious alike. For all the good Billy Graham might have done, he and fundamentalists like him have missed what value-based life is all about. And the ethical heart of the Bible provides a sound basis for faithful value-based living.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 12:50 PM

1. Don't forget stoning your neighbor for working on Sunday.

 

That's a Biblical value too.

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Response to Speck Tater (Reply #1)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 01:22 PM

5. I don't recall stoning for violating the Sabbath, but the Sabbath was Saturday then.

I do recall stoning a woman (but not the man) for adultery being in the Bible, but Jesus halted the stoning by challenging the man who was without sin to to throw the first stone.

In that story, Jesus was writing in the ground as he spoke, but the Bible never says what he wrote that got them all to put down their stones.

Talk about burying the lead!

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Response to merrily (Reply #5)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 01:28 PM

6. Exodus 31:12-15 ...

 

The LORD then gave these further instructions to Moses: 'Tell the people of Israel to keep my Sabbath day, for the Sabbath is a sign of the covenant between me and you forever. It helps you to remember that I am the LORD, who makes you holy. Yes, keep the Sabbath day, for it is holy. Anyone who desecrates it must die; anyone who works on that day will be cut off from the community. Work six days only, but the seventh day must be a day of total rest. I repeat: Because the LORD considers it a holy day, anyone who works on the Sabbath must be put to death.' (Exodus 31:12-15 NLT)

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Response to Speck Tater (Reply #6)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:08 PM

16. see post 7 nt

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Response to Speck Tater (Reply #6)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:44 PM

24. Sorry, but I am still not seeing stoning or Sunday. Interesting translation, too.

Anyone who desecrates it must die; anyone who works on that day will be cut off from the community.


Working on the Sabbath definitely desecrates the sabbath, which carries a death penalty and yet the passage also mandates that the violator be cut off from the community. Cutting a corpse off from the community?

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Response to merrily (Reply #24)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 04:22 PM

36. So because it's not stoning on Sunday it's OK?

Being put to death for disrespecting Saturday is reasonable? WTF?

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Response to merrily (Reply #24)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 11:09 PM

46. Murdering on Sabbath. OK, is that better? nt

 

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Response to Speck Tater (Reply #1)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 01:29 PM

7. No, that is not a Biblical value

Last edited Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:05 PM - Edit history (1)

It comes from something called "the levitical code" sometimes called "the holiness code." It has never been recognized outside its narrow perimeters as authentic Biblical ethics. Of course there is in the religious tradition always a band of fundamentalists--even today. But they have never been in the mainstream. They flare up and disappear. In the US their number is already in decline. What I listed in my post is what the heart of the Judeo-Christian tradition has identified as Biblical values. In and out of religion that is what ethicists of all sorts have held.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 01:47 PM

11. The Bible says you are NOT allowed to ignore what you wish to ignore in the Bible.

 


“For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:18-19)

"It is easier for Heaven and Earth to pass away than for the smallest part of the letter of the law to become invalid." (Luke 16:17)

"Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest part or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place." (Matthew 5:17)

"All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for refutation, for correction, and for training in righteousness..." (2 Timothy 3:16)

"Know this first of all, that there is no prophecy of scripture that is a matter of personal interpretation, for no prophecy ever came through human will; but rather human beings moved by the holy Spirit spoke under the influence of God." (2 Peter 20-21)

Jesus criticizes the Jews for not killing their disobedient children according to Old Testament law. Mark.7-13 "Whoever curses father or mother shall die" (Mark 7:10)

And about a dozen more at http://www.evilbible.com/do_not_ignore_ot.htm

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Response to Speck Tater (Reply #11)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:50 PM

28. Yes, but there are also provisions of the New Testament to the effect that

Christians who were not Jews before becoming Christian are not required to observe all the commandments of the Old Testament. This was a controversy between Paul and Peter.

Hence, most Christians do not, for example, keep a kosher home or build an outddor shelter on Succoth, or have Passover seders, etc.

Edited to add the words "to the effect" in the subject line.

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Response to merrily (Reply #28)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 04:20 PM

35. Your edit reveals a critical point here.

"to the effect" - meaning, you need to do some interpreting. It isn't directly said that you can just ignore the parts of the OT you don't like or that you don't think you need to follow anymore. Correct?

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Response to merrily (Reply #28)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 11:10 PM

47. So since the ten commandments are Old Testament, we can ignore them. Right? nt

 

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Response to merrily (Reply #28)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 11:18 PM

48. "provisions of the New Testament" =

 

You get to pick and choose which parts of the Bible to believe and which parts to ignore.
If you were not a Jew before then you can ignore the Ten Commandments? Were, specifically, did Jesus say that?

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Response to Speck Tater (Reply #11)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 05:57 PM

38. That stance is exactly how the fundamentalist view Biblical innerency.

If you want to reflect solid Biblical scholarship, why not take seriously what progressive Bible scholars say, and not parrot fundamentalists. Unless the point you want to make is easier if you think like the fundies.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #38)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 06:38 PM

42. "Solid Biblical scholarship"?

i.e. cherry-picking the parts of the Bible that you like and are comfortable obeying, and finding erudite excuses to dismiss the rest. No "Biblical scholarship", solid, shitty or otherwise can tell you what dictates in the Bible are really the word of a god that actually exists.

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Response to skepticscott (Reply #42)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:19 PM

113. Even if we stipulate that God exists, the bible is still a God-awful mess.

Trying to make sense out of it is a fool's mission.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 03:09 PM

31. ......

It has never been recognized outside its narrow perimeters as authentic Biblical ethics.


I disagree as to the "the levitical code,", unless by "its narrow perimeters" you mean all of observant Judaism (in which case, I would probably have another issue with your post) from old Testament times to the twentieth century.

The laws of the Torah were very much recognized (and then some) by Jews.

Orthodox Jews observe them to this day, but in in modified ways.

For instance, they keep the Sabbath well beyond what most of us consider "work."

While they may not kill anyone for violating a provision of the Torah, they may well have sat shiva for the transgressor and ignored him or her forevermore, meaning they were dead to them.

And, ins going to Jerusalem to place a newly-sacrificed animal on the altar of the temple has been replaced with prayer. And so on.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 04:24 PM

37. "the heart of the Judeo-Christian tradition"

Does this "heart of the Judeo-Christian tradition" happen to match up perfectly with what you believe the "Judeo-Christian tradition" is all about?

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Response to Speck Tater (Reply #1)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:07 PM

15. see post 7 nt

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 12:53 PM

2. i quit paying attention to Billy... during the Nixon era

when his defense of the Viet Nam war, was that we were fighting "Godless Communism"

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Response to oldhippydude (Reply #2)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:09 PM

17. you lasted longer than I did nt

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 12:56 PM

3. This is probably your best post to date

But I have one problem with it.
I do not believe Billy really supported Willard.
Did anyone outside of the inner circle say those words of support for Willard??
I believe Franklin spoke for his father and it was Franklin's support.
Until I hear Billy say these words then it is Franklin's endorsement ............


Again a very good post

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Response to Angry Dragon (Reply #3)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 01:36 PM

10. Thanks.

You are probably right. It came from Franklin--although the image on the full page was Billy. Pardon my ignorance, but who is Willard?

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #10)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:03 PM

13. Romney ............ Willard is his first name

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Response to Angry Dragon (Reply #13)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:10 PM

19. Of course!

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Response to Angry Dragon (Reply #3)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:26 PM

21. But a month before the election Willard sat at Billy's feet and got his blessing. nt

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #21)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:45 PM

25. Yes, I saw the picture

What I am saying is there anyone outside of the Franklin and Willard circle that heard what was said??

You travel in religious leader circles, when have you or anyone else you know hear Billy say anything??
Is Billy still of sound mind or is franklin feeding him things to say??

I still say Franklin is the one talking and not Billy

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Response to Angry Dragon (Reply #25)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 03:10 PM

32. Fragile and probably easily manipulated

But what he purportedly said was consistent with where he had been all along.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #32)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 03:15 PM

33. On his website he called Mormonism a cult

and just after the announcement it was scrubbed

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 01:14 PM

4. .......

The Bible is clear that sexual acts in which the powerful dominate the weak—such as grown men sexually abusing little boys, or men abusing women—is immoral.


I don't recall any mention in the Bible of grown men sexually abusing little boys or men abusing women.

I do recall a lot of abuses of power in the Bible that are related very matter of factly, with no condemnation of any kind, simply included because they are part of the story.

Abraham, supposedly one of the humans mentioned in the Bible that God loved most, has sex with his slave because his wife is barren and he wants a child. If that is not an abuse of power, what is?

And, when his wife finally has a child, he banishes both the slave and his child to fend for themselves.

David, the most beloved by God and the direct ancestor of Joseph, Jesus's earthly father, is a king who send Bathsheba's husband into battle to die so he can have sex with her.

Lot, whom God loves so much that he saves him from the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, tries to stop a gang rape of angels (according to the story) by offering the rapists his young, virgin daughters.

Edited to replace "them" with "the rapists" so that the sentence is clearer.

Also edited to add: I don't recall mention in the Bible of joyful sexuality, either; and I think feeding the poor is different from leveling the economic playing field and I don't recall mention of the latter.

But, those are details and I do agree with the main thrust of your post.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 01:34 PM

8. The non religious are best joined by the religious

who put aside their feelings for their faith and join others on the common ground of national identity to bring justice and parity to all, regardless of their own conception of divinity.

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Response to rrneck (Reply #8)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 01:49 PM

12. My guess is that if you look back into history

you will find the opposite. The important fact is that the religious and the non-religious thankfully come out at the same place and obviously borrow from each other. The chicken or the egg is not important--at least to me.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #12)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:09 PM

18. My guess is that you are ignoring the Enlightenment

which was a response to the outrageous demands religion put on cultural progress. You know, that whole First Amendment thing.

If you want to continue the historical imprimatur of religion on how societies are organized, you have to own its barbarous excesses. Are you prepared to do that? Or do you have some new interpretation of divinity that derives its identity from the scientific advances of that last few hundred years? If so, you will have to own the barbarous excesses of science and technology.

Your call.

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Response to rrneck (Reply #18)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:23 PM

20. Of course religion is repleat with what you suggest.

Barbarous excesses abound. While the enlightenment grew out of basic religious history and ancient religious texts, it still had to sluff off the crud that always accompanies religion. That job is not just the task of secularists. it is what many of us in the religious tradition spend our time doing. While the rottenness is also ours, cutting the rot from the apple is a major task. But you don't just discard the apple. Isn't that the job of all scholarly applications to whatever discipline is at hand? Scientists do the same thing--and historians and everyone else in a serious discipline.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #20)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:46 PM

26. If you would...

describe your God.

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Response to rrneck (Reply #26)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 06:02 PM

39. In a paragraph or two?

How many times have I done this here. Instead of hearing what was said, sometimes people just want another target. Go back and check a dozen posts I have made in the past.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #39)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 06:32 PM

41. Got a link?

I realize you're a VIP and all, but perhaps you might favor us with a clue. At least until you get your own TMO group.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #20)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:53 PM

29. With religion, it's impossible to distinguish the rot from the apple.

Because no two believers will agree - nor can they generally persuade each other - on just what part is rot.

I also have to question your understanding on the origins of the Enlightenment - but your desired explanation definitely fits your pattern of wanting to claim every single success in history for religion. Even the movements that rose up against it! LOL

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #20)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 06:42 PM

43. The Enlightenment was a repudiation

of the god-centered idiocy of religion, not a continuation of it.

You just never get tired of making shit up to meet your needs, do you?

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Response to skepticscott (Reply #43)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 08:50 PM

45. He long ago made up his mind that religion - specifically, HIS religion...

is responsible for all that is good and decent in the world. So thus even when progressive movements arise to combat and defeat his religion in a certain area, it was really the "good" elements in his religion vanquishing the bad ones all along. Isn't that convenient?

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 01:36 PM

9. You missed a few

Owning slaves
Slaughtering infants
Not cooking a young goat in its mothers milk
Not eating pork
Forcing victims to marry their rapists
Taking your child to be sacrificed (Abraham) then doing it (Jephthah)
Beating your children
Fathering a child on your dead brother's wife
Impregnating your daughters whilst drunk
Considering menstruation unclean
Not being able to fight iron chariots
Talking to donkeys
Mutilating your boy children
Killing a swineherd's entire herd of pigs
Cursing fig trees
Disowning your parents
Selling clothes to buy weapons
Raising zombies (in Matthew it wasn't just Jesus that rose up)

Yes, you can find lots of pretty, glittery words in the Bible but these are just the normal morality practised by the bulk of humanity with or without this Holy garbage. The Bible is a book of tales some good but many more bad and if you accept the Bible as a guide you have to accept the thoroughly evil or nonsensical parts as well.

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Response to intaglio (Reply #9)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:04 PM

14. The thrust of religious ethics is clear.

Your proof texts are mainly related to a code I referred to in an earlier answer. Take a look.

You are falling into the same trap as the fundamentalists. They can take texts--snippets--totally apart from their meaning and hold them as proof. It is a stupid way to do honest Biblical research, and nobody with much sense of meaning uses it.

You are entitled to your opinion in the last paragraph--except that if you think that the "bulk of humanity" has lived by the values I have listed, you had better ask you money back from your history teacher. Historians realize that religion has been that thin veneer of civilized living over the jungle. I'm no talking about religious scholars or historians, but secular ones who all come to the same opinion.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #14)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:40 PM

22. Good OP, but you had to go and spoil it.

Historians realize that religion has been that thin veneer of civilized living over the jungle.


Really? Oh dear...

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Response to mr blur (Reply #22)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:47 PM

27. Yes, he's made it perfectly clear that he views religion to be the one thing keeping us civilized.

Without religion, he evidently believes we'd all run around like crazed lawless animals, raping and murdering each other.

Oh wait, we do that WITH religion... and often in the NAME OF religion. Oops!

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #14)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:57 PM

30. Religion is a formal manifestation of an emotional need

The need to feel empathy and understanding with others is a theory of mind. Religion is just one way among many to get people to cooperate - for good or evil.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #14)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 03:31 PM

34. The thrust of religious ethics is clear?

Firstly don't you mean Abrahmic ethics? You are implying that all religion follows the Biblical example. Sorry, but it does not.

Now, you say that I take "... texts--snippets--totally apart from their meaning and hold them as proof," They are not proof except of the falsehood of your blind assertions. They are just some of the obvious counterexamples that you are busy trying to ignore.

It is yourself who is removing the glittery, nice parts of the Bible from their context as part of a whole that includes all that I have identified and more. You are like Disney, gutting the horrifying elements from the tales gathered by the Grimms and Perrault into some saccharine pabulum and saying that this is the real story.

The Bible is a story book about a vindictive, irrational God who, by the account you want us to believe, turns his own son into a scapegoat and allows that child to be tortured to death, offering no comfort to the poor deluded man in agony on the tree.

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Response to intaglio (Reply #34)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 06:07 PM

40. Sorry, but I've quit trying to dialogue with that sort of vituperation.

You are welcome to your prejudices, but they don't allow for conversation.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #40)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 02:33 AM

49. Then stop making selective quotations

I am not being vituperative towards you but towards the bowdlerised deity you want us to follow.

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Response to intaglio (Reply #49)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 01:57 PM

217. "bowdlerised" I learned a new word today.

 

Looked up the meaning and you used it very appropriately.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #40)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 09:35 AM

50. Conversation also means you don't get to selectively ignore data...

that doesn't support your conclusion. This is a consistent pattern in your behavior during your entire tenure here - you put forth a topic that promotes your religion, and then tell everyone that not only will you refuse to listen to those who disagree with you, it's highly disrespectful of them to even bring up an opposing viewpoint. ("Vituperation"? Really?)

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Response to trotsky (Reply #50)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:06 AM

60. This is how he continues to convince himself that he is superior to the rest of us.

It's his Ego, trotsky. It must be fed.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 02:42 PM

23. The Golden Rule is basic to many religions and also explicit in the various Humanist Manifestos,

 

e.g. #III “Working to benefit society maximizes individual happiness.”


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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 08:44 PM

44. I'm almost sure Leviticus is still in the Bible.

Leviticus 20:13
New International Version (©1984)

If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.




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Response to dimbear (Reply #44)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 09:39 AM

51. Like all ancient texts

 

Leviticus can't be read literally because we don't live in the same context.

Leviticus also establishes that aliens living in a country are to be treated justly, as the native population is. It has all kinds of statements in it.

Bashing the religious tradition of more than 80% of the population is a really lousy political strategy.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #51)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 10:38 AM

54. If Leviticus cannot be read literally, then none of the bible can be read literally.

And if something cannot be read literally, then each individual reader can have their own interpretation, which makes it like a Deepak Chopra book.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #54)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 10:55 AM

56. The bible is a collection of very old books, many of them pastiche

 

anyone can decide what they find of value in it and reject other things in it.

Anti-religious bigotry will do nothing to make Democrats a majority party and liberalism achieve effective power. It is a hindrance to progress.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #56)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 10:59 AM

58. Please show me some of this "anti-religious bigotry."

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #58)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:05 AM

59. Bigots don't generally believe they are bigots

 

even as they spew their bigotry.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #59)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:10 AM

64. So stop spewing bigotry and show us some examples of it.

It is really easy to post links so we can all view and evaluate this "anti-religious bigotry" your humble self says exists here.

Your further reluctance to do so will show all that you pulled that nonsense right out of your rectum. Judging by the smell of it, it would seem that is exactly where it came from. But feel free to prove me wrong.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #64)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:19 PM

114. Hmm! Some examples? Let's see now.

Oh, yes.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/123011428

"If President Obama were to do this (as he should, IMO), the religious noise machine would explode, while the moderate believers stood idly by and watched the fallout."
http://www.democraticunderground.com/121854580

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Response to Starboard Tack (Reply #114)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:38 PM

116. You have demonstrated your passive-aggresiveness well, but failed to show bigotry.

You have been following me around, responding to posts not addressed to you, with nothing but more passive-aggressive nonsense. Well done.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #116)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 12:55 AM

134. Thank you for acknowledging that I am not a bigot. That shows some progress on your part.

Now, would you care to address your own bigotry, which you constantly demonstrate? Do you really fail to see how distasteful it is?
You flatter yourself by suggesting I "followed you around", when you are in everyone's face with your despicably ugly and offensive posts. Do you think for one moment that we don't all see them for what they are?
Now you have an opportunity to turn over a new leaf and start treating those who choose to believe differently with some respect.
Again, let me say how refreshing it is to see that you too are able to show some humility.

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Response to Starboard Tack (Reply #134)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:50 AM

148. Your passive-aggressiveness is a turn off. Learn how to control that, then we can talk

about you being a bigot.

Now stop stalking me, put me on ignore, and improve your life.


And have a really, really, nice day.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #148)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 12:06 PM

165. You obviously have some serious problems

First you say I'm not a bigot "you've failed to show bigotry" and now you want to talk about me being a bigot. WTF is wrong with you? Me stalking YOU?
I have considered putting you on ignore. Others claim it improves their DU experience, but I've never liked bullies and hypocrites, so I'll be checking in occasionally to see how you're behaving. Meanwhile, feel free to ignore me.
You too have a really nice day.

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Response to Starboard Tack (Reply #165)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 12:31 PM

167. Oh, on the contrary, it is you that seems to have serious problems.

I suggest seeking professional help.

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Response to Starboard Tack (Reply #134)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:54 AM

163. Wow. Really

You are going to jump in on this thread in support of the McCarthy guy? Seriously? That's who you are going to hitch your wagon to in this discussion.

That speaks volumes about you. None of them good, in my opinion.

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #163)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:58 AM

164. Sorry, but I have no idea what you are talking about.

McCarthy guy? Who's that? And what does it have to do with cleanhippie's bigotry?

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Response to Starboard Tack (Reply #164)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 01:09 PM

168. You can't really be that obtuse, can you?

Maybe you are.

The subthread YOU RESPONDED TO was a discussion between cleanhippie and Mr. McCarthy. And that you decided to not say a SINGLE WORD about what McCarthy was spewing and to go after cleanhippie is just ridiculous. I mean McCarthy used "you people" to talk about atheists, which I presume includes you too. YOU PEOPLE. I don't have to get much past that at all to know there are some problems with that language. But, hey, go after cleanhippie. It's par for the course with your family.

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #168)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 01:59 PM

172. Link please

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Response to Starboard Tack (Reply #172)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 04:00 PM

173. Oh, come on

It's on this thread. I told you the poster. Just scroll down a bit and see if you can find it.

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #168)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 04:32 PM

174. OK, I got it now. Couldn't remember his name.

Must be an age thing. Anyway, yes, I don't have any issue with McCarthy. I agree that the bible is a pastiche of old stories, all or mostly parables. Nobody in his right mind takes any of it literally, whether he's a believer or non-believer.
Nothing bigoted in his posts that I can see. Maybe I'm missing something. Meanwhile, cleanhippie is his usual insulting, bigoted self. No surprise there. There is a difference between going after someone and calling him on his bullshit and nastiness.
You seem obsessed with my family, which is funny because I'm the only one in my household who even sees your posts or cleanhippie's, or trotsky's or the rest of your little gang. Nice attempt at smearing though. Par for the course, as you might say.

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Response to Starboard Tack (Reply #174)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 07:59 AM

193. BTW, your buddy just got PPR'ed.

Oops. If there was nothing bigoted in his posts, why is he gone now? Pardon me if I don't think you are a very good judge of what is bigoted and what isn't!

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Response to trotsky (Reply #193)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 10:13 AM

196. The worst bigots never are.

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Response to trotsky (Reply #193)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 11:28 AM

197. What buddy? The guy whose name I couldn't remember and had never seen before.

I read 2 of his posts. Your gloating is pretty fucking rich after supporting one of the most bigoted, hypocricital and obnoxious trolls of all time, your much loved laconicsax, who for some inexplicable reason, still adorns the walls of your basement hangout.

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Response to Starboard Tack (Reply #197)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:13 PM

198. Clearly your buddy's disappearance was upsetting.

I understand what laconicsax did to get PPR'ed, it was a single act whereby he thought he was going to teach someone a lesson but he stepped over the line. It was correct to PPR him for that, and I don't defend his action.

You, however, insisted you saw nothing bigoted in your buddy's posts and were defending him even as the hammer fell on his bigotry.

Again, you have displayed absolutely no ability to judge bigotry - and the DU system confirms that. Sorry that burns you up so much. You need to let go of the hatred and anger, like I've told you before.

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Response to Starboard Tack (Reply #174)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 09:48 PM

206. So when they say that

they don't have anyone on ignore, but simply refuse to respond to them, they're lying?

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Response to skepticscott (Reply #206)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 10:14 PM

207. Lying would seem to be in line with the behavior exihibited so far.

I mean, saying things one knows isn't true IS lying, right?

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #168)


Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #175)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 05:31 PM

177. I know

it was so awesome when Ann Romney said "you people." It didn't represent a repulsive, elitist attitude at all. Your's either.

Oh, wait...

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #163)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 12:30 PM

166. He has become a joke, GM.

It makes me giggle every time he posts.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #59)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:34 PM

178. Bigots usually call everyone else bigots, even while they spew their bigotry.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #51)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:16 AM

65. Whoa, whoa, "Treat the native population Justly?"...excuse me? God's actions say otherwise...

Whatever Leviticus said about "aliens living in a country are to be treated justly, as the native population is"--the god of the OT countermands it. Or do we forget that the Israelites came upon the land of Canaan, and were given permission *by god* to not only take that land away from its native population, but slaughter that native population. God tells them in fact, not to let a single man, woman or child remain.

Do we understand this? in the bible, god commands his followers to murder not enemies trying to kill them, but sleeping, innocent civilians, down to babies in the womb, toddlers, little girls, old men. Every...last...native of that land is killed so that the Israelites can have it.

Never mind what the Bible *SAYS*, look at what people do and are allowed to go and are even commanded to do. THAT tells me what the Bible's values are.

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Response to Moonwalk (Reply #65)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:42 AM

70. You really believe God said that?

 

I don't. Sounds like nationalistic clap trap to me. It's not history or science or newspaper reporting.

What people have done within my lifetime is make excuses for and deny the millions of murders committed under atheist regimes and to go on and on and on about things like stoning people because of Leviticus when people who take Leviticus seriously aren't doing that. I used to do that kind of crap myself, until I realized that the people killed by supposedly leftist, materialist regimes were just as dead as the ones killed by the Nazis.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #70)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 03:32 PM

99. LOL! Dude, I'm an Atheist! I don't believe there is a god to say ANYTHING...BUT....

...but if one is going to use the Bible to dictate what one's values are, rather than listening to one's own moral compass, then one has to accept that there is one AND ONLY ONE thing the god of the Bible wants--New and Old Testament combined.

The one and ONLY thing god keeps telling everyone in that book, the one moral value you MUST have is: "Do what god says."

That's it. If god says, as he does to Abe, "Kill your son," well, Abe does (he doesn't know god's just punking him). He doesn't say, "Gosh, god, that sounds immoral, I don't think so." When god tells King Sol "Kill all your enemies, men, women, children and their animals, don't let any remain." King Sol doesn't say, "Gosh, god, it doesn't seem fair or just to kill little kids. I really can't ethically do that..." He does it--but, of course, gets greedy and decides to keep the animals.

And what happens? god turns from him and gives his favor to David. Why? Because Sol did the one thing no one, according to the Bible, is allowed to do: Disobey god.

Is that really a moral code to live by?

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Response to Moonwalk (Reply #99)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:11 PM

112. Then you can't complain that God said to kill peole

 

I'm not surprised you don't get the story of Abraham and Issac, seeming to miss the point that God didn't let him go through with it.

Someday a blog atheist will come up with something new and I'll pass out from shock. But that day isn't today and I doubt it's going to be tomorrow or next year. Atheists don't seem to have said anything new since c. 1885.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #112)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:35 PM

179. He can complain about whatever the hell he wants.

Now go away. Please.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #112)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:31 AM

187. I'm not surprised you don't get the story of Abraham and Issac,

I think he did get it perfectly. You are the one confused.

Abraham DID intend to follow god's commands. The point was to see how far that tool Abraham would go. God didn't let him finish, but the loyalty at all costs...even you son's life... is clear.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #70)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 03:51 PM

102. On the Nationalistic side...just to add...

Of course it's fucking nationalistic! What else is the Bible but nationalistic propaganda? Look at the 10 Commandments. #1: "Thou wilt have no other god but me..." (Reason: "I"m a jealous god.") Okay. Now if there is only ONE god then this makes no sense at all. Imagine Stephen King getting mad at a bunch of Richard Bachman (his pen name) fans. Saying to them, "You shall worship no other horror author than me! Down with Bachman!"

This is absurd! Getting jealous of yourself! Stephen King would smile and say, "Glad you like Bachman, I do, too." Every worshiper of every god is worshiping the same god if there is only one so Commandment #1 is irrelevant and pointless. UNLESS...the Hebrews there--and their Bible believes that there are many gods. Then it all starts to make sense; if that's true, then the whole deal of the OT is to prove that theirs is the biggest, baddest, coolest god of all. He beats out the Egyptian gods (remember the priests of those gods can turn their staves into snakes, but Moses does the same and his snake eats theirs...talk about un-subtle Freudian messages!).

And then there's the "east of Eden" bit--the OT god apparently created humanity with other gods (and god created man and woman), then created his own special guy and gal (adam & eve) and kept them all safe in the garden. When they disobeyed him (see other post), he kicked them out. And when son Cain had to leave home, he went "east of Eden" to find a wife. Meaning, a woman belonging to another people who worshiped another god.

So, is the bible nationalistic propaganda? You betcha. And this is the reason that the wandering tribes can TOTALLY ignore Commandment #6 and #8 when it comes to the folk in Canaan. Because all those laws apply ONLY to those in the 12 tribes. You don't get to kill your fellow Hebrews, or steal from them. But the followers of other gods? You can slaughter them down to the last baby and the last camel. And if you want to remain on good terms with the Hebrew god, you'll do just that.

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Response to Moonwalk (Reply #102)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:38 PM

115. You guys always seem to think it makes you daring and grown up to say "fuck"

 

like a 13 year old.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #115)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 08:08 PM

122. I could make a strong argument that completely ignoring the substance of a person's argument

and picking up on one modifying word out of 400-500 words is responding like a 13-year-old.

I'm 50 years old, a college teacher with nine years of higher education, and I use "fuck" quite a lot, for a variety of reasons.

In addition, people have been using that word freely at this web site since I first started reading it in late 2003 and there are no rules against that kind of "profane" language. Indeed, if their were, I would quit posting here.

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Response to Hissyspit (Reply #122)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:13 PM

129. Well, make your strong argument if you think you can

 

I'm a number of years older than you are and I've taught on the college level as well, to which I would say, big deal.

If you think there was a substance to their argument you must specialize in micro-chemistry.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #115)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:33 AM

188. grown up to say "fuck" like a 13 year old.

I say it like an adult.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 09:44 AM

52. Reading the typical religion bashing on this thread

 

I'd put the numbers of people stoned to death in the manner of Leviticus in the past century against those who were killed by anti-religious governments to see who has made progress in getting past that kind of thing. I wish I had a dollar for everyone who brushed aside the tens of millions of murders by Stalin, Mao, and other champions of "scientific" materialism, the excuses for that I've heard among alleged liberals and lefties during my life.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #52)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 10:35 AM

53. If keeping score is what you want to do...

I'm pretty sure that killing every living thing on the planet in a worldwide flood wins the prize.

But you keep pushing that tired, worn-out, christian apologist bullshit. Although I don't think it is very humble of you.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #53)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 10:53 AM

55. I don't happen to be a Christian

 

So the millions of people killed by anti-religious regimes in the past century and this one mean nothing but the virtually non-existent stoning of people after Leviticus condemn those who don't support stoning anyone.

Remind me of why I should take you people to be liberals or lefties?

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #55)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 10:57 AM

57. "Remind me of why I should take you people to be liberals or lefties?" What. The. Fuck?

Are you here from Freeperland?

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #57)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:06 AM

61. I'm not the one trying to alienate well over 80% of Americans

 

who are religious from the Democratic party.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #61)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:08 AM

62. Yeah, that is what I'm trying to do. You found me out.



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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #62)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:36 AM

68. Yeah, it is what you're doing.

 

God save liberalism and the Democratic party from pseudo-liberals who lose elections. And the left from clueless "lefties".

Bigots are bigots, no matter how kewl they believe themselves to be.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #68)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 12:29 PM

78. Then you are a bigot too!

If thats how you want to characterize me, then your hatred and intolerance justifies you wearing that label as well. Hey, we an be bigot buddies! Lets start a club!




Now you have a really nice day.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #78)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 12:39 PM

80. What passes as a clever retort among your buddies, I'd suppose.

 

People who laugh at their own jokes are losers, as are the jokes, which is why they feel they have to laugh at them so someone will.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #80)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 03:01 PM

97. You're not paying attention.

How does it feel to realize that you ARE the joke?

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #97)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 03:15 PM

98. How does it feel to know that you can't carry your argument?

 

If you could hold up your side of the argument your insults might have a chance of upsetting me, as it is they're just reassuring.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #98)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 03:36 PM

101. How does it feel to know you dont even have an argument.

All you have are personal attacks and non sequiturs. If you even had an argument to begin with, we may have gotten somewhere.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #101)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 04:18 PM

104. I've seldom encountered an atheist who really knew what a non sequitur was

 

most of them know everything they know about logical discourse from a casual reading of St. Carl Sagan's Demons book.

I'm in the process of writing a long piece about St. Carl Sagan and the industry peddling him. The man was quite able to be very silly and a bit more of a horn dog than Gen. Petraeus. Though I'll only mention his widow who will be trading off of him for years to come.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #104)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 04:22 PM

105. Then you need to get out more.

You have a really, really nice day.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #105)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 05:33 PM

108. I see you've reached the stage of total meaninglessness.

 

Which is where you guys usually start out as well.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #108)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 05:51 PM

109. Perhaps, but at least I'm not at the stage of nonsense like you are.

It is not even clear whether you yourself even know what you are saying.

Again, have a really nice day.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #109)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:59 PM

119. You keep insulting me and you're going to make me over-confident

 

that I'm right.

Cherish the fool's reproach, as William Blake said.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #119)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 08:36 PM

124. You started out by insulting, and have yet to stop.

Pot, meet kettle.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #124)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:16 PM

130. I started out by correcting your bigoted accusation that I was a Christian

 

and responded to your incoherent assertion about what I'd said about the tens of millions of people killed in the name of materialism and anti-religion in the 20th and 21st centuries.

You clearly intended what you said to me as an insult, as anyone who wanted to look at the timed comments could see. Not that I expect that kind of interest in accuracy from bigots.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #130)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:48 AM

147. You are so cute!




You have a nice day.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #147)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:50 AM

149. You are so running on empty.

 

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #149)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:54 AM

151. How precious. It taunts, too.

Maybe I will get my dog one for christmas.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #151)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:06 AM

156. Any emptier you're going to fall into a vacuum

 

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #156)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:12 AM

157. There is no chance that I will fall between your ears.

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #157)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:21 AM

160. Ignoring you

 

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #160)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:27 AM

161. Is that a promise?

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #104)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:39 AM

189. I'm in the process of writing a long piece about St. Carl Sagan and the industry peddling him

No bigotry displayed there!

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #68)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 04:49 PM

106. Gosh that sounds familiar.

I wonder why? Let me just research that...

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Response to trotsky (Reply #106)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:55 PM

118. I wrote about that quote earlier this year on my blog and in blog comments before then

 

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #118)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 08:04 PM

120. Ah yes of course.

You've had 4 posts hidden lately. I guess you have a hard time being civil. That's too bad - your arguments must not be strong enough to make your point.

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Response to trotsky (Reply #120)


Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #131)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 08:42 AM

137. If you're "standing up" to people you disagee with,

why do you have to use such abusive language and rotten behavior? Such actions are not generally taken by someone who is standing up to bullies - instead, they are taken by individuals who are trying to exercise power and control over others. That is disappointing, but all-too-typical of many of today's Christians, who imagine themselves to be victims but instead are the bullies.

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Response to trotsky (Reply #137)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 09:34 AM

138. WACBs

 

You can't stand it when someone gives you a taste of your own practices. I've seldom encountered a group on the left which has a more inflated view of itself and a greater propensity for being cry babies when they encounter someone who won't agree with them and their dishonest polemics. Well, I'm that kind of person.

Christians and Jews, most of them Democrats, in the congress and the executive branch of the U.S. government gave atheists full civil rights protection in the mid-1960s under the Civil Rights Acts. The new atheists ignore facts like that to make believe they are the most discriminated against group in the country when they have full, legal protection of their rights. Atheists have never been discriminated against in the United States in a way that other minority groups have been. Their claims in that area are an urban myth.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #138)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 09:46 AM

140. Is that what Jesus told you to do? Fight fire with fire, attack with impunity...

and call names whenever possible? That isn't what most liberal Christians say Jesus was about. Instead, he's allegedly for tolerance, love, "turn the other cheek" and all that jazz. You are acting like a right-wing fundie Christian who ignores the kinder, liberal parts of the bible and embraces the nasty, vindictive stuff.

There is nothing I can do to convince you that atheists are indeed discriminated against that won't just further anger you and invite more attacks. All I would ask is in good faith, could you please read this article?

http://www.salon.com/2012/08/09/4_reasons_atheists_have_to_fight_for_their_rights_salpart/

“You atheists are just taking on the mantle of victimhood. There are laws protecting you — especially the First Amendment. Therefore, you’re not really discriminated against. And it’s ridiculous for you to claim that you are.”

Atheist activists get this one a lot. When we speak out about ways that anti-atheist bigotry plays out, we’re told that we’re not really oppressed. We’re told that, because we have legal protection, because anti-atheist discrimination is illegal, therefore we don’t really have any problems, and we’re just trying to gain unearned sympathy and win the victim Olympics. (I’d love to hear Bob Costas do the commentary for that!) It’s a classic Catch-22: If we speak out about oppression and point to examples of it, we’re accused of “playing the victim card,” and the oppression becomes invisible. And if we don’t speak out about oppression … then the oppression once again becomes invisible.

If you’ve ever made this “discrimination against atheists is against the law” argument, I have some really bad news for you. You may want to sit down for this, it may come as a shock:

People sometimes break the law.

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Response to trotsky (Reply #140)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:05 AM

141. Telling the truth to refute fiction isn't forbidden by any religion I know of

 

Atheists have been a covered class, able to go to court to fight against illegal discrimination since the mid-1960s, they can marry, serve on juries, enter into contracts, it is illegal to discriminate against them in public accommodations and government, etc. The level of illegal discrimination against women, black people, Latinos, lgbt people, swamps that which atheists report. Most of the alleged discrimination against atheists comprise of them being exposed to other peoples' religious expression and people not being willing to vote for atheists, neither of which are illegal and, even if they were, you're not going to do much to make people from exercising their rights of expression and choice in voting by being obnoxious jerks.

If you were capable of reading or thinking, you'd have seen I already said I wasn't a Christian.

"People sometimes break the law" yeah, if they didn't there wouldn't be much need for laws. Someone breaks the law and your're a victim of it, you go to the cops and the courts to get them to stop it. BEING ABLE TO GET RELIEF FROM THE GOVERNMENT IS THE WHOLE POINT OF CIVIL RIGHTS LAWS. You can either face that like an adult or you can whine that the world isn't perfectly to your liking for the rest of your life. People aren't required to make you happy, they can be required to not discriminate against you in terms defined by laws. Some atheists are adults, many are cry babies. I remember sitting in a gay symposium back in the 1970s when a few people got into whining about how much they just hated, hated straight people because they discriminated against gay folk. I told them to grow up that straight people were, by far the majority and if we were going to gain full coverage, of the sort that atheists had, as already mentioned, that it depended on winning over straight people. You can either wallow in your resentment and mutual self-congratulations or you can grow up and make a winning coalition. The new atheists are incapable of forming that kind of coalition. Democrats should drop any bunch of people who insist on alienating the vast majority of the population, they are guaranteed losers.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #141)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:43 AM

145. I'm sorry you continue to feel the need to personally insult me and my intelligence.

It is unfortunate how you relish the role of a bully. Discrimination is indeed illegal against many classes of people - but that doesn't mean it doesn't happen on a daily basis. I'm sorry you don't choose to acknowledge that and would rather just continue to berate and attack. I have nothing more to say to you.

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Response to trotsky (Reply #145)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:55 AM

153. You really don't get this law stuff, do you.

 

Laws don't guarantee people won't break them, they guarantee that you can go to the authorities to punish people who break them.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #141)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:48 AM

146. FYI - Seven states prohibit atheists from holding public office.

Youre welcome.

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Response to bunnies (Reply #146)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:52 AM

150. For your information the CONSTITUTION AND FEDERAL CIVIL RIGHTS ACTS SUPERSEDE

 

THOSE STATE LAWS.

Do they teach civics at all anymore?

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #150)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:37 PM

181. For your information

YOU GOT LOCKED OUT OF THIS DISCUSSION BECAUSE YOUR POSTS WERE CAUSTIC AND HATEFUL.


Do they teach civility at all anymore?

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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #181)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 08:03 AM

194. Not just locked out of the discussion!

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Response to trotsky (Reply #194)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 10:05 AM

195. Bwahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!

Fucking awesome!

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #138)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:49 AM

190. The new atheists ignore facts like that to make believe they are the most discriminated against

...group in the country when they have full, legal protection of their rights."

And Christians think they are the most persecuted group ever... to have a church on every corner. The War on Christmas. Crosses on public lands. Tax exempt. and their message is just getting stifled everywhere....except on TV, radio, bill boards, and a whole day of the week just for them Poor poor put upon Christians!

Talk about urban myths.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #52)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:09 AM

63. Excuse me?

Stalin and Mao were "champions of scientific materialism"???

I'm sorry, I thought they were communists. Communist governments don't supress religion out of some high minded idealism that they love science. They do it because they set the government up as the central and unchallenged authority and THEY DON'T LIKE COMPETITION.

How clueless do you have to be to think Stalin and Mao were, in the smallest way, motivated by "scientific materialism"?

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #63)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:34 AM

66. They thought so

 

as did many of their fans in the west who praised them as they notably didn't go to enjoy their rule.

Anyone who claimed to be a communist was claiming the supposed scientific materialism that Marx espoused. Just about all of the atheistic political-economic ideologies claimed their basis was scientific. I'll give this to Marx, he tried to distance himself from the "Marxists" as it was becoming apparent what a disaster that was going to be.

I'm not surprised when blog commentators don't know what they're talking about. It doesn't mean the rest of us have to pretend they do.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #66)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:35 AM

67. No they didn't. Don't be naive. -eom.

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #67)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:46 AM

71. It's not called being naive

 

it's called READING WHAT THEY CLAIMED.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #71)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:57 AM

75. And ACTUALLY BELIEVING IT.

Which is where the naive part comes in. Or you could go with gullible if you prefer. Would you prefer gullible? I'm ok with it.


Do you make a habit of believing ridiculously transparent propaganda statements made by totalitarian dictatorial governments that were freaking WORLD FAMOUS for their ridiculous propaganda? Do you also believe all the other nonsense they spouted?

Or here's an alternative for you, you could try basing your judgements of what they believed on their actions instead of their absurdly transparent claims about their actions. and what they rather clearly believed is "we're in power and we're staying there, anyone who could be a rival for our control is getting stomped on."

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #75)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:20 PM

84. What matters is that they believed that what they were doing was science

 

when it so obviously wasn't. They were materialists and atheists, about which they can't be doubted as they were the ones who said so.

I have based my judgments on their actions.

Atheists are not near to being a politically significant splinter group, they can damage the larger Democratic effort, they can't win elections.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #84)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:23 PM

85. Bullcrap they did.

Keep in mind what we are talking about is "killing dissidents, their political rivals, and anyone else who got in their way by the millions"

Make ONE ARGUMENT for concluding they were doing that because they "believed what they were doing was science". One. I'll wait.

Or... stop talking about something you don't have a clue about. Either one.

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #85)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:29 PM

87. They did that because they believe people are objects

 

and were disposable or usable. There is nothing in materialism that could lead them to believe people are anything but material objects, resources to be used or disposed of when desired by people with enough power to do that. There is nothing, whatsoever, in materialism that could lead them to believe anything else, no matter what Comte or Kropotkin asserted so ineffectively. Or, as Richard Dawkins so infamously put it:

In a universe of electrons and selfish genes, blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won't find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe that we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but pitiless indifference.

I'm just taking them at their word and looking at the results of what happens when materialists gain political control. It's not inconsistent.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #87)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:31 PM

88. Um, here's your first problem

I'm just taking them at their word


You do know about propaganda, right? I mean this was pointed out to you earlier in the sub-thread and you have chosen to ignore it.

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #88)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:49 PM

91. So you figure Dawkins was lying when he said that

 

and he really believes that materialism produces moral judgements of evil and good. Clearly, according to you, Dawkins must believe that lying like that is moral to lie.

In which case, why should anyone believe anything he says? Based on what you said.

I'll figure he means what he says and refute that instead of pretending he was just joshin' when he said it. You can believe he didn't really mean it if you want to, though. Maybe you should get his e-mail and ask him.

Stalin and Mao acted as if they believed that. As did Hoxha, Pol Pot, the government in the GDR, the Reign of Terror.....

I kind of prefer democracy. You've got to believe in rights and the moral obligation to respect other peoples' rights, something you can't get to with materialism.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #91)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:59 PM

94. All Dawkins is saying in that quotation

is that there is no greater purpose. Good shit happens to some people and bad shit happens to some people and it doesn't reflect on either person's inherent worth. Read Stephen Crane and the other American Naturalists (I would suggest starting with Red Badge of Courage) if you want some literature that deals with the same concept. It's nothing new to Dawkins.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #87)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:33 PM

89. Oh, so now we've gone from "they did it because they thought it was science"

...to "they did that because my arm chair psychological analysis of them concluded that their materialistic (so I say) philosophy led them to the conclusion that people are disposable objects"?


Neat. And try reading Dawkins for comprehension, his quote means NOTHING RESEMBLING the conclusion you are attempting to say it supports. Saying that bad things sometimes happen in a materialistic universe has NOTHING TO DO with whether we make conscious decisions to value human lives you genius. And it sure as hell has nothing to do with the actions taken by Communist governments.

Get a clue.

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #89)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:57 PM

93. No evil, no good, no purpose,

 

he's the one who said it, purporting it was a scientific conclusion. I'm certain that it isn't but I'm not responsible for what Dawkins says and the myriad of inconsistencies in it.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #93)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 06:45 PM

111. No thought put into your statements,

The universe not somehow containing some kind of absolute objective good and evil inherent property DOES NOT MEAN THERE IS NO CONCEPT OF GOOD AND EVIL. the universe ont hainv g A purpose does not mean people do not have purpose.

If this is how shockingly shallow your thoughts on this subject are it's no wonder you reach such inane conclusions about the motivations of communist governments.

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #111)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:46 PM

117. I'm not interested in a "concept of good and evil".

 

I'm interested in people believing they are required to avoid doing evil and to go good strongly enough for it to change behavior for the better.

I'm wondering where those "concepts" are if they aren't contained in the universe.

And, I'll point out, yet again for those who can't be bothered to read up-thread IT WAS RICHARD DAWKINS WHO SAID IT, I WAS JUST REPEATING IT AND TAKING HIM AT HIS WORD THAT HE BELIEVED THAT. He purported his nihilistic view to be supported by science as he purports to be a scientist. That puts the onus on him to really mean what he says when speaking ex cathedra, so to speak.

It's not my fault that the atheists here don't seem to believe he really meant what he said, I believe he meant it as I do the other atheists who said similar things about morality not being real.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #117)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 08:54 PM

125. Sigh...

I'm wondering where those "concepts" are if they aren't contained in the universe.


Let me introduce you to this thing called "society"...

and I know it was Richard Dawkins who said what you quoted. What I pointed out, and will now point out again, is you obviously didn't even begin to UNDERSTAND what he said.

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #125)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:26 PM

132. You're claiming your society isn't in the universe?

 

Wow, even Hawking doesn't go that far out. Where is it? How many dimensions are there, there? What would Mr. All there is is the Cosmos Man, Carl Sagan, say about there being something other than the cosmos? Or maybe you live in "The Amniotic Universe"(chuckle).

What Richard Dawkins said in that quote is unambiguous. Having dealt with many of his quite ambiguous ideas, from his Just-so stories of evo-psy to his absurd invention, memes and his Bayesian incompetence in his 747 argument, that's one of the least ambiguous things he seems to be on record as having said.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #132)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 12:44 AM

133. No. I'm saying society =/= universe.

Do try to follow along.

And yes, actually what Dawkins said WAS unambiguous. Which makes it all the more pathetic that you still can't grasp it.

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #133)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 06:23 AM

135. Well of course society doesn't equal the universe it's an element

 

in the set of all of the things within the universe. It's a rather large set.

If you think this is ambiguous:

In a universe of electrons and selfish genes, blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won't find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe that we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but pitiless indifference.

you must not be reading it very carefully. Beginning with a clear assertion of life being merely a material entity, it is an absolute statement that purpose, justice, design, evil and good don't really exist. Since Dawkins entire professional life has been dedicated to the proposition that life is a merely material phenomenon, anyone who denies that's what he meant has to either be lying or they are ignorant of his work.

I will point out that if that is true then liberalism and democracy are a delusion. If there is no reality to justice then any requirement that the more powerful or fortunate have any requirement to treat weaker people well doesn't exist and they can treat weaker or less fortunate people like animals in a factory farm are treated, or worse. And there have been many materialists who either did that without bothering to articulate the idea or who have advocated that point of view.

Materialism is an absolutist ideology that is entirely incompatible with democracy and liberalism, if any materialists give lip service to those, even as they work to undermine their intellectual bases, it by lapses in their materialism, not by virtue of their materialism. Almost every atheist of any sophistication at all I've read or talked to is a materialist. Some of them may have lapses sufficient in their materialism to allow them to express liberal or democratic sentiments but history demonstrates that you can't count on that when materialists gain control of entire governments. There has never been an officially atheist, anti-religious government that has been anything but a dictatorship. There are many liberal democracies that have official, state religions, though I think a secular government is more just.

With the new atheism, I'm not pretending that materialism's incompatibility with democracy, inherent rights, justice, and equality isn't obvious. I'm not pretending that the new atheism is anything but a loser at the ballot box, insulting and jeering at more than 85% of the population. If Democrats allow people like that to become the face of the Democratic party, it will lose elections.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #135)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 09:43 AM

139. No, you're not reading it carefully.

Specifically you are *completely ignoring* the qualifier "at bottom". Which renders everything you are saying incorrect.

He is not saying there exists nowhere within the universe any concept of good or evil or justice. He is saying these are not absolute universal FUNDAMENTAL PROPERTIES of the universe or some magical super being that supposedly created and rules the place.

Get it?

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #139)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:15 AM

142. "At bottom" means at the most basic level

 

the level that, in his reductionist faith, determines the rest of it. It specifically means that he believes those are fundamental aspects of the universe, that those things are entirely absent. I know he's tried to backtrack on that, just as he has on much of the rest of what he's written as people have blown holes in it - memes, for example - but what he was expressing was a fundamental aspect of materialism purporting to be science. He's hardly the only big name in atheism to say that, it's a recurring theme of materialism.

Materialism, far from being a support of liberalism and democracy, destroys their most fundamental prerequisites which are all metaphysical. Equality, inherent rights, free will..... all of them are immaterial. Materialism will always undermine them.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #142)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:38 AM

144. Why yes, IT DOES. So why are you ignoring that?

And no, he hasn't tried to backtrack on that since it's a mind numbingly obviously true statement.

Good and evil and justice are VALUE JUDGEMENTS. They cannot exist as fundamental properties of the universe, they are created by thinking people. In... oh let's say... SOCIETIES. They're not properties of the universe like gravity or something.

Following along yet? Or do I have to reduce the number of syllables in the words I'm using to explain the simple straightforward meaning of what he is saying to you over and over and over?

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #144)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:01 AM

154. You are making my point.

 

Materialism holds that peoples' inherent rights are imaginary, as imaginary as it holds any other non-physical entities and the obligations of people to honor those rights are not binding. Democracy doesn't work when those rights aren't held to be real and that obligation is really binding on everyone. That is why materialist regimes have been, uniformly, brutal dictatorships under which those with power can use and dispose of people at their whim. Given that history, given statements such as Dawkins and similar ones by people like Jerry Coyne, I think choosing to not vote for materialists is a rational act. I'd have to have a full explanation from someone who believed what Dawkins said as to why they should be trusted with political power before they'd get my vote.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #154)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:14 AM

159. No, you just can't comprehend mine.

"Materialism holds that peoples' inherent rights are imaginary,"

There is a difference between collectively constructed and implemented societal standards and "imaginary" things.

And if you think there isn't, try going out and stealing some food from your local grocery store then telling the judge you can't be charged because laws are "imaginary" since people just thought them up instead of them existing as Laws with a big "L" like the Law of Gravity.


And with that I think we're done here. You're either too dense to have this conversation with or you're really good at pretending to be to avoid acknowledging error and either way I'm done wasting time with you.

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #159)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:52 AM

162. It's so odd that you can't see that you're confirming what I said.

 

Maybe you can't take the logical consequences of what you're stating. Which is a problem for you, not for me. I can see it and am not pretending I don't, anymore.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #162)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:38 PM

182. No, you just cannot comprehend what he is saying.

Par for the course.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #84)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 03:05 AM

192. they can damage the larger Democratic effort, they can't win elections.

No, the repugs lost this round because they believed in science...

Like a woman can shut down a rapists sperm
And global climate change is a hoax
And that anti-materialist tax code they championed.
And of course the religious element was all on the winning side!



"They were materialists and atheists, about which they can't be doubted as they were the ones who said so. "

Like it can't be doubted they were a republic! They said so!

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #66)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:37 AM

69. OK, so let me get this straight

1. If you are communist, then you have to believe and foster everything that Marx said.
2. Marx tried to distance himself from the Marxists because they weren't following what he said.

How are you not lying on the floor from being dizzy after putting that "argument" together?

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #69)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:51 AM

73. Marx famously said,

 

Je ne suis pas Marxiste" He didn't explain what he meant by it. I think he could see that the Marxists of his time were following a fad like blog atheists do and weren't serious people. Or it could be that he could see that they were going to end up badly.

It's not my fault if you guys never read what he and they said. All of the alleged materialist political ideologies believed they were scientific, I'm unaware of a single one that didn't claim scientific validity for their beliefs.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #73)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:57 AM

74. Um, you missed my point oh wise and great one.

Let me spell it out for you.

You support your claim that the communists like Stalin and Mao were killing in the name of science by stating that if they were communists, they had to be following Marx developed when he created the manifesto.

Then, you talk about how Marx distanced himself from them because he saw it was going to be a train wreck.

Then, when I point that contradiction out to you, you further your contradiction by pointing out the "Je ne suis pas Marxiste" line.

And follow up that logical blunder by trying to say that WE are the stupid ones and you are the wise ones.

Either they followed Marx or they didn't. By your own evidence, they didn't follow Marx. So if they didn't follow Marx, you really can't claim that they were following Marx for the one thing that proves your point but not anything else.

Fix your contradiction of shut your pie hole. And stop claiming intellectual superiority to "you guys" when you make such glaring contradictions. It makes you look like a tool.

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #74)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 12:37 PM

79. Well, anyone who murdered other people was not following Jesus

 

You can't say that Stalin and Mao were violating some tenet of materialism when they committed mass murder because there isn't one that prohibits it.

I don't claim to be wise. That is, unless you consider not talking about what I've never read is a great and unusual sign of wisdom. Which it seems to be to so many in these kinds of arguments. Being a blog atheist seems to mean never having to know what you're talking about.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #79)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:44 PM

90. You aren't serious, right?

79. Well, anyone who murdered other people was not following Jesus

There is so much fallaciously wrong with that sentence I don't know where to start. Oh, yeah, I do: No True Scotsman. Plenty else wrong, though.

And just as there isn't a tenent of materialism that prohibits mass murder there isn't one that tells them to do it, either. Which cuts against your point. I really hope you don't consider yourself good at argument.

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #90)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:53 PM

92. Jesus was absolutely clear, you were to treat people as you would be treated,

 

you were to love your enemy and pray for them, if you lived by the sword you would die by the sword. Anyone who did those and many other things were obviously in violation of what Jesus taught.

You can kill every last person on earth, every last organism if you want to and can and you wouldn't be violating any moral commandment of materialism. People are just objects under materialism. And materialists who have gained control of governments have pretty much uniformly acted as if they were.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #92)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 02:00 PM

95. So you can't be moral unless you have religion?

Seems to be the underlying point you are making.

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #95)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 02:59 PM

96. If a materialist acts morally they are not doing it from the basis of materialism

 

For crying out loud, it was RICHARD DAWKINS, the foremost professional atheist in the English speaking people, who said that, I didn't.


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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #96)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 03:34 PM

100. So then, conversely, from the point you make

if they do something "immoral" they are not doing it from the basis of materialism. Which contradicts what you initially said. See what I did there?

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #100)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 04:15 PM

103. Immoral acts are all based in selfishness, morality is effectively resisting selfishness

 

You can either give in to selfishness or you can resist it. Materialism gives no reason to resist selfishness, it gives a free pass to doing whatever you want to, your ability to get away with it is generally the only limit to doing that no matter what the consequences for other people are. That has been the sometimes tacit, sometimes admitted thrust of almost all of allegedly scientific materialism since the early 19th century and even before. Nietzsche was one of those who fully admitted it.

Religions generally teach limits on selfishness. That religious people have such a bad record of following the teachings of the religions they profess is only proof that it's difficult to overcome a propensity to selfishness, even with a belief in those restraints. Without them, in the cases where materialism has taken over governments, the results show that expecting more of a restraint in the absence of that belief results in a lot more depravity.

Materialism, by not providing any restraint on selfishness, effectively gives permission for it.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #103)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 08:07 PM

121. Does religion put a restraint on selfishness?

Do religious people ever act in selfish manner?

Have selfish people ever acted as if they believed their religion gave them permission for it?

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Response to trotsky (Reply #121)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:04 AM

155. I already pointed out that they do

 

even as they profess to believe in the obligation to not be selfish. If they can while doing that I don't see how anyone who longs for a society that holds that any obligation to restrain their selfishness has no more reality than a pink unicorn would act any better.

I used to pretend I didn't notice things like that in some misguided notion of leftist solidarity but with the new atheism I'm not pretending not to notice them anymore.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #155)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:13 AM

158. Given your inability to refrain from personal attacks, I have decided to place you on Ignore.

Good luck railing gainst leftist atheist communists.

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #95)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 05:30 PM

107. Nobody said that,

and don't know anyone who believes it Looks as if you are scratching to make a invalid point..

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #107)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 06:05 PM

110. So you weren't following along either

to see the point that I was getting to.

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #74)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 12:43 PM

81. You Got That Right

... and just observe, like in this thread, f.i. - how corrosive religion actually is. Magical thinking and superstition was, has been and continues to be a foil to all knowledge and one of the chief causes of human conflict and misery everywhere throughout the world. Stop with all the references to translations of copies of translations of writings originally put forth by a bunch of Bronze Age goatherds. How anyone over the age of twelve could take that collection of documents seriously is beyond me. Grow up and embrace reality and the methods we use to determine it.-

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Response to Ligyron (Reply #81)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 12:52 PM

82. Geesh, one more cliche and you get an egg roll.

 

I'm going to explain it, DEMOCRATS CAN'T WIN ELECTIONS WITH THE 1.6% OR SO OF THE POPULATION THAT IDENTIFIES THEMSELVES AS ATHEISTS. We can't win even if they got that figure up to 5% before the new atheist fad runs its course. Alienating religious people, the vast majority of the human species, is a political non-starter. It is a loser.

They didn't wipe out religion in the Soviet bloc, not even in the worst cases like Albania. They haven't in North Korea. The new atheism won't do it.

Why don't you folks all go bash religious people over at a Green message board, it won't do any harm to progress there.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #82)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:36 PM

180. You really have no idea what you are talking about, do you?

And your posts are caustic as well.

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #63)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:54 AM

191. How clueless do you have to be to think Stalin and Mao were, in the smallest way, motivated by "scie

yeah Mao revered science!

The great famine had nothing to do with them rejecting science!

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:46 AM

72. Lol, there are more literalists in this thread than in some churches.

Who'd have thunk it?

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Response to cbayer (Reply #72)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 12:02 PM

76. Yeah, hahahahaha

Except the only standard for what your father offers for what is to be taken literally and what isn't is:

THOSE THINGS I AGREE WITH SHALL BE TAKEN LITERALLY

The rest of us aren't literalists. We are just calling your father (and those that think like him) on his (their) bullshit. Unless you admit that there are some parts of the bible that you take literally, then Jesus is no different that Jay Gatsby. Except The Great Gatsby is better written than 99% of the bible and gives a better, and more consistent, message.

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #76)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:18 PM

83. Please, if you are going to take a swipe at me, go for it.

But don't be so cowardly that you think it is clever to do it through my daughter. We are two very different persons.

Having gotten that out of the way, a couple of points.
1-The essence of Communism is called "dialectic materialism."
"Dialectic" denotes Hegelian conflict in which all progress results from the inter-penetration of opposite ideals.
"Materialism" denotes the notion that nothing exists beyond stuff, and stuff is the sole object of the scientific method. Nothing else has either existence or meaning.

2-Modern Biblical scholarship does not cherry pick as absolute those texts which agree with its liberal position and leaves the nasty ones behind. It holds that all texts only point to a reality which is already in the culture which produced the texts, impelled by a vision of what is possible. It, however, sees all of history lured by a force to grow beyond itself--thus the theological apology for evolution. We hold that this "elan vital," which lures creation on, is one way to define God.

One of the rules of rational discourse is to hear the definition of terms as the one who holds those terms defines them.
That is not to agree, but only to hear. The opposite is the kind of diatribe which calls the perspective of the other "bull shit" without he slightest effort to hear. It is the approach of fundamentalists of all kinds.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #83)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:29 PM

86. a couple thoughts

1. I thought everyone else pointed out pretty well the problems with your OP. Felt like it would be piling on for me to say the same thing as everyone else.

2. As to my comment to your daughter:
2. a) She posted a comment on a public board.
2. b) She took a swipe at many people who responded to your post. Did you chastise her to not be so cowardly as to take a swipe at those people by thinking it is clever to do so in a response to you?
2. c) You certainly got caught in the crossfire, but my post was very clearly a swipe at her. And rather than use her passive-aggressive technique, I thought I would confront that which I wanted to take a swipe at directly even though I know she will never respond to me. What I did is called being an adult and addressing the conflict head on.
2. d) As I've noted before to you son-in-law, it smacks of a certain level of patriarchal protection for you to come in to her rescue. She's an adult and if she wishes to respond to me, I'll be happy to have that discussion.

3. As to dialectic materialism. Keep digging. Seriously, this is the best you've got as to how Stalin, Mao, et al were doing what they did in the name of science is:
"Materialism" denotes the notion that nothing exists beyond stuff, and stuff is the sole object of the scientific method. Nothing else has either existence or meaning.

That would be cute if it came from one of my high school students. It is just embarrassing coming from you.

4. So if nothing in the bible is to be taken literally and it is only a reflection of a culture and what is possible, please indicate to me why it is a better text than The Great Gatsby. Because without some level of literal interpretation of the bible by you, Jesus is no more real than Jay Gatsby was. There is NO support for a historic Jesus outside the realm of the bible. And if that isn't to be taken literally, you are following a poorly written narrative with contradictory statements on the human condition.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #83)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 10:12 PM

127. How typically arrogant of you and your gaggle of ivory tower academics

Claiming that "we" are the sole voice and mind of "modern biblical scholarship", and that your proclamations have superseded those of everyone else currently and down through history.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 12:07 PM

77. Graham was just punching a button for the GOP.

The whole "Biblical Values" thing was built up among Republicans who also considered themselves Evangelical as a way to try to bridge the gap between Mormons and Christians. It was nothing but a plea for everyone to vote Republican despite the deep seated misgivings of many Evangelicals. And it didn't work. Many Evangelicals, we'll never know how many for sure, simply didn't get out and vote for Romney.

What the GOP operatives in the churches couldn't go out and do was say "OK guys, we were just kidding about Mormons. They insist they're just Christians with a few additional texts and some other stuff. Go ahead and vote for Romney because we value your vote more than your soul at this point." That would not have gone over very well. So they just kind of hid behind a catch phrase like "Biblical Values" and made mention of the fact that Graham no longer considers the Mormon Church a cult. Hardly a ringing endorsement.


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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 08:30 PM

123. As A believing Christian I think that Biblical Values mean to live your life with integrity.

I think it means what our Lord said about loving our neighbor as ourselves. Loving God with your hear, soul, and mind. It means not being greedy, vengeful, or mean. It means doing the best you can.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 09:16 PM

126. Biblical morality: It's okay to commit genocide, to murder two year-old children clutching ...

at their mother's hem, based upon the actions of some.

See Noah, flood.

Biblical morality is not about how human's should behave, it's about how the main character of the book, the divinity figure, does behave. The book reveals the main character to be a genocidal madman, unworthy of belief let alone worship.

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Response to GodlessBiker (Reply #126)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 10:48 PM

128. !

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Response to GodlessBiker (Reply #126)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 06:38 AM

136. Noah's arc is a fable

 

"a genocidal madman"

Closer but not at all close. The god of that story isn't God, not as articulated later in the Bible. It's an entirely anthropomorphic conception of God more like those of other myths. The God articulated later in the Bible is no a man at all, not like human beings, entirely different from the anthropomorphic concept of god and gods. A God who can't be defined in human terms. A God who atheists don't like to deal with because it's more convenient to their purpose to deal with the more anthropomorphic God of Genesis.

The books of the Bible are written by people with the limited ability of people to conceive of things beyond our abilities. The God of the prophetic tradition of Judaism is entirely beyond description and will always be immune to new atheist mockery.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #136)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:36 AM

143. pretzel anyone?

 

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #136)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 03:52 PM

201. Ah, so what parts of the bible are fables

and what parts are true? Who decides? You?

If the Noah tale is a fable why is it included in the Bible? What aspect of the deity does it illuminate?

If the life of Jesus is factual why are there so many contradictions within the Gospels?

If the teachings of Paul were divinely inspired why are they derivative of older philosophies? Why does Paul contradict the gospels and himself? Why are the forged Pauline letters included - especially that noxious text Timothy?

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:55 AM

152. Unfortunately, the phrase has become code

for "brutally enforced patriarchy." That's all it means for a lot of the people using it.

They've never read the book they're using as a weapon. If they had, they'd have discovered a lot of the values you listed.

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Response to Warpy (Reply #152)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 01:14 PM

169. I agree.

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Response to Warpy (Reply #152)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 01:20 PM

170. Wow! After all we have seen here

it is a relief to find someone who actually is commenting on the original post.
Yes, "Biblical values" has been used by many as a code for brutally enforced patriarchy, as have many other perspectives, religious and non-religious. It is the kind of world we live in. Nevertheless, here and here now and then there are those who see something else, something noble and life-giving and respond to it. Sometimes what gets their attention and lures them on has religious roots. Often it does not. But the end product is the same. The opposite is also true for religious and non-religious alike. Despite the arrogance and hatred people who claim to follow Jesus have brought on the world, millions of others have seen a way to live that lifts themselves, others and the world led by a vision that is noble and life-giving. Whether the vision is born from religion or non-religion the result is the same and God is glorified--even if no notion of God is believed. That process which is both within all things and beyond all things is what offers a vision of the good. Plato called it the "world of forms." Jesus called it the "love of God." Teilhard called it the '"mega point." Bergson called it the "elan vital.'' Atheist who have seen what is noble have other names. They all come to the same conclusion. Life has meaning! The list I offered is just an affirmation of that notion. It stands against all forms of nihilism and distortions which abound no matter he claims of many religious and non-religious alike.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #170)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 01:40 PM

171. The Jewish conception of justice

 

and equality before God is one of the great contributions to world culture. Other traditions contribute other things but I'm not aware of any that have the same conception of justice.

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Response to Anthony McCarthy (Reply #171)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 04:06 PM

202. Right, So the pagan Saxon concept of equality before the Law

is not one of the great contributions to world culture or is derivative from the Jewish tradition. I think you may be wrong.

Or the Pagan Roman concept of all Romans having the same rights and duties under the law owes everything to the Hebraic codes.

And the Greek concept that all people are judged equally for the sin of hubris is sourced from Jewish ideas.

And the Jewish concept of laws owes nothing to the older codes such as Hammurabi?

And the Jewish codes do not state that certain people, ordained by God, are set to rule over all others?

Perhaps Jewish learning does not state that before the Lord all are as slaves, and as such do not contain what I would term a meaningful concept of equality.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #170)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:43 PM

183. WRONG AGAIN, TMO!!!! "Biblical values" has not been used as code for the non-religious.

And what the fuck does this mean?

Whether the vision is born from religion or non-religion the result is the same and God is glorified--even if no notion of God is believed.


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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #170)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 12:52 AM

185. Huh?

There is no god.

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Response to Warpy (Reply #185)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:38 PM

199. Warpy,

Absolutist statements are he product of fundamentalism, no matter who says them.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #199)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 07:09 PM

203. Like this one?

Whether the vision is born from religion or non-religion the result is the same and God is glorified--even if no notion of God is believed.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 05:26 PM

176. judgement and intolerence

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Response to Skittles (Reply #176)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:48 PM

184. Bingo, hit the nail on the head!

Succinct and to the point.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 01:49 AM

186. Billy Graham is a respected evangelical who has helped millions of people turn their lives around.

Really? Offering stone age fairy tales isn't much of a turn around.

"His support of Nixon was disastrous for him and for authentic religion."

What ARE you going on about this time? Ugh...

"Joyful sexuality—that’s a Biblical value. "

HAHAHAHAHA!!!!!! you're joking, right?

Not one thing you mentioned is exclusively in the Bible. There's no need to even evoke the Bible for any of them except as one of many sources for the "values". The are not "Biblical Values". They are just values.

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Response to AlbertCat (Reply #186)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:45 PM

200. Give me a definition of "values"

What sort of historic research have you done that tell us us what produces "values" or is that human nature untouched by persons and structures which which first articulated them?

Joyful sexuality? Try reading the unexpergated Song of Solomon.
It is just one of the Biblical descriptions. Or are you an expert on Biblical texts?

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #200)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 09:27 PM

204. Give me a definition of "values"

val·ue    Show IPA noun, verb, val·ued, val·u·ing.
noun
1.
relative worth, merit, or importance: the value of a college education; the value of a queen in chess.
2.
monetary or material worth, as in commerce or trade: This piece of land has greatly increased in value.
3.
the worth of something in terms of the amount of other things for which it can be exchanged or in terms of some medium of exchange.
4.
equivalent worth or return in money, material, services, etc.: to give value for value received.
5.
estimated or assigned worth; valuation: a painting with a current value of $500,000.


Jesus on a stick... can't you use a dictionary?

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #200)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 09:38 PM

205. Song of Solomon.

That is a sticking point for theologists. This dirty poem in the middle of the wretched book.

So it is interpreted as a love song to god..... not anything mortal.

Now you'll say "that's not true." but you will be wrong. I don't have to study it to know. It's kinda general knowledge since everybody wonders what it doing in there.... and gets that answer. For instance: I went to a concert by the excellent Stile Antico of medieval musical settings of the Song of Solomon, and even in the program notes they sited several theologians from several centuries that say it is to be interpreted as a love for god, not a woman.

You want good love making.... try Hinduism.

And everyone around you may be ignorant of other religions and philosophies, but I'm not. You don't have to be a scholar to know the Bible has little, if nothing, original in it.

But you're free to make up any crap you want. That's what theology is all about.

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Response to AlbertCat (Reply #205)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 01:11 AM

208. Sorry Albert The Song of Solomon is about erotic love.

There have been many religious prudes historically who refused to see eroticism in the Bible. Their reasons are different than yours. They are anti-sexual. You don't want to see it because you want to prove that the Bible is anti-sexuality, and anything that disturbs that conclusion must be ruled out of court. You and the fundies just agree. Either way it is called bigotry. I suggest that you just google "sexual love in the Song of Solomon.' or something like that. The references are just too numerous for me to repeat them--but they are all there. Have a look.

"A dirty poem."? Is that what sexuality is for you. Too bad.

You really don't have to be a Bible scholar to understand it. But it just might help avoid pontification.

I have been to India and seen and studied the beautiful erotic art and literature there. Have you? and what do you really know about it? It comes out of that ancient religion.

It is sad that many fundies hate sexuality and so have come up with the notion that the s of s is about love for God or the King. It is sad when intelligent people, like you, take their interpretation to prove that the Bible is anti-sexual. Why not look at religion like liberals do and not like fundies. It might open up a different world.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #208)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 04:27 AM

209. Sorry Albert The Song of Solomon is about erotic love.

I KNOW that...


but don't tell theologians.

As usual, you miss the point completely

Try to get out of your bubble more.... christ!

Some reading comprehension would be helpful too. It's like you didn't even read a word I said.... so bye bye

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Response to AlbertCat (Reply #209)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 11:33 AM

211. "It's like you didn't even read a word I said" - AC, that is what is so frustrating!

He responds that way with EVERYONE! No matter what is said, unless it is ejaculating praise and kudos all over his OP, he dismisses or ignores EVERYTHING else!

That tells me that he really, truly is a "Serious Theologian". He has his part down pat.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #208)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 04:31 AM

210. "A dirty poem."? Is that what sexuality is for you. Too bad.

Boy are you arrogant! Do you understand nothing?

I don't think it's dirty.... but as you yourself point out... a lot of theologians do.

Adios!

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Response to Thats my opinion (Original post)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 01:35 PM

212. The Bible is one sicko, violent, fucked-up book.

Last edited Fri Nov 16, 2012, 02:10 PM - Edit history (1)

Using as a guide is a pretty poor decision. I'd rather take it as messed-up fiction.

Oh, and Billy Graham is a corrupt snake oil salesman. Hopefully Gaaaawd 'n' Jeeeeezus will call 'im hoooome soon, to the fluffy Home for Old Charlatans in the Sky.

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Response to Arugula Latte (Reply #212)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 02:49 PM

213. Fundamentalists are easily spotted.

They reveal themselves when hey make categorical statements, particularly when they condemn those with whom they disagree. All fundies are not religious. Your post is a first-rate example.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #213)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 03:20 PM

214. Right. I'm a fundy. You found me out. Curses!

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Response to Arugula Latte (Reply #214)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 08:22 PM

215. Give us a defintition of fundamentalism--not religious but just generic.

And then decide whether you are one --or I am, or anyone who posts here.

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Response to Thats my opinion (Reply #215)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 10:16 AM

216. Someone who doesn't buy into irrational theological doctrines is not a fundamentalist.

Sorry. Nice try though.

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