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#475681 - 10/12/01 09:34 AM Re: TERRORIST COMICS: Time to Take a Stand!
columnist Offline
Member

Registered: 04/22/01
Posts: 360
Loc: Evanston, IL, USA
Quote:
Originally posted by Jesse Hamm:

Larry: I'm always amazed at that line of argument that reasons "Communism shows what happens without God."

It's more like,"Communism shows what happens when we behave as though God does not exist."



Only if you also accept the statement "The WTC attack on Sept 11 shows what happens when we behave as though God does exist." I think the two statements are equally valid.

- Larry H

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#475682 - 10/12/01 09:38 AM Re: TERRORIST COMICS: Time to Take a Stand!
columnist Offline
Member

Registered: 04/22/01
Posts: 360
Loc: Evanston, IL, USA
By the way, past experience says this thread is too long, and will begin crapping out pretty soon.

Caveat Emptor.

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#475683 - 10/12/01 09:53 AM Re: TERRORIST COMICS: Time to Take a Stand!
columnist Offline
Member

Registered: 04/22/01
Posts: 360
Loc: Evanston, IL, USA
Quote:
Originally posted by Kal:

Now as I said, I have known a number of people (at least 4 that I remember) who have had a premonition of a future event which then happened. Each of you may know of similar occurrences. Is this proof (by your argument) that free will does not exist?


Free will does not preculde limitations based on physical/logical restrictions. For instance, I am not free to escape Earth's gravity on my own power, no matter how much I wish to fly to the moon. If I attempt to flap my arms and fly, and you "predict" that I will fail, you will be correct. Does that mean I don't have free will in general? I don't think so. It just means that free will only applies within the limitations imposed by the physical world.

Some people may see the big picture better than others, and be able to predict events which to them look inevitable (i.e., "there will be a war in the next 100 years").

However, I will also say to be wary of putting too much stock in predictions. We tend to notice the "successful" ones and not the many more wrong ones. For instance, there is a stock market scam which goes something like this:

1) Send 8000 people an ad for your service in which you predict that stock A will increase in value in the next 10 days. Send a similar letter to 8000 different people predicting stock A will decrease in value.

2) In ten days, ignore the group you sent the "wrong" prediction to, and split the "winning" group into further halves. Send 4000 a new prediction and 4000 the opposite predicion.

3) you get the idea...repeat two more times

4) At this point, you have 1000 potential clients who have seen you make four successful predictions in a row. They think you are infallible, and are open to trusting you. Milk them for all they are worth.

Note how much power you seem to have to the folks getting all of your letters. Yet note how absolutely NO predictive power is necessary to perpetrate this scam.

- Larry H

Edited to correct bolding




[This message has been edited by columnist (edited 10-12-2001).]

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#475684 - 10/12/01 11:39 AM Re: TERRORIST COMICS: Time to Take a Stand!
Kal Offline
Member

Registered: 09/25/01
Posts: 113
Wow, that’s a pretty neat scam Larry.

Your comments regarding vague, simple or limited-possible-outcome predictions are absolutely valid. However, most of the ones I was referring to do not fall into that category. I’m talking about really freaky stuff. To quote one example (ironically from a friend who is, I’d say, at least as cynical about the supernatural as anyone here. He doesn’t quite know what to make of it himself)...

Years ago he had a dream where a light aircraft was flying across a clear sky, then all of a sudden the aircraft stopped and crashed (this is how he described it to me) and when he looked at the wreckage it had become a motorbike. The next day he received tragic news that a friend had been killed in a motorbike accident. When he and some other friends went to the location of the accident, he saw that it was right in front of an aircraft charter office and there was a billboard with a picture like he had seen in his dream, of the aircraft flying across the clear sky.

Another (totally unrelated) person some years ago, told me about a similar dream where he pictured a car accident. He clearly pictured the car (a utility from memory) passing by and then crashing behind him. Sometime after the dream (I can’t remember how long) he was traveling in a car and the exact same scene started playing itself out. He saw the other car go past and he told the other person in his car what was about to happen. It did.

There are other predictions which where not dreams as such, but just a ‘knowing’ somehow that something was going to happen. Not all were negative. One was a positive prediction of a safe arrival of someone at a specified time (more easily dismissed as coincidence, but not so easy to explain the ‘knowing’ with absolute certainty as it was described).

Another friend of mine once awoke from a dream on a bus trip and described a scene he had clearly pictured to the person sitting next to him. Later (the same day I think) during the trip, as they were stopped at a place (he had never been there previously) the other person pointed out that the scene was just as he had described it in his dream. Indeed, it was the scene he had pictured.

In every case, it wasn’t something that the person could control (like a supposed clairvoyant might claim to be able to do) but something that just happened.

Has anyone else heard first-hand of (or personally experienced) these kind of things?

Anyway, must go — I’ve got 8000 stamps to lick.

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#475685 - 10/12/01 08:26 PM Re: TERRORIST COMICS: Time to Take a Stand!
Elliot Kane Offline
Member

Registered: 08/17/01
Posts: 2337
Loc: London, England
Jesse...

How do the guidelines for worship in the Bible go against the practises of Islam or Judaism? Do they at all? Or is it simply church practises that are different?

What is the difference between Icons (as used by the Catholic Church) and Idols? I have NEVER been able to figure that one out. One is a little painting or statuette you pray to, and the other is... Er... A little painting or statuette you pray to... Where am I going wrong, here?

I would have thought Polytheists would more come under "Thou shalt worship no other God before me" as not all of them use Idols or graven images of any kind.

Calling something false and persecuting it may technically be different, I will grant you, but the line is a very thin one and too easily crossed.

Where is the love in condemning good people to Hell because they follow another religion? Isn't that rather like saying that your beliefs are more important than your actions? Isn't Christianity all about mercy and forgiveness?

My regard for humanity is entirely arbitrary, no argument, but as long as people are around anyway then the type of society they create and the social mores they live within are important. These values have reason for their existence, and so are not arbitrary.

Hair splitting perhaps, but I always try to seperate my opinions from anything that may have some factual base. The two are not always the same.

Oh, and I never critique without facts at my command. Whether you agree that they are facts or not is another story, but my arguments are based on logic, so I am NOT the kind of critic I decry.

Ah... Plausibility. And how certain IS certainty? I have always been amused that scientists seem to gain the same kind of unreasoning belief and faith in whatever they say that priests used to get in the Middle Ages. Which is NOT an insult to priests. Jesse, by the way, but a comment on how far faith in science has overtaken faith in God.

The general consensus always seems to be that all scientists must speak sense, just because they are scientists. It is often forgotten that they are people too, and just as fallible as anyone else.


***

Charlie...

If scepticism is the more intellectually honest position, are you now an Agnostic, perhaps? [img]/resources/ubb/smile.gif[/img]

Isn't that what I said at the start? [img]/resources/ubb/smile.gif[/img]


***


Columnist...

Thanks for the added notes on free will/predestination, communism et al...

I agree with you totally.

Ditto on your comment to Jesse at the top of this page.

***

Kal...

I didn't ignore you, I just agreed with you.

As for precognition, it is a pretty well documented fact. All sorts of people from all walks of life have these kind of future glimpses.

Sometimes they are warnings of what MIGHT happen, and foreknowledge has enabled people to avoid a nasty fate.

Personally, I believe we are all psychic to some extent, and this sometimes manifests itself in future prediction or other psychic phenomena, even if it is only the 'sixth sense' that tells us when we are being looked at.

But that's a whole other subject, and nothing to do with the matter at hand...
_________________________
Elliot's forum - The Chaos Cascade - welcomes all nice people.

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#475686 - 10/13/01 07:47 AM Re: TERRORIST COMICS: Time to Take a Stand!
Kal Offline
Member

Registered: 09/25/01
Posts: 113
Anyone coming late into the discussion might be a bit confused. I hope this clears things up...

[img]http://www.starkis.com.au/misc/comics_discussion.gif[/img]

Any similarity to actual people is not purely coincidental, but is nonetheless highly unlikely. Take it easy guys!

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#475687 - 10/13/01 08:14 AM Re: TERRORIST COMICS: Time to Take a Stand!
Elliot Kane Offline
Member

Registered: 08/17/01
Posts: 2337
Loc: London, England
Kal...

That is wonderful! You have a real gift there!

I'm keeping that image to laugh at long after our discussion is over [img]/resources/ubb/smile.gif[/img]
_________________________
Elliot's forum - The Chaos Cascade - welcomes all nice people.

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#475688 - 10/16/01 12:30 AM Re: TERRORIST COMICS: Time to Take a Stand!
Kal Offline
Member

Registered: 09/25/01
Posts: 113
...leave your message after the tone...

Beep...

Hello...? Hello? Charles? Larry? Jesse? Pick up if you're there...

Didn't mean to scare everyone away with my cartoon... It was just a joke... Guys...?

-Click. Beep... beep... beep...

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#475689 - 10/16/01 01:35 AM Re: TERRORIST COMICS: Time to Take a Stand!
Jesse Hamm Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/01
Posts: 682
Loc: Portland, USA
Kal -- great cartoon! Although I look nothing like that. And you should know better -- you've read my autobio stuff! (Too bad there weren't many female participants on this thread; Kal draws such pretty women.) And no, I wasn't ignoring you (or Elliot); just been busy.

Elliot,

Quote:
How do the guidelines for worship in the Bible go against the practises of Islam or Judaism?


Here and elsewhere in this post, Scripture speaks more eloquently than I could:

"Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God's wrath remains on him." ~John chapter 3, verse 36 (great chapter; Jesus elucidates further therein)

"Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation -- if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel." ~Colossians 1:21-23

And that gospel is "the word of faith we are proclaiming, that if you confess with your mouth,'Jesus is Lord,' and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved." ~Romans 10:8-9

(By the way, I have to add that the relationship I have with God, through Jesus, is the most fabulous thing I've encountered or could ever imagine. I don't add that as an argument, or even an elucidation, but simply as a post-script which I couldn't resist. It's easier to avoid 'witnessing' when discussing dry logic, but when we get near the gospel, everything in me screams,"I'm changed! I'm alive!!")

Quote:
Calling something false and persecuting it may technically be different, I will grant you, but the line is a very thin one and too easily crossed.


Regardless, we're stuck with calling things false. Every statement made (e.g., "There are two gods"..."religious exclusivity is wrong") implies the falsehood of its own denial.

Quote:
Where is the love in condemning good people to Hell because they follow another religion?


"There is only One who is good. But if you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments." ~Jesus (Luke 19:17)

Quote:
Isn't that rather like saying that your beliefs are more important than your actions?


Jesus said,"The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent." (John 6:29)

Quote:
Isn't Christianity all about mercy and forgiveness?


"Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane.... Going a little further, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed,'My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me.'" ~ Matthew 26:36,39

"But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." ~ Romans 5:8

Quote:
My regard for humanity is entirely arbitrary, no argument, but as long as people are around anyway then the type of society they create and the social mores they live within are important.


I just don't see how the fact that people "are around anyway" makes their social mores important.

Quote:
my arguments are based on logic, so I am NOT the kind of critic I decry.


When I said "the sort of critic you're decrying," I was referring to those critics who criticize religions.

Quote:
What is the difference between Icons (as used by the Catholic Church) and Idols?


Since I'm not a Catholic, I'll leave it to Catholics to field that one.

I'm leaving soon on a trip, and probably won't get to return to these boards for a couple of weeks. And like Charles, I doubt I'll return to this thread, since I think it's pretty much run its course. (Which isn't to say that I begrudge Elliot his response to this post.) But it's been fun, guys! Thanks for helping keep up a friendly, thoughtful atmosphere, Elliot. I look forward to "seeing" you again here at Comicon.
_________________________
http://jessehamm.blogspot.com

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#475690 - 10/16/01 08:05 AM Re: TERRORIST COMICS: Time to Take a Stand!
Elliot Kane Offline
Member

Registered: 08/17/01
Posts: 2337
Loc: London, England
Jesse...

Thanks for the answers.

None of your quotes are about practises, only doctrine, which is obviously going to be different.

Nowhere does it say "The only good priests are those who wear white dresses" or anything like that. So I guess I win this one [img]/resources/ubb/smile.gif[/img]

***

Seriously though, this has been great fun, but I think it is finally over.

Charlie: your knowledge of philosophical works and terminology is astounding. You give an impressive voice to your views.

Jesse: strong faith and strong theological knowledge make for a potent combination. You're no mean philosopher either.

Larry: the king of metaphor. What the rest of us spend three pages trying to explain, you sum up in one sentence. A useful talent indeed.

Kal: the seeker of truth... You have made an impressive start on the road, and I wish you good journey. Do something with that cartooning talent of yours. You have a real gift.

All of you: Good luck wherever you may go and in whatever you do.

Hopefully we will all be disagreeing with each other on another forum real soon [img]/resources/ubb/smile.gif[/img]

Best wishes.

EK
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Elliot's forum - The Chaos Cascade - welcomes all nice people.

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