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Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

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Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Ivan on Thu Jan 08, 2015 5:06 pm

First topic message reminder :

Most people who follow a particular religion do so because of geography. If you’re born in Iran or Indonesia, the odds are that you’ll be a Muslim. If you’re born in Spain or Italy, you’ll as likely as not be a Catholic. In Germany, you'll probably be a Catholic if you grow up in Cologne, Mainz or Bavaria, but a Protestant if you are raised in another part of the country. I suppose many of us aren’t able to detach ourselves from the conditioning we’ve received when young, but I still find it hard to accept that otherwise rational people will believe things that there is no logical reason to believe.

Virgin birth? Can you really believe that? How about resurrection, a fantasy that the early Christian Paul wrote about? Is it any coincidence that in his native Tarsus there were inscriptions calling Herakles, who died and descended into Hades, a divine saviour? The legend has it that Herakles came back to life in due course; does that sound familiar? And then there’s an angel called Gabriel popping in for a chat with Muhammad in his cave, while another angel, this time called Moroni, told Joseph Smith where to find some gold plates. A lot of people really believe all this nonsense.

The three Abrahamic religions – Judaism, Christianity and Islam – all teach that unquestioned faith is a virtue. Many protagonists assert that every word in the Bible or the Qur’an must be believed as the literal truth. The danger then is that some followers of those faiths read the more violent parts of the Old Testament, or the verses of the Qur’an which date from after Muhammad’s flight to Medina, and then interpret the requirements of their religion accordingly.

I wouldn’t dream of claiming that atheists don’t commit atrocities, for nationalism or some other political ideology, or just because they’re insane (although the latter often suffer from religious mania). But isn’t the idea of encouraging people to believe absurdities the first step on the road to committing atrocities such as 9/11, 7/7 and the Charlie Hebdo massacre?
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Tue Dec 01, 2015 2:26 pm

polyglide wrote:Dr, Sheldon,
                Let us try again, I know the dictionaries of late have changed and down graded the meaning of homosexuality as to previous definitions so lets take the latest.

                Homosexuality, a liking or sexual attraction to the same sex etc;

                Abnormality, a deviation, if homosexuality is not a deviation then what is it?.

                All the dictionaries of late have done is to attempt to cloud the issue to go along with the present attempt to appease as many people of different opinions as possible.

                What a word indicates is what the majority of people accept it as and as I have stated several times that the majority of the world populations will agree that homosexuality is abnormal.

                 Why you are concerned at the actual definition I cannot understand, one either agrees with it and accepts it or disgrees and feels otherwise.

                 There are numerous occasions when opinions differ but nothing other than a difference of opinion is involved.  

 You claimed all dictionaries defined homosexuals as perverts. You also claimed the dictionary you were using was the most current. You're now lying again,  so don't make me quote and link your posts yet again because I'll do it.

The definition of abnormality is moot, Sharina covered this extensively and debunked your nonsense completely.  Again I'll happily start quoting and linking those posts if you insist on misrepresenting or denying  them. 

It's sad you can't see how ludicrous it is for you to claim to know how the majority of people define a word, just to try and redefine it to support your prejudiced views. You seem to think claiming it's your opinion justifies hateful and homophobic remarks, this is simply not the case. Just because everyone is entitled to an opinion and to free speech, doesn't mean there are not consequences. 

"Why you are concerned at the actual definition I cannot understand, one either agrees with it and accepts it or disgrees and feels otherwise."

Obviously because you lied and claimed all dictionaries defined homosexuals as perverts. Would you like me to link the post again and quote it?

"There are numerous occasions when opinions differ but nothing other than a difference of opinion is involved."

Some opinions are pernicious and it behoves all decent people to challenge them. Racism, xenophobia, mysogyny and homophobia for example.

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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Tue Dec 01, 2015 2:33 pm

marcolucco,
I agree entirely that moderation and discernment should be used at all times, however, one can be testsed to the extreem by unfair comments.

I agree that many things are abnormal, it is just a word to explain a situation or disability etc; any stigma placed on using it is at the hands of those doing so, you can say the same about many words that can be used in several ways etc;

I would never go up to a blind man and say you are blind nor a handicapped person and say you are handicapped, I have helped the handiccaped for over 10 years one day a week and never once thought anything other than I wished I was as content as many of them are and would never even think of mentioning their handicap, in many ways I think I am more handicapped than them.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Tue Dec 01, 2015 2:54 pm

"by polyglide Today at 3:33 pm

marcolucco,
I agree entirely that moderation and discernment should be used at all times, however, one can be testsed to the extreem by unfair comments."

Imagine someone constantly calling you an abnormal unnatural perverted deviant in post after post. As you did to Awfultruth even after he gently and politely explained several times how offensive you were being. 

All I did was comment on the post content, nothing personal in my post and you respond with pure ad hominem.  It's not as if this is the first time either and I am the only poster who's been subjected to such abuse by you. You always end up playing the victim afterward as well.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Tue Dec 01, 2015 3:16 pm

Ivan,
Of all the atrocities that have occured on earth the majority will have had nothing to do with religion although many will have used religion as means of obtaining agreement.

As I have said many times , anyone open to manipulation can be persuaded to do almost anything, good , bad or indifferent.

So of course Valtaire is right but realy it is a meaningless question in the first place unless he is attempting to put all atrocities at the hands of those capable of ceating absurdities which in itself is absurd
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Tue Dec 01, 2015 7:30 pm

polyglide wrote:Ivan,
      Of all the atrocities that have occured on earth the majority will have had nothing to do with religion 
So with yet another sweeping and entirely un-evidenced claim you try to absolve a being that oversees 'everything' and has limitless choice, of any responsibility for what it allows to happen. I really do tire of pointing out how absurdly illogical this is. A being with omnipotence by definition would be entirely culpable for everything, it could be no other way.

Polyglide wrote: although many will have used religion as means of obtaining agreement.
Ah the No True Scotsman fallacy, another of your favourite common logical fallacies. LINK

Polyglide wrote:As I have said many times , anyone open to manipulation can be persuaded to do almost anything, good , bad or indifferent.
That's irrelevant to the point though, as I have said many times. It is precisely because young impressionable suggestible people are indoctrinated into believing that their first and even only moral responsibility is to a fictional deity, or a political ideology, and not to other human beings that they are capable of committing atrocities.

Polyglide wrote: So of course Valtaire is right
Never in doubt really, but I suspect you're about to provide a caveat.

Polyglide wrote: but realy it is a meaningless question in the first place
kerching.....there it is

Polyglide wrote: unless he is attempting to put all atrocities at the hands of those capable of ceating absurdities which in itself is absurd
Well why don't we re-read this meaningless question?
"Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?"
So no then, in plain English that clearly isn't what was asked.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by marcolucco on Wed Dec 02, 2015 12:14 am


     
polyglide wrote:Of all the atrocities that have occurred on earth the majority will have had nothing to do with religion although many will have used religion as means of obtaining agreement.
     As I have said many times , anyone open to manipulation can be persuaded to do almost anything, good , bad or indifferent.
     So of course Voltaire is right but really it is a meaningless question in the first place unless he is attempting to put all atrocities at the hands of those capable of creating absurdities which in itself is absurd
           

Voltaire's general statement is being used in the specific field of religion. People believe in the Ascension, the Assumption, parthenogenesis, the Resurrection .... and these are indeed absurd concepts. (Tertullian said: credo quia impossibile est - I believe it because it is impossible.) Those who have such phenomenal faith can inspire folk to commit atrocities. We know this from experience.

I don't know that the atrocities of history are largely non-religious; Aztecs, Jews, Huguenots, Catholics...... But whatever, we are looking at the religious aspect and we might conclude that if religion does lead people into savagery then religion is wrong. I don't go all the way with that conclusion: religion can produce excellent results, such as the missionary schools in Africa that have been praised by atheists.

Perhaps the worst of Christianity is over now; Islam now lays claim to killing in God's name.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Wed Dec 02, 2015 9:44 am

Eloquently stated if I may say so. To make a general sweeping claim that most of the atrocities committed had nothing to with religion, yet not even attempt to evidence it,  speaks for itself.  Like you marcolucco I'm dubious that such a claim is true.

Beyond that and again in agreement with your post, Voltaire's premise is being discussed in a forum for religious discussion, it makes sense therefore to apply that context. 

As for absurdities I couldn't agree more. Unfortunately you'll now be subjected to semantics about how we define absurdity and another invocation of the No True Scotsman fallacy.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Wed Dec 02, 2015 11:27 am

marcolucco,
I agree that the present state of the world is at the hands of false religious maniacs which is entirely in accordance with Bible prophercies.

I do not have to tell you the Bible references to substantiate this I feel you are well versed in what the Bible predicts.

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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Wed Dec 02, 2015 12:14 pm

by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD Today at 10:44 am
Unfortunately you'll now be subjected to semantics about how we define absurdity and another invocation of the No True Scotsman fallacy.

polyglide wrote:marcolucco,  I agree that the present state of the world is at the hands of false religious maniacs which is entirely in accordance with Bible prophercies. I do not have to tell you the Bible references to substantiate this I feel you are well versed in what the Bible predicts.

I did warn you. There are no bad christians, you see if they're bad then they're not really christians. I have tried in vain to explain this is a logical fallacy. I'm not sure what if any relevance this has to Voltaire's premise.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by marcolucco on Thu Dec 03, 2015 8:15 am


             
polyglide wrote:  I agree that the present state of the world is at the hands of false religious maniacs which is entirely in accordance with Bible prophercies. I do not have to tell you the Bible references to substantiate this I feel you are well versed in what the Bible predicts.
         
Hello polyglide; like you I seem to have acquired the ability to post and have the post vanish. Perhaps it is proof that miracles do happen in the 21st century. I had given examples of God's pretty nasty views on illegitimate children and those with damages testicles ( of all things). He seems to be in accord with throwing homosexuals off high buildings or burning them or stoning them (with stones!). Leviticus and Deuteronomy are not for the faint hearted. Religious maniacs don't have far to look for justifications of their maniacal behaviour.

Muhammad predicted that Islam would eventually divide itself into factions and lo! that is happening. Does that make Muhammad a great prophet or just a shrewd politician? Go well -you have an uphill struggle to make your God lovable.

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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by marcolucco on Thu Dec 03, 2015 8:22 am

" There are no bad Christians; you see, if they're bad then they're not really Christians."

Yes, that's a line taken by many apologists. It is common usage in the present situation regarding Muslim terrorists - they are not real Muslims, for Islam - as the world has learned -is a religion of peace.

I'm afraid I've nothing to offer you but agreement; we sing the same hymns, so to speak. Best regards.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Fri Dec 04, 2015 10:26 am

marcolucco,
I understand your comments regarding the actions of God that appear not those of a loving God etc; the same things I have had to consider on a number of occasions myself.

However, I have always come to the conclusion that if I believe in a creative loving God then I have to accept that whatever he does is relevant to the situation and however it may appear unacceptable in our limited means of consideration he must have a sound reason for anything done in his name.

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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Fri Dec 04, 2015 10:36 am

morcolucco,
WORDS ARE WONDERFUL thingsbut over a period of time theeeeir meaning can change. The classic example for me is "awful" , whic in the 17th century had a meaning of roughly equivalent to "awesome". Nowadays, most of us would use it to mean terrible or horrible. Another word that has changed its primary meaning in my lifetime is "gay", whic used to be applied to happy and fun-filled people of both sexes or a colourful display. Today it is predominatly use to refer to homosexuals. But for many other words the change is less dramatic and is mainly due to how it is perceived by the listener.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Fri Dec 04, 2015 10:39 am

marcolucco,
Sorry for the spelling and other mistakes I had to rush before it vanished.

The above is from a current publication relating to one of my hobbies and the most relevant part for me is the last sentence.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Fri Dec 04, 2015 6:41 pm

polyglide wrote:I have always come to the conclusion that if I believe in a creative loving God then I have to accept that whatever he does is relevant to the situation and however it may appear unacceptable in our limited means of consideration he must have a sound reason for anything done in his name.

So you can't exercise free will & morals at all, you just have to accept that no action, no matter how appalling or evil, is acceptable if your deity does it? Genocide, infanticide, ethnic cleansing, torture, even torturing a baby to death to punish adultery, kidnapping young child virgins to be raped after all other living beings had been murdered in a battle etc etc etc??
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by marcolucco on Sat Dec 05, 2015 1:05 am


             
polyglide wrote: WORDS ARE WONDERFUL things but over a period of time their meaning can change. The classic example for me is  "awful"

Yes, polyglide, in considering Voltaire's words it is necessary to examine their present meaning. Many of our words are derived from Latin, and when you look up a word in a Latin dictionary you usually find many meanings attached to the word and these meanings have developed over centuries. Often a word takes on a metaphorical meaning or sometimes a part begins to represent the whole or vice versa (called synecdoche). In taking words from the Bible it is important to know their precise meaning. Worship was originally the total honour paid to God alone, but now a girl can worship her father. It is important to know when we are diluting the meaning of a word.
In the present debate the important words are absurdities and atrocities. If people or books can persuade you to accept the absurd they are getting you to overrule your powers of reasoning. When Aquinas spoke of the Eucharist he said that sight, touch and taste are deceived - for under transubstantiation the bread and wine become body and blood. Millions believe this. The proposition is that the power used to make people accept THAT sort of thing can be used to get them to believe that murder is right or atrocities justified.

Your religion is basically the same as anyone else's. It doesn't matter what you call your God. The bits and pieces of belief may differ but this is mere colouring. Jesus was born in a stable at Bethlehem but for Muslims he was born to Mary under a great tree from which she plucked sustenance. It hardly matters. The glue of religion is FAITH. Today we can see that persuasive Imams can make people use Kalashnikovs to kill children. You - and they - would argue that there are NO absurdities in your religion. But truly there are things that challenge belief; things that faith accepts, such as rising from the grave. Voltaire's statement is being illustrated in our cities today.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Sat Dec 05, 2015 6:22 am

The proposition is that the power used to make people accept THAT sort of thing can be used to get them to believe that murder is right or atrocities justified.


polyglide wrote: wrote:I have always come to the conclusion that if I believe in a creative loving God then I have to accept that whatever he does is relevant to the situation and however it may appear unacceptable in our limited means of consideration he must have a sound reason for anything done in his name.


Ahem....
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Sat Dec 05, 2015 6:28 am

You - and they - would argue that there are NO absurdities in your religion.
He's already argued this, arguing against the examples of suicide bombers by claiming the absurd belief that their dead bodies would be reanimated in heaven with a daily supply of 72 virgins, would not be absurd to them. The resulting semantics were painful to read.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Sat Dec 05, 2015 11:18 am

marcolucco,
I take in what you say and as a none believer I accept that you cannot judge by faith and accept that which cannot be explained in human terms.

However, if you could beyond any doubt prove that God created everything and the Bible was the truth then there would be no need for faith or doubt.

I am not interested in any other faith than Christianity, I take the Bibles indication that there will be many false religions.

As I have said several times if anyone is open to their mind being manipulated then they can be persuaded to do almost anything based on anything choose how absurd it may be.

Anyone of sound mind will not be open to manipulation and be aware and able to deal with same.

What you are realy saying is that what some religions base their belief on is absurd ( to you and others) and to a certain extent I agree.

However, the only religion I am concerned with is Christianity and to quote others to me is a waste of time as I believe them to be false religions.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Sat Dec 05, 2015 11:19 am

You've missed the point again Polyglide.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Mon Dec 07, 2015 2:33 pm

marcolucco,
The most interesting of Voltairs quotes are:-

Chance is a word devoid of sense; nothing can exist without a cause.

God gave us the gift of life ; it is up to us to give ourselves the gift of living well.

The former interests me the most regarding all things.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Mon Dec 07, 2015 3:13 pm

Voltaire was a genius,  what people who quote mine general don't grasp is geniuses are still human and therefore fallible. Chance plays a part in all manner of things. A lottery win isn't caused,  it's pure chance an individual wins, yet week after week win it they do. What could it mean?
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by marcolucco on Mon Dec 07, 2015 9:20 pm


                 
polyglide wrote:Chance is a word devoid of sense; nothing can exist without a cause.

Chance is a word much used in mathematical statistics. It has a great deal of sense. Voltaire said that if God didn't exist it would be necessary to invent him. For those who believe in God we have a counterexample for the statement that nothing exists without a cause - God himself, the uncaused. But as I've said a few times before, when we are dealing with the frontiers of physics, we can't be too sure of our common sense axioms. Even in Euclid's geometry - the straight line is the shortest distance between two points SEEMS an undeniable truth, but we can build geometries where this is NOT a fact.


                  "God gave us the gift of life ; it is up to us to give ourselves the gift of living well."
This is more a platitude than an axiom for life. True, it has elements of Horace's carpe diem which is more hedonistic than Christian.

 
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Tue Dec 08, 2015 12:00 pm

Didn't Voltaire also say "all men are prisoners of the epoch in which they live"?

This would seem apropos for Polyglide's attempt to quote mine the great man, and use that quote without proper context.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Tue Dec 08, 2015 4:27 pm

marcolucco,
Have you ever just sat and thought, without taking anyone elses opinion and ideas into account, just how everything come into existance?.

Just sit out on a moonlight night and take in all the stars etc; think about all the plant life and all the animals etc; along with your ability to consider all that is available to you and then tell me that intelligence is not involved in creation.

My own feelings are that there must be an intelligence involved and mankind has not the comman sense to use that which he has avialble in a proper manner.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Tue Dec 08, 2015 6:25 pm

polyglide wrote:marcolucco,
               Have you ever just sat and thought, without taking anyone elses opinion and ideas into account, just how everything come into existance?.  Just sit out on a moonlight night and take in all the stars etc; think about all the plant life and all the animals etc; along with your ability to consider all that is available to you and then tell me that intelligence is not involved in creation. My own feelings are that there must be an intelligence involved and mankind has not the comman sense to use that which he has avialble in a proper manner.

All life evolved, this is a scientific fact that is as solidly evidenced as the rotundity of the earth. Postulating theories based on a priori beliefs about things you don't have an answer for is called argumentum ad ignorantiam. I believe we've done this already. Your relentless attempts to dismiss everyone who doesn't share your personal beliefs as lacking common sense is absurdly silly, and has long since become comedic and tragic in equal measure.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Wed Dec 09, 2015 11:04 am

Dr, Sheldon,
I am well aware of your ideas, I was asking Marcolucco for his opinion.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Wed Dec 09, 2015 2:02 pm

polyglide wrote:Dr, Sheldon,
                I am well aware of your ideas, I was asking Marcolucco for his opinion.

So what? I'm not stopping marculloco or anyone else from giving an opinion. This is a public forum, you seem to struggle with this concept. You're posting in a thread that's aimed at everyone, and off topic at that.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Sat Dec 12, 2015 11:37 am

Dr, Sheldon,
I have fully answered the topic.

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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Sat Dec 12, 2015 11:56 am

polyglide wrote:Dr, Sheldon,
                I have fully answered the topic.

I never mentioned otherwise, so am unsure why you're making this claim, though your posts indicated that your grasp of the topic is weighed down & clouded by your own religious dogma, and doctrine.

However you did asked the following which I answered..
Polyglide wrote:Have you ever just sat and thought, without taking anyone elses opinion and ideas into account, just how everything come into existance?.
I responded with "All life evolved, this is a scientific fact that is as solidly evidenced as the rotundity of the earth. Postulating theories based on a priori beliefs about things you don't have an answer for is called argumentum ad ignorantiam."

You also made this un-evidenced claim...
Polyglide wrote:My own feelings are that there must be an intelligence involved and mankind has not the comman sense to use that which he has avialble in a proper manner.
Now your own feelings are not evidence of course, and therefore this kind of strident claim is pretty meaningless, as is your general derogation of the entire human race's reluctance to defer to how you feel about you beliefs, and that anyone disagreeing with how you feel indicates a lack of common sense (yes that's how you spell common). However nothing we have learned about the universe or our planet indicates a single shred of evidence for an intelligent creator. So instead of telling us endlessly how you feel or what you believe you might try addressing that fact?
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by marcolucco on Sun Dec 13, 2015 10:56 pm


               
polyglide wrote:Have you ever just sat and thought, without taking anyone else's opinion and ideas into account, just how everything come into existence?. Just sit out on a moonlight night and take in all the stars etc.; think about all the plant life and all the animals etc.; along with your ability to consider all that is available to you and then tell me that intelligence is not involved in creation.

               My own feelings are that there must be an intelligence involved and mankind has not the common sense to use that which he has available in a proper manner.


Sorry, polyglide, I overlooked your post.

I write poetry, polyglide, and am not insensitive to the beauty around me. Keats said "beauty is truth, truth beauty" and we can tease our imaginations for a long time on that consideration. As a boy I would wander over a moorland and listen to curlews calling plaintively and I felt a sense of my smallness in the immensity and sound of nature; I believed in God then. When I contemplate the heavens now, of a starry night, I think in terms of the equations of an ellipse or a hyperbola and I can see that the movement around me is explained in beautiful mathematics. When I throw a stone into the air it cleverly moves in a parabolic motion, without any awareness of focus or directrix (parts of a parabola). When an owl sees the same things it does not reflect on any intelligence behind them; the intelligence comes from the mind or the imagination of the human beholder. The laws behind motion have been formulated by observers not by an initiator. In life there is a vast amount of scary randomness too. Ancient peoples looked at the Sun and saw a god; the seasons were explained in terms of gods. Your God may be a tad more sophisticated but he's an invention, to explain man's awe.

As for mankind being unable to use what he has available, I think he does pretty well. Across the globe man is in various stages of development - some tribes eat dead relatives, some shake each other by the genitals in a friendly greeting, others again regard Prince Philip as a god. To communicate with you I am using my fingers and a keyboard, something that would have stunned Seneca, the wise Roman. Man does well; he also behaves very badly. Many would say that much of his bad behaviour is caused by superstition and religion. This thread is about the extremes that people will go to in order to satisfy their God - and I think that if they sat and contemplated the night sky, and its beauty, then read Omar Khayyam, in the Fitzgerald translation, they would not carry out atrocities. For good to prevail we don't need gods - just civilised behaviour with an extra helping of kindness. Go well.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Mon Dec 14, 2015 3:55 pm

marcolucco,
I too write poetry and have had several published in the reevant publication.

Man can explain many things and only because there are laws that can be relied on, my piont is, who and how did these laws originate?.

It would take an awful lot to convince me that everything came about by chance.

Thoughout the ages mankind has behaved in varying stages of good, bad and evil and the same applies today.

As far as Chirtianity is concerned I feel that if the basics were adhered to and no compromises made there would be a far better world.

You know as well as I do that there are numerous anomalies in the past history of mankind and many of the atrocities have been carried out in the name of religion when the actual religion did not condone the bahaviour.

The present problem we have with the lunatics killing and raping etc; has nothing to do with any religion they are drug fueled idiots who are being paid to do the dirty work of those sat safe and sound ( so they think) who must be laughing their heads off at the stupidity of those thinking they are going to have a few virgins to play with etc; Why on earth do they not ask them why they are not too keen to join them?.

Christianity at the present time does not either condone any kind of henios activity or ask people to do anything other than lead a good life and as I have said previously I am not concerned about any other religion.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by marcolucco on Mon Dec 14, 2015 6:08 pm


               "Christianity at the present time does not either condone any kind of heinous activity or ask people to do anything other than lead a good life and as I have said previously I am not concerned about any other religion. "

As Donne said, no man is an island - one religion impinges upon another. Religions go through a period of change, moving through violent dogmatism to tolerance and then oblivion. Islam is going through the violent stage. Both Bible and Koran have passages that unambiguously advocate violence. Good people will act morally, regardless of what they believe in.

As a person who has been brought up on rigorous proofs I find the assumptions we have to make to establish God by rational thought are unacceptable. It is even worse to imagine that a deity would be so displeased with our reasoning that we'd be punished. Benevolence would smile on our ignorance and praise our infant efforts. Why would there be more merit in blind acceptance, like the schoolboy who just writes an answer he has guessed?
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Mon Dec 14, 2015 6:59 pm

polyglide wrote: Man can explain many things and only because there are laws that can be relied on, my piont is, who and how did these laws originate?.
Those laws are created by humans, to explain how we perceive the workings of the universe, the explanations quite obviously wouldn't exist independently of human thought. We can explain things because of science, and the way it allows us to remove our inbuilt subjectivity, and accrue and examine evidence objectively.

Polyglide wrote:It would take an awful lot to convince me that everything came about by chance.
Why do you persist with this stupid creationist lie? You've been told repeatedly that science doesn't claim this? Chance playing a part in random events doesn't mean everything cam e about purely by chance, do try not to ignore what you don't like to hear, random events given enough time and repetition are mathematically certain to produce complexity. The more repetition and the longer they occur the more complex the results. Given the universe is 14 billion years old and there are 100 billion stars in our galaxy and a billion galaxies in the universe that we know of that's a lot of repetition to produce just one planet with potential to produce life, so it isn't 'entirely by chance' at all. Not that it matters as you'll ignore this fact again as you've done every time before.

Polyglide wrote:Thoughout the ages mankind has behaved in varying stages of good, bad and evil and the same applies today.  As far as Chirtianity  is concerned I feel that if the basics were adhered to and no compromises made there would be a far better world.
Why? Evidence that claim...

Polyglide wrote: You know as well as I do that there are numerous anomalies in the past history of mankind and many of the atrocities have been carried out in the name of religion  when the actual religion did not condone the bahaviour.
No True Scotsman fallacy.
Exodus 22.18 "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live."

However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you. You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land. You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance. You may treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way. (Leviticus 25:44-46 NLT)

When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property. (Exodus 21:20-21 NAB)

Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ. (Ephesians 6:5 NLT)
...care to try again?

Polyglide wrote:
The present problem we have with the lunatics killing and raping etc; has nothing to do with any religion they are drug fueled idiots who are being paid to do the dirty work of those sat safe and sound ( so they think) who must be laughing their heads off at the stupidity of those thinking they are going to have a few virgins to play with etc;

You said rape was ok if your deity advocated it, not just brape either, but anything it did or advocated, would like me to quote the post?

Polyglide wrote:Why on earth do they not ask them why they are not too keen to join them?. Christianity at the present time does not either condone any kind of henios activity or ask people to do anything other than lead a good life and as I have said previously I am not concerned about any other religion.  
You've got a short memory, and a selective one, you yourself claimed that murder, rapine, genocide, child sacrifice et al were ok by you as your deity must have a good reason, if that isn't the most breathtaking hypocrisy I don't know what is.  
   
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:46 pm

Dr, Shedlon,
I have no idea what brape is.

I will reaffirm what I have stated previously.

Anything attributed to God that is true I agree with.

This I base on the fact that you nor I nor anyone else could possibly know the consequences of God not doing so.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:53 pm

marcolucco,
Just a little ditty,

Some people believe in evolutiuon
But how can this be the solution?
How on earth can this be
When a lttle acorn grows into a large oak tree
Man seeks answers every day
When realy all he has to do is pray
God will always answer everyone
Through his beloved son
Some may scoff and boast
They are the ones who need help the most.

God be with you.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:56 pm

Well clearly the consequences would be that men women and children would remain unmurdered and unraped.  Now clearly you have no moral problem with rapine and murder and genocide as you've said so. I on the other hand can not conceive of a scenario where these would be morally acceptable, but then I'm not a christian, nor am I religious and base my morals on the wellbeing of others not the sadistic whims of a deity.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by polyglide on Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:27 pm

Dr, Sheldon,
How you cannot understand my opinion regarding the matter of God knowing the consequences and mankind not knowing I do not know.

You are very happy that the atom bomb was dropped on Japan because you THINK if we had not done so the consequences would have far outweighed the thousands of men women children and pregnant women etc along with those still suffering from radiation etc; in the most henios manner.

Now you THINK that, the fact is Japan may have decided to surender in any case when Germany fell and all that meyhem may have been saved.

However, God would be fully aware of not doing what he did which makes just a little difference do you think?.
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by marcolucco on Tue Dec 15, 2015 6:36 pm



                "Some people believe in evolutiuon
                But how can this be the solution?
                How on earth can this be
                When a little acorn grows into a large oak tree
                 Man seeks answers every day
                 When really all he has to do is pray
                 God will always answer everyone
                 Through his beloved son
                 Some may scoff and boast
                 They are the ones who need help the most."

To which the frustrated seeker might reply:

                 Though people seeking answers pray
It would appear God's gone away
And those who turn their eyes to heaven
Discover that no answer's given.
What father, asked to help his son,
Instead of bread gives him a stone?
So said the Lord -but it would seem
Divine assistance is a dream.
When wanting rain folk pray and dance
But if showers fall, they fall by chance.
If only God would make it clear
That he exists by shouting "Here!"
Instead of being coy and mute
He'd quickly settle our dispute.
On that event place no reliance,
We'll have to get along with science.



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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Tue Dec 15, 2015 9:21 pm

polyglide wrote:Dr, Sheldon,
                How you cannot understand my opinion regarding the matter of God knowing the consequences and mankind not knowing I do not know.

How can you keep making the same asinine claim that everyone has failed to understand you, just because they point out how ludicrous, and poorly thought your arguments are. Making bland assumptions about what an omniscient deity thinks isn't very compelling since you have no evidence it exists in the first place, and are simply waving away the evidence of your own bible because you have no reasonable answer as to why anyone would worship a being that is by any measure appears a nasty, sadistic, genocidal narcissist, that advocates and commits atrocities like genocide, rapine, slavery and infanticide/child sacrifice, even torturing a baby to death to punish it's parents for adultery. You claimed you have no problem with any of this if your god does it, and only religion can convince people that the worst kind of immoral turpitude is in fact moral rectitude.

Polyglide wrote:You are very happy that the atom bomb was dropped on Japan
Liar, I have never claimed to be happy about it you cretin, you really are a shameful liar Polyglide. I dare you to try and quote a single post of mine claiming that.

Polyglide wrote:because you THINK if we had not done so the consequences would have far outweighed the thousands of men women children and pregnant women etc along with those still suffering from radiation etc; in the most henios manner.

Who knows what the consequences would have been, but the culpability for the bombings rest at least as much with the fascist leaders of Japan at that time, who had waged a truly barbaric and amoral war of attrition on anyone that was unlucky enough to fall under their control, but you prefer to ignore all facts that don't mesh with your incoherent ramblings, just as when you asked fro examples of more depraved acts than the bombings and I gave a list, which of course you completely ignored. If you think me wrong then try answering why the bombings were worse than the Nazis Holocaust, or the aptly named Japanese army's 'Rape of Nanking' as just two examples?


Polyglide wrote:Now you THINK that, the fact is Japan may have decided to surender in any case when Germany fell and all that meyhem may have been saved.
I never claimed this or even implied it, this is just a dishonest lie you've made up. You're fundamentally incapable of honest intelligent discussion. There are two r's in surrender, and mayhem has only one e.

Polyglide wrote:God would be fully aware of not doing what he did which makes just a little difference do you think?.  
You're now trying to claim that a being that has limitless choice, 'had' to commit endless vile atrocities. That's asinine logic, and morally repulsive. What that has to do with the Japanese fascist government's complete betrayal of it's people by indoctrinating them into a vile racist militaristic nationalistic regime whose brutality easily outstripped Nazis Germany, only you can know. What's your point here? You're not making any sense at all. Either God has limitless choice, or it had to act in a certain way by torturing babies to death, committing genocide, advocating mass rapine, and sex slave trafficking etc etc..which is it?
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Re: Do you agree with Voltaire that “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”?

Post by marcolucco on Wed Dec 16, 2015 8:40 am

polyglide, it was entertaining to discuss with you. Some of my closest friends are firm believers and I respect them for that; my sainted mother-in-law goes every week to church and obviously gets something from the experience. If I take her I feel out in the cold, unable to warm to the words of the Lord's assignee.

I will let you and Dr. Sheldon continue your unsolvable dispute. Apologies for the little interruption - I perhaps stayed rather longer than I intended. I liked this little religious oasis of relative calm here.
Have a good Christmas and remember marco when you get round to the Bleak Midwinter carol.
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