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Nareed
Nareed
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October 24th, 2011 at 11:54:15 AM permalink
Quote: HotBlonde

We think we really KNOW things but do we really? If I'm in my bedroom and I want to go into the living room can I be absolutely certain that the living room really exists and is there on the other side of the door?



Not knowing the layout of your place, I can't say. But I do know if I'm at my desk and want to go to the kitchen, it's certain the kitchen is right through the door to my left. There's no doubt about it. If I ever step into the kitchen and find something else, I'll let you know.

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Can I be absoulutely certain that Abraham Lincoln existed? There's a 99.999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999+% chance that he did but can I ABSOLUTELY know that?



Yes, because he's been described by a multitude of sources, there are photographs of him, records of him, and not too long ago there were even people alive who knew him.

Look, you can ask the same question of everyone in history, myth and the present. if you do, you'll exhaust yourself and never be avble to do anything else. You can also ask the same question about everything as well. But what's the point? Sure, some things you cannot know of your own first-hand expereince. And so? You have enough first-hand experience to be able to judge what you learn about second- or third-hand.

So when you read about Lincoln or Neapoleon, or Lee or Wellington for that matter, you know how much to trust what you read. That doesn't amke what you know any less certain.

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I just read this and it reminded me of our current discussions: "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." - Aristotle



Certainly. Aristotle means you can evaluate and judge a thought without accepting. Indeed, you should do that before accepting or rejecting it.
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HotBlonde
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October 24th, 2011 at 12:21:09 PM permalink
Quote: Nareed

But I do know if I'm at my desk and want to go to the kitchen, it's certain the kitchen is right through the door to my left. There's no doubt about it. If I ever step into the kitchen and find something else, I'll let you know.

So there's no possibility that one day you could go to walk in there, certain that the kitchen is there as it's always been, and instead now there's a gaping hole? Whether it be from the effects of an earthquake or a bombing or whatever, are you saying there is no other possibility other than that the kitchen will actually be there?

Quote: Nareed

Yes, because he's been described by a multitude of sources, there are photographs of him, records of him, and not too long ago there were even people alive who knew him.

And YOU choose to believe this. It doesn't matter whether it actually happened or not. You say yes with such certainty but we're overlooking the fact that there is nothing that is 100% certain. Look at the movie The Truman Show. Although it is a fictional story, Truman lived his life thinking it was what he percieved it to be when in actuality it wasn't what he thought it was at all.

Quote: Nareed

Look, you can ask the same question of everyone in history, myth and the present. if you do, you'll exhaust yourself and never be avble to do anything else. You can also ask the same question about everything as well. But what's the point? Sure, some things you cannot know of your own first-hand expereince. And so? You have enough first-hand experience to be able to judge what you learn about second- or third-hand.

That would be entirely exhausting, you're right. But if there is a 0.0000000000000000000000000000000000000001+% chance that something could be different than what it's percieved as then you have to admit there is no way we can ever be absolutely (100%) sure of anything.

Byron Katie says that no thought is true. The wonderful and freeing thing about this is that we can question the thoughts that we've held on to all our lives as fact (sex can actually be "bad", my mother should love me, we're supposed to be nice to one another, etc.) and come out on the other end realizing that what we thought we knew is really just a bunch of concepts that we've attached to and that's it. They have no value.

Katie also says that if we completely and stubbornly eliminate any possibility that something could actually not be true we have now closed our minds and simultaneouly closed our hearts.
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HotBlonde
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October 24th, 2011 at 12:26:53 PM permalink
Look at the case of being transgendered, if you don't mind. There can be people who say that it is wrong, perverted, not in accordance with God's plan, etc., etc. Is that true? Then there are others who say it is fine, there's nothing wrong with it, transgendered individuals are just following their hearts, etc. But the thing with opposing opinions is that no one is right, both are wrong. It is what it is without words to describe what it is, plain and simple. It's only us as humans who attach words and meanings to things. Take that away and you see what exists just simply exists.
OFFICIALLY and justifiably reclaimed my title as SuperHotBlonde!
Nareed
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October 24th, 2011 at 12:52:34 PM permalink
Quote: HotBlonde

So there's no possibility that one day you could go to walk in there, certain that the kitchen is there as it's always been, and instead now there's a gaping hole? Whether it be from the effects of an earthquake or a bombing or whatever, are you saying there is no other possibility other than that the kitchen will actually be there?



I suppose something could ahppen to the kitchen, yes. But absent things like earthquakes, bombing, or even remodelling, I'm certain the kitchen will be there.

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And YOU choose to believe this. It doesn't matter whether it actually happened or not. You say yes with such certainty but we're overlooking the fact that there is nothing that is 100% certain.



Maybe you can't be certain of some thign you did not learna bout first-hand. But it doens't matter, so long as you can be reasonably certain. It's prefferable than to say "there's a remote chance abe Lincoln was a cannibalistic, alien deity from antoher dimension, so maybe we should view all his words with suspicion, or maybe there was no civil war at all, but the alien god Lincoln used hispowers to persuade evruone there was; and of course he ate all the fallen soldiers and the parts removed from the "wounded" ones"

What benefit is there to that?


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Look at the movie The Truman Show. Although it is a fictional story, Truman lived his life thinking it was what he percieved it to be when in actuality it wasn't what he thought it was at all.



Great movie. People can be fooled, no question. Even so, if you as a spectator do not suspend your disbelief, won't buy the fact that Truman was fooled for so long.

Quote:

Byron Katie says that no thought is true. The wonderful and freeing thing about this is that we can question the thoughts that we've held on to all our lives as fact (sex can actually be "bad", my mother should love me, we're supposed to be nice to one another, etc.) and come out on the other end realizing that what we thought we knew is really just a bunch of concepts that we've attached to and that's it. They have no value.



I fail to see any value in thinking that way, sorry.

To be sure you can know things that are wrong, call it "wrong knowing." For instance, until the age of six or so I thought the Galaxy was the Universe, with the Sun at the center and the stars right there just past the farthest planets. Regardless of how that's explained, I mean why I thought that, I did learn better. But having had wrong knowledge doesn't mean I can't be certain the Galaxy is part of the Universe, the Sun orbits well away from the center and the stars are very far away and are sunlike in nature.

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Look at the case of being transgendered, if you don't mind. There can be people who say that it is wrong, perverted, not in accordance with God's plan, etc., etc. Is that true? Then there are others who say it is fine, there's nothing wrong with it, transgendered individuals are just following their hearts, etc. But the thing with opposing opinions is that no one is right, both are wrong.



Opinions are a mix of fact and value judgments. Let's take it as given that Ronald Reagan had a hand in ending the Cold War and contributed to the fall of Communism in Europe and Asia. As a result there will be people who love Reagan for that, and people who hate him for it. Which set is right? Neither. Their opinions, that is to say their judgment of Reagan, depend on their values.

On the other hand, you sometimes find common ground between peopl who hold opposing views. For example, many Christians will maintain that promiscuity is wrong because sex is bad. That anything relating to sex is bad, and to use sex for anything other than procreation is wrong. There are people, though, like me, who will tell you promiscuity is bad because sex is good. Sex is an expression of love, of the highest personal values between two people. To give it away freely to any one and everyone without passion between them and you cheapens it and the people involved.

Wht you need here is a standard against which to measure sex, communism, liberty, etc as being good or bad. It would seem you object more to judging things as to their degrees of value than to knowing or not knowing for certain that the kitchen exists.
Donald Trump is a fucking criminal
FrGamble
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October 24th, 2011 at 6:57:49 PM permalink
Quote: Nareed


Yes, because he's been described by a multitude of sources, there are photographs of him, records of him, and not too long ago there were even people alive who knew him.

Look, you can ask the same question of everyone in history, myth and the present. if you do, you'll exhaust yourself and never be avble to do anything else. You can also ask the same question about everything as well. But what's the point? Sure, some things you cannot know of your own first-hand expereince. And so? You have enough first-hand experience to be able to judge what you learn about second- or third-hand.



It does my heart good to hear you using this argument for the existence of Abe Lincoln, because this is what I was trying to demonstrate in concern to the existence of God and more specifically Jesus Christ in many previous posts. Your quote about things you cannot know of your own first-hand experience and our need to depend on credible witnesses who did have first hand experience is beautiful!

Billions more people attest to have had experiences of God or the divine than can attest to knowing honest Abe. When it comes to Jesus Christ there are records of Him and people alive who knew him and spread the word about Him. Alas there is no photographs back then so if that is the proof you need you are outta luck and so is your belief that anyone existed before 1826. Because no one is attested to more, talked about more, nor debated about more than Jesus Christ in the history of the world. Do you really think that the entire world would have been changed by a made up story about a carpenter who died by crucifixion and rose from the dead? How long would that fly with the people who knew him, placed guards at his tomb, and desperately wanted to keep the news about Him quiet. Much less how could that news be accepted and believed by Romans and other pagans whose images and understanding of God is radically different than a God who becomes one of us in a humble stable in Bethlehem. It is certainly amazing to say the least that the Gospel spread so quickly, powerfully, and completely if it was not true.
Face
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Face
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October 24th, 2011 at 7:07:41 PM permalink
:popcorn:
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thecesspit
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October 24th, 2011 at 7:16:04 PM permalink
A lie can travel around the world, while the truth is still putting on its shoes - Mark Twain
"Then you can admire the real gambler, who has neither eaten, slept, thought nor lived, he has so smarted under the scourge of his martingale, so suffered on the rack of his desire for a coup at trente-et-quarante" - Honore de Balzac, 1829
MathExtremist
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October 24th, 2011 at 7:26:10 PM permalink
Quote: FrGamble

It is certainly amazing to say the least that the Gospel spread so quickly, powerfully, and completely if it was not true.


Why? The persistent theme of a sun-god carrying the orb of flames across the sky in a chariot or boat was just as pervasive in B.C.E. times, yet that wasn't true. Truth has very little to do with the speed at which a rumor spreads, after all, but everyone loves a juicy story -- and everyone loves to elaborate on it by exaggerating details or putting themselves in the picture.

And you're making a poor argument given the facts on the ground. Islam is spreading more quickly, powerfully, and completely than Christianity. Do you conclude that its gospel is more true than Christianity's gospel?
"In my own case, when it seemed to me after a long illness that death was close at hand, I found no little solace in playing constantly at dice." -- Girolamo Cardano, 1563
FrGamble
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October 24th, 2011 at 7:47:57 PM permalink
Quote: MathExtremist

Why? The persistent theme of a sun-god carrying the orb of flames across the sky in a chariot or boat was just as pervasive in B.C.E. times, yet that wasn't true. Truth has very little to do with the speed at which a rumor spreads, after all, but everyone loves a juicy story -- and everyone loves to elaborate on it by exaggerating details or putting themselves in the picture.

And you're making a poor argument given the facts on the ground. Islam is spreading more quickly, powerfully, and completely than Christianity. Do you conclude that its gospel is more true than Christianity's gospel?



I think the staying power of Christianity is also something to marvel at. My argument is that the spread and continuing hold of Christianity around the globe is unique and quite extraordinary. I think it speaks something about its truthfulness and value. The stories about a sun-god that prepare the way and have now fallen to the wayside is a good example of how quickly falsehood retreats when the light of truth shines upon it.

You raise a interesting point about Islam, while it has not nearly spread as completely as Christianity did through its nearly 1400 years there is no doubt that it is spreading powerfully and quite quickly now a days. I wonder if some of this is related to it's claim to further the revelation of Jesus, who is regarded as a great prophet and whose mother Mary is honored almost as much as in my own faith. There could be other reasons as well, including political and economic reasons, for its current growth but there was certainly not an explosion of growth over the whole world that could compare with Christianity that occurred after Muhammad's death in 632 AD.
Nareed
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October 24th, 2011 at 7:50:44 PM permalink
Quote: Face

:popcorn:



Funny you should say that. I was going to suggest selling tickets to some of these threads :)
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