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Old 06-19-2001, 09:42 PM   #21
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by James Still:
rodahi, lance, and others,

When I said that a creed was a confession of faith I meant that its truths are understood quite differently from those truths in science and history. They derive their meanings solely from within the language-games of belief (to use a Wittgensteinian term). They are not treated the same way we treat scientific facts. But sometimes nonbelievers pluck out articles of faith from within the language-games in which they were at home in order to hold them up to scientific criteria. This practice generates a great deal of confusion in my opinion. We start talking about heaven, hell, whether such places exist, and so on. But they are all metaphorical -- either the believer believes in them literally but without understanding or believes in them them metaphorically with understanding. In neither case is the belief formed as a result of empirical examination of the evidence.

The confusion cuts both ways of course. Some believers, mesmerized by the near certainty that science affords, insist that they believe literally and with understanding. But as we all know, when asked to provide the reasons for their belief (which is now a perfectly valid request since the believer himself has extracted the belief from its language-game in order to treat it as an evidential matter) we soon discover that their reasons are woefully inadequate if not downright comical. Comical according to the criterion of scientific verification that is but not according to the language-games of belief -- if they had left well enough alone and believed on faith there would never have been a problem.

Yes, I'm a dualist with respect to faith and reason. I think that life is much simpler and more rewarding when one discards the metaphysical baggage of religion. But not everyone agrees. Religion is an important aspect of our lives and it's probably here to stay. As long as we keep faith and reason in their respective spheres I don't have a problem with that.

I want to say that I understand rodahi's project in that he is examining the creeds evidentially and I support it if it is in response to Christians who I described as confused: those who claim to believe literally with understanding and reasons for that belief. In that case, yeah the Holy Ghost, heaven, hell, resurrection, the whole shebang is a load of hooey. But it's a load of hooey according to scientific criteria only -- it's still enormously meaningful for those who treat them metaphorically or as pure articles of faith and I don't want to say that such people are wrong.
</font>
I basically agree with what you say. I'm not saying that one can't give good reasons for belief in this or that tennet of a creed. I've tons of good reasons, that you or others find my reasons inadquate I think is totally due to your bias. I'd love to see you in a debate with Robert Koons. It was be a fine debate. I'm going to try and arrange it.

But there's more to it than that. People have different reasons for their basic beliefs. science is not the only form of knowledge and I don't see why all beliefs must pass scientific muster. Scinece cannot tell me if Kant was right about synthetic apriori's or the categorical imparative. I think those are important things to think about. beliefs such as religious belief are world views, and world views can never decided based upon one fact or one issue.

Moreover, scinece is a world view. I'm sure you've read Thomas Kuhn. Yes, I'm still a Kuhinan.
 
Old 06-19-2001, 09:44 PM   #22
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by rodahi:
quote:</font>
Why do you get to decide who is a rational person? Why is your criteria any better than mine?

I bet I find 10 basic crucial things that you believe about the world, life and yourself that you cannot prove through science. If I find that will you admit that you are irrational?
 
Old 06-19-2001, 10:00 PM   #23
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by rodahi:
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by Amos123:
Hi meta. I would say that it is science and that philosophy can justify the creed or the atheist community would be right. In other words, it is not just a fairy tale.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

James Still: I have to agree with meta here. A creed is a confession of faith and not an evidential straightjacket.

I seriously doubt that you will get Metacrock (or Ish, or SecWebLurker, or Nomad, or Layman, or Tercel, or Bede, et al) to admit that the Creed is merely "a confession of faith." </font>
Meta =&gt;I thought I already said that.

James Still: When a believer says "I believe in Jesus Christ" he or she is not saying "I have studied the internal evidence and now give my intellectual assent to the truths therein."

THAT is precisely what I hear virtually all Christian posters saying. I certainly have no quarrel with those who will freely admit that their beliefs are based solely on faith and NOT evidence, but how many admit this?[/QUOTE]

Meta =&gt; That's because you are not distinguishing between the reasons why people hold the beliefs that they hold, and the reasons they try to give to others as to why those beliefs are true. These two sets of reasons have to be different to some extent becasue belief is too private a matter. The things I would find significant in my life you would not find important. So I have resort to some other set of certieria which I can document and to which all might give assent. But, own reasons for holding the beliefs I do (and you are so sure you kow what they are but you don't) consist of both personal experinces which you would refuse to accept because you weren't there and it didn't happen to you, and upon reason about issues which I was concerned with at the time (since I was an atheist I did have a large list of issues and did demand logical proofs and so forth,that list was either satisfied, or ceratin factors redefeined since the experinces I had changed their importance). But I can't tell you about any of that becasue you wouldn't listen, don't care, didn't experince and don't want to believe.

Also, there is a distinction between taking a creed as a tennet of faith, and trying to prove it as a means to convincing others. That distinction is what I'm trying to get across to you (plus im just in a honory feidistic mood, we Texans are like that).

James Still: For most believers that would sound very strange (and perhap that's why biblical studies are largely a secular endeavor). There is an enormous difference between belief "in" the gospel and belief "that" a gospel is true.

=&gt; Well said.
[QUOTE}
The vast majority of all biblical studies (of the JC Bible) are done by Christians, so I disagree that it is largely "a secular endeavor." It is true than many claim to bracket their Christian presuppostitions during their studies, but the fact remains that most evidence Christian bias. Every Christian scholar has a vested interest in the object of his study.[/QUOTE]

MEta=&gt;Well that's just your ignornce. Since you progbably have never known a real Bible scholar you can't even say that. Of course it depends upon the camp, but there are more liberal one's than conservatives. The "liberals" always tend to be in the "real Universities" Harvard, Northwestern, Oxford, ect, while there are conservatives at those places, most conservatives tend to be at much lesser known places and places ran for the purpose of propogating conservative doctrine. So there are levels to what "real" schoalrship is and the topc academic levels tends to be very liberal. Liberals tend to follow fashions and the fashion of the day is unbelief. So most Bible scholars don't give a rat's hind quarters about proving things to save the faith or any such nonsense.

James Still: Think of Kierkegaard's "deo incognito" -- even if you were a disciple of the historical Jesus and witnessed his miracles firsthand you would still need to choose whether to believe in him.

What do you think prompted Kierkegaard to think such a thing? What makes you think he is correct?

rodahi

Meta =&gt;o I guess he must have just been an idiot. Those old Danes were all idots you know, they never could philsophy, it's the Viking roots you see. Although their Cousins the Sweeds can make good movies.

Or maybe its becasue there are other ways to know things than just science, and maybe there are other kinds of questions than just scientific ones? Nawwww, let's not get wild here.
 
Old 06-20-2001, 12:36 PM   #24
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Metacrock:
Why do you get to decide who is a rational person?

I think people who use a combination of reason, logic, empirical evidence, and common sense are more rational than those who use a combination of faith, wishful thinking, and personal conviction.

Metacrock: Why is your criteria any better than mine?

See above. If you disagree, then that is your prerogative.

Metacrock: I bet I find 10 basic crucial things that you believe about the world, life and yourself that you cannot prove through science. If I find that will you admit that you are irrational?</font>
I attempt to "think" more than "believe."

rodahi
 
Old 06-20-2001, 12:40 PM   #25
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quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by rodahi:
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by Amos123:
Hi meta. I would say that it is science and that philosophy can justify the creed or the atheist community would be right. In other words, it is not just a fairy tale.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
James Still: I have to agree with meta here. A creed is a confession of faith and not an evidential straightjacket.

I seriously doubt that you will get Metacrock (or Ish, or SecWebLurker, or Nomad, or Layman, or Tercel, or Bede, et al) to admit that the Creed is merely "a confession of faith."


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Meta =&gt;I thought I already said that.

Okay. For the public record, Metacrock admits that the Creed is a confession of faith.

rodahi
 
Old 06-20-2001, 12:45 PM   #26
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quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by James Still:
rodahi, lance, and others,
When I said that a creed was a confession of faith I meant that its truths are understood quite differently from those truths in science and history. They derive their meanings solely from within the language-games of belief (to use a Wittgensteinian term). They are not treated the same way we treat scientific facts. But sometimes nonbelievers pluck out articles of faith from within the language-games in which they were at home in order to hold them up to scientific criteria. This practice generates a great deal of confusion in my opinion. We start talking about heaven, hell, whether such places exist, and so on. But they are all metaphorical -- either the believer believes in them literally but without understanding or believes in them them metaphorically with understanding. In neither case is the belief formed as a result of empirical examination of the evidence.

The confusion cuts both ways of course. Some believers, mesmerized by the near certainty that science affords, insist that they believe literally and with understanding. But as we all know, when asked to provide the reasons for their belief (which is now a perfectly valid request since the believer himself has extracted the belief from its language-game in order to treat it as an evidential matter) we soon discover that their reasons are woefully inadequate if not downright comical. Comical according to the criterion of scientific verification that is but not according to the language-games of belief -- if they had left well enough alone and believed on faith there would never have been a problem.

Yes, I'm a dualist with respect to faith and reason. I think that life is much simpler and more rewarding when one discards the metaphysical baggage of religion. But not everyone agrees. Religion is an important aspect of our lives and it's probably here to stay. As long as we keep faith and reason in their respective spheres I don't have a problem with that.

I want to say that I understand rodahi's project in that he is examining the creeds evidentially and I support it if it is in response to Christians who I described as confused: those who claim to believe literally with understanding and reasons for that belief. In that case, yeah the Holy Ghost, heaven, hell, resurrection, the whole shebang is a load of hooey. But it's a load of hooey according to scientific criteria only -- it's still enormously meaningful for those who treat them metaphorically or as pure articles of faith and I don't want to say that such people are wrong.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Metacrock: I basically agree with what you say. I'm not saying that one can't give good reasons for belief in this or that tennet of a creed. I've tons of good reasons, that you or others find my reasons inadquate I think is totally due to your bias.

How many of those "tons of reasons" "for belief in this or that tenet" are rational reasons? You were better off to simply say that you believe because of faith.

rodahi


 
Old 06-20-2001, 12:49 PM   #27
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Metacrock: But there's more to it than that. People have different reasons for their basic beliefs. science is not the only form of knowledge and I don't see why all beliefs must pass scientific muster.

That's because your belief system cannot be proven to be rational. That is preciesly why you have taken this stance.

Metacrock: Scinece cannot tell me if Kant was right about synthetic apriori's or the categorical imparative. I think those are important things to think about. beliefs such as religious belief are world views, and world views can never decided based upon one fact or one issue.

You have to have faith in Kant just like you have faith in the Creed. Now what?

rodahi

 
Old 06-20-2001, 01:04 PM   #28
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James Still: When a believer says "I believe in Jesus Christ" he or she is not saying "I have studied the internal evidence and now give my intellectual assent to the truths therein."

[b]rodahi: THAT is precisely what I hear virtually all Christian posters saying. I certainly have no quarrel with those who will freely admit that their beliefs are based solely on faith and NOT evidence, but how many admit this?[/QUOTE]

Metacrock: That's because you are not distinguishing between the reasons why people hold the beliefs that they hold, and the reasons they try to give to others as to why those beliefs are true. These two sets of reasons have to be different to some extent becasue belief is too private a matter.

Nonsense! You hold your beliefs based on faith. The only sell you have is faith in faith.

Metacrock: The things I would find significant in my life you would not find important. So I have resort to some other set of certieria which I can document and to which all might give assent. But, own reasons for holding the beliefs I do (and you are so sure you kow what they are but you don't) consist of both personal experinces which you would refuse to accept because you weren't there and it didn't happen to you, and upon reason about issues which I was concerned with at the time (since I was an atheist I did have a large list of issues and did demand logical proofs and so forth,that list was either satisfied, or ceratin factors redefeined since the experinces I had changed their importance).

I don't find personal experience or conviction particularly convincing. It seems to me that what you want people to do is take it on faith the reasons why you have faith in the Creed.

Metacrock: But I can't tell you about any of that becasue you wouldn't listen, don't care, didn't experince and don't want to believe.

Are you interested in my reasons for thinking that Jesus was nothing more than a man?

Metacrock: Also, there is a distinction between taking a creed as a tennet of faith, and trying to prove it as a means to convincing others.

No, I don't think so. You have to have faith in the proof you wish to use to convince others to have faith.

Metacrock: That distinction is what I'm trying to get across to you (plus im just in a honory feidistic mood, we Texans are like that).

There is no disctinction. (Being a Texan has nothing to do with your attitude or belief system. I was a Texan years before you came along (unless you were born before 1948) and I don't agree with your attitude or belief system.)

rodahi
 
Old 06-20-2001, 01:19 PM   #29
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James Still: For most believers that would sound very strange (and perhap that's why biblical studies are largely a secular endeavor). There is an enormous difference between belief "in" the gospel and belief "that" a gospel is true.

[b]Metacrock: Well said.

rodahi: The vast majority of all biblical studies (of the JC Bible) are done by Christians, so I disagree that it is largely "a secular endeavor." It is true than many claim to bracket their Christian presuppostitions during their studies, but the fact remains that most evidence Christian bias. Every Christian scholar has a vested interest in the object of his study.

Metacrock: Well that's just your ignornce.


No, Metacrock, it is verifiable FACT.

Metacrock: Since you progbably have never known a real Bible scholar you can't even say that.

First of all, I can say what I damned well please on this issue.

Second, I have read numerous NT scholars, the vast majority of which are Christian, almost all of them exhibit, to varying degree, Christian bias.

Metacrock: Of course it depends upon the camp, but there are more liberal one's than conservatives.

I am not talking about liberals and conservatives, Metacrock. I am talking about Christian NT scholars.

Metacrock: The "liberals" always tend to be in the "real Universities" Harvard, Northwestern, Oxford, ect, while there are conservatives at those places, most conservatives tend to be at much lesser known places and places ran for the purpose of propogating conservative doctrine.

You have a right to your faith and opinion. Fortunately for everyone, neither is necessarily consistent with reality.

Metacrock: So there are levels to what "real" schoalrship is and the topc academic levels tends to be very liberal.

Do you believe this based on faith, or what?

Metacrock: Liberals tend to follow fashions and the fashion of the day is unbelief.

This seems to be just one more in a long string of "faith" statements.

Metacrock: So most Bible scholars don't give a rat's hind quarters about proving things to save the faith or any such nonsense.

MOST Bible scholars??????? Prove it. And please don't resort to "confession of faith" to do so.

rodahi
 
Old 06-20-2001, 01:30 PM   #30
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James Still: Think of Kierkegaard's "deo incognito" -- even if you were a disciple of the historical Jesus and witnessed his miracles firsthand you would still need to choose whether to believe in him.

rodahi: What do you think prompted Kierkegaard to think such a thing? What makes you think he is correct?

Metacrock: I guess he must have just been an idiot. Those old Danes were all idots you know, they never could philsophy, it's the Viking roots you see. Although their Cousins the Sweeds can make good movies.

I think you are being too hard on old Kierkegaard. He just probably formulated a philosophy to justify any belief that happened to coincide with those he had. That certainly does not make him an idiot.

Metacrock: Or maybe its becasue there are other ways to know things than just science, and maybe there are other kinds of questions than just scientific ones?

Or, maybe, he was just attempting to justify through a "deep philosophy" a belief in those things which he believed, knowing there was no way to justify it rationally.

Metacrock: Nawwww, let's not get wild here.

Aw--shucks, Metacrock, why not?

rodahi

 
 

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