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Narrow Opinions In Religion

  1. jonnycomelately profile image87
    jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago

    When anyone, of whatever religious persuasion, holds thoroughly rigid views within the accepted norms of that religion, does it make for honesty and truth? Or deception and lies?

    Opening up one's mind to other points of view, does this help in the understanding of truth?  Or does it cloud and confuse the truth?

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      Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I think it makes for honesty in possible deception. When some people are expressing their belief, they are as honest about their beliefs. The issue with this is that they honestly believe in what could be a deception of another.




      It helps those seeking understanding

      1. jonnycomelately profile image87
        jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Thanks for your input.  Looks like it might fizzle out.

      2. 60
        puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        JCL has used several 'relative' terms to qualify his own opinions pn the topic of 'religious persuasion': itself something even more relative or particular as it is the practice of one's religious beliefs, meaning one's the real unique element (and not the credo itself) in said beiiefs/faith. The only advise I have to certain sensitivity towards others' sensitivities wink  is to understand that no matter how good opinions somebody has or how good or consistent with the values/faith the person is saying to believe/practice, it still is a very extremely relative 'opinion' far from being 'the' truth..the truth is is that  'the truth' is a plural term, and hence, there is not one truth.. there are as many as people holding them and, my dear Watson, is factual, so whatever remains out of possibility, but remains nevertheless, however impossible, must be the truth wink (Holmes dixit)

        1. jonnycomelately profile image87
          jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Thank you for that.  It opens up some more questions for me, which I will try to address in another discussion thread when I get home.

    2. bBerean profile image60
      bBereanposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Jonny, I think regardless of the sincerity of a believer, that belief will always be suspect to atheists and agnostics.  I understand, because through the material world it is pretty tough to say you "know" anything with certainty, so those who proclaim certainty "must be" delusional.  It is not difficult for me to understand the unbeliever's perspective and doubt.  So many who aren't certain of what they believe, but know they believe in something, only fuel the perception that all believers are simply projecting a fabricated reality they desire. 

      Tell me...have you ever been certain about something?  What does that look like from the outside looking in? 

      Let's say you are in a profession that many think they understand, and that making money in that industry is thought to be easy, so the young ones just keep coming.  Fresh from school, brimming with confidence, they set about to make their fortunes in this field they are sure they now know all there is to know about. 

      You, as a weathered and seasoned veteran, know the problems and pitfalls that await them, but they are not interested in your perspective.  Your solid knowledge and understanding of the correct way to conduct this business are perceived as fruits of a narrow and closed mind.  When you try to explain things that would help them, you realize that although purporting themselves to be open minded, your would be studies close their ears, glaze over their eyes and seek to endure as you share your wisdom.  Smiles and nods further the illusion they are open to what you say, but secretly their mind is on Facebook. 

      Such is the experience of a true believer, who through spiritual discernment is certain of what they know, when confronted by those for whom that spiritual discernment is considered a fantasy because it, (like everything else we hold dear, such as love, mercy, justice, peace, security, etc), cannot be weighed or measured.  All in all, it is a contentious relationship, not easily resolved, with both sides wary. 

      Do you continually spend precious time opening yourself up to the ridicule of those who you perceive are not likely to ever listen, or do you seek other, more promising venues in which to invest your efforts?  A quandary.

    3. kess profile image60
      kessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      No man will think beyond his own openly accepted identity....
      To do he must first be willing to truly forsake such an identity.

      So to therefore impress upon someone to consider their opinion as it relates to their identity,
      while you yourself hold fast to your opinions concerning yourself is the beginning and height of hypocrisy.

      Any label a man applies to himself, can be judged by this.
      If he must justify or defend before another,
      If he need to be encouraged and supported by another,
      If he thinks it is absolutely necessary to share his label,

      Any one of these things would mean that That label/identity is a false representation of himself.
      This is why he cannot help himself but be a hypocrite.

      There is only one identity that a man can identify himself with and not be /hypocrite/false.
      It is because this identity encompasses all others, while being unlike any of them.

      This identity begins as an understanding, and ends as the same understanding.
      There are a few labels that can be used to represent such an understanding/identity,
      and the labels without the understanding will be just as any other... a false identity.

      But with understanding the label cannot ever be false because it is the Truth..

      1. jonnycomelately profile image87
        jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Profound, thank you Kess.

    4. A Troubled Man profile image60
      A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      That entirely depends on whether or not there is any truth in those views. Often, there isn't, and holding those views in light of facts is most certainly deceptive and dishonest.



      Both. Again, it all depends on the validity of the those views.

      We all know the views of Christians and Muslims, for example, because we can read their holy books, too.

      1. soldout777 profile image60
        soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Simply reading the book will not give you the truth. In other words, Looking at the food will not fill your stomach!

        You need to eat it, to be filled.
        And you need to read it with faith.

        1. Josak profile image59
          Josakposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          So basically you need to go in wanting to believe it, apply critical thinking, indeed use your brain at all and it falls apart.

          1. soldout777 profile image60
            soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

            I was a skeptic, I just hate religion .....
            but I found out that I was missing out so many things by not coming to God.
            I believe in God, not  because i am forced to! God is amazing man!!

            1. jonnycomelately profile image87
              jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              If that is what satisfies your understanding, then you are entitled to it.... but don't declare it's the only truth for every other thinking mind to accept.

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                Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Don't you get it, Jonny, Soldout's truth is the only truth of the Bible. Not too different from others who are convinced they are right and anyone who believes different is wrong and a nonbeliever (despite the fact that they read and understand the same Bible)

                1. soldout777 profile image60
                  soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  I don't agree with this, "and anyone who believes different is wrong and a nonbeliever (despite the fact that they read and understand the same Bible)"

                  One can read the bible thousand times but still know nothing of the truth written there. ...

                  1. A Troubled Man profile image60
                    A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    One can read it once and find the so-called truths there are nothing of the sort, but are little more than myths and superstitions.

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                    Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    I am so glad you responded to this sarcastic post. I stated this because according to a discussion that you and I had in a different forum, this is the attitude you give off. Remember in the other forum you told me that I was not a Christian and no different than the nonbelievers. Do you recall that post? what of the discussion we had a couple of days ago when you were telling me that I was wrong in the things I was presenting (even though those things were biblical? I have evidence here in the forums that supports the assessment I made of you.



                    Which leads to the question of how can you dismiss the "truth" someone else finds in the bible that may differ from yours?

                  3. A Thousand Words profile image80
                    A Thousand Wordsposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Why is that? Because you can only understand it if the "Holy Spirit" is leading you? Sounds more like you're only trying to pick the positives out, and either ignore the negatives or mold your view point to match/accept the negatives.

                    The reason that people who read the Bible for the book that it is aren't impressed with it is because they're not reading it with rose colored glasses on. They're not "searching for answers." They are absolutely able to read it in context and understand everything written in it, but do not form an emotional bond with it. I can read any book and take it the way my feelings lead me along with preconceived notions of what I should be getting from it. The same way Christians read the Bible is how other religious people read their holy books.

                    Believe me, I understand, I used to read it the same way. Imagine the shock I had the first time I really saw it from a more objective perspective.

                    Men being torn to shreds by lions after being deceived by prophets. God forcing people to sacrifice their children to Him in order to instill "the fear of God" into them. Scripture after scripture of absolutely horrid things. Things that I would've brushed off, ignored, or said "serves'em right," or something along those lines. I would have found a way to justify atrocities I would never justify a human for doing. But because it was "God," I didn't look at it objectively.

              2. soldout777 profile image60
                soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Please do the same...
                Stop declaring that God is not there simply because you don't accept it!

                1. jonnycomelately profile image87
                  jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  I trust you keep the Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter series, and Alice in Wonderland on the same bookshelf as your bible.  They can tell you much more about life and you will learn more about your own attitude if you can read between the lines.  You might even allow yourself some expansive fun in the process.  smile

                  1. soldout777 profile image60
                    soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Well well keep that wisdom to yourself,
                    I'll not be needing them...
                    I don't need another confused person helping me!!!.

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                    puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    JCL, your just issued answer to soldout777 is pretty much a 'narrow-minded one" as you claim/pointing-finger as dishonest or whatever. What bothers you from believers? their happiness because they do not feel lonely nor forgotten (even if it's fancying??), their solid/stoic (i.e. hope) way to resist pain/suffering?, their rock-solid decision to follow the Scriptures? their 'opinions' (of which you also, after narrow-mindedly interpreting, dare to judge?, their humility but strength? who said that being humble meant lack of opinion or false-modesty?? I beg you to answer and, please, do not escape by the edges...just answer what is it that makes you be so... bitter some times clouding your very often times excellent posts..I'd interpret with this posting of yours that you are mocking a believer, yet you claim that those very same believer are narrow-minded or dishonest. I do, DO, keep my favorite books in the same shelf...and yes, Lewis Carroll is there Throu the looking glass wink and no, not harry potter (I does not engage me), and books about THruth and Meaning and YES, the BIble! my favorite one, where I read that even before opening our mouth to say nasty things, even if we did not say them, we have already sinned in out mere thoughts...idoes that tell you something about character? about ethics? about a meaningful life? Or, is that, whoever feels outsided, by some, has a reason-enough to mock the whole bunch...Speaking of narrow minded? Sorry, the Hanmurabi is not an accepted rule for society anymore...It's not eye by eye and tooth by tooth anymore...We have grown up socially (Or so we believe, is it not true?)...Neanderthals are gone, and modern man is here...Do not forget, though, that man is said to belong to the animal kingdom (according to your proclaimed evolution)...so why are you outside the box so conveniently some times? animal is animal, and spirits are spirits...and man carries both, whether you can explain or not, you have to admit that your enchantment by listening Mozart, or the Beatles, has more to do with your souly part than your physicalities...You can have your own opinions, you can disagree fiercly, but do not mock them or simish them just because you do not like them or were hurt by some belonginf to the believers....that contradicts yourself right on the spot...and then, we wasted our time...

                  3. Chris Neal profile image83
                    Chris Nealposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Reading between your lines I have to assume you mean that Harry Potter can teach you more about life than the Bible.

                    Seriously?

                    And don't get me wrong, Alice in Wonderland is one of my favorite books but can it teach more about life than the Bible? Yeah, I doubt even Lewis Carroll would have said that.

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                  riddle666posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Who said that "the mummy returns" is a fiction?

        2. JPB0756 profile image60
          JPB0756posted 3 years ago in reply to this

          like suspending belief during a film.

    5. tsmog profile image86
      tsmogposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Hello jonnycomelately.  Not used to forums still regarding the window to post, therefore with memory recall I copy/pasted to remain in focus.

      When anyone, of whatever religious persuasion, holds thoroughly rigid views within the accepted norms of that religion, does it make for honesty and truth? Or deception and lies?

      Opening up one's mind to other points of view, does this help in the understanding of truth?  Or does it cloud and confuse the truth?

      Okay, I will work bottom toward the top pretty much. I tend to have the perspective that "opening up one's mind to other points of view "does" help with understanding "truth." Therefore the second portion is negated regarding requiring an answer.

      Pondering a moment the first question it is a contention that honesty from a perspective is an attribute or character trait of ethics rather than moral regarding "a" religious persuasion. How honest is not at question, just honesty is considered. However, that does not speak of or for truths.

      Further, an honest person may be deceptive through an action of omission rather than commission, thus not know they are telling or sharing a lie. Again, truths are not within the conditions of the proposition, since we really do not know if a lie or a truth, only of the telling. 

      For example Person A holds a citrus fruit and it is the color green. Person B holds a citrus fruit and it is the color green. Both are spherical, both have two leaves at the stem, and both have the same texture. They both have near to the same life on the branch. They both have not matured yet. They both appear identical. With any visual view, feel of texture, and possible the scent are identical. Possible scent may give it away based on each individual capacity and abilities. 

      The conclusion is both are holding a lime.

      Yet, upon slicing them open one has a thicker rind pointing toward an orange and the other less thick of a rind pointing toward a lime. Lemon is not considered since they tend to be more of an octagon. Like a football some say. 

      Truths are a whole different matter. Well, time for a meal near dinner some call lunch. Sometimes I ponder later and go oops, that was not correct. I got it wrong, then, ponder if I told a lie.

      tim

      1. jonnycomelately profile image87
        jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Thanks Tim

        1. tsmog profile image86
          tsmogposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Your welcome Jonny. Great Thread having walked along its path once more. I have some pondering to do. Maybe a hub, although possible on gardening.

          tim

    6. Chris Neal profile image83
      Chris Nealposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Yes.

      And yes.

      And yes.

      And yes.

      It really depends on how honest the person can be. Some people are simply not capable of the kind of self-analysis and necessary action to be "fully actualized." And some people are simply not able to accept a different point of view without an overly emotional reaction. And it takes a disciplined person indeed to not react to the reaction with equal ferocity.

      In my experience, at any rate.

    7. pennyofheaven profile image83
      pennyofheavenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Understanding truth, evolves. Both the rigid and the open minded assist life as we know it to continue to evolve.

    8. mariexotoni profile image91
      mariexotoniposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Sometimes you have to walk in the fog to get clarity and have insight. I wish everyone would meditate.

    9. Ceegen profile image85
      Ceegenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      "When anyone, of whatever religious persuasion, holds thoroughly rigid views within the accepted norms of that religion, does it make for honesty and truth? Or deception and lies?"

      What is truth? How would you know the truth if you heard it? Is truth something we just agree on, or, is it objective and unchanging?

      Just as we know that the laws which govern our physical existence do not change, neither do the spiritual laws which govern our ultimate fate change. Or at least that is what seems to be the case. All the theories can't be right, at the same time, so someone has to be wrong.

      But what if we're all wrong? What if we really don't know what is going on?

      Personally, I find my answers in the bible. No religion is necessary to know God, because God is knowable through the man Jesus the Christ. Christianity has no more a license on truth than I do, it's God's truth. I don't claim to know it all or even most of it, but I do know God is real, and that Jesus Christ died for our sins. It's real easy to be forgiven, you just first have to admit you need forgiveness. Believe that if God can forgive me... He can forgive anyone. They're God's laws, not "Christian" laws or "Jewish" laws, and God can forgive anyone of breaking his laws. He's God, and he can do that, ya know.

      "Opening up one's mind to other points of view, does this help in the understanding of truth?  Or does it cloud and confuse the truth?"

      What is truth? Again I ask, because your definition of truth may be different. Why "truth" is different for people is an interesting study in and of itself!

      But to answer your question, from my perspective anyway, is this: Opening my mind up to other points of view, has only solidified my belief that a great deception is going on. If people honestly believe in Islam, why do they? If people honestly believe Communism can work, why do they? If people honestly believe in nothing, why do they?

      What drives a person to "believe" anything? Why are we even capable of thought? What is cognitive function, or rather, why do we exist? Because you can deny anything you want, except for the fact that you exist. So...

      Why do you exist?

      1. jonnycomelately profile image87
        jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I don't agree with that statement.....  The "Laws of Physics" are the human statement to describe in an orderly fashion, what we see happening and to give reasons, predictability to what happens.

        As time goes by, the perception of those laws may or may not change... but an honest scientist will always leave room for further findings and understanding to arise.

        So, it's not the actual Physics that changes, but our perception of it.   

        Spiritual Laws are also the perceptions of humans.   Set up by individuals to clarify their understanding.   Since perceptions can change, those "laws" are not set and unchangeable.



        Surely this is religion!!!    Are you open minded sufficiently to explore other possibilities? Or is your belief now set in stone?

        Post Script:  I see that you have partly answered this question, sorry I missed that.  However, my point in asking again is that I feel (as you can see from my OP discussion that you have repeated) that the way forward for christians themselves is to open their minds:  open up the the infinite possibilities of the god they worship.

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          puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          I eco the question JCL what is truth?

        2. Ceegen profile image85
          Ceegenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          "I don't agree with that statement.....  The "Laws of Physics" are the human statement to describe in an orderly fashion, what we see happening and to give reasons, predictability to what happens."

          No, things like the laws of physics are very well understood and documented, which is how we know why and how the universe works. If our perception of gravity or electromagnetism changes, that doesn't change the operation of these things, it just means that we're wrong.

          Likewise --

          "As time goes by, the perception of those laws may or may not change... but an honest scientist will always leave room for further findings and understanding to arise.

          So, it's not the actual Physics that changes, but our perception of it."

          Finding out something new doesn't mean anything that is well understood will change. Just because quantum mechanics has discovered new insight into the world around us, the discovery of this aspect of reality hasn't changed how gravity operates one bit. It changes our understanding of things like gravity, space, time and matter, and not the listed items themselves.

          "Spiritual Laws are also the perceptions of humans.   Set up by individuals to clarify their understanding.   Since perceptions can change, those "laws" are not set and unchangeable. "

          So if there are physical laws which don't change, then, there may be spiritual laws which don't change. I may be wrong, but I may be right, and both options are interesting.

          "Surely this is religion!!!    Are you open minded sufficiently to explore other possibilities? Or is your belief now set in stone?"

          I am 99.99% certain of my beliefs, and when new information presents itself, it only solidifies what I believe to be real and true. I could be wrong, but even if wrong, the man Jesus Christ in the story of the bible has made me a better person regardless. I find that the man forgiving his murderers, because "they don't know what they're doing" is an astounding statement to make, and one worth believing in.

          Why do we kill? Because we fear each other, because we know what we are capable of with, or without, any religious doctrine attached. People are evil, all on their own, and if you refuse to admit that evil exists... Well, then you're pretty much a nihilist, which is the belief in nothing.

          But clearly, evil exists. It is a thing, and we know what evil is because of the aforementioned human paranoia which can drive a person to kill..

          "Post Script:  I see that you have partly answered this question, sorry I missed that.  However, my point in asking again is that I feel (as you can see from my OP discussion that you have repeated) that the way forward for christians themselves is to open their minds:  open up the the infinite possibilities of the god they worship."

          See, that's the problem though. The whole reason we're in this mess, according to the bible anyway, is because we imagined the possibilities without God in the picture. The idea is that Satan corrupted the imaginations of God's newest creation, us, because he simply hates us that much. Why that is, I'm not entirely sure yet, but I keep reading the bible and thinking about it. Maybe I'll find an answer, or maybe I won't, but it has been my experience that the bible answers a LOT of questions.

          Why does anyone hate? It doesn't make sense.

      2. JMcFarland profile image93
        JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        No, you don't KNOW that.  You believe it, because you believe in the veracity of the bible.  That is separate from knowledge.

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          puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          the definition of knowledge is the commonality of facts and features between truth and belief...Belief is separate from knowledge as long as in that knowledge there is nothing generating intuition/perceotion/revelation.
          God does reveal to ourselves.
          For example, the generosity in humans to help each other is God's inspired virtue. It does not mean that someone needs to practice a particular faith, but that conscience of comppasion does not grow in the trees: it's of divine inspiration. The definition of charity is far from 'giving' to see happy faces, it's derived from love to our brothers and sisters...regardless they even know who is doing the charity...To see happy faces when I give is a reward, and we are not supposed to give for any reward.

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            Rad Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Generosity is not unique to humans as a matter of fact it is seen in all animals that rely on numbers (groups) to survive. It's the evolutionary trait that helped our ancestors survive.

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              puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              yes; it's amazing. But the fact it's seen in animals, does or does not speaks from a God? t

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                Rad Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                You can ascribe it to a God or you can understand why evolution has brought us to where we are. Once you understand something one no longer needs God as an explanation.

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                  puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  I understand evolution Rad Man; there are explanations in med field that adaptation to new context conditions explains some mutations at the red cell level that cause , well...illnesses, etc; mutations were/are there for adaptation and renewals of many survival skills...It did not mean that ALL could adapt (evolve) so that explains the fittest only...But ANY explanation,
                  absolutely any, still lacks the proof to a no-God universe wink  Ibecause randomness is really not that random wink and so, coincidences are not such...There is a blueprint, whetehr we call it God generated or Evolution or Big Bng of Higgs stuff..still, it's only putting the beginning of the beginning a bit far behind, but never deleted or dicarded. I do not say this to preach to you, you have shown your own explanations to your incognitas, still, I have to say that these points of views are for me and not for you to feel invited or forced or in any way rejected in the event you just do not consider them  On the contrary, perhaps a few here on the non-believers wink realm have brought to my attention even more proofs! with some of the matters they have thought of...Thanks for your reply

              2. jonnycomelately profile image87
                jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Puella, all of your understanding rests upon you acceptance of there existing a "God."  Without that acceptance, most if not all of your interpretations and comments to my posts fall flat.

                At least, in my humble opinion smile

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                  puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  yes, you said right, in your opinion JCL wink

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                  puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  You, not so long ago, were saying that the truth is only perceived thru changes...hence your opinion on 'the truth' is just that, an opinion based on a perception; I, for instance, do practice meditation; each day, before starting my day routines, I meditate...and it is amazing how that clarifies the things in my life...and I can attest that nothing, so far, has been a 'coincidence'...it was meant to be for the better, even when whatever happened was painful and meant to separate to my 'usual' life...

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                    Rad Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    I can attest that the meditation is not working. Try reading something other than the bible instead as you seem confused.

                  2. jonnycomelately profile image87
                    jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Meditation can certainly be a very healthy mental exercise.   It clears the mind, energises the body, is a way of dealing with distractions..... if you choose to bring a god into your thoughts, fine.... he/she/it is still only in your mind.

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                  puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  And JCL, if in your humble opinion, you believe that only atheists can have and understand the truth wink then my dear JCL you are also prone to fall flat and infact, you have done so many times here...Like telling the obvious to someone "you do not have the monopoly of truth" is sooo obvious, but yoou seem sooo upset...Why? It is true! Nobody has the mon opoly of the truth, as for human affairs...The religoius truths can only be believed or not (and if you remember in the worldly affairas a truth is b believed right on the spot...but we are here talking of religion...nothing is straight forward nor provable...Why get upset? Why mock? why name callings?

                  1. jonnycomelately profile image87
                    jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    you believe that only atheists can have and understand the truth (do I?)
                    but yoou seem sooo upset...(do I?)
                    but we are here talking of religion... (yes, we are, and looking for antidotes for the disease)
                    Why mock? (yes, sometimes, hehe.)


                    You believe that only christians can have and understand the truth, puella?
                    But yoou seem sooo upset, puella.   Why?
                    You are talking about religion, discussing your disease, are you?
                    Do you feel mocked?  Why?

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          puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          I echo the question: what is truth? Deepes? where are you? smile

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            Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Hey, Puella. I just started a new job and as such my replies will be slower. But Glad someone actually looks for my input smile


            To answer your question (from my perspective): Truth is basically a fundamental understanding and acceptance of a specific concept, principle, or ideology. Truth is basically broken down to two types, objective (More commonly referred to as reality) and subjective (more commonly referred to as belief). Objective truth is a universal understanding of something that is mutually accepted by all people within a specific preset guideline that is mutually agreed upon between peoples. The fact that humans need oxygen to survive is an example of an objective truth. On the other hand, you have subjective truth which is dependent upon the perception of the person or persons examining a concept. The belief in a deity is an example of a subjective truth. Subjective truth is broken down into three types in itself (This may or may not make sense but hopefully with my explanation it will be clear).. There is objective group subjectivity where a concept is understood and accepted by a specific group of people (such as Christianity as a whole) but not ALL people.  There is also an individual group subjective approach to truth (such as denominations of Christianity) where the truth is viewed by different groups within a collective group. Then there is individual subjective truth which of course is dependent on a single person which may or may not coincide with any group truth. The thing about each truth (objective and subjective) is that subjective truth can become objective as more information is gathered, studied, and accepted by all people within an agreed upon preset guideline. The Christian belief (or lack thereof) in God (one that even I can accept being Christian) currently is simply a group subjective truth, but not objective at this time (NOTE- I HAVE A FIRM BELIEF IN GOD BUT I RECOGNIZE THAT NOT ALL SHARE MY BELIEF, THUS IT BEING SUBJECTIVE) as it is not accepted by everyone within a preset guideline. However, an objective truth CANNOT become subjective as it is universally accepted and understood by all people. It simply is what it is and cannot be altered.


            Hope this answers your question as to what truth is.

            (ANOTHER NOTE- THIS IS ONLY MY OPINION AND PERSPECTIVE ON THE CONCEPT OF TRUTH. IT IS SUBJECTIVE AND MAY NOT BE AGREED AND ACCEPTED BY ALL)

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              puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Deepes! good luck in your new avenue and God always with you!
              Your answer is what you and I and others have been saying all along. It's what is it is. Belief cannot become objecive as even if it's based on the Bible or other source, it will always be a particular living for each person and each person is unique: how do you make that universla to be an objective truth? It's not possible; Jesus right before His death was asked "Do you call yourself a king" and what did He answer? "My kingdom is not of this world" We interpret hat as His Kingdom is not about earth or materialities, but for our souls...Kigndom in which we all enter as long as we do in our temporal (an abosulte truth: we all will die), struggling (we all struggle since the moment of birth when a baby cries because he is forced out by nature, out of the environment baby is comfty and secure and sheltered, basically, allof the needs as per Marlow, satisfied), and a long etc; Xtianity 's tennets are quite a different thingto Xtians behaviour. Just, for a swift example, school teaches exactly the same curriculum to each class to all students;..there will be students overachievers, main stream, and those lacking...Is the curriculum defiecient? is it that the teacher is not doing the job appropriately? is it that no person is identical to another, not even twins in what respects to abilities and intelligence? what is it? If to that  we add home issues since early age, one can easily find a person not prepared for a life of sacrifice and giving which Xtianity requests...and also, lke in society we explain some misfits by their upbringing, schizos, child abuse, etc, Xtianity also carries within these cases as Xtianity is formed wiithin a society.
              If further, atheists want to desecarte the source: faith instilled by God, a book, and a credo...then that's another campaign and that's where I find it the easiest: we are not arguing if our faith is true or if God exists...we do not doubt that...We, here, are arguing about the deceptions and lies seen in Xtianity...and that is totally explainable by psychology, philosophy, definitions, and honesty. Once somebody accuses us, as a whole, of dishonesty, then we have the right to say back, well you ar dishonest! why not? where is the insult? why feel insulted? how about liberating ourselves of prejudices an speak without trying to win? I have done that...but it has not gone thru; you have done that, and I wonder still.
              However, the original sin here is not what we have been arguing or how we have been arguing, the truth is that JCL started out with his left leg: judging as dishonest, even in general, is not the right way to invite...it's already doomed.
              THIS IS MY OPINION. WHATEVER YOUINTERPRET IS ALSO YOUR OPINION NOTHING ALL BETWEEN HEAVENS AND EARTH IS CLARIFIED BY THE SUN (KING DACID DIXIT)

        3. Ceegen profile image85
          Ceegenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          "No, you don't KNOW that.  You believe it, because you believe in the veracity of the bible.  That is separate from knowledge."

          Uhhh... What? I hope you know what you're talking about, because I do not.

          But in a general response kind of way, all information is knowledge, and the information in the bible is just as valid as any other source of information. It also has some of the oldest and widespread texts in history, which almost defies logic how something could stay in circulation that long.

          Plus, even if it's all just a good story, guess what? Humankind thinking about God, got us to where we are now because we started using our minds: We became self-aware!

          1. JMcFarland profile image93
            JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Information leads to understanding, not necessarily to knowledge.  Since you have no PROOF of your religion that can be tested or demonstrated or falsified, all that you have at best is the belief that your beliefs are true.  You cannot have absolute certainty of religious beliefs without proof, and I'm sorry but the Bible is not proof that god is real.  It is proof that certain people had certain beliefs, and they wrote them all down.  What is interesting to me is that nowhere in the bible does god instruct people to write these stories down and claim that they're HIS word and is inherently perfect.  He does not create the cannon and dictate which books are truly "god inspired" and which ones should be thrown out.  The biblical cannon (at least the new testament) were done by committee, and it was hotly debated at the time - and is still hotly debated now.

            If god's word was clear (which it should be, because god himself according to the bible claims that he's not the author of confusion) then there would not be over 40,000 denominations of Christianity that all interpret it differently with different criteria for salvation, what is expected, which rules to follow, etc.  If god was OBVIOUS and inherent, then there wouldn't be hundreds of different religions, and the proof would be obvious to everyone.  It's not.  At all. 

            The fact that the bible was preserved was because the Catholics in the early days of the church became the official state religion of Rome.  After the NT was cannonized, they preserved it.  The books that they rejected were all but lost to history with only a handful of copies still in existence - most of which were discovered by accident.  Orthodox Christianity had a monopoly of both politics and religion from the 3rd to 4th century through the middle ages up to the enlightenment.  With the invention of the printing press, with church authorized books being produced en mass and all "heretical" books being burned alongside their authors, it's not that much of a mystery that the bible remained intact.  A basic comprehension of history will teach you that. 

            I'm sorry, but the bible is not proof of god.  I'm not stupid enough to say that nothing in the bible is true - it was written by people who were experiencing history, and they wrote down what they witnessed or what was passed on by oral tradition.  There are elements of truth in the Spider Man comics, too - in as much as they take place in New York City and we know that is a real place.  Archaeology has uncovered certain places mentioned in the bible, but that doesn't mean that the stories that the bible lays out about those places or people are actually true.  It means that they're stories based on real things.  We see that in multiple different mythologies.  No one thinks that the Odyssey is true because it mentions real cities.  Then again, the Odyssey doesn't claim to be the word of god, so we all recognized that it's mythology - but greek and roman mythology was very real to the greeks and romans.  Likewise, the fact that the jews attributed events to their god does not mean that their god was responsible.   They couldn't prove it.  They just said that "god did it" and that was good enough for them.  There's no way to either prove the veracity of these stories or to prove their source, and to claim otherwise is nothing more than arrogance, assumption and confirmation bias.  Likewise, since none of the New Testament was written by eyewitnesses (and the MAJORITY of biblical scholars both secular and religious concede that none of the four gospels were written by the people whose name is on them aside from strict fundamental literalists) claiming that something happened does not prove that it did.  It proves that people believe it did, with no proof whatsoever.

            1. Ceegen profile image85
              Ceegenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              "Information leads to understanding, not necessarily to knowledge.  Since you have no PROOF of your religion that can be tested or demonstrated or falsified, all that you have at best is the belief that your beliefs are true."

              I could show you proof, but would you believe it? I highly doubt my evidence would count as proof, and so I'm not interested in even providing proof if asked. What's the point when I know I'd just be ridiculed and mocked?

              "You cannot have absolute certainty of religious beliefs without proof, and I'm sorry but the Bible is not proof that god is real.  It is proof that certain people had certain beliefs, and they wrote them all down.  What is interesting to me is that nowhere in the bible does god instruct people to write these stories down and claim that they're HIS word and is inherently perfect."

              Obviously you've never read the thing if you're saying that: And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. - (Revelation 21:5).

              And elsewhere in the bible, God instructs people to write things down. It just is the way it is, so either these people were crazy, or, God really did tell these people to write things down. There is a chance that because of the harmony of biblical texts provide us that God does exist, or it is the best "living" story in history. Either way it is an amazing set of books and letters that has survived up til' now.

              "He does not create the cannon and dictate which books are truly "god inspired" and which ones should be thrown out.  The biblical cannon (at least the new testament) were done by committee, and it was hotly debated at the time - and is still hotly debated now. "

              Oh I know. I think the books of Jasher, Jubilees and Enoch should be included, since these books are referenced by other books in the bible. Just to start with, at least.

              "If god's word was clear (which it should be, because god himself according to the bible claims that he's not the author of confusion) then there would not be over 40,000 denominations of Christianity that all interpret it differently with different criteria for salvation, what is expected, which rules to follow, etc.  If god was OBVIOUS and inherent, then there wouldn't be hundreds of different religions, and the proof would be obvious to everyone.  It's not.  At all."

              Well it is actually quite simple, but humans complicate things ad infinitum. That's mostly the reason for the mess we're in now. Anti-Semites like Martin Luther (not King Jr., he was a good and righteous man) and John Calvin, who forgot that both the first "Christians" and all of humankind's Salvation, were all Jews. Why make new "religions" when the old one was doing just fine? Most of what Jesus was telling people, was in the "Old-er" part of *the* testament.

              "The fact that the bible was preserved was because the Catholics in the early days of the church became the official state religion of Rome.  After the NT was cannonized, they preserved it.  The books that they rejected were all but lost to history with only a handful of copies still in existence - most of which were discovered by accident.  Orthodox Christianity had a monopoly of both politics and religion from the 3rd to 4th century through the middle ages up to the enlightenment.  With the invention of the printing press, with church authorized books being produced en mass and all "heretical" books being burned alongside their authors, it's not that much of a mystery that the bible remained intact.  A basic comprehension of history will teach you that."

              The bible has survived history, and a basic comprehension of history will teach you that. Empires rise and fall, religions come and go, but the bible is still here. Lest you forget, the Roman Catholic Church tried to outlaw bibles in any language other than Latin, and, only clergy could afford the accommodations to learn Latin! They kept people from learning about what's really in the bible, by even burning copies and killing the authors of bibles printed in languages native to their areas!

              A monopoly on information made it possible for the RCC to become more than just a "church". They left behind the basic tenants of the bible, thanks mostly in part to Constantine "the great", the first "Pontifex Maximus" of the RCC who brought sun-worship back into the mix. And by the way, Pontifex Maximus was only a title available to a Roman Emperor, with interesting origins of its own.

              "I'm sorry, but the bible is not proof of god.  I'm not stupid enough to say that nothing in the bible is true - it was written by people who were experiencing history, and they wrote down what they witnessed or what was passed on by oral tradition."

              In a platonic way of looking at it, yes.

              "There are elements of truth in the Spider Man comics, too - in as much as they take place in New York City and we know that is a real place."

              All lies are based in truth, or else it wouldn't be a lie. What is truth?

              "Archaeology has uncovered certain places mentioned in the bible, but that doesn't mean that the stories that the bible lays out about those places or people are actually true.  It means that they're stories based on real things.  We see that in multiple different mythologies.  No one thinks that the Odyssey is true because it mentions real cities.  Then again, the Odyssey doesn't claim to be the word of god, so we all recognized that it's mythology - but greek and roman mythology was very real to the greeks and romans.  Likewise, the fact that the jews attributed events to their god does not mean that their god was responsible.   They couldn't prove it.  They just said that "god did it" and that was good enough for them.  There's no way to either prove the veracity of these stories or to prove their source, and to claim otherwise is nothing more than arrogance, assumption and confirmation bias."

              Ron Wyatt found compelling evidence for biblical stories. Whether or not you consider his findings evidence, I do. I don't care about his religious affiliation, what he found is either the greatest hoax of all time, or, divinely inspired and true. More people should know about it to at least consider the possibility, and ya know, be open minded about the situation.

              And why is that? Because if the blood of Jesus Christ is on the Ark of the Covenant... That changes everything. If the guy is a liar, well, he's a liar. If he's not, you will be speechless. Hear it from him first, then go to whatever debunking web site you have in mind, free to see on the wonderful world wide web.

              "Likewise, since none of the New Testament was written by eyewitnesses (and the MAJORITY of biblical scholars both secular and religious concede that none of the four gospels were written by the people whose name is on them aside from strict fundamental literalists) claiming that something happened does not prove that it did.  It proves that people believe it did, with no proof whatsoever."

              Actually, scholars familiar with the material have dated the earliest writings to within 70 AD, which means you have people who were likely alive at the time Jesus walked on earth. That is within distance of the "eye-witness period", meaning more than likely true to at the very least that Jesus was a real person.

              So if a real person claiming to be God went around forgiving everyone of their sins, even forgiving his murderers, what does that mean? Kind of an important lesson in there, somewhere.

              1. JMcFarland profile image93
                JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                I am willing and able to look at any evidence that is presented.  I've studied this for the majority of my life, and I don't make it a habit of mocking people.  If you don't believe that, you can ask some of my closest friends on this site - and in my real life apart from hubpages who are christians.  We talk about things openly and honestly and I don't make fun of them just because they believe things that I don't.  We would have to agree upon the definition for proof and/or evidence, however - and I doubt that you'd comply with them.



                This is not about god telling people to write things down.  We're talking about the creation of the bible and the cannonization process of the New Testament.  Where in the bible did god say "thou shalt write this book, and it shall be my holy and infallible word?  The answer is never.  This is abundantly clear when you research and study the cannon creation in the new testament - and the new testament cannon that we have TODAY was consensus by committee.  God wasn't involved.  Again, the bible is not harmonious internally, nor is it harmonious with history.

                And if you want to tell me that I've "clearly" never read the bible, my professors in bible college where I learned Hebrew, Latin and Greek and studied actively IN a predominant bible college wouldn't agree.  I got good grades, and I was a bible-believing Christian and returned missionary at the time.  You don't have to believe me, but that doesn't make it untrue.  Isn't that what your whole argument is?



                Do you know why they weren't included?  There are sites out there from Christian apologists, listing why they were left out.



                I see.  It's not the fact that god is a bad writer.  It's that people just like to complicate things - and an all-knowing all powerful god that supposedly created us with these brains didn't foresee the fact that we'd...i dont know..  use them.  You do realize that Marin Luther (that you're practically demonizing right now) is one of the main reasons that the bible DID appear in a language that common people could read and understand, right?



                Once again, the bible is still here because the people that were in power in the religious sphere were the same people that were in control politically.  They executed everyone who offered different opinions, burned documents that disagreed with their common doctrine and put forth their version of the story because might made right and no one could contest them on it without risking their lives. 

                Ironically, now you seem to be demonizing Catholicism in the same way you earlier demonized Martin Luther who was the father of Protestantism.  Are you then claiming that the only person that got it "right" in all of these thousands of years was you?



                What other way is there?



                No, some lies are just blatant falsehoods.  If I tell you that I own an invisible purple dragon who lives in my garage, what truth is that based on - or is it just a lie?



                I've never heard of the guy in four years of bible college, and over 15 years of research in my adult life AFTER college - most of which i was still a christian.  Point me in his direction, and I'll look at it.



                Correction - the EARLIEST gospel of Mark is believed to have been written around 70-75AD.  The other gospels came in the next 25 or so years, with John being the last.  According to the bible itself, most of the apostles were long dead in the first 35 years after Jesus death, therefore none of the gospels could have been written by disciples.  If Matthew was written by a disciple, like fundamental believers want to claim - why does it copy Mark, who wasn't a disciple?  The names on the gospels weren't added to a couple hundred years later, so for believers to say "the disciples wrote the gospels so clearly they're true" are at best misguided - and at worst they've been lied to and didn't bother to check it out for themselves.  How much does a story change in 35-40 years?  Don't give me "the jews were a people focused on maintaining the integrity of oral tradition" in first century Judea.  First Century Judea is one of the most documented historical periods.  We have thousands of records and preserved documents from this era, but we have no complete copies of gospels for at least 100 years after they may have been written.  Additionally, there is no contemporary independent confirmation of Jesus apart from the gospels.  I don't know if Jesus was a real person or not.  Honestly, I think it's impossible to know one way or the other.

                A lot of people wandered around claiming to be a Messiah or a god or a demi god or a sort of god.  That doesn't make them true.

                1. 0
                  Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Have you ever read "Evidence that demands a verdict" by David Wilkerson?

                  1. JMcFarland profile image93
                    JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Several times, yes.  I don't find it compelling, but it would take a 20 page paper to explain why.  I thought it was by Josh McDowell.  Not whoever you mentioned.

                    Have you ever read "God is Not Great" or "The God Delusion"?   I'm assuming not, based on previous conversations I've had with you.

                    What I see here is that you want me to read your material, study it and you'll pray that I'm convinced by something - but you're unwilling to read any of mine.  Why?  I don't think you want to understand the other side, as evidenced by the fact that you ask us atheists the same questions over and over again and the answers don't seem to sink in - and you're not willing to consider anything that puts things in another perspective.

                  2. A Troubled Man profile image60
                    A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    That was written by Josh McDowell. David Wilkerson wrote "The Cross and the Switchblade"

                2. Ceegen profile image85
                  Ceegenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  "I am willing and able to look at any evidence that is presented. ..."

                  Great! Part of my evidence includes the finds by Ron Wyatt. I'd start with that.

                  "This is not about god telling people to write things down. ..."

                  There are a lot of people that disagree with you, sorry. Dr Michael Heiser has hours upon hours of video you can watch. Very interesting stuff.

                  "And if you want to tell me that I've "clearly" never read the bible, my professors in bible college where I learned Hebrew, Latin and Greek and studied actively IN a predominant bible college wouldn't agree.  I got good grades, and I was a bible-believing Christian and returned missionary at the time.  You don't have to believe me, but that doesn't make it untrue.  Isn't that what your whole argument is?"

                  Maybe you read it and tried to apply worldly knowledge to it, hence why you don't understand it. God warns us not to try to interpret the bible, even by our own standards that we've agreed upon. If you really did read it, you wouldn't have missed that part. The whole idea of canonization is that scripture interprets scripture, like a set of laws or rules, much like the idea behind things that we know and see on a daily basis such as gravity or light; It becomes self-evident by the evidence presented. Human bias, however, puts restraints on such things. But when I say "self evident" I mean in terms of discoverable nature of things, like gravity.

                  "Do you know why they weren't included?  There are sites out there from Christian apologists, listing why they were left out."

                  Yeah, because people don't understand them. Only just now am I seeing the importance of these books, having found copies of them on the internet. It really answers a ton of questions, and so I don't entirely rule it out simply because a bunch of fussy old men say that it isn't inspired.

                  "I see.  It's not the fact that god is a bad writer.  It's that people just like to complicate things - and an all-knowing all powerful god that supposedly created us with these brains didn't foresee the fact that we'd...i dont know..  use them.  You do realize that Marin Luther (that you're practically demonizing right now) is one of the main reasons that the bible DID appear in a language that common people could read and understand, right?"

                  Part of the implications of the bible being true is that we are under constant attack by very evil forces beyond our understanding. If a great deception really is going on, Martin Luther was part of the plot. He hated Jews.

                  If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? - 1 John 4:20 (hah).

                  Martin Luther's hatred of Jews means that, by biblical standards, he is a liar. So forget whatever junk you learned in bible college or whatever about this guy, he's evil plain and simple. He incited people to violence, a murderer AND a liar.

                  "Once again, the bible is still here because the people that were in power in the religious sphere were the same people that were in control politically.  They executed everyone who offered different opinions, burned documents that disagreed with their common doctrine and put forth their version of the story because might made right and no one could contest them on it without risking their lives."

                  So why didn't the RCC just completely abandon the bible and destroy all copies, writing their own version? They were almost successful in doing this very thing, and yet they still failed. The vast power of the RCC couldn't destroy the bible, nor could the mighty Roman Empire, the Greeks, the Assyrians and even the Babylonians and Egyptians. It almost defies logic that the bible is still around. Miraculous, if you will.

                  "Ironically, now you seem to be demonizing Catholicism in the same way you earlier demonized Martin Luther who was the father of Protestantism.  Are you then claiming that the only person that got it "right" in all of these thousands of years was you?"

                  I'm not saying I'm right, I'm just saying God is the only one of us that is right. I'm a sinner just like everyone else. You can read the bible and come to the same conclusions I do or not, but I'm no more an authority on the matter than you are, really.

                  "What other way is there?"

                  Left? Right? Up? Down? (Select, Start). I don't know, what?

                  "No, some lies are just blatant falsehoods.  If I tell you that I own an invisible purple dragon who lives in my garage, what truth is that based on - or is it just a lie?"

                  Do you have a garage? If so, then your lie is based on truth.

                  "I've never heard of the guy in four years of bible college, and over 15 years of research in my adult life AFTER college - most of which i was still a christian.  Point me in his direction, and I'll look at it."

                  Good!

                  "Correction - the EARLIEST gospel of Mark is believed to have been written around 70-75AD.  The other gospels came in the next 25 or so years, with John being the last.  According to the bible itself, most of the apostles were long dead in the first 35 years after Jesus death, therefore none of the gospels could have been written by disciples.  If Matthew was written by a disciple, like fundamental believers want to claim - why does it copy Mark, who wasn't a disciple?  The names on the gospels weren't added to a couple hundred years later, so for believers to say "the disciples wrote the gospels so clearly they're true" are at best misguided - and at worst they've been lied to and didn't bother to check it out for themselves.  How much does a story change in 35-40 years?  Don't give me "the jews were a people focused on maintaining the integrity of oral tradition" in first century Judea.  First Century Judea is one of the most documented historical periods.  We have thousands of records and preserved documents from this era, but we have no complete copies of gospels for at least 100 years after they may have been written.  Additionally, there is no contemporary independent confirmation of Jesus apart from the gospels.  I don't know if Jesus was a real person or not.  Honestly, I think it's impossible to know one way or the other."

                  Search "historical evidence of Jesus". Plenty of evidence there from people like Tacitus, Pliny the Younger, Josephus, Lucian, and the Babylonian Talmud. The last one being especially interesting - Why would the Talmud talk about Jesus in a negative manner, if he didn't exist? Seems odd that entire writings exist solely to slander a man that didn't exist.

                  "A lot of people wandered around claiming to be a Messiah or a god or a demi god or a sort of god.  That doesn't make them true."

                  I don't know of any of them whose blood is on the Mercy Seat of the Ark of the Covenant.

                  1. JMcFarland profile image93
                    JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    So you don't like catholics, and you don't like the founder of protestantism that made it possible for the bible to be written in the common language.  What kind of christian are you?  Martin luther was hardly alone in his hatred of the jews among christians.  Luther was hardly unique, so I'm unsure why you singled him out for anti jewish sentiments. 

                    I've researched the historical evidence for Jesus.  None of it is contemporary to his life. 

                    I tried to copy and paste the rebuttal to the specific things that you mentioned, but it was entirely too long.  I'll leave the one about the Talmud since you seem fixated on it, and leave the link for you to read on your own (since you're urging me to look at your evidence, I'm just assuming that you're willing to read mine.

                    The Talmud:
                    2. The Talmud contains inconclusive evidence of Jesus. The Talmud [42] is a massive compilation divided into two parts, the Mishna [43] and the Gemara [44]. The Mishna was codified by Rabbi Jehudah ha-Nasi circa 200 CE but was not actually committed to writing until the fifth century; it discusses numerous subjects, including festivals, sacred things, etc. The Gemara was completed in the fifth century and is really a commentary on the Mishna.

                    McDowell cites six lines of evidence for the historical Jesus from the Talmudic writings:

                    (a) The Tol'doth Yeshu. At the outset, note that the Tol'doth Yeshu is not in any sense a part of the Talmud; in ETDAV McDowell erroneously lists the Tol'doth Yeshu as if it were a part of the Talmud. (In fairness to McDowell, I should note that he does not repeat this error in his later book, He Walked Among Us; in that volume, the Tol'doth Yeshu is listed under the heading of "References from the Rabbis."[45]) Anyway, McDowell states that the Tol'doth Yeshu is a reference to Jesus; in that document "Jesus is referred to as `Ben Pandera'".[46] Yet Joseph Klausner--who McDowell relies on heavily in his section on the Talmud--believed the Tol'doth Yeshu "contains no history worth the name."[47] Furthermore, Klausner stated, "The present Hebrew Tol'Doth Yeshu, even in its simplest form, is not earlier than the present Yosippon, i.e. it was not composed before the tenth century. Therefore it cannot possibly possess any historical value nor in any way be used as material for the life of Jesus."[48] Even on McDowell's view, this is more than enough time for legendary development. And in He Walked Among Us, McDowell and Wilson list the Tol'doth Yeshu among the "unreliable [rabbinic] references to Jesus."

                    (b) The Babylonian Talmud. McDowell next lists the opinion of the Amoraim that Jesus was hanged on the eve of Passover.[49] However, Klausner thinks that the Amoraim traditions "can have no objective historical value (since by the time of the Amoraim there was certainly no clear recollection of Jesus' life and works)."[50] Morris Goldstein states that the passage "cannot be fixed at a definite date within the Tannaitic time-area."[51] The value of this passage as independent confirmation of the historicity of Jesus is therefore uncertain.

                    (c) The tradition about Jesus as the son of Pantera. Commenting on the Talmud's references to Jesus as "Ben Pandera (or 'Ben Pantere')" and "Jeshu ben Pandera," McDowell writes, "Many scholars say `pandera' is a play on words, a travesty on the Greek word for virgin `parthenos,' calling him `son of a virgin.'"[52] However, "Jesus is never referred to as `the son of the virgin' in the Christian material preserved from the first century of the Church (30-130), nor in the second century apologists."[53] As Herford argues, this passage "cannot be earlier than the beginning of the fourth century, and is moreover a report of what was said in Babylonia, not Palestine."[54]

                    (d) The Baraitha describing hanging Yeshu on the eve of Passover. McDowell considers "of great historical value" the following Jewish tradition about the hanging of Jesus:

                        On the eve of Passover they hanged Yeshu (of Nazareth) and the herald went before him for forty days saying (Yeshu of Nazareth) is going forth to be stoned in that he hath practiced sorcery and beguiled and led astray Israel. Let everyone knowing aught in his defence come and plead for him. But they found naught in his defence and hanged him on the eve of Passover.[55]

                    It is unclear whether this passage refers to Jesus. As Goldstein admits, "the possibility of the Jesus named in the Talmud being someone other than Jesus of Nazareth, and identified as such only because of confusion, cannot be entirely dismissed."[56] But even if the passage does refer to the Jesus of the New Testament, according to Goldstein, "it is of no help one way or the other in the question of the historicity of Jesus."[57]

                    Following this Baraitha are some remarks of the Amora 'Ulla, a disciple of R. Yochanan and who lived in Palestine at the end of the third century. McDowell quotes these remarks as follows:

                        'Ulla said: And do you suppose that for [Yeshu of Nazareth] there was any right of appeal? He was a beguiler, and the Merciful One hath said: Thou shalt not spare neither shalt thou conceal him. It is otherwise with Yeshu, for he was near to the civil authority.[58]

                    Both McDowell and Klausner conclude, "The Talmud authorities do not deny that Jesus worked signs and wonders, but they look upon them as acts of sorcery."[59] However, given our ignorance of both the date of these passages as well as the author's sources, we simply can't assume these passages represent independent traditions about Jesus.

                    (e) Talmudic references to the disciples of Jesus. McDowell writes, "Sanhedrin 43a also makes references to the disciples of Jesus."[60] Turning to Joseph Klausner, we read:

                        Immediately after this Baraita comes a second (Sanh. 43a): Jesus had five disciples, Mattai, Naqai, Netser, Buni and Todah.[61]

                    Yet as Klausner notes, "In any case the Baraita itself is lacking in accuracy, for although the names are those of real disciples, they include some who were not disciples of Jesus himself, but disciples of the second generation."[62] In other words, the list of names is simply a list of Christians, not a list of contemporaries of Jesus.[63]

                    Laible has suggested that "the story refers to the prosecution of Christians under Bar Cocheba"[64] because (1) the story occurs in the same passage which describes the death of Jesus and (2) "the key to the understanding of the statements there made about Jesus in the anti-Christian hatred of Bar Cocheba, and more especially of Aqiba, his chief supporter."[65] If that is the case, then the passage can be dated to the second century, which would prevent it from providing independent confirmation of the historicity of Jesus.

                    (f) The reference to such-an-one as a bastard of an adulteress. McDowell, following the lead of Klausner, cites the following passage from the Babylonian Talmud, Yebamoth 4.49a:

                        R. Shimeon ben Azzai said: 'I found a geneaological roll in Jerusalem wherein was recorded, Such-an-one is a bastard of an adulteress.'"[66]

                    McDowell takes this to be a reliable reference to Jesus.[67]

                    However, there are good reasons to doubt that this passage represents an independent tradition about Jesus. First, the passage comes from the Babylonian Talmud, which dates to around the sixth century. Second, the gospel of Matthew begins with the words, "The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ."[68] This "genealogical roll" or "Book of Pedigrees" may have been influenced by the gospels. Third, this passage fits the pattern of Rabbinical polemic. Thus this reference may not be based upon an independent source. Of course, it's also possible that this passage was based on independent sources. The available evidence does not favor one view over the other; thus, we can't use this passage as independent confirmation of the historicity of Jesus.

                    (g) The reference to the 'hire of a harlot.' Finally, McDowell quotes the following passage from the Talmud:

                        He answered, Akiba, you have reminded me! Once I was walking along the upper market (Tosefta reads 'street') of Sepphoris and found one [of the disciples of Jesus of Nazareth] and Jacob of Kefar Sekanya (Tosefta reads 'Sakkanin') was his name. He said to me, It is written in your Law, 'Thou shalt not bring the hire of a harlot, etc.' What was to be done with it--a latrine for the High Priest? But I answered nothing. He said to me, so [Jesus of Nazareth] taught me (Tosefta reads, 'Yeshu ben Pantere'): 'For of the hire of a harlot hath she gathered them, and unto the hire of a harlot shall they return'; from the place of filth they come, and unto the place of filth they shall go. And the saying pleased me, and because of this I was arrested for Minuth. And I transgressed against what is written in the Law; 'Keep thy way far from here'--that is Minuth; 'and come not nigh the door of her house'--that is the civil government.[69]

                    What is crucial to the evidential force of this passage is the words in parentheses; yet McDowell never defends them. He simply quotes Klausner, who in turn quoted an obscure, 19th century manuscript.[70] Nonetheless, most scholars would reject the passage as McDowell has it:

                        To establish the reliability of this passage, Klausner must engage in a contorted argument that includes an appeal to Hegesippus' account of the martyrdom of James--something that would not inspire confidence in many scholars today. Joachim Jeremias weighs the pros and cons of the argument about authenticity and decides in the negative--rightly in my view. The saying is a polemical invention meant to make Jesus look ridiculous.[71]

                    In conclusion, the value of the Talmud as a witness to the historicity of Jesus is at best uncertain. John Meier argues that the Talmud contains "no clear or probable reference to Jesus."[72] And Twelftree states that the Talmud is "of almost no value to the historian in his search for the historical Jesus."[73] Of course, as McDowell and Wilson point out, the Talmud never questions the historicity of Jesus.[74] But that fact cannot itself be used as evidence for the historicity of Jesus, for two reasons. First, as Goldstein points out,

                        we must be careful not to make too much of [the] argument [that had Jews doubted the historicity of Jesus, they would have said so]. It is not conclusive. Can we attribute to ancient peoples our modern concept of myth, or historicity? Furthermore, this manner of logic lends itself to fallacious extension whereby one could attempt to prove that whatever the early Jewish tradition does not specifically mention in contradiction to the Christian tradition must have taken place.[75]

                    Second, the Talmud can only provide independent confirmation of Jesus's existence if it relied on independent sources. Given our ignorance of the sources for the Talmud as well as its late date, it simply can't be used as independent confirmation of the historicity of Jesus.

                    all of these sources and more can be found here:  http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/ … l#josephus

                    The summaries here are not my own research, but everything I've learned on the subject pretty much agrees with few disputes or differences from what is listed on this site.  Are you interested in learning more from the side against yours?  You also may want to read "Bart Ehrman and the :Quest for the Historical Jesus" which was written in rebuttal to Ehrman's book "Did Jesus Exist"  Also watch the presentations from Richard Carrier or read "Nailed" by David Fitzgerald.

                    If it were not for the Catholic church, you would not HAVE a bible.  You would know nothing about Jesus except small fragments from the dead sea scrolls and the nag hamani library.  There would be no modern day christianity that even faintly resembles the christianity that exists today, and you would probably be just as vehement about a different set of religious beliefs.

                    I'll look for that guy you mentioned when I get a chance.  Unfortunately I cannot devote entire days to searching out christian claims because I work two jobs, participate in Hubpages and have a devoted wife and friends.  I'll put it on the list - but trying to minimize my background in biblical studies because I came to different conclusions about it than you did seems at best dishonest, and at worst ridiculous for perpetuating a rational and civil discussion with you.  If it doesn't stop, I see no need to continue talking to you if you can't come to the discussion on a level playing field respecting my conclusions.  I've not disrespected you, and I've never said that any of the things you've presented about yourself (if any) are stupid or clearly untrue.  I expect (and deserve) the same respect.

                    And no.  I live in an apartment, not a house and I don't have a garage.  Claiming that if I had a garage it would be based in truth is like saying "if you've eaten an orange, then you've eaten fruit.  Therefore saying you've never eaten a kiwi is not a lie, because you've eaten an orange, so it's a lie based on some truth."  It doesn't work that way.  The existence of garages does not extend to the possible existence of an invisible purple dragon.

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                puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                "You cannot have absolute certainty of religious beliefs without proof, and I'm sorry but the Bible is not proof that god is real.  It is proof that certain people had certain beliefs, and they wrote them all down.  What is interesting to me is that nowhere in the bible does god instruct people to write these stories down and claim that they're HIS word and is inherently perfect."

                You could ask, in turn, what proofs does ANY body have that God does not exist? and if indeed "the Bible is a fabricated for manipulating " book, and so many other questions.
                The fact is ANY proof is identically impossible so far. And each of us has been born under a unique context, with similarities but also with great differences, particular differences...So far, psychology says that abyone can have a twin in the plane but it seems to be refering to fenotypes and not mind-type...So far it is said in the scientific communty that the brain is a powerful engine and that we use only some 10% (genious) and the rest totally misuse the brains. Atheists mantain that Xtians misuse the brains winkwink Well, if misusing the brains make us happier, shinier, accomplished, then I welcome misusing the brains...If the behaviour of God and Xtians, in  general, bothers atheists, then they have two, only two, options: if you do not like your neighbour change of neighborhood or...adapt...And thtis truth abosulutely for all mankind; last time I cecked evolution happened by hose two optons: either moving out and/or adapting...Misused brains then and now, maybe...it's also to be proved... Don't you think that the istubborn ntechange is not opening any minds? You are certain of what yo believe, as I am too; atheists are certain only on what hey do not believe bt nEVER that what we believe is a falsehood, because, by the same token they pretend to dismantle our grounds, they afre also beaten...It's written since many many years of philosophy  of thought, of language, og cooking, of gardening, etc etc etc. JUST be happy you believe and, yes, I qould also pity, soeone who does not, but not because I am superior like all jumped to say, but becaus eof the loneliness and perhaps fear of abandonment they must feel deep down their hearts...Do we need to define heart?

                1. jonnycomelately profile image87
                  jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  You are free to live with your illusions, puella.   I am not in that state of loneliness.   I have no fear of abandonment, so you have no need to feel pity for me.   You make presumptions here which are just that.... presumably (on my part) because of some wayward background in your own life.  Thus your religion is a sort of counter to that background.

                  Am I mistaken?

                  1. 60
                    puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Totally JCL!! I was the favourite child of my dad just because, he used to say, I was flexible even when protesting his rules for us at home... and because I used lo laugh at his, then to me, outregious control of our friendships and never letting us go sleep over anybody's home...On the other hand, he did provide generously to our education and well being...He graduated 7 kids all the way till graduate school (not any does that)...and happily and celebrating with us our accomplishments...We could not but retribute his efforts and generosity thru all of our life...That's why when he passed away younger than 65 due to an abdominal aneursim, I for a long time questioned the fairness of it all...to God...Just when we were all ready and on our jobs doinf great and we all wanted him to quit job and travel with mom, he dies in asudden irremediable episode of an aneurism.
                    I only have happy memories of my childhood and youth and college and married and mother...My children are all on their track and as good Xtians as many.doing the contribution to the life of many...I do not see why, if you are that happy now, you can be so 'biting' wirh some of your comments, specially when someone insists in their belief as true...If it bothers you so much why do you write in a FORUM? what did you expect? total surrender to the most important aspect of our entire life, you like yourself: s not your current (you have wandered you said) belief r credo or absence of that what has left you in a state, like you say, of enjoyment of your life? it's contradictory to the way you respond sometimes...It's not that it bother me what you may believe in the end...it's up to yo and your circumnstances...but what bothers me is the contradictory state of animus hen someone says the same but with a God in their life...You dare, with a snot-so subliminal superirity, to say that we are stuck!!! are not you too? prove it. I am happy JCL, very grateful to life and to God who made it possible and yes, to my hard work too.

          2. jonnycomelately profile image87
            jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Ceegen, you are totally stuck in that business of "the world being full of evil," as far as I can see.  That colours your everyday attitude to the world.   That is your choice.   I DO NOT make that choice.

            Yes, of course there is evil in this world.   No one denies that.   But you paint the world so, so, black and evil, when do you get the opportunity to see the beauty and the goodness?

            You keep your bible, your christianity, your religion and your darkness.   I will not be sucked into that world you have created for your own mind.   Thank you, all the same...not for me.

            1. Ceegen profile image85
              Ceegenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              "Ceegen, you are totally stuck in that business of "the world being full of evil," as far as I can see.  That colours your everyday attitude to the world.   That is your choice.   I DO NOT make that choice."

              I think the world is and can be beautiful at times, but there is obviously evil in the world. You can't just ignore it. Ignoring cancer doesn't make it go away, does it?

              "Yes, of course there is evil in this world.   No one denies that.   But you paint the world so, so, black and evil, when do you get the opportunity to see the beauty and the goodness?"

              Every day I look at my wife and son, and admire the natural beauty of God's creation all around me. No joke, I still stop to stoop down and admire the beauty of a flower. Call it fruity or whatever you want, but this world fascinates me. I think most people overlook what is all around them, because we take it for granted that it's there.

              "You keep your bible, your christianity, your religion and your darkness.   I will not be sucked into that world you have created for your own mind.   Thank you, all the same...not for me."

              Believing in the God of what is known as "the bible" is not a religion. Though people have made religions based on the bible to fill their bellies (something God even warns us of), that doesn't change the contents of the bible. Religion is merely the opinions of man about God, but if God is real and does interact with humans... What is He saying?

              He's saying we, humanity, have a problem; primarily based on our refusal to admit that He even exists. I'm not saying to look only at the evil in the world, but rather, wonder why evil is evil. Think about what evil really is. How do we know what is good or evil?

              1. jonnycomelately profile image87
                jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                In the earlier post you make statements about the laws of physics.   These are matters of this finite, physical world which you and I are part of .   

                Now in this later post you talk about religion.  You say "Religion is merely the opinions of man about God, but if God is real and does interact with humans... What is He saying?"   So, you agree that it's about the opinions of man about God.  You Ceegen are using religion!  You are steeped in it!  Your opinions, as I have said before, are your choices.   Yet you speak of them as fact!   They are NOT.  They are all your opinion.   Respected if you recognise and admit to that.... not respected when you try to call them facts.   

                Start being honest with yourself, and then we/I might start believing you are honest with us.  One of the most honest people in this forum is JMcFarland.   She is knowledgeable, writes clearly, answers questions honestly and with first-hand information.   Yet you and other people with christian convictions here, repeatedly refuse to actually listen to her and, maybe, increase your own knowledge.   This does not surprise me.  I have been a christian, like JMcFarland was.  I am not now, but still have a desire to listen to the opinions of others.   Again..... provided there is honesty there, and not people talking fancy nonsense with the aim of "converting" me, because I am not trying to "convert" you to atheism.

                1. JMcFarland profile image93
                  JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Thank you, Johnny.

                2. Ceegen profile image85
                  Ceegenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  "In the earlier post you make statements about the laws of physics.   These are matters of this finite, physical world which you and I are part of ."

                  Yes exactly. But both you and I can look at the same picture, and write an entire book on just one picture, with both books being entirely different. The only thing that would be common in the stories, are the things described or referenced to in the picture. We'd both see and understand the picture and its contents, but still derive two differing set of opinions based on what we know about the world around us in relation to that picture.

                  But what if you had a perfectly clear view of the situation? You'd have to be God to have the most perfect and clear view of the situation that we're in, because all else are just opinions, if the bible is true. Trusting that it's true means accepting what God says about it, and the warnings associated with both past and future events. Once you take the position of believing what God says, it is no small matter then to see conspiracies for what they are -- Simply, fulfillment of prophecy.

                  "Now in this later post you talk about religion.  You say "Religion is merely the opinions of man about God, but if God is real and does interact with humans... What is He saying?"   So, you agree that it's about the opinions of man about God.  You Ceegen are using religion!  You are steeped in it!  Your opinions, as I have said before, are your choices.   Yet you speak of them as fact!   They are NOT.  They are all your opinion.   Respected if you recognise and admit to that.... not respected when you try to call them facts."

                  If God said to write things down, and people who honestly thought that God was talking to them said to write things down and for a reason, what would that reason be?

                  "What is truth?" - Pontius Pilate, speaking to Jesus. Funny... Jesus never answered him. Maybe Jesus was just tired of repeating himself?

                  Romans 3:
                  10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:
                  11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.
                  12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

                  The bible is constantly trying to remind us how bad we can really be without any guidelines at all. If anything, being a radical Christian believer means using no violence at all. If we're supposed to emulate Jesus, then "real Christians" when facing persecution, willingly submit to it without fighting back. I believe one day it will get like that, and people will want to kill me simply because I wanted to believe in something greater, something worth holding onto and hoping for. If that's crazy to you, I'm sorry, but what is your vision of a "peaceful world"? Am I included in your utopia, or would you put me to death for disagreeing with you?

                  Yes, I'm paranoid, and for good reason. I grew up in gangland USA, Southern-California area. I used to hate people, especially since I was picked on a lot as a kid, but I don't hate any of those people. I forgave and forgot, I moved on. I know that if the bible is true, then they are being deceived into being violent for all the wrong reasons. Plus, a lot of comments on various news sites and streaming video comments section from everyday people, says a lot about how people (in general) perceive reality. What I see mostly are a bunch of people blaming religion for the evils and ills of the world, and if only we could end this religion nonsense we could just move on to bigger and better things!

                  But what if that isn't true? What if that is part of the deception? And what if religion itself is part of the deception, and Lucifer really is in control of most of the churches, if only by proxy through the evil men who run them. Lots of "Christians" incite people to anger, and do violence without cause, but what if it's on purpose, just to get you angry at me? I mean, what did I ever do to you?

                  Religion isn't evil, it just is trying to point out to us what evil really is, and I just happen to believe that the bible answers a lot of these types of questions.

                  By chance, do you play chess?

                  "Start being honest with yourself, and then we/I might start believing you are honest with us.  One of the most honest people in this forum is JMcFarland.   She is knowledgeable, writes clearly, answers questions honestly and with first-hand information.   Yet you and other people with christian convictions here, repeatedly refuse to actually listen to her and, maybe, increase your own knowledge.   This does not surprise me.  I have been a christian, like JMcFarland was.  I am not now, but still have a desire to listen to the opinions of others.   Again..... provided there is honesty there, and not people talking fancy nonsense with the aim of "converting" me, because I am not trying to "convert" you to atheism."

                  I don't care if you're not trying to convert me to atheism, it just will not work. I started out as not believing. Yeah I went to church as a kid, but most of the time I took the offering money my dad and mom gave me, skipped church and went to Dunkin' Donuts. Just because someone writes clearly and says a lot of things, doesn't mean they're right or wrong, it just means they like to quote things they think are true. How much "life-experience" do you have? What is your story, anyway? What turned you away from God?

                  Because I can tell you my story, but all the "facts" that you know to be true would call me a liar. You respect each other because you believe the same thing, but me? Who am I, but a worm among men? A hated servant of the Lord!

                  I am being honest with you, and yes I am trying to convert you. Who cares about all the evil people are doing in the world? Is it really God's fault that no one wants to abide by His rules? Are the rules really all that hard to follow, anyway? Why is the first commandment the hardest one to follow? "Love God with all your heart, mind and soul" - Paraphrased from Deuteronomy 6:5 and Luke 10:27.

                  Is it really that hard to love God, even if other people don't, or do evil things against God's wishes, even doing evil things while invoking the name of God? Things aren't so clear though human eyes, because our eyes lie to us all the time. We're biased. Very, very biased. No one saw the man in the ape suit running in the background!

                  1. jonnycomelately profile image87
                    jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Answer:  Then I would have a strong suspicion that those people were living in the land of the fairies.

                    "What is your story, anyway? What turned you away from God?"

                    Answers:  1. Christians.   2. I turned away from the fear-mongering and pretense of humans, not from a god.

                    "I am being honest with you, and yes I am trying to convert you."

                    Answer:    Well at least that bit is clear.  And your trying to convert me can only come from the presumption that you are in a stronger, more authentic position that I am..... enough said. 

                    Post script:   Reading between the lines, there is that "story" which most christians have to tell.   It conveys the reason, usually, of difficulties, a "hard life," trauma, tragedy, etc.   Then christianity comes along in the form of someone with a message..... "follow this man who was god incarnate and he will make your life better for you."   The story and your history of your life are respected and I would never wish to play it down.   But understand that the solution you found on your own journey is not necessarily the solution for others.   Each of us has a unique path to tread.

    10. JPB0756 profile image60
      JPB0756posted 3 years ago in reply to this

      The answer one must seek is why would one have a need for such "matter-of-fact-ness;" security. Always interpret opinions with the perspective time provides, id est what were the needs, social structures and mode of governing then and there.  The winners write history.

      1. 60
        puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        thank you ... Not only history is written by the winners, but the 'losers' believe it

      2. jonnycomelately profile image87
        jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Very true!

    11. A.Villarasa profile image79
      A.Villarasaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      @JCL:
      "....thoroughly rigid views".... I suppose you are referring to the basic tenets of a particular belief system ( not only in religion, but also in other areas of human thinking, endeavor and interaction). When one mentions basic tenets, what immediately comes to mind are the words "un-bending" and "un-shakable". The implication of truth being applied to"basic tenets" is of course  what  you are referring to in your questions, but as everybody knows, what could be the basic truth of one's belief system may not necessarily be of another belief system.

      Adhering to those basis tenets is what makes one a  "true" believer. Without  true believers, in a religion tenet, or a philosophical thinking, or a scientific model, or a political organization,  the  reason for the existence of that religion, or philosophy, or science, or politics evaporates quite rapidly. The world without belief systems would indeed be an empty shell.... TRUTH be damned.

      1. jonnycomelately profile image87
        jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Very interesting and refreshing point of view.

      2. 60
        puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        And would you consider someone 'narrow minded' just because of his/her ideas, or just because he/she tries to say the most of it (does not mean the best of it I know) in a forum where there are fraternities of though bouncing back everything said by the opposite side? I have not seen here any serious reply (except for McFarland and for  Deepes) who have tried to offer their knowledge without too much emphasis in words that may result insulting..When, logically one responds in the same tone, the focus is lost and the latter to respond is juded ad "attacking the character of the opposite side...!
        I am sure that if I had said what you just wrote, almos in a seconf, without difestion it, and just because I said from the beginnig that I am a Catholic, everything from me is trashed but with added cheap vinegar...And then they all play the 'dove' or 'the sacrificed lamb' because of insults!!!

        1. A.Villarasa profile image79
          A.Villarasaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          @Puella:
          Truth, as in beauty or as in reality is in the eye of the beholder. It is all about perspective. One's perspective may change over time and space, but once undergirded by basic tenets, remains steady, stand-fast, and secure. Therein lies the truth.... in philosophical terms.

          Truth, solely  in material  terms ( i.e. in the material world) could be real (or unreal), depending upon whether one  is observing it as "particles" or as  "force fields".

          1. 60
            puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Force field (a spinal are that exerts influence on how we, in turn, maintain 'balance'? or just the exaggeration of defenses to keep ourselves as 'complete' as we are?
            Yes, I think it's a natural reaction that happens before even understanding reality; the instinctive reaction...which gets badly enhanced by some facts of reality, namely, hostility in the context, and accusations of ill intentions when it is not our truths...The truth is that paranoia takes place even before the subject knows of it; and paranoia, just like love or anything mindful, is a reaction to chemistry...
            But this should not encourage anyone to consider others weakness in the art of debating to make them aware of such weaknesses; too much concentration in a few trees when the entire forest can say otherwise...And if the ones concentrating in a few trees are the ones claiming on being openminded, what's for the rest? I guess is no mind at all...and that's a lie! everybody has a mind, and a heart...althogh some show here to be really heartless

      3. 60
        puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        my advise, not solicited? do not say for a while if you believe in God or do not...You will be read carefully and replied if possible wink

  2. 0
    Sooner28posted 3 years ago

    I feel like your characterization could apply to almost any belief system!  (I keep imagining Tea Partiers and their refusal to acknowledge any evidence not in line with what they already believe).

    Anyway, I think that people who hold very rigid views in line with their religion are going to be honest with you when describing what they believe.  Ultra conservative Christians will often tell you that God doesn't want to send you to hell, but that your rejection of him forces that to happen.

    I happen to disagree with that.  But I don't think the person is being dishonest with me.  There might be a tendency to dishonesty (or intellectual unfairness)in evaluating evidence against your position.

    I think the most pernicious aspect of conservative religious believers is they don't approach the subject with an open mind.  They don't ask: Is the Bible the word of God, is the concept of God coherent, is it possible God doesn't exist, is it possible God exists but isn't good?  They box themselves in because they are taught "doubting and questioning" are sinful.   Like this- http://www.gotquestions.org/question-God.html

    1. jonnycomelately profile image87
      jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Thanks for your feedback...... I would ask a further question then.....does the bible contain all you need to know?   Could you get some deeper insights about what is written in the bible, if you were to study, say, the Bhagavad Gita?

      1. 0
        Sooner28posted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I'm an atheist, so I think studying all religions is a good thing.

        But for my conservative relatives, they say no.  Anything that teaches beliefs contrary to the Bible is automatically wrong by default.  So if the Bible teaches the earth is 6,000 years old, and another book says the opposite, the Bible is necessarily right.  Here is what some intellectual dishonesty comes in.

        Instead of evaluating both to the best of one's ability, the conservative relatives I have will not even try to engage in opposition evidence. 

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2C3T17aKPCI

        Craig is actually a respectable philosopher, but his discussion here shows his approach isn't actually as open-minded as it appears.

        1. jonnycomelately profile image87
          jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Sooner28, thank you.   It is that lack of freedom of thought and being unwilling to explore other possibilities that I feel brings with it so much negativity.

          Also, behind much of that public rhetoric, is often a commercial and power-game motive for their zeal.  They know that there is a vulnerable audience out there that is longing for someone to get up on stage and "tell" them the easy answers and solutions in life.   

          For the individual, though, when there is courage to step out into the unknown and explore new vistas, this can be very refreshing.

          1. 0
            Sooner28posted 3 years ago in reply to this

            That's true.  More people need to think for themselves and stop allowing religious dogma to dictate their lives.

      2. 0
        Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        At the risk of being called a non- Christian.. NO!! The bible does not contain all that you need to know. In some churches, people use the word Bible as an acronym meaning B.asic I.nstructions B.efore L.eaving E.arth. The bible features Christ who lived a life as an example of how to live a good life helping others and the bible does give some basic principles on living and how to handle most situations, BUT it does not account totally for every different scenario. There is a saying that people perish for lack of knowledge, but the bible does not state (to my immediate recollection) that it contains all of the answers (other than seek first the kingdom of heaven). The bible does not teach you about other cultures, customs, etc. Holding on solely to the bible often times disallows people to see the big picture because they are using a very small frame (their minds)

        1. soldout777 profile image60
          soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

          At the risk of being called a non- Christian.. ??

          If you think the Bible doesn't have all the answers, you are doubting the word of God, and you are no better than unbelievers.

          The Bible says, read the word, pray to God and then He shall direct thy paths.

          1. Josak profile image59
            Josakposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            The bible is right because the bible says so and the bible says we have to accept everything in it because the bible says tongue

            Infinite regression of a fallacy.

            1. soldout777 profile image60
              soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Because the Bible is the word of God. God don't lie. you don't want to accept it fine...
              Not a new thing.
              Critics will always be there....
              But I know what is right for me..

              1. jonnycomelately profile image87
                jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Stay with that last line.... accepted, true for you, respected.   But you do not have the monopoly on truth, nor does your bible, nor does you imagination.

          2. jonnycomelately profile image87
            jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Deepes Mind is using the brain he was born with!!  wink

            1. 0
              Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Don't stress coming to my defense.. Like it has been pointed out several times before, People get what they need out of the bible.. Apparently, SoldOut can get all of the answers to life's problems out of the bible (even those things that the bible points out to keep searching for) and that's fine for him.. His position is still safe (well unless God still looks down on the whole Passing judgment of others thing and takes exception to his/her judgment over another Christian wink).

            2. soldout777 profile image60
              soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Deepes Mind is using the brain he was born with!..great
              And he is a Christian!

              If you don't want to listen to what I am saying, listen to Deepes
              He is not an atheist. And I am sure he is using his brain when he decided to follow Christ.

              1. 0
                Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Thank you. And it is in following Christ that allowed me to see the true strength that I have been given to live and do what I can to make the best and biggest difference here on earth for myself and others.

                1. soldout777 profile image60
                  soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  You are welcome!
                  Good to hear that.  Carry on the good work. God bless!

          3. 0
            Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Okay, Genius.. Where in the bible does it speak about technology? The inner workings of the brain, heart, etc...?? Please tell me what scripture contains the cure for cancer, AIDS, etc...

            When you can point me in the direction of those scriptures (other than prayer) then you will have a point.. Prayer does change things and I totally believe that and I believe the word of God, But the word also says that faith without works is dead.. You can believe all you want, but there is also work that has to be done here on earth to fulfill God's word..

            It is this thinking of The bible and prayer doing everything that caused that couple in Pa to now be in jail for child neglect because they refused to take TWO children to the hospital for medical attention. So now that they lost two kids the same way, what do you tell them?? Their faith wasn't strong enough? or that they didn't apply the basic principle of taking their kids to the hospital would have saved their lives?

            I know where I stand in my faith in the word of God and what it says.. The word even says that even in trusting in the Lord, we still have to walk in faith. Part of walking in faith is still doing works to complete what needs to be done..

            Please read Matthew 7:1-5 and while you're at it spare me your self righteous judgment  over another Christian's faith and belief in what the bible says. I know where I stand in my faith and things that I have gotten from the bible have allowed me to walk in the victory in Him..

            If you choose to ignore the parts of the bible that speak to your own power and ability given through Him (namely Philipians 4:13)

            By passing judgment over me (or anyone else for that matter who is Christian) you are no better than an unbeliever in what God has revealed to your fellow Christians.

            Move that beam, my friend

            1. soldout777 profile image60
              soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

              well well, I am sorry,

              but I am sure you believe that nothing is impossible with God, as you are a Christian . The Bible is the book of faith. First seek His kingdom and all the things that you need will be given.

              At the same God has also given us brains to think  and to do what is best. God gave man wisdom ,so he is better than animals. But when he questions his maker, he is a no better than a fool..

              1. 0
                Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                I agree. It may start there, but it does not always stay there.




                This is the point.. It may start with scripture, but it does not stay there. Scripture encourages us to use our brains as well as scripture, so in looking to other sources, you are not questioning the maker. you are simply using your brain to think and make full use of all things around you. We are to have faith, but we are NOT to be so totally dependent on Him that we cripple ourselves of the power that He gave us. One issue that I see is that some Christians will pray to God then sit and wait on the miracle to happen. Some are so sold out (no pun intended and this is not a knock on you) that they make the most mundane things seem miraculous as they thank God for everything. I'm not knocking you and I understand your stance (from what I've read from you), but the time has come for Christians to widen their perspective as to what God truly has done in giving us the power for ourselves. Free will does not come without the power to act on that will. Free will without power is not free.

                1. soldout777 profile image60
                  soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Yes, we should do what we can ,not only waiting for God to do everything.
                  I am doing exactly that...
                  But one thing I hold on to, is that God is real. I am sure you do the same.

                  1. 0
                    Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    I do. that is why it bothers me when another Christian accuses me of being an unbeliever because we may not have gotten the same things out of the Bible. I read and believe in the same bible and have gained my own understanding of it as well as what the churches teach and some church doctrine is soo off base.

        2. 60
          puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          a book that teaches you how to 'solve' the mistery of life and thus make you feeling you have 'mastered' life?? ghee...which one? When you live, you are supposed to 'leave' some bad habits in order to be engaged socially. You behave as an outsider of ewhatever 'rules' and you are outed. That is the normalcy of life. BUT, the Bible does add even more requirements that, if, a big if, you master them, the other ones will seem piece of cake or, if you mind, peace of cake wink...So your mockery of the meaning of the bible does not mock it at all; you are the final receptor of your own doings, remember? what comes around goes around...? the pure street wisdom... Be content that you do not have to be 'biblical' often times...but wheter you have noticed it or not you have come to enjoy a lot of benefits due to the realization of the Bible teachings...Plese abstain of history of horrors...Just balance the results as a whole...Even if you don't, wink still those results are here forever since forever...cheers..you will be fine

          1. jonnycomelately profile image87
            jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Puella, your rant towards Deepes Mind stinks of a desire to control.

          2. 60
            puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Rant? and to control what? be specific if you don't mind; have you re-read some of your own? what, if anything, am I looking to control? just what? this thread? but if you yourself declared it 'finished' when someone told you, us, that from whatever angle you can approach this topic, it will not be 'solved' by anybody, believers or not, believe it or not wink..then you said, "really...finished then" as if you were worried that certainly no definite answer would be ascertained...Plese JCL...I am not ranting...But if  anybody deminish the level of the conversation by defining what B.I.B.L.E. means in a way that extripates the seriousness of it all, what do you call that? speaking of tolerance and respect and etcS

            1. jonnycomelately profile image87
              jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Yes, Puella, a "rant."   Why?  Because I fail to see how you get all of what you say "from the bible."

              If this is what you glean from its pages; if these proclamations which you make; if the "message" which you say the bible sends us ----- is truly valid and factual, how can you construct your understanding of the bible in this way?   Especially when the scriptures are such a mix of writings from the distant past.   

              There is myth, and history, and superstition, and parable.   Little can be translated into what we can all fully understand today, in our own cultural climate.  Most of us, myself included, can understand little of the culture of 2000 years ago, especially where it relates to the people of Israel and Arabia.

              I have said that what one can glean from the Harry Potter books can give us lots of metaphorical pointers to leading a better life.   If you can see them, it is probably because you don't want to see them.

              You have apparently chosen a particular religious path for your life.   That is respected and of course you have that free choice.   But, hey!   What are your qualifications, your authority, to tell others what precisely are the "true" messages of the bible?   Have you done studies that can be openly assessed and vetted by your peer group?  Are you a spiritual, ascetic, mystic, enlightened person whom we can listen to and expect an authentic translation of the bible? 

              We know nothing of you except what you write here in the hub.   If I knew what was your background of expertise, then I would be more willing to listen to your points of view.   So far, all we have managed is rhetoric and reaction.

              1. 60
                puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                What you just said applies entirely to what the opposition wink says too. And will bounce that ball back to you: if you do not see it is because you do not want to see it. Reaction is a natural response to action...it's life itself!! evolution means that a change impossed by context required a reaction (adaptation and all the genetical mutations involved thu time) to be able to survive and 'progress'...The blueprint of everything we do is spelled in our reactions. If you do not want people to react to what you say or write then why do you write for? you are supposed to be enjoying reactions...and contradict them if needed and adopt them if valuable etc etc etc. You do not need to know about us...our writings are telling you what we think (and my dear Watson...we are saying, pouring)... What you ask me about "the who know" how the Bible was written and all the mistakes, etc etc ...you are not adding anything important...you are wasting your times. It does not matter that you do not know the languages...an author speaks himself in his/her books (surprised?) so what we need to do is to try to be in the author's shoes...and that is what we have been doing. Now, you seem to be stucked in your analysis. Whatever happened to you, had its moment in time, and you MUST have seen changes after that from that church..If you deny the positive changes you are denying evolutionary thoughts and philosophy. I do not need to write here about Jesus teachings...It's enough 'all' what riddle... knows wink for example of the Bible...He has even better readings than the Bible... What are your 'better' readings? You just get trapped in the past...Evolution takes time..and so survival...and so progress....You cannot say that today's situation, regarding your context now and then, has not changed!!! it is simple not possible. The critics of the Bible as a God's book do mean nothing to me...It only speaks of ignorance of the book. And it's a loooong book. Do you aspire to discuss it here? wink no way!! And for those who have included stuff from the Bible, what answers have they got? just think about that. Do not be mad a t me...

      3. Chris Neal profile image83
        Chris Nealposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Some people might indeed derive insight from it but if you believe that God wrote the Bible (using human agents) then you must understand that Hindu writings don't provide deeper insight in to the actual character of God. There are insights to be gleaned about what differences and similarities there are between different religions and peoples, which can be applied in a number of ways.

    2. 60
      puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      the very point of 'absolute'!!! The Bible repeatedly along hte pages maintains that He is an absolute God and His is an absolute truth; but He is not talking about thw 'winners' in a mundane concept; soul salvation (from death, from sin, thru love, is salvation
      A Xtian is not comfrtly speaking about what he will have for breakfast (muesli and all that jazz) when there are all of the millions in hunger; I would say that this kind of superficilaity, shallowness, pnly speaks of the real needs of the heart: there is saying in Spain: "tell what you have got in abundance and I will tell what is the nature of you scarcities"...is not that telling>???
      and JCL, read carefully, I am not convincing anybody to be a Catholic! please do not pit words in my writings... Do not fantasize about my writings: you are not reading harry potter okay?

  3. 0
    Motown2Chitownposted 3 years ago

    I think that many of us hold to religious belief as the only means of ensuring that we live a good and moral life.  Simply by virtue of exposure to the rest of the world, I can't see how one can hold to that conclusion with any measure of maturity.  As we get older, and meet people outside of our tiny, little worlds, we begin to understand that perhaps there is a lot more to living than we've ever been taught...and I say that in terms of not just religion, but everything.  Let me use a silly, silly, but poignant example.  I was raised by a first generation born Italian-American father.  In my house, we only ever had Italian salad dressing.  Until I was around 11, I thought that WAS salad dressing.  It never occurred to me that there were other flavors of salad dressing, because in my home, it was as simple as do you wan't dressing on your salad or no?  Such are those who are born into households or communities that are centered around one ''true'' religion.  They are never given the option to learn that God may have shared His truth with anyone outside of the household (community).  The question is then, do you want God or don't you?  Well, then, here He is.  Take Him or leave Him, as it were.

    I was blessed to have been raised to seek truth - constantly - and to understand that every truth that brought joy, love, peace, and unity among peoples came from God.  Later, I chose to understand for myself that Christ is the ultimate truth, and that whether people label Him as such isn't as important as whether people choose to live according to the ultimate truth that unifies us as a people.  Does that make sense?

    1. jonnycomelately profile image87
      jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      It sure does!  (At 4.35am, anyway  smile)

  4. psycheskinner profile image80
    psycheskinnerposted 3 years ago

    I think there is a difference between being quite sure about your own personal beliefs and being intolerant of the beliefs of others.

    I mean, sure, I might change my mind about my core beliefs but it is fairly unlikely.  But one of those beliefs is that other people get to be free in what they think and do--so long as they aren't hurting anyone.

    1. bBerean profile image60
      bBereanposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      You reach a point where the likelihood of being exposed to an argument, idea, or concept you have not already explored or considered is low.  New information is becoming available all the time, but it pretty much just falls into line with perspectives you have previously considered.  Sure, you look to see if that new data shifts the weight of the premise, but that rarely happens. 

      Not being anxious to constantly retrace old ground is frequently perceived as being close-minded, at least to those who hold that particular argument in high regard, or for whom it is new.  I don't begrudge others their right to embrace that opposing view.

  5. marion langley profile image60
    marion langleyposted 3 years ago

    I suspect  it's my consideration, questioning, and research of different views, ideas, and observations that helps me to identify patterns and inconsistensies. I am often surprised to find out what I thought was within the accepted norm was in fact inconsistent with my religion. That is a personal challenge that is essential to the growth of my spiritual strength, in my opinion. :-) I suspect growth would be quite limited by a habit of not appreciating something or someone else.

  6. moonfroth profile image82
    moonfrothposted 3 years ago

    Ahh!  The human Tasmanian Devil does it again!  If anyone can conjure up a question that cannot be "answered", only CHEWED on, it's Jonny.  I'm going to be untypically and mercifully brief, because you have a lot of thoughtful, intelligent, and well-written responses already.  You don't need more blather from me.

    I would add only a few observations (which frees me from the work of developing an Argument)--

    1)  "what is Truth, said jesting Pilate, and would not wait for an answer"
    2)  the simple fact that rarely, if ever, does Jesus of the Gospels answer the disciples' tough questions with direct answers, almost ALWAYS he uses images, metaphors, parables.  Example (you can almost SEE him shrugging)--"Consider the lilies of the field.  They toil not, neither do they spin."  --What the hell does THAT mean...?  Exit, scratching your head, go find a gourd of wine and figure this out.
    3)  "Nothing is real, except I perceive it so"  Can't remember the source of that one....
    4)  Plato's famous "Allegory of the /Cave" in the REPUBLIC (VI. I think)--in which people have been staring at reflected shadows on a wall their entire lives, and when the hoax is revealed to them and they are shown the "real" world, they reject it passionately and want to return to their cave.

    Our perceptions are our lives.  And that is all we have, all we can turn to to define "truth".  Who would presume to tell a Muslim that Allah is simply a projection on \his wall and has no verifiable existence in a "real" world?  Who would presume to tell a devout Christian that Jesus was just a neat guy in the right  place at the right time for a passionate Messianic culture to deify him?  Who would presume to tell an Atheist that his misguided demands for proof would doom him to hell for all eternity?

    Unfortunately--and this is what gives Jonny the right to ask the tough question--all sorts of people from the beginning of recorded history have so presumed, and countless millions of people have been killed in the name of the wars of Truth.  Rationally, there is no TRUTH shimmering like an eternal beacon in an ethereal landscape, waiting for men to embrace it.  Jesus knew that.  Muhammed knew that.  The Buddha knew that.  They all threw puzzles at men--puzzles tat were unimportant per se.  What was important was that each man had to come thru the puzzle in his own heart, where whatever truth was available to him, resided.  Now, if we could all accept THAT and in so doing, accept that many, many different paths can lead one to that Truth.......well, there we are.  o more wars, no mor slaughter, no more stress.

    Most religions fear that apparent relativism with an abding passion.  To acknowledge it is to relinquish power and control...and that would never do.

    So, in my opinion, it is not the exercise of process, of seeking, of thinking that is the3 problem and the obstruction.  It is the false and often self-serving DEFINITION of "Truth" itself that obscures and clouds our minds and makes it impossible to "answer" Jonny's excellent question.

    1. jonnycomelately profile image87
      jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Maybe it's not important for us to arrive at "the" truth.  Maybe for each of us our perception is all we need to dwell on and understand. 

      End of debate, if this is the case.

      Thanks Moonfroth and everyone for daring to answer the questions.

      1. jonnycomelately profile image87
        jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        A couple of further thoughts:   

        If I were really narrow minded in religion, it would prevent me even drawing upon the beauty that can be found in each. 

        It does not matter that I don't subscribe to the religion in general or particular aspects.  The artistry and emotional communication can sometimes lift me up out of the mundane nature of every day life.

        For example, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was steeped in the Roman Catholic religion of his day.  I could not enter into those beliefs now.  Yet the music he wrote and passed on down to later generations is sublime.  I have been listening to his Requiem while writing this comment.  That "wedding cake" of sound can send shivers down my spine.   His composition and all of the life he led up to the writing of it, the musicians, the technicians, every part of the process of getting it to my ears, are what inspire me.

        If I rejected the religion totally, how much beauty would I be missing?  Yet there is no need for me to take the beliefs on board for myself.   The same goes for the Hindu and Buddhist religions, with all their art and culture;  the Mormons and their Tabernacle Choir;  the classical paintings of Italy;  art of all kinds.... these came to us from people who had passionate beliefs.

        So --- we reject and we miss out.

        1. 0
          Emile Rposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          I haven't read through the whole thread. But I doubt by rejecting a religion we would reject the people who follow the religion. Mozart's work, and that of anyone, can be appreciated separate from religion. You would need to reject classical music in order to miss out on that.

          But, we must accept that we all have narrow views. My view may leave room for other views, my view may encompass many philosophies; but I still reject things. I still miss out by this rejecting. What is beautiful and pertinent to me addresses my needs. By thinking my view is better than another view I am, by that act, narrow minded.

          1. jonnycomelately profile image87
            jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Interesting points, Emile R. 

            There is a teaching within Buddhism, that of the "equanimous" mind.  Accepting each and every aspect of life for what it is, without judging "good" or "bad."   That each point of view arises from an awareness, the consciousness at the centre of our "being."   That each and every experience we have has its place in the grand, indivisible  "scheme" of things.

            Not far different from a christian view point, probably with different terminology.

            1. moonfroth profile image82
              moonfrothposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Since I'm a pragmatist, I pragmatically agree with Emil's pragmatism and yours, Jonny (note that I'm never redundant)--but both of you seem to miss the point about the CIRCUMSTANCES surrounding Mozart's beautiful music.  Was not the point that an Atheist can enjoy the beauty of Mozart's Art, but it must be acknowledged that the Christian milieu in which he was steeped from infancy had a profound and abiding influence on his work.  One could probably argue successfully that all that beauty would not have occurred WITHOUT that Christian milieu.  As modernists, we can detach his music from Christianity.  He could not.

              And Jonny--tho I do so with trepidation, anticipating a bolt from Zeus as I write this--I must take you to task for your closing caveat just above.Evil ]s a virtual obsession in Christianity. The existence of dichotomy and division is the cornerstone of Christianity.  Only God holds the key to harmony==bring your flawed and sinful soulto him andblah, blah maybe he'll let you in on some of the secrets.  Maybe not.  Depends.  And on and on it goes.  The Buddh found Good in all things

              1. 60
                puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Man is him and his circumstances...said by an atheist too in 1898,

  7. aka-dj profile image80
    aka-djposted 3 years ago

    Not unlike "beauty is in the eye of the beholder", so is the acceptance of truth.

    As a believer, my statement of "God exists", or "God is", it totally true.
    Every believer out there would agree. It would also be truth to them.

    Atheists, fundamentally reject any notion fo God, therefore, they would consider that statement an outright lie.

    1. moonfroth profile image82
      moonfrothposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      "What is Truth?" said jesting Pilate, and would not wait for an answer.

      "Nothing is true, except I perceive it so."

      And in Plato's Allegory of the Cave, the people chained lifelong watching a world of shadows on a wall, want to RETURN to that world of illusion after they;ve been led out of the cave and shown that their "reality" is a hoax.  Not to them it isn'.t.

      So, Emil--and I am not being facetious--if all this is true, why do we bother talking about this stuff, at all?

      1. Josak profile image59
        Josakposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Precisely, it doesn't take a great mind like Plato's to determine that there is no finite, ultimate or absolute truth, any text or ideology that claims to have it is either one of mindless zealotry and obedience or simply a scam.

      2. 0
        Emile Rposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Why do we bother talking about it? Because we find it interesting. Why else?

    2. jonnycomelately profile image87
      jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      A "lie" implies a deliberate attempt to deceive.   I don't think most religious people are trying to do that, so I don't like to say they are "lying."

      More like a sincerely-held mistaken belief.  IMHO.

      1. wilderness profile image97
        wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I think you're absolutely right.  It can be very difficult for a non-believer to understand how someone can believe such things as Adam being created in seconds from a handful of dirt, but believers can and do believe a great many things contrary to common knowledge.  It doesn't make it a lie, although presenting an opinion or belief, without basis or supporting evidence, as truth might be considered lying.

        1. soldout777 profile image60
          soldout777posted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Yes, it is very difficult for a non-believer to believe that, because they have never seen what God can do.... 
          Nothing is impossible with God.!

      2. aka-dj profile image80
        aka-djposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Works both ways.

        Most atheists sincerely believe the evolution lie.

        1. jonnycomelately profile image87
          jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          You have got that all wrong....

          I don't "believe in" evolution.   From what I have read, it is a theoretically possible way in which living organisms have come about in this world.   Darwin was a very religious, believing man, like yourself.  He held a theory, passionately, on how things might have happened.   He courageously went out into the world to explore his theory.   Then he came back, again courageously, and explained his theory and his findings to his peers, many of whom were extremely antagonistic towards him.  I suspect that, being a good scientist, he would have left lots of unknowns, "stones un-turned," for later generations to discover.

          Now, aka, if this is too much for you to grasp or contemplate, so be it.   Carry on in your religious mode.  Your choice.   I prefer to keep my sense of wonder and awe wide, wide open. 

          If I were to "believe in" any god at all, it would not have limitations.... it would be boundless and beyond my comprehension.   Not confined to a deity that confused everyone by inspiring the writing of a book; to be interpreted and mis-interpreted ad infinitum and threatened me with eternal damnation if I did not tow the line.

          You pushed a button with me.  smile  I wonder what it is within you that makes you absolutely reject even a possibility of the evolutionary process.

          1. aka-dj profile image80
            aka-djposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            My fundamental objection is that scientific observation, including ALL we know, we emphatically cannot observe life arising from non-life.
            In EVERY instance, life gives rise to life! Period.

            For me to "accept" evolutionary theory, is a greater leap of faith, than to believe (a) God, (a LIVING God) is more than capable of creating life.
            Life from life. NOT life from some contrived primordial goo.

            Feel free to hold onto these beliefs yourself. I doubt you'd listen to me!

            1. jonnycomelately profile image87
              jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              I have listened to you, and you can see that my mind is boundless in anything that is sensible.  But your fundamental position on christianity is, as you say, something I will not be part of, ever.

              1. aka-dj profile image80
                aka-djposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                That answer does not surprise me, since we have been here before.
                I note that you have no answer for the abiogenesis conundrum.

                I know it's a tough one, but a stand has to be made.
                It underpins all the rest.

                1. 0
                  riddle666posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  I was under the impression that your god was a living one, but now you say that life can only arise from life. So from which life did your god arise?
                  Or is your god a dead one?

                2. jonnycomelately profile image87
                  jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  The one thing that underpins all of your beliefs is that you, and I, and all of the human species, have an individual  consciousness after the death of our body.  I do not accept that, therefore I cannot accept your fundamental, born again christianity.  I am not rejecting the possibility that there is/was a creator of some kind, the nature of which none of us can know, because such a creator would be on a totally different plane of existence.   However, the imposition of a judgmental character in the form of a god is a man-made construction, designed to control other people.   The church you belong to will be part of that control group and it has obviously sucked you in, hook, line and sinker.

                  If you reject the idea of an evolutionary process, how do you suggest life came about?

                3. jonnycomelately profile image87
                  jonnycomelatelyposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Abiogenesis is another theory, so far backed up by a strong probability yet not proven.  This is just one aspect of man's inherent curiosity.   Why do you need to reject it?   It is something which we can continue to explore. 
                  I have just been watching this evening, a program by Prof. Brian Cox, which show some wonderful things about biology and species which I had no knowledge of.   He also has an exploring mind.  He is able to look out on (and into) the beautiful creation and enlighten us.   I love this.  It gives me so much respect for the world I live in. 
                  The answers are unlikely to be available to me, in my life time, but that does not matter.  I am privileged to experience life as it is now.   I have no worries whatsoever about anything after my death.   Whereas you, Aka-dj I suspect will be shivering in your shoes, wondering if you have pleased your master.

                  1. A Thousand Words profile image80
                    A Thousand Wordsposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Here's a more accurate description of abiogenesis.

                    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/abioprob/abioprob.html

                  2. aka-dj profile image80
                    aka-djposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    I have no reason to fear Him.

                    I'm already pleasing and acceptable to Him.

                    In fact, I'm 100% righteous before Him.

  8. amer786 profile image81
    amer786posted 3 years ago

    I have only briefly read thru a few of the postings on this thread so going back to your original question. I don’t think ‘rigidity’ or ‘openness’ would define the truth. The truth should be independent of that. One can be rigid with the truth or be open with falsehood or even vice versa.

    Also, I don’t agree that people are always sold out in their minds and hearts with their beliefs which is why they may come across as rigid—hence they may not really be lying or deceiving. I say this because I am an active proselytizer myself. When I engage people I am trying to win over to what I believe to be the truth and presenting the case, sometimes they react negatively when their logic, fact-record, viewpoint or philosophy is in apparent compromise. Sometimes people do not want their belief system challenged and their solace disturbed, no matter how ridiculous it may be. I won’t say that they are deceiving themselves, but for them religion is more a social system than a path of salvation to God. Human beings are complex, emotional and defensive. They may say one thing in public, and another in private, one thing with a certain group of people and yet another with some other group. While subscribing to a certain, let’s say, social system that originated in religion, people sometimes harbor doubts and other beliefs.

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    riddle666posted 3 years ago

    The sales men of god started to put advertisements too!!

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      puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      "Simply because, inevitably, if and when the dogmatic religious assertion becomes commonly applied to a society, or a community, then those who do not agree with the dogma get punished." JCL dixit
      "The sales men of god started..." riddle... dixit
      I ask in all honesty... what does it mean 'applied to society or community"...If you had good news, as Jesus called it and instructed His followers to spread them, would not you want to share them? Can you judge a forest by depicting a tree? Cannot you turn your face around and see that no matter what or who says or does not, there is an inherent flaw in human kind..What or why does that have to be blamed on christianity...It's not about of faith...the flaws are not about the credo, but about the interpretation of a credo and the living it Or you wil pretend to say that humans as parents do not love their kids when they make sooo many mistakes while responsible of their upbringing? yet, would you dare to say that they lacked love? of that they were 'flawed' like everybody else...

      Or on the science itself corner...how many times 'science' with evidence and method and etc, has stated "this is safe to do" to find ot later that it was not? then science is evil? then let's find some caves to go and live there ensgrined in out own self righteosusness and on our own ntolerance of the rest being just humans...and let's blame it all to Gid Himself for having made man so un-interestting or un-interested in the rest and selfsh to claim that 'me' is more important than "we'

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        riddle666posted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Was there any good news? I missed it. All I heard was the story about a poor man claiming himself as god and railing against the rich and walking with goons and prostitutes and other scum of the society and performing a lot of magic. I enjoyed Harry Potter better.

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          puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          wink Good.sense of humor has scientifically been proved healthy!! "a poor man" indeed! but as a 'man' and by choice! One of the 'core' teachings of Xtianity is indeed to be humble even if surrounded by earthly riches...And of the MOST effective teaching methods, especially for un-enlightened people, is by example...Parents teach a lot by example and, unfortunately, they damage a lot by contradicting their speech by their real behaviour...also an example of flaws...
          And I do not know why I have the 'feeling' that you interpret 'poor' and 'humble' all the same wink )after all it's a matter of interpretation, as I always insist...like the fact that you enjoy Potter's stuff...keep it up! it's important to have those indulgencies...I do not enjoy Potters' but pottery!!! I really like that!! to shape up my own doings and their consequences...for real life...And you know, scientifically, 'poor' can be rich and rich can be poor depending on what is being analyzed...Do material belongings count as any 'richness'? I find lasagna pasta to be very rich!! (in flavors that I love) and  any grilled fish, especially Caribbean ones...Yet, the topic remains the same: you interpret as you can, and 'can' is restricted by 'may' and 'may' cannot bring the flowers if 'april' has not brought the showers...

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            riddle666posted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Poor, concerning jesus is lacking material things. He was always for the "poor" getting this and that, and the rich going to hell or getting to heaven like the camel.... you got the gist?
            Intellectually also he was poor, had no idea about the world or psychology or economics. He was also dishonest by claiming himself as the son of god(also goes in with one of the definitions of poor).
            But actually none of these matters because he and his teachings and deeds are a later creation, nothing to do with him.

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              puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              One of the required elements in making an assessment about somebody's performance is to take into consideration something you, again, have missed: the context., Jesus times context. So, either you have a device that puts you in that era (sort of a time machine) but malfunctioning, or you really are believing in whatever convinced you in the Bible wink, so please, make up your mind...Your definitions are really really really poor because of your lack of touch with that reality and because it is full of exactly what JCL claims as intolerable: narrow minded...sorry for you, you have to deal with whatever is causing you that demoure...I cannot help here as you have not been granted the soil where faith grows -no matter how rainy it can get-  and you pretend to be critically analyzing but. in fact. you are like a volcano, releasing ashes...just ashes...and Jesus is alive and fine and fullfilling promises that are 2000 years old already (for example He said heavens and earth will pass but my words will not pass). And regarding His position regarding riches, He was very clear: His critics were about those people who having material riches, when it comes the time to give, they will give whatever they do not need or extra supplies...but Jesus meant that giving had to be real giving of what you cherised but were willing to share...missed it again??? Cheez, you really have to do something about this ;missing; habit...But anyway, it's none of my business what makes you spell ashes to the rest of the planet...my business is that I, myself, do not copy winkwink  Jesus intellectually poor? winkwink Dishonest? winkwink Agaim you are missing he facts. And whatever conquerors did in the name of Jesus has nothing to do with Jesus and His teachings...missed again?? Can't you analyze unbiasedly the history of mankind?

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                riddle666posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                I know there were so many charlatans who called themselves god and god's son.

                ".just ashes...and Jesus is alive and fine and fullfilling promises that are 2000 years old already "
                So is Harry Potter, Indra, Krishna, Buddha, Gandalf.....

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                  puellaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  ) yes, you are right wink in this one wink charlatans...especially when history is so telling of each of those in your list...

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                    riddle666posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Including Jesus,  only Indra, Krishna are before and Harry Potter, Gandalf after!