Intercessory prayer is pointless
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08-09-2017, 08:55 AM
RE: Intercessory prayer is pointless
Beloved? I don't think that fits but you do lose understanding.

There's all that beauty in the actual applications. The rotation of planets and the effects of gravity and electromagnetic forces that generate a atmosphere that at a mix of the certain temperatures rain happens. Just as beautiful but not fit for human live the rains of Venus in blistering sulfur or the storms if Jupiter.

You seek very strongly to push some discrimination pet notion. Things are also unified by the observations that show us connected.

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"Allow there to be a spectrum in all that you see" - Neil Degrasse Tyson
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08-09-2017, 09:26 AM
RE: Intercessory prayer is pointless
(08-09-2017 06:47 AM)nosferatu323 Wrote:  Science and religions are there to satisfy our insatiable mind to seek patterns and discrimination in our perceived reality, which ultimately helps us with our basic needs and survival and finally greed. Reality is as it is, science, God or any other concept does not affect it, as I see it.

You're just describing these different things in the same reductionist way to force your conclusion. Consider the differences:

The whole point of science is to make sure that the results are repeatable while trying to limit bias as much as possible. The end result is an observation that can be used to make meaningful predictions, and thus, intelligent decisions.

Religious claims tend to be nonfalsifiable and cannot be used to make meaningful decisions. The "useful" aspects of religion tend to involve making people feel better and giving them a purpose for community, but those are side effects.

Lumping those two different things into "pattern seeking" is like calling carrots and Doritos both "food" and ignoring any other differences.
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08-09-2017, 11:25 AM (This post was last modified: 08-09-2017 11:47 AM by nosferatu323.)
RE: Intercessory prayer is pointless
(08-09-2017 09:26 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  Religious claims tend to be nonfalsifiable and cannot be used to make meaningful decisions.

I, as a typical theist, make decisions based on the commandments of my God on a daily basis, and I think those are very well informed, meaningful and intelligent decisions. I do not need any prediction to make those decisions, because I trust that relying on the commandments of an all-wise God is self sufficient and I do not need to worry about the future.

The thing is, who determines whether a decision is meaningful or not? Religions can be a basis for decision making. Decisions that are deemed very meaningful within their own context.

Meaning is ultimately a product of the mind, if something is meaningful for a large group of people, that's fine I think. It doesn't need to meet any hard scientific criteria. I think you are evaluating meaning within religions with a scientific lens. That's not right, I guess.

You can argue that if I base my decisions on science, I'll probably have a better luck for my survival. That's something I'd accept, but more meaningful? That's subjective.
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08-09-2017, 12:13 PM
RE: Intercessory prayer is pointless
(08-09-2017 11:25 AM)nosferatu323 Wrote:  I, as a typical theist, make decisions based on the commandments of my God on a daily basis, and I think those are very well informed, meaningful and intelligent decisions. I do not need any prediction to make those decisions, because I trust that relying on the commandments of an all-wise God is self sufficient and I do not need to worry about the future.

What decisions do you make informed by religion that are not also informed by observation? If it's not something that is based in observation, it's nonfalsifiable. Sure, it could be correct, but you have no way of knowing that. Acting on hunches is not the same as making informed decisions. It might turn out alright, but it's still not the same thing.


(08-09-2017 11:25 AM)nosferatu323 Wrote:  Meaning is ultimately a product of the mind, if something is meaningful for a large group of people, that's fine I think. It doesn't need to meet any hard scientific criteria. I think you are evaluating meaning within religions with a scientific lens.

Yes, people can find meaning in whatever they want, but it's all nonfalsifiable. My point isn't that there are no people who think X is super important. My point is that it has no apparent bearing on reality, and any claim to the contrary is nonfalsifiable.

The funny thing about people choosing when to just believe in something and when to trust observation seems to be very self-serving. A person might believe that they have an immortal soul that will survive after death, and yet, they look both ways when they cross the street. They buckle their seat belt when they get in a car.

And I'm not trying to make some "lol theists are scared of death!" jab there. I'm pointing out that they very much are in tune with reality when they make those decisions. If I told that person that I too believe I have an immortal soul, they'd nod with me. If I told them I thought that car coming down the street was a ghost car, and we should just cross, or that I have a guardian angel keeping me safe in the car without a seat belt, they'd think I was insane!


So, any one given nonfalsifiable theistic claim may be true. Or maybe it's not. But at this point, we can't know, and it is in no way the same as making claims based off of observation. Lumping these all into "meaning being a product of the mind" is the same reductionist reasoning as saying "science and religion just satisfy our pattern-seeking behavior". They're two very different things and you're ignoring the important differences to make your point.
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08-09-2017, 12:15 PM
RE: Intercessory prayer is pointless
(08-09-2017 11:25 AM)nosferatu323 Wrote:  
(08-09-2017 09:26 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  Religious claims tend to be nonfalsifiable and cannot be used to make meaningful decisions.

I, as a typical theist, make decisions based on the commandments of my God on a daily basis, and I think those are very well informed, meaningful and intelligent decisions. I do not need any prediction to make those decisions, because I trust that relying on the commandments of an all-wise God is self sufficient and I do not need to worry about the future.

The thing is, who determines whether a decision is meaningful or not? Religions can be a basis for decision making. Decisions that are deemed very meaningful within their own context.

Meaning is ultimately a product of the mind, if something is meaningful for a large group of people, that's fine I think. It doesn't need to meet any hard scientific criteria. I think you are evaluating meaning within religions with a scientific lens. That's not right, I guess.

You can argue that if I base my decisions on science, I'll probably have a better luck for my survival. That's something I'd accept, but more meaningful? That's subjective.

I am also a typical theist, though I'm a theist of a totally different variety. I've been taught that the only reason that the Jews follow the commandments is because through trial and error, we've found that they improve our lives. If they didn't, we'd stop following them. We do not follow G-d because we "believe" that G-d is all wise.

We worry about the future all the time because we believe that we have free will to fuck up, so it's up to us and our actions to ensure our own bright futures.

Blind faith is downright dangerous.
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08-09-2017, 02:54 PM
RE: Intercessory prayer is pointless
(08-09-2017 12:15 PM)Aliza Wrote:  Blind faith is downright dangerous.

Amen sister, preach it!

We'll love you just the way you are
If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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08-09-2017, 06:21 PM
RE: Intercessory prayer is pointless
(07-09-2017 08:05 PM)Thoreauvian Wrote:  
(07-09-2017 05:28 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  What is that Sufi assumption about the nature of self you find highly questionable?

Sufism, which is a variety of pantheism, hypothesizes that the self can become one with God through realizing there is already a direct connection. The so-called commanding self is what stands in the way of this realization, by narrowing our conception of the self to the physical body with all its conditioned responses. "Dying before you die" is the goal of Sufi mysticism, i.e. to die to the false, commanding self so you can realize your true self connected to God. It is assumed that we lose the commanding self when we die for real, so you are just dying early and saving yourself the trauma later.

However, the whole conceptual scheme is just one big jumble of unproven assumptions, and to try to live by them is to become a person who can rationalize anything and everything as coming from God.

In a word, Sufis are the most extreme rationalizers I have ever encountered. They are beyond being mere apologists who think they can speak for God. They think they are God.

Thanks. Now I know I'm a Sufi. ... Should I wear a turban or something? No wait, that's Sikhs. Do Sufi wear fundoshis? I bet Sufi wear fundoshis. Smile

#sigh
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08-09-2017, 06:25 PM (This post was last modified: 08-09-2017 06:45 PM by GirlyMan.)
RE: Intercessory prayer is pointless
(08-09-2017 12:58 AM)morondog Wrote:  
(07-09-2017 08:05 PM)Thoreauvian Wrote:  In a word, Sufis are the most extreme rationalizers I have ever encountered. They are beyond being mere apologists who think they can speak for God. They think they are God.

Girly does too Facepalm

I will now use the google to establish whether Sufi are Girly, or Girly is Sufi. Since I barely even heard of Sufi, my guess is Sufi are Girly and we just happened to arrive at the same conclusions. Big Grin

#sigh
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08-09-2017, 06:43 PM
RE: Intercessory prayer is pointless
(08-09-2017 05:37 AM)nosferatu323 Wrote:  Christianity and the concept of divinity of man was indeed unreligious in its context, the idea of a distant, separate and unreachable God in Judaism was strongly challenged by the notion of Son of God, the idea that divinity reaches to men through the Son.

I already got an Assembly of Man Church around somewhere asking "What is the point of the Word if not the blasphemous recognition of the Divinity of Man?" Got houseofcantor lined up as prophet, asked hellbound to be the preacher but he ain't that dim. Lemme see if I can dig it up. I think it was something like the Assembly of Man on Facebook. Christians don't realize what they signed up for, they accept the responsibility of divinity whether they realize it or not. Satan wasn't responsible for the fine print.

#sigh
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08-09-2017, 06:52 PM (This post was last modified: 08-09-2017 07:38 PM by GirlyMan.)
RE: Intercessory prayer is pointless
(08-09-2017 05:37 AM)nosferatu323 Wrote:  Islam strongly contradicted the polytheistic beliefs, the idea that emanated from the belief that there can be multiple independent agents. It opposed all those views and held that there is one authority and all are mere slaves. This was very unreligious, in a context that there were many diverse and independent Gods, represented as inanimate objects created and worshipped by men. Believing in only one effective will, led people to realize that the universe must be consistent, since there are no conflicting agencies at work. I think it provided the ground for the scientific method to emerge. (First use of the scientific method is commonly attributed to a muslim named Ibn al-Haytham)

That's very provocative. And my gut says it can not only be rationally supported, but might actually provide the best explanation. Arabs did the algebra after all. ... Why you got neg rep? Did you go asshole on someone? You must've went asshole on someone.

#sigh
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