More conversations with theists who are dicks (UPDATE)
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02-09-2015, 11:54 AM (This post was last modified: 03-09-2015 11:33 AM by Tonechaser77.)
More conversations with theists who are dicks (UPDATE)
One of my fundie friends was so distraught when I told her I was not a believer any more that she asked for an explanation so I sent her an email similar to one that I sent to my aunt that I recently posted. This one was the abbreviated version though. She in-turn took my email and forwarded it to a theologian. Dr. Edward Dalcour...his website is here: Dr. Edward Dalcour

Now despite the fact that she did so without my permission (i can forgive her for this) when he wrote her back she used that and sent it to me. I am venting because this guy is a fucking fraud if there is one. You'll see what I mean by the interaction:

Quote:From: kellye
Subject: Fwd: The question of Jesus
Date: Mon, 31 Aug 2015 16:15:12 -0700
To: Kyle

I sent your letter to a friend of mine who has degrees in Theology and wanted his views. I told him you and I spoke of the copy/paste shit LOL.

But my heart hurts for you Kyle. I won't lie. You have to ask yourself one main question..... WHAT IF YOURE WRONG???? You're denying God!!!! Jesus!!!!! Look, your soul WILL go somewhere Smile

Sent from my iPhone

Begin forwarded message:

From: Edward Dalcour
Date: August 26, 2015 at 1:21:27 PM PDT
To: Kellye
Subject: Re: The question of Jesus


He embraces many many errors, such as when he says: "The gospel of Mark is thought to be the earliest existing “life of Jesus,” and linguistic analysis suggests that Luke and Matthew both simply reworked Mark and added their own corrections and new material." Really may deny this.

As real scholars point out, There is no hard real evidence that Mark was the earliest gospel written. That theory is based on assumption.

I would 1) call him out on his "copy and paste" deception; let him know that you found sources in which showed he plagiarized the works of others and pretended it was his own, 2) his article had many mistakes in the factual data (he did not research properly), and 3) unless he embraces the true triune God and trust and believes in the Jesus of the biblical revelation, who was God in the flesh, the resurrected Savior, he will dies in his sins (John 8:24)

And for you, Pray to God that God will save him,

Blessings,


So since she took it upon herself to send my email to him, i took it upon myself to respond to his email:

Quote:On Tue, Sep 1, 2015 at 2:37 PM, kyle wrote:

Hello Edward,

I hope this email finds you well. I have taken it upon myself to reply to the email that my wonderful friend Kellye forwarded to you from me. She probably did so hoping that you could supply some answers. You seemed to have identified some errors in the hypotheses I provided and as someone who is open to criticism and revision of thought process insomuch as the criticism is justified through logic and reason, I very much look forward to what you have to offer.

Let me start by saying I am definitely NOT a scholar. At best I am an amateur who simply enjoys the study of religions. I was raised in fundamentalist pentecostalism but within the last few years have apostatized as a result of growing concerns that just could not be reconciled. I studied apologetics and theologians like C.S. Lewis, WLC, Gary Habermas, Paul Tillich, Josh McDowell, Lee Strobel, Raymond Brown and the likes. I have also tip-toed into the deep end of the pool with more prolific writers such as Gunkel, Noth, von Rad, Ingersoll, Barker, Smith, Guthrie, Mack, Jonas, Schmithals, Neusner, Wellhausen, Helms, Crossan, MacDonald and more recently Barker, Carrier, Ehrman, Price and so on. This by no means makes me an expert but it does give me a peak into the window to gain an understanding, if only tenuous, of what goes on in the higher forms of criticism. I will also state that some of the reconciliations I came across DID seem possible but in the end, to me, they simply seemed like ad hoc attempts to get out of a tight spot. As I'm sure you know the goal is not to prove what is possible but what is probable. However, as I have stated before, I am in no means positing that no other position could convince me otherwise. It depends on the weight of the evidence that the arguments hold. I have started from ground zero. I have not started with "God" or for that matter "Jesus" and worked backward, making everything fit my presuppositions. Some call the aforementioned presuppositions proper "biblical hermeneutics" but that thought process engages in circular reasoning.

With that said, I would first like to address the accusation of plagiarism. In fact, I told Kellye that if she wanted sources for any of the information I provided I was more than happy to present them. The lion share of the information I presented was summarized and redacted from the past few years of reading material, much of it from the authors I mentioned in the preceding paragraph. However, this information is available to the public at large with the simple click of a mouse. It must be stated though that one must be careful to vet the information one finds. This is a daunting task as you may very likely know. Nevertheless, as I continue in my studies this is something I have to look at daily and very carefully.

Next you stated that I did not do my research correctly which resulted in nonfactual data. Could you please present the errors that I made here so I can review them? As I said, if I did present false information I want to know so I can review and correct.

Your last point, #3, is a bold claim.You are presupposing a god exists. You are presupposing Jesus was his son and you are presupposing if I do not believe and follow these two and the holy spirit that I will die in my sins which may or may not imply some sort of eternal torment. You have opened an enormous Pandora's box here that causes more problems than it solves. If you are willing, I would love to investigate this with you. From what I understand through Kellye you are much more knowledgeable given your education and experience level, so any position I hold that has been the result of incorrect information should be easily disputed on your end.

Your first claim presupposes the existence of god. My response would be:

1.) Which god? There were literally thousands of gods throughout recorded history. How have you come to the knowledge that your god is the correct god?

2.) Can you define the characteristics of this god? Do you believe in an anthropomorphic deity that seems to be "on stage" with the actors of the OT ? ....or do you support the Hellenistic-influenced philosophical efforts that presented a god with the 'omni-characteristics'? or...perhaps the newly devised maximally omni-characteristic god that neo-apologists are now presenting? This will help frame any potential discussion.

3) Can you provide evidence that he/she/it exists? The burden of proof is not on me to disprove this claim. The burden is on the believer to provide reasonable, logical and verifiable evidence since the default position is "nothing". At this point I'll pause and give you a chance to respond.

If you are willing to engage me and have the time I would certainly be obliged. Like most people I'm sure you are busy, as am I, but I always try to make time to learn something new especially when it could ultimately lead to a position adjustment.

I look forward to your feedback and certainly appreciate you taking time to read this.

Best regards,
Kyle

P.S. I have copied Kellye on this email so my end of the exchange can remain as transparent as possible.

His response to me:

Quote:Hello,

Please understand, I generally I do not interact with long and multiple subject matter with unproven assertions kinds if emails esp in a non- formal construct.

Based on your many assertions here and the content in your email to Kellye, yes I see that you lack basic scholarship in the area research and epistemology on various (not to mentioned your method of merely copying the works of others), which makes interaction on advanced or even basic textual criticism (lower or higher) unproductive. Further, It seems that you have a very limited scope of sources. That tells me clearly that you not equipped to engage on the topics you mentioned.

I am busy and do not have the time to answer all of your loads of antedated and assertions--it seems you already made up your mind, or you question your own belief system. Keep in mind when I see you folks like you one thing is always prevalent: a lack of verifiable evidence proving their position -- all they do is assert it as true.

But if you have a question regarding the gospel or theology, please feel free to ask.

Thank you

My FINAL response to him and you will probably understand why from his above email:

Quote:Edward,

Well you can't say I didn't try. I find it quite discouraging that self claimed theologians and apologists I have tried to talk to reject conversation and questions, especially when I specifically said that I am still at a place where I am open to all answers.

Oddly enough I find your response predictive; you stake your claim with a sanctimonious response, asserting your piousness with passive-aggressive contempt, skirting the questions and asserting you have the answers while providing no reference to either my errors or your so called answers.

I must say very bluntly, I am certainly glad your approach does not represent the majority of christians. If it did, I would be happy to be excluded.

Best regards,
Kyle


His responses infuriated me...I had to take a step back and understand that these people will not engage. I know he wasn't attacking me...not in any statement...but his tone was so condescending that I couldn't hold back from venting...

**Crickets** -- God
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02-09-2015, 12:04 PM
RE: More conversations with theists who are dicks
I love this part from Edward (*eye roll*): "Keep in mind when I see you folks like you one thing is always prevalent: a lack of verifiable evidence proving their position -- all they do is assert it as true."

Has he not picked up one secular scholarly history/science/anthropology/archaeology/literary book or peer-reviewed article--like ever????
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02-09-2015, 12:09 PM (This post was last modified: 02-09-2015 05:10 PM by goodwithoutgod.)
RE: More conversations with theists who are dicks
(02-09-2015 11:54 AM)Tonechaser77 Wrote:  One of my fundie friends was so distraught when I told her I was not a believer any more that she asked for an explanation so I sent her an email similar to one that I sent to my aunt that I recently posted. This one was the abbreviated version though. She in-turn took my email and forwarded it to a theologian. Dr. Edward Dalcour...his website is here: Dr. Edward Dalcour

Now despite the fact that she did so without my permission (i can forgive her for this) when he wrote her back she used that and sent it to me. I am venting because this guy is a fucking fraud if there is one. You'll see what I mean by the interaction:

Quote:From: kellye
Subject: Fwd: The question of Jesus
Date: Mon, 31 Aug 2015 16:15:12 -0700
To: Kyle

I sent your letter to a friend of mine who has degrees in Theology and wanted his views. I told him you and I spoke of the copy/paste shit LOL.

But my heart hurts for you Kyle. I won't lie. You have to ask yourself one main question..... WHAT IF YOURE WRONG???? You're denying God!!!! Jesus!!!!! Look, your soul WILL go somewhere Smile

Sent from my iPhone

Begin forwarded message:

From: Edward Dalcour
Date: August 26, 2015 at 1:21:27 PM PDT
To: Kellye
Subject: Re: The question of Jesus


He embraces many many errors, such as when he says: "The gospel of Mark is thought to be the earliest existing “life of Jesus,” and linguistic analysis suggests that Luke and Matthew both simply reworked Mark and added their own corrections and new material." Really may deny this.

As real scholars point out, There is no hard real evidence that Mark was the earliest gospel written. That theory is based on assumption.

I would 1) call him out on his "copy and paste" deception; let him know that you found sources in which showed he plagiarized the works of others and pretended it was his own, 2) his article had many mistakes in the factual data (he did not research properly), and 3) unless he embraces the true triune God and trust and believes in the Jesus of the biblical revelation, who was God in the flesh, the resurrected Savior, he will dies in his sins (John 8:24)

And for you, Pray to God that God will save him,

Blessings,


So since she took it upon herself to send my email to him, i took it upon myself to respond to his email:

Quote:On Tue, Sep 1, 2015 at 2:37 PM, kyle wrote:

Hello Edward,

I hope this email finds you well. I have taken it upon myself to reply to the email that my wonderful friend Kellye forwarded to you from me. She probably did so hoping that you could supply some answers. You seemed to have identified some errors in the hypotheses I provided and as someone who is open to criticism and revision of thought process insomuch as the criticism is justified through logic and reason, I very much look forward to what you have to offer.

Let me start by saying I am definitely NOT a scholar. At best I am an amateur who simply enjoys the study of religions. I was raised in fundamentalist pentecostalism but within the last few years have apostatized as a result of growing concerns that just could not be reconciled. I studied apologetics and theologians like C.S. Lewis, WLC, Gary Habermas, Paul Tillich, Josh McDowell, Lee Strobel, Raymond Brown and the likes. I have also tip-toed into the deep end of the pool with more prolific writers such as Gunkel, Noth, von Rad, Ingersoll, Barker, Smith, Guthrie, Mack, Jonas, Schmithals, Neusner, Wellhausen, Helms, Crossan, MacDonald and more recently Barker, Carrier, Ehrman, Price and so on. This by no means makes me an expert but it does give me a peak into the window to gain an understanding, if only tenuous, of what goes on in the higher forms of criticism. I will also state that some of the reconciliations I came across DID seem possible but in the end, to me, they simply seemed like ad hoc attempts to get out of a tight spot. As I'm sure you know the goal is not to prove what is possible but what is probable. However, as I have stated before, I am in no means positing that no other position could convince me otherwise. It depends on the weight of the evidence that the arguments hold. I have started from ground zero. I have not started with "God" or for that matter "Jesus" and worked backward, making everything fit my presuppositions. Some call the aforementioned presuppositions proper "biblical hermeneutics" but that thought process engages in circular reasoning.

With that said, I would first like to address the accusation of plagiarism. In fact, I told Kellye that if she wanted sources for any of the information I provided I was more than happy to present them. The lion share of the information I presented was summarized and redacted from the past few years of reading material, much of it from the authors I mentioned in the preceding paragraph. However, this information is available to the public at large with the simple click of a mouse. It must be stated though that one must be careful to vet the information one finds. This is a daunting task as you may very likely know. Nevertheless, as I continue in my studies this is something I have to look at daily and very carefully.

Next you stated that I did not do my research correctly which resulted in nonfactual data. Could you please present the errors that I made here so I can review them? As I said, if I did present false information I want to know so I can review and correct.

Your last point, #3, is a bold claim.You are presupposing a god exists. You are presupposing Jesus was his son and you are presupposing if I do not believe and follow these two and the holy spirit that I will die in my sins which may or may not imply some sort of eternal torment. You have opened an enormous Pandora's box here that causes more problems than it solves. If you are willing, I would love to investigate this with you. From what I understand through Kellye you are much more knowledgeable given your education and experience level, so any position I hold that has been the result of incorrect information should be easily disputed on your end.

Your first claim presupposes the existence of god. My response would be:

1.) Which god? There were literally thousands of gods throughout recorded history. How have you come to the knowledge that your god is the correct god?

2.) Can you define the characteristics of this god? Do you believe in an anthropomorphic deity that seems to be "on stage" with the actors of the OT ? ....or do you support the Hellenistic-influenced philosophical efforts that presented a god with the 'omni-characteristics'? or...perhaps the newly devised maximally omni-characteristic god that neo-apologists are now presenting? This will help frame any potential discussion.

3) Can you provide evidence that he/she/it exists? The burden of proof is not on me to disprove this claim. The burden is on the believer to provide reasonable, logical and verifiable evidence since the default position is "nothing". At this point I'll pause and give you a chance to respond.

If you are willing to engage me and have the time I would certainly be obliged. Like most people I'm sure you are busy, as am I, but I always try to make time to learn something new especially when it could ultimately lead to a position adjustment.

I look forward to your feedback and certainly appreciate you taking time to read this.

Best regards,
Kyle

P.S. I have copied Kellye on this email so my end of the exchange can remain as transparent as possible.

His response to me:

Quote:Hello,

Please understand, I generally I do not interact with long and multiple subject matter with unproven assertions kinds if emails esp in a non- formal construct.

Based on your many assertions here and the content in your email to Kellye, yes I see that you lack basic scholarship in the area research and epistemology on various (not to mentioned your method of merely copying the works of others), which makes interaction on advanced or even basic textual criticism (lower or higher) unproductive. Further, It seems that you have a very limited scope of sources. That tells me clearly that you not equipped to engage on the topics you mentioned.

I am busy and do not have the time to answer all of your loads of antedated and assertions--it seems you already made up your mind, or you question your own belief system. Keep in mind when I see you folks like you one thing is always prevalent: a lack of verifiable evidence proving their position -- all they do is assert it as true.

But if you have a question regarding the gospel or theology, please feel free to ask.

Thank you

My FINAL response to him and you will probably understand why from his above email:

Quote:Edward,

Well you can't say I didn't try. I find it quite discouraging that self claimed theologians and apologists I have tried to talk to reject conversation and questions, especially when I specifically said that I am still at a place where I am open to all answers.

Oddly enough I find your response predictive; you stake your claim with a sanctimonious response, asserting your piousness with passive-aggressive contempt, skirting the questions and asserting you have the answers while providing no reference to either my errors or your so called answers.

I must say very bluntly, I am certainly glad your approach does not represent the majority of christians. If it did, I would be happy to be excluded.

Best regards,
Kyle


His responses infuriated me...I had to take a step back and understand that these people will not engage. I know he wasn't attacking me...not in any statement...but his tone was so condescending that I couldn't hold back from venting...

In other forums and venues I have engaged hubris dipshits like this who have built up in their mind this lofty throne of empty confidence in their belief in magic. I have always enjoyed ripping them apart one empty assertion after the other. In EVERY religion class I took at Saint Leo University, I would endeavor to challenge the information presented, and expose it for the emptiness that it was, to great detail, and personal joy.

My favorite interaction was in the first week of history of Christianity class when I received a frantic email from the good doctor in theology professor who asked what was I trying to do? Why was I dismantling the basis of people's faith? I simply replied that I had no agenda, outside of the study of truth, and every time the text or you posit information as fact, that I know is false, I will call it out, and disprove it using Christian textbook references. Surely you don't wish to mislead students by presenting false information in such a manner using your position of authority? It is ok to admit the synoptic gospels have unknown authors and that they were written long after the deaths of their namesakes....the text even admits that, why can't you...rather then stating....Christian tradition states that Mark wrote mark....yeah that is great, but EVIDENCE suggests otherwise. Oh it was always good times, and I always got an A in each class as I met the requirements and presented perfectly formatted and cited work.

People like this infuriate me. They know the truth, but don't want to admit it openly because it might "shake people's faith". Rolleyes

"Belief is so often the death of reason" - Qyburn, Game of Thrones

"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
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02-09-2015, 12:19 PM
RE: More conversations with theists who are dicks
(02-09-2015 12:04 PM)jennybee Wrote:  I love this part from Edward (*eye roll*): "Keep in mind when I see you folks like you one thing is always prevalent: a lack of verifiable evidence proving their position -- all they do is assert it as true."

Has he not picked up one secular scholarly history/science/anthropology/archaeology/literary book or peer-reviewed article--like ever????

The lack of self awareness in his statement is astounding. It's projection, plain and simple. Kyle didn't assert anything as truth, he admitted his own ignorance and desire to learn. And as per usual, the theist in the conversation accused Kyle of the very thing he was guilty of. Asserting something without evidence. un-fucking-real.

TC, once again, you're a better man than I. Mostly for your final response being polite. I don't thing I'd have engaged him to begin with, let alone remained polite to such an extraordinary ass.

Typical theist bullshit. "Don't ask questions. Just shut up and believe what I tell you to believe."

Excuse me, I'm making perfect sense. You're just not keeping up.

"Let me give you some advice, bastard: never forget what you are. The rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor, and it can never be used to hurt you." - Tyrion Lannister
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02-09-2015, 12:35 PM
RE: More conversations with theists who are dicks
"I am busy and do not have the time to answer all of your loads of antedated and assertions--it seems you already made up your mind, or you question your own belief system. Keep in mind when I see you folks like you one thing is always prevalent: a lack of verifiable evidence proving their position -- all they do is assert it as true."

This guy has a degree and he writes like this? It looks like something written by a 14 year old.

Do not lose your knowledge that man's proper estate is an upright posture, an intransigent mind and a step that travels unlimited roads. - Ayn Rand.

Don't sacrifice for me, live for yourself! - Me

The only alternative to Objectivism is some form of Subjectivism. - Dawson Bethrick
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02-09-2015, 12:38 PM
RE: More conversations with theists who are dicks
(02-09-2015 12:35 PM)true scotsman Wrote:  "I am busy and do not have the time to answer all of your loads of antedated and assertions--it seems you already made up your mind, or you question your own belief system. Keep in mind when I see you folks like you one thing is always prevalent: a lack of verifiable evidence proving their position -- all they do is assert it as true."

This guy has a degree and he writes like this? It looks like something written by a 14 year old.

Well, it's a degree in theism, so you really can't expect that they learned much useful.

Excuse me, I'm making perfect sense. You're just not keeping up.

"Let me give you some advice, bastard: never forget what you are. The rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor, and it can never be used to hurt you." - Tyrion Lannister
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02-09-2015, 12:52 PM
RE: More conversations with theists who are dicks
(02-09-2015 12:38 PM)itsnotmeitsyou Wrote:  
(02-09-2015 12:35 PM)true scotsman Wrote:  "I am busy and do not have the time to answer all of your loads of antedated and assertions--it seems you already made up your mind, or you question your own belief system. Keep in mind when I see you folks like you one thing is always prevalent: a lack of verifiable evidence proving their position -- all they do is assert it as true."

This guy has a degree and he writes like this? It looks like something written by a 14 year old.

Well, it's a degree in theism, so you really can't expect that they learned much useful.

It also showcases how people behave when their beliefs are threatened. Deep down, I think all have questions/doubts but are taught by the church to suppress those. And when the doubts rise up, people react like this out of fear they might start to question as well. I had a pastor that behaved the same way whenever I would ask him questions that he did not like.
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02-09-2015, 01:02 PM
RE: More conversations with theists who are dicks
(02-09-2015 12:52 PM)jennybee Wrote:  
(02-09-2015 12:38 PM)itsnotmeitsyou Wrote:  Well, it's a degree in theism, so you really can't expect that they learned much useful.

It also showcases how people behave when their beliefs are threatened. Deep down, I think all have questions/doubts but are taught by the church to suppress those. And when the doubts rise up, people react like this out of fear they might start to question as well. I had a pastor that behaved the same way whenever I would ask him questions that he did not like.

Every. Freaking. Time.

When I first started doubting, I started asking questions. Ironically, it was the non-responses and the not so veiled threats that made me start to think they were all full of shit.

Seriously, if you get outwitted by a 12 year old, you REALLY aught to look at your own beliefs twice. But, they don't. They double down and start shouting.

I can remember being told that questions like that would put me on a path to hell. Well, if curiosity leads down that path, I've just got one thing to say to them.


I'll take the express lanes, thanks.






Excuse me, I'm making perfect sense. You're just not keeping up.

"Let me give you some advice, bastard: never forget what you are. The rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor, and it can never be used to hurt you." - Tyrion Lannister
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02-09-2015, 01:10 PM
RE: More conversations with theists who are dicks
TC,
You write well. You were polite, respectful and thorough. This guy's answer shows that he knew he was up against a real foe and not a sheep like the ones who usually bleat when he pontificates. So, he cut and ran. You definitely deserved a better answer than the one you got. But, like you said, at least you tried.

Doc
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02-09-2015, 01:50 PM
RE: More conversations with theists who are dicks
TC, well said. This seems to be a common thing with believers in my experience. They make these verbose statements and when you try to peel the onion back to see what is underneath, they run away. When it becomes apparent that you aren't going to buy it at face value, they turn tail and run. This clown was not interested in saving your eternal soul, he was caught. If he were a True Christian™ he would have witnessed like he was supposed to.

"If we are honest—and scientists have to be—we must admit that religion is a jumble of false assertions, with no basis in reality.
The very idea of God is a product of the human imagination."
- Paul Dirac
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