Theists, which matters more: action or belief?
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15-02-2016, 05:55 PM
RE: Theists, which matters more: action or belief?
(15-02-2016 03:38 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(15-02-2016 02:38 PM)Aliza Wrote:  Stupid chemistry exam interfering with my ability to participate in my own thread. Dodgy

Quickly, though. Tomasia, what I'm really trying to do in my OP is drill down to what matters most to you. If you had to pick only one, with the expectation that the other will not work out, which would it be?

I just take issue with the dichotomy here. But if I had to chose I'd say that my intentions are more important than my actions. The why i do the things I do, more so than the things I do. If the why can be represented by sets of beliefs, than I'd say beliefs are more important than actions. Though I'd feel more comfortable with the comparison expressed as intentions vs actions, as opposed to beliefs vs. actions.

But it wasn't. You could start a thread on that subject.

Quote:
Quote:Naturally, religious people think that if they have belief, their actions will fall in line with their beliefs. -But that's not always the case. Take the example of the heroin addict. There is a physical addiction to heroin that will ruin their lives and may interfere with their ability to act on their faith even if they do feel that they have this wonderful and personal connection to a higher power.

I don't think it's always the case either. Because there's always a why to why you believe what you do. Why does the heroin addict believe his connection to be wonderful? Does he really find it to be wonderful, or is he lying to himself? If it was wonderful, he likely wouldn't be addicted. Just like rats with a wonderful rat park and other rats to play with, are unlikely to develop an addiction, even after tasting drug laced water, unlike their isolated counterparts.

You can believe for a variety reasons, perhaps you believe something primarily because it's unpopular not to. But the sort of beliefs are reserving myself for are the one's representative of our intentions. Why do I serve food at a homeless shelter, strive to be a good husband, a son, a person. Because I believe I have a duty too, to love my neighbors, to love the poor, to be Good, etc...

But your belief as to why you do it matters only to you. It does not make any difference to the actions you take.

I might give $50,000 to the women's shelter and halfway house across town because my religion/conscience/ethics impel me to do so.

I might give $50,000 to the women's shelter and halfway house across town because otherwise they will have to close it and move to a less expensive location that happens to be across the street from my house and I don't want them there.

Those actions have the same effect.

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16-02-2016, 02:05 AM
RE: Theists, which matters more: action or belief?
(15-02-2016 03:24 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(15-02-2016 02:51 PM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  Having racist opinions, and acting of those opinions, is the difference between discrimination and thought crime.

But not the difference between right and wrong. It's wrong to have racist views, regardless if you act on them or not.

That's reading as you saying belief is something that can be morally right and morally wrong. So belief is quite relevant to the moral choice over merely a "moral action"

If you're indicating action are empty without intention, how is that so different than actions are empty without a belief about it? You don't like the dichotomy but make is this difference of this contrast in intention vs belief?

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17-02-2016, 08:26 AM
RE: Theists, which matters more: action or belief?
(15-02-2016 05:55 PM)Chas Wrote:  I might give $50,000 to the women's shelter and halfway house across town because my religion/conscience/ethics impel me to do so.

I might give $50,000 to the women's shelter and halfway house across town because otherwise they will have to close it and move to a less expensive location that happens to be across the street from my house and I don't want them there.

Those actions have the same effect.

In terms of the shelter getting $50k it's all the same. But the only different between the man who paid 50K to insure the homeless don't infect his town, and those that support laws that prohibit the homeless from loitering in areas of their town, that fine folks that attempt to encourage this behavior by feeding them, is just the means in how they do so.

It's the difference between a father who cares for the well-being of their child that he helps pay for their education, and the father who pays for his children's education because he detests them and wants them out of the house. In terms of providing a them an paid education, it's the same. In terms of their fundamental relationship which their children, it's not.

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"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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17-02-2016, 05:22 PM
RE: Theists, which matters more: action or belief?
(17-02-2016 08:26 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(15-02-2016 05:55 PM)Chas Wrote:  I might give $50,000 to the women's shelter and halfway house across town because my religion/conscience/ethics impel me to do so.

I might give $50,000 to the women's shelter and halfway house across town because otherwise they will have to close it and move to a less expensive location that happens to be across the street from my house and I don't want them there.

Those actions have the same effect.

In terms of the shelter getting $50k it's all the same. But the only different between the man who paid 50K to insure the homeless don't infect his town, and those that support laws that prohibit the homeless from loitering in areas of their town, that fine folks that attempt to encourage this behavior by feeding them, is just the means in how they do so.

It's the difference between a father who cares for the well-being of their child that he helps pay for their education, and the father who pays for his children's education because he detests them and wants them out of the house. In terms of providing a them an paid education, it's the same. In terms of their fundamental relationship which their children, it's not.

You have not shown how they are different, and instead have created some new scenario that has nothing to do with it.

This seems a common tactic of yours. You need to stop doing that.

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18-02-2016, 07:54 AM
RE: Theists, which matters more: action or belief?
(17-02-2016 05:22 PM)Chas Wrote:  You have not shown how they are different, and instead have created some new scenario that has nothing to do with it.

This seems a common tactic of yours. You need to stop doing that.

The difference is in their basic orientation towards those they are "helping". In what sort of person they are.

The difference between a man who works to get the homeless off of his street,because he can't stand their stench, or to be around them, and a man who is deeply concerned about the affliction of their lives, moved to cloth them and feed them, are worlds apart. And that should be obvious. One is moved by compassion, the other is not. One is what we aspire to when we speak of a Good person, the other is not.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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18-02-2016, 08:02 AM
RE: Theists, which matters more: action or belief?
(18-02-2016 07:54 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(17-02-2016 05:22 PM)Chas Wrote:  You have not shown how they are different, and instead have created some new scenario that has nothing to do with it.

This seems a common tactic of yours. You need to stop doing that.

The difference is in their basic orientation towards those they are "helping". In what sort of person they are.

The difference between a man who works to get the homeless off of his street,because he can't stand their stench, or to be around them, and a man who is deeply concerned about the affliction of their lives, moved to cloth them and feed them, are worlds apart. And that should be obvious. One is moved by compassion, the other is not. One is what we aspire to when we speak of a Good person, the other is not.

If a person who has great compassion does nothing much, is he still good? If a person motivated by greed does something which benefits others, is he still bad?

Good and evil are relative, not absolute.

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(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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18-02-2016, 08:17 AM (This post was last modified: 18-02-2016 08:20 AM by Tomasia.)
RE: Theists, which matters more: action or belief?
(18-02-2016 08:02 AM)morondog Wrote:  If a person who has great compassion does nothing much, is he still good? If a person motivated by greed does something which benefits others, is he still bad?

A person who has great compassion, is not one who does nothing much. If he avoids doing much of what is within his means, he likely doesn't have great compassion.

What you want as a community, as friends, as a family, is one which involves a great deal of compassion for each other, not a community of folks motivated by greed to tolerate each other.

As a child the most important thing is that your parents truly loved you, more so than just putting food on the table. If one had to choose between a poor mother who loves you, or a rich one that didn't but provided you all the material comforts of yours heart content, we'd choose the poor one.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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18-02-2016, 08:21 AM
RE: Theists, which matters more: action or belief?
(15-02-2016 03:38 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(15-02-2016 02:38 PM)Aliza Wrote:  Stupid chemistry exam interfering with my ability to participate in my own thread. Dodgy

Quickly, though. Tomasia, what I'm really trying to do in my OP is drill down to what matters most to you. If you had to pick only one, with the expectation that the other will not work out, which would it be?

I just take issue with the dichotomy here. But if I had to chose I'd say that my intentions are more important than my actions. The why i do the things I do, more so than the things I do. If the why can be represented by sets of beliefs, than I'd say beliefs are more important than actions. Though I'd feel more comfortable with the comparison expressed as intentions vs actions, as opposed to beliefs vs. actions.


Quote:Naturally, religious people think that if they have belief, their actions will fall in line with their beliefs. -But that's not always the case. Take the example of the heroin addict. There is a physical addiction to heroin that will ruin their lives and may interfere with their ability to act on their faith even if they do feel that they have this wonderful and personal connection to a higher power.

I don't think it's always the case either. Because there's always a why to why you believe what you do. Why does the heroin addict believe his connection to be wonderful? Does he really find it to be wonderful, or is he lying to himself? If it was wonderful, he likely wouldn't be addicted. Just like rats with a wonderful rat park and other rats to play with, are unlikely to develop an addiction, even after tasting drug laced water, unlike their isolated counterparts.

You can believe for a variety reasons, perhaps you believe something primarily because it's unpopular not to. But the sort of beliefs are reserving myself for are the one's representative of our intentions. Why do I serve food at a homeless shelter, strive to be a good husband, a son, a person. Because I believe I have a duty too, to love my neighbors, to love the poor, to be Good, etc...

In Judaism, we take a different approach; one much closer to what Chas was describing. When I explain this to Christians, I’m usually met with horrified expressions because Christians like to describe themselves as Judeo-Christians and they believe that the root of their value system comes from us. In Judaism, intentions (beliefs) and actions are not really related. We humans only have dominion over the actions. We can never truly know another person’s intentions, so we can only judge the actions.

The end result of giving $50,000 to a women’s shelter is the same, and your intentions don’t weigh into the equation. Likewise, begrudgingly giving $1,000 to a food bank simply feeds more people than it does when someone gives $10 out of “the goodness of their heart.” You cannot feed starving children with good intentions.

We don’t have thought crimes in Judaism. Lusting over married women is not a sin until it turns into actual intercourse. Thinking about stealing your neighbor’s car is one thing. Actually stealing it is another thing.

We believe that G-d will sort out your intentions. We focus only on the actions.
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18-02-2016, 08:45 AM
RE: Theists, which matters more: action or belief?
(18-02-2016 07:54 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(17-02-2016 05:22 PM)Chas Wrote:  You have not shown how they are different, and instead have created some new scenario that has nothing to do with it.

This seems a common tactic of yours. You need to stop doing that.

The difference is in their basic orientation towards those they are "helping". In what sort of person they are.

And that has fuck all to do with the question.

Quote:The difference between a man who works to get the homeless off of his street,because he can't stand their stench, or to be around them, and a man who is deeply concerned about the affliction of their lives, moved to cloth them and feed them, are worlds apart. And that should be obvious. One is moved by compassion, the other is not. One is what we aspire to when we speak of a Good person, the other is not.

So what? It makes no difference in the effects of their actions.

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Science is not a subject, but a method.
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18-02-2016, 09:06 AM (This post was last modified: 18-02-2016 09:11 AM by Tomasia.)
RE: Theists, which matters more: action or belief?
(18-02-2016 08:21 AM)Aliza Wrote:  I just take issue with the dichotomy here. But if I had to chose I'd say that my intentions are more important than my actions. The why i do the things I do, more so than the things I do. If the why can be represented by sets of beliefs, than I'd say beliefs are more important than actions. Though I'd feel more comfortable with the comparison expressed as intentions vs actions, as opposed to beliefs vs. actions.

While those views might be consistent with the views of Judaism that's developed in the last two thousands years, I don't think they are particularly faithful to the perspective of OT writers, etc.. who often focus of the importance of changing one's heart, as central to our relationship with God and man.

Quote:In Judaism, we take a different approach; one much closer to what Chas was describing. When I explain this to Christians, I’m usually met with horrified expressions because Christians like to describe themselves as Judeo-Christians and they believe that the root of their value system comes from us.

I don't think many Christians believe their value systems arose from modern judaism lol, but rooted in the perspective of some jews two thousands years ago. In terms of values, as opposed to beliefs about the messiah, whether we're talking about Jesus or Paul, or the rest of the NT writings, they're not some radical departure from the value systems of judaism at the time. The disputes between gentile and jewish christians were not about values.

But also the modern jew, like the modern christian beliefs system has been shaped by a variety of factors, well beyond the ones that took place a hundreds of years ago. One of which is that considerably shaped by our own unique political space, one that doesn't involve the need of tightly knit communities, which are more peripheral than necessary to for us to function and survive. We are more inclined to see each other as political entities, than to consider each other as neighbors. In this our personal lives are not important, just our material contribution to the polis. As far as the material stability of our society is concerned, loving our neighbor is unnecessary.

Quote:In Judaism, intentions (beliefs) and actions are not really related. We humans only have dominion over the actions. We can never truly know another person’s intentions, so we can only judge the actions.

But I'm not speaking about judgement, but as to the sort of person we should desire to be ourselves, the sort of goodness we should be aiming for, that we should desire our children seek after, our communities strive towards. That we should aim not to be the man who gives to charity because it puts his name on a plaque, but driven by the obligation to love others. Which is not a christian value, but just as much a jewish value. It's was Hillel who summarized the entire breath of scripture into that one commandment. And if you say that's not the view of Modern Judaism, then that says more about the state of Judaism today, than the one of long ago.

If modern Judaism sees it's own moral frame as molded by the same clay as secular consequentialism, it's not the christian who has betrayed his roots.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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