What has given Christianity its staying power?
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28-01-2016, 06:22 AM
RE: What has given Christianity its staying power?
The problem with the question in the OP -- is implied in "has staying power" is the assumption that xtianity the same as it was 1000 year ago.

It's not.

The simple fact is - that xtianity as worshiped today (depending on your current definition as to what IS xtian) has little in common with the xtianity of history.

Were modern xtians to hop in their time machine and go back as little as 200 years ago -- they'd find little in common with the adherents of the day.

The xtians of 2 or 300 years ago would happily denounce any xtian of today as a heretic and likely hang or burn them at the stake.


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28-01-2016, 06:48 AM
RE: What has given Christianity its staying power?
(27-01-2016 02:51 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  Does all the available evidence confirm any worldview? Does all the evidence show that any particular worldview, like Eliminativism is true? You look at a series of observations, the results of series of laboratory experiments, at the end of the day you'd likely just be looking at series of dot's, but to connect these dots to form a worldview of the totality of these observations, requires more than merely a question of evidence.

Yes. All of the evidence points to natural world that functions according to principals that we can understand through rational thinking and scientific experimentation.

Nice word play, BTW. I asked for what evidence to consider and you shifted to ALL of the evidence.

I can shift it too: Show me ANY evidence.

(27-01-2016 02:51 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  It's very likely that we both can be presented with variety of thoroughly vetted scientific observations, and vouch for the validity of each and everyone, with no disputes in regards to the result, while holding entirely competing worldviews.

Since you can't provide evidence than evidence is invalid?

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28-01-2016, 06:53 AM
RE: What has given Christianity its staying power?
(28-01-2016 06:22 AM)onlinebiker Wrote:  The problem with the question in the OP -- is implied in "has staying power" is the assumption that xtianity the same as it was 1000 year ago.

It's not.

The simple fact is - that xtianity as worshiped today (depending on your current definition as to what IS xtian) has little in common with the xtianity of history.

Were modern xtians to hop in their time machine and go back as little as 200 years ago -- they'd find little in common with the adherents of the day.

The xtians of 2 or 300 years ago would happily denounce any xtian of today as a heretic and likely hang or burn them at the stake.


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I disagree that, that is a problem. I think you bring up a good point that it morphs which is a big factor in it's ability to remain constantly on top.

It's gone through it's great reformations in concepts when it was begining to dwindle and it certainly will try something in the comming years. I don't know if the whole "personal relationship" not religion idea that is happening now will be seen as a shift. I doubt it but maybe people do buy that nonsense.

"Allow there to be a spectrum in all that you see" - Neil Degrasse Tyson
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28-01-2016, 07:20 AM
RE: What has given Christianity its staying power?
(27-01-2016 10:20 PM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  
(27-01-2016 02:32 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  The question is just a red herring. If all the available "evidence" can't lead you to hold any worldview let alone a religious one the problem isn't "evidence". It's like a man who continuously fails in his relationships thinking the problem is everyone else.


No, just, no... Facepalm


If you're so incredulous in that you'll believe anything with little to no evidence, then you'll be the one tricking themselves into seeing the emperor's new clothes when he's instructed he should. You're arguing that if I don't see the clothes, the problem isn't that the emperor is in fact naked, the problem is that I am not embracing the lie. Fuck that, and fuck you.


You're noncommittal you don't embrace anything, you don't hold to the emperor being clothed or naked. You lack a belief in whether he's clothed or naked.

The common practices when atheists ask for evidence, is similar to when creationist ask for evidence for Evolution, or anything else for that matter. They're not really looking for evidence, but a way to categorize what others say serves as evidence, is not "evidence". The classic example is the historical Jesus debates, where many atheists here suggest there's no evidence of historical Jesus, when presented with accounts in the NT, writing by historians at the time, they'll just categorize all these aspects as "not evidence". They don't believe Jesus did not exist, they skillfully claim to merely lack a belief.

I believe in God as confidently as believe I have two hands, or the sun is shining outside of my window. I don't even know where to begin to not believe. And it's not out of a lack of trying. I find the suggestion that human life, our level of consciousness, creative and rational abilities, moral dimensions, our desire for meaning and truth, is result of a cosmic accident, absurd. The fact the your run of the mill atheists is unlikely to argue or defend this view, and prefers to say he lacks a belief, seems to speak volumes of this absurdity, that many atheists lack the confidence to declare God doesn't exist, the same way I would say Santa doesn't exist, that inability, that reluctance, that insecurity means something, one that illuminates theism more so than atheism.

But these are only a small part of why I believe. If we were to ask the real question, as to why do I believe, and you don't? That's an interesting question, and the real answer is far more complex and richer than the premature rationalizations we offer. My beliefs and yours are the result of very different lives and experiences, that convey to us certain understandings, and limit us from others. Atheists such as yourself tend to be occupied with questions regarding the external world, were as for me the real question are more personal, questions of self, of who I am. And the relationship between this and the external world, is what serves as the basis of my beliefs, what sustains, and fuels that confidence.

When I look at the totality of existence it appears tragic, but it also appears grounded by a profound beauty, that animates my life and others. I find myself unable to see it as senseless, but a part of a meaningful order that I can't fully comprehend or articulate. You likely won't understand what it is I'm talking about here, it'll just be ripe for a series of misunderstanding. If you did understand I doubt you'd be an atheist.

"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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28-01-2016, 07:35 AM
RE: What has given Christianity its staying power?
(28-01-2016 07:20 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  I believe in God as confidently as believe I have two hands, or the sun is shining outside of my window. I don't even know where to begin to not believe. And it's not out of a lack of trying. I find the suggestion that human life, our level of consciousness, creative and rational abilities, moral dimensions, our desire for meaning and truth, is result of a cosmic accident, absurd. The fact the your run of the mill atheists is unlikely to argue or defend this view, and prefers to say he lacks a belief, seems to speak volumes of this absurdity, that many atheists lack the confidence to declare God doesn't exist, the same way I would say Santa doesn't exist, that inability, that reluctance, that insecurity means something, one that illuminates theism more so than atheism.

I believe in God as confidently as I believe I have two hands as well.

Is it absurd... yeah, so? You seem to not realize how often you just skip leaps of logic or relevance to the idea and accept things multiple layers deep because you didn't peel back and think about what that actually would be.

Yes, you want to continue believing humanity is special and there is an order going in your direction. Well, what good would that do?

"Allow there to be a spectrum in all that you see" - Neil Degrasse Tyson
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28-01-2016, 07:35 AM
RE: What has given Christianity its staying power?
(28-01-2016 07:20 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(27-01-2016 10:20 PM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  No, just, no... Facepalm


If you're so incredulous in that you'll believe anything with little to no evidence, then you'll be the one tricking themselves into seeing the emperor's new clothes when he's instructed he should. You're arguing that if I don't see the clothes, the problem isn't that the emperor is in fact naked, the problem is that I am not embracing the lie. Fuck that, and fuck you.


You're noncommittal you don't embrace anything, you don't hold to the emperor being clothed or naked. You lack a belief in whether he's clothed or naked.

The common practices when atheists ask for evidence, is similar to when creationist ask for evidence for Evolution, or anything else for that matter. They're not really looking for evidence, but a way to categorize what others say serves as evidence, is not "evidence". The classic example is the historical Jesus debates, where many atheists here suggest there's no evidence of historical Jesus, when presented with accounts in the NT, writing by historians at the time,

They were written by anonymous people, not historians. This is typical of you - you make statements that are simply not factual.

Quote:they'll just categorize all these aspects as "not evidence". They don't believe Jesus did not exist, they skillfully claim to merely lack a belief.

It is not evidence because it does not adhere to any real standards of evidence. It is, at best, hearsay.

Quote:I believe in God as confidently as believe I have two hands, or the sun is shining outside of my window.

That's sad. You have evidence for hands and sun, but nothing like that for a god.

Quote:I don't even know where to begin to not believe.

You have made that quite apparent. You entirely lack critical thinking skills.

Quote:And it's not out of a lack of trying.

It is a lack of honestly trying.

Quote:I find the suggestion that human life, our level of consciousness, creative and rational abilities, moral dimensions, our desire for meaning and truth, is result of a cosmic accident, absurd.

Your incredulity is not a rational argument.

Quote:The fact the your run of the mill atheists is unlikely to argue or defend this view, and prefers to say he lacks a belief, seems to speak volumes of this absurdity, that many atheists lack the confidence to declare God doesn't exist, the same way I would say Santa doesn't exist, that inability, that reluctance, that insecurity means something, one that illuminates theism more so than atheism.

Bullshit. You continue to use emotionally loaded terms like "cosmic accident" instead of neutral terms such as "natural process", and that is indicative of your inability to even imagine something outside of your worldview.
I will certainly defend the position that our consciousness is an emergent property of our evolved brain. Evolution is your answer, but you seem unable to even ask the question.

Quote:But these are only a small part of why I believe. If we were to ask the real question, as to why do I believe, and you don't? That's an interesting question, and the real answer is far more complex and richer than the premature rationalizations we offer. My beliefs and yours are the result of very different lives and experiences, that convey to us certain understandings, and limit us from others. Atheists such as yourself tend to be occupied with questions regarding the external world, were as for me the real question are more personal, questions of self, of who I am. And the relationship between this and the external world, is what serves as the basis of my beliefs, what sustains, and fuels that confidence.

You ignore the evidence of the external world and live in your internal delusion.

Quote:When I look at the totality of existence it appears tragic, but it also appears grounded by a profound beauty, that animates my life and others. I find myself unable to see it as senseless, but a part of a meaningful order that I can't fully comprehend or articulate. You likely won't understand what it is I'm talking about here, it'll just be ripe for a series of misunderstanding. If you did understand I doubt you'd be an atheist.

Naturalism explains what you see; evolution is senseless but you don't actually understand evolution, so you can's see that.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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28-01-2016, 07:39 AM
RE: What has given Christianity its staying power?
(28-01-2016 06:48 AM)Fatbaldhobbit Wrote:  
(27-01-2016 02:51 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  Does all the available evidence confirm any worldview? Does all the evidence show that any particular worldview, like Eliminativism is true? You look at a series of observations, the results of series of laboratory experiments, at the end of the day you'd likely just be looking at series of dot's, but to connect these dots to form a worldview of the totality of these observations, requires more than merely a question of evidence.

Yes. All of the evidence points to natural world that functions according to principals that we can understand through rational thinking and scientific experimentation.

Nice word play, BTW. I asked for what evidence to consider and you shifted to ALL of the evidence.

It is a matter of "all" of the evidence, because the question is ontological. If physicalism is true, than it's not based on handful of evidence, but the totality of evidence, the totality of observations, not a partial set of them, or even limited to a sort that's easily transferable, that you can hold in yours hands.

I can point a to handful examples, but that would only be a marginal basis for why I belief, evidence such as the nearly universal desire of man to look for some transcendental order, his desire for meaning and truth, and goodness, that gave rise to religions. Of a human history of men creating a pictures of this transcendent order which they only see vaguely. Why do men desire to find something to live for, rather than merely survive. This seems to be a desire to find something that's real, and not something that's not. For a purpose, as opposed to the outcome of a cosmic accident.

You can formulate godless explanations for this, but they seem to be formulated for sake of preserving disbelief, these explanations tend to be so out touch with the thing being observed, it's were one's temperament masquerades as one's intellect.

"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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28-01-2016, 07:47 AM
RE: What has given Christianity its staying power?
(28-01-2016 07:39 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(28-01-2016 06:48 AM)Fatbaldhobbit Wrote:  Yes. All of the evidence points to natural world that functions according to principals that we can understand through rational thinking and scientific experimentation.

Nice word play, BTW. I asked for what evidence to consider and you shifted to ALL of the evidence.

It is a matter of "all" of the evidence, because the question is ontological. If physicalism is true, than it's not based on handful of evidence, but the totality of evidence, the totality of observations, not a partial set of them, or even limited to a sort that's easily transferable, that you can hold in yours hands.

I can point a to handful examples, but that would only be a marginal basis for why I belief, evidence such as the nearly universal desire of man to look for some transcendental order, his desire for meaning and truth, and goodness, that gave rise to religions. Of a human history of men creating a pictures of this transcendent order which they only see vaguely. Why do men desire to find something to live for, rather than merely survive. This seems to be a desire to find something that's real, and not something that's not. For a purpose, as opposed to the outcome of a cosmic accident.

You can formulate godless explanations for this, but they seem to be formulated for sake of preserving disbelief, these explanations tend to be so out touch with the thing being observed, it's were one's temperament masquerades as one's intellect.

At best, all you could derive from that, is a generalized deism. If you can't enumerate specific characteristics of a god concept, then it's useless.

So how would you go about determining specific characteristics about something that has no physical basis?

I could assert that a god made the universe and destroyed itself in the creation of this universe. That is functionally the same as no god existing at all.
How would you know that that isn't the true characteristic of a god?

Gods derive their power from post-hoc rationalizations. -The Inquisition

Using the supernatural to explain events in your life is a failure of the intellect to comprehend the world around you. -The Inquisition
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28-01-2016, 08:04 AM
RE: What has given Christianity its staying power?
(28-01-2016 07:35 AM)Chas Wrote:  It is not evidence because it does not adhere to any real standards of evidence. It is, at best, hearsay.

Ah, here comes Chas just proving my point. His whole shtick is about what does or does not constitute as evidence. But he’s not unique, it’s a common tactic. He seems to have some extremely stringent criteria for what constitutes as evidence, to the point that it’s not surprising that he has a hard time believing anything, that all he can do is parrot his disbelief.


Quote:You continue to use emotionally loaded terms like "cosmic accident" instead of neutral terms such as "natural process", and that is indicative of your inability to even imagine something outside of your worldview.

Not it just shows that you find the term “cosmic accident” provocative, loaded, that you prefer a euphemism instead. Which is not surprising for a man who seeks to not believe. You want the road paved in such a way that this comes on the easy.

Quote:You ignore the evidence of the external world and live in your internal delusion.

You don’t really question this. This is something you want to believe, something it appears you have to believe, tied into the identity you so desperately want to perserve. It’s an entirely thoughtless claim. You claim that I ignore evidence of the external world? What evidence of the external world do I ignore, or refuse to accept? Clearly you trumped up this claim, without even being remotely curious or skeptical in regards to it’s validity.

Quote:Naturalism explains what you see; evolution is senseless but you don't actually understand evolution, so you can's see that.

I don’t have a problem with evolution. I do think some aspects of it are incomplete, but that can be resolved overtime. But overall, I have no issue with it. Nor do I subscribe to some sort of divine tinkering mid-process. That once set in motion it’s able to operate without any sort of agent sticking his finger in from time to time. Based on it’s contingent parts, given enough time, it’ll produce this unique creature called humanity, a way of the cosmos to know itself, that desired to know how it came about, that would seek after truth and meaning, and doubt that he was the product of a cosmic accident.

"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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28-01-2016, 08:05 AM
RE: What has given Christianity its staying power?
(28-01-2016 07:39 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  It is a matter of "all" of the evidence, because the question is ontological.

You are incorrect. In years past I too was fascinated by philosophy. However in that time, say 30"+ years, I have come to understanding that only moral philosophy is worthwhile. Physics has taken over. Physics is the future. Ontological philosophy is an outdated concept. At least in IMHO.

NOTE: Member, Tomasia uses this site to slander other individuals. He then later proclaims it a joke, but not in public.
I will call him a liar and a dog here and now.
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