[split] maklelan and others discuss evidence
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03-01-2014, 04:20 PM
RE: [split] maklelan and others discuss evidence
(03-01-2014 09:35 AM)maklelan Wrote:  
(03-01-2014 09:23 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  A long time ago Girly and HoC and I agreed that there essentially is no difference, on a practical basis between Eastern Tao, the highest levels of European (mystical/contemplative) Christianity, (see the "Cloud of the Unknowing"), and Agnosticism. I'm suggesting here that it might open a few eyes to actually go read David's blog. He doesn't mindlessly accept Mormonism, but says he has found it useful. So what. We accept Kingsy. He finds Calvinism useful. I seriously hope that, as weird as it might seem, we might have another Kingsy here. I mean a Calvinist is the admin of this forum, and David has never once "preached" Mormonism, just as Kingsy never preaches Calvinism. He can defend what he wants, or say, whatever he wants, or NOT say whatever he wants to say. BTW David, Ralph was pretty new here when you came here first. We didn't really know what to make of his weirdness. He has been back a few times since, and proved unable to answer even the most basic questions. Hope you choose to stick around after your "gauntlet" hazing. It's YOUR business, and no one else's what you choose to find useful, as nutty as it might seem to others.

I appreciate the sentiment, Bucky (although it's Dan, not David. Dave's my brother).


Oops. I was supposed to be at an early meeting, and I was late. Oh well. Sorry Blush
The enemy is not "religion". The enemy is Fundamentalism, and ignorance, as I see it. I was sitting in the San Diego Cathedral this Christmas, having been asked to fill in for an ill baritone soloist, and I was thinking "Hmm, these people are reasonable, and all they want is to raise all these kids the best they can". If Francis can say 'Who am I to judge ?', maybe I should tone it down a notch. I do get that many people here have horrible experiences stemming from their exposure to religion. I don't happen to be in that number. My family is ULTRA liberal Catholic and Episcopalian. (Like "nuns-on the bus" type people). I just don't have the chip on my shoulder many here do. I do get where it comes from though.

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03-01-2014, 04:23 PM
RE: [split] maklelan and others discuss evidence
(03-01-2014 02:08 PM)DLJ Wrote:  For those who might be interested, data / information can have Intrinsic Quality

Yeah, but data and information are meaning, not texts. It's tautologous to say that meaning can have meaning. Also, if you're going to copy and paste from a book, at least have the decency to identify the book. You might also try explaining how this business model for enterprise IT management is at all relevant to linguistics.

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03-01-2014, 04:26 PM
RE: [split] maklelan and others discuss evidence
(03-01-2014 04:20 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  The enemy is not "religion". The enemy is Fundamentalism, and ignorance, as I see it. I was sitting in the San Diego Cathedral this Christmas, having been asked to fill in for an ill baritone soloist, and I was thinking "Hmm, these people are reasonable, and all they want is to raise all these kids the best they can". If Francis can say 'Who am I to judge ?', maybe I should tone it down a notch. I do get that many people here have horrible experiences stemming from their exposure to religion. I don't happen to be in that number. My family is ULTRA liberal Catholic and Episcopalian. (Like "nuns-on the bus" type people). I just don't have the chip on my shoulder many here do. I do get where it comes from though.

Finally, a thoughtful and objective approach.

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03-01-2014, 04:30 PM
RE: [split] maklelan and others discuss evidence
I get what you are saying - so all of these things on my bookshelf here at work are just abstract collections of words that give any individual reader whatever they get out of it. I also see how you need to play with words and meanings to give the religious books any validity - is that all I have to do, some bending and twisting?

I would rather take in an ounce of reason than take in a ton of your hogwash.

I am punching out Maverick!

“Truth does not demand belief. Scientists do not join hands every Sunday, singing, yes, gravity is real! I will have faith! I will be strong! I believe in my heart that what goes up, up, up, must come down, down, down. Amen! If they did, we would think they were pretty insecure about it.”
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03-01-2014, 04:31 PM
RE: [split] maklelan and others discuss evidence
(03-01-2014 04:19 PM)maklelan Wrote:  
(03-01-2014 03:39 PM)Timber1025 Wrote:  #1 - Load of crap but nice deflection though. Intrinsic meaning would actually be a requirement for me to accept any religious text as worthy.

No text in existence has intrinsic meaning. I am going to be deeply disappointed if everyone here suddenly jumps on the "we don't know anything about linguistics or the human mind" bandwagon.

(03-01-2014 03:39 PM)Timber1025 Wrote:  #2 - not much interpretation for me with my Chemistry and Biology books, the manual for my AV reciever, scientific papers, all autobiographies - just sayin'

It's all interpretation. The fact that it refers to concepts that are empirically verifiable is a completely different discussion.

(03-01-2014 03:39 PM)Timber1025 Wrote:  #3 - Kind of wishy washy there. In poetry or philosophy there are no claims of the supernatural interacting with the real world that are taken on faith to be true.

Nor is it necessary to do that to find value in religious texts, but you were asking about "intrinsic meaning," not "claims of the supernatural . . . that are taken on faith to be true." If you had asked about the latter first, maybe my responses would have been more appropriate. When you're going to spring a rhetorical trap, you've gotta make sure the bait is set on the right spot.

Are you saying something as trivial as the marks on the paper have no intrinsic meaning?

Fine, they don't. The text is not the ink on the paper.

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03-01-2014, 04:32 PM
RE: [split] maklelan and others discuss evidence
(03-01-2014 02:14 PM)Stevil Wrote:  I understand and have read the history on the coining of the term.
To me it is unimportant what was originally intended by the meaning of the term.

Even when the original meaning is still the vastly predominant meaning?

(03-01-2014 02:14 PM)Stevil Wrote:  It seems to me that this phrase has somewhat backfired to its original intent.

Maybe in some places, but the original intent is still very much the way the phrase is most commonly used. It is assumption and misunderstanding that extended the semantic field to include a completely different phenomenon.

(03-01-2014 02:14 PM)Stevil Wrote:  To me, it is unimportant whether the gap is as per current scientific knowledge or whether it is merely ignorance of the person with the gap of knowledge. What is important is that it is a gap.
The second qualifier is filling that gap with an assumption of "god did it", without providing any positive evidence for this act of god.

Whether scientists have already filled the gap with scientific knowledge, are likely to fill the gap or are unlikely to fill the gap is unimportant.

We could make a distinction in these terms. My version would be "God of the Gaps" yours would be "God of the Scientific Gaps".

I don't think the academic community would appreciate you co-opting the phrase and then asking them to come up with an alternative. The phrase has a very specific technical sense.

(03-01-2014 02:14 PM)Stevil Wrote:  But the difference is trivial.

Obviously it's not, since according to your understanding, the only conceptualization of a deity possible is a "god of the gaps" according to your personal understanding of what that means. That is quite non-trivial.

(03-01-2014 02:14 PM)Stevil Wrote:  It is still a knowledge gap filled by an assumption of "god did it".

But the function of the assumption is completely different, and it's in the function that the concept takes on real meaning.

(03-01-2014 02:14 PM)Stevil Wrote:  It seems to me (given both our understanding of the phrase) that the Abrahamic beliefs (which are the majority) fall into this category because they assume their god created the universe (god did it). Scientists don't know how the universe began or was "created".

But there are plenty of adherents to Abrahamic faiths that attempt to reconcile the science with their faiths (for instance, here). Whether or not they succeed is irrelevant.

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03-01-2014, 04:34 PM
RE: [split] maklelan and others discuss evidence
(03-01-2014 04:31 PM)Chas Wrote:  Are you saying something as trivial as the marks on the paper have no intrinsic meaning?

Fine, they don't. The text is not the ink on the paper.

If the text is not the ink on the paper or the pixels on the screen, what is it? If it's an abstraction, a perception, or a conceptualization, then it exists nowhere except in the mind of the reader. It simply does not exist until a reader conjures it up.

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03-01-2014, 04:40 PM
RE: [split] maklelan and others discuss evidence
(03-01-2014 04:30 PM)Timber1025 Wrote:  I get what you are saying - so all of these things on my bookshelf here at work are just abstract collections of words that give any individual reader whatever they get out of it.

Yes, creative readers can get virtually whatever they want out of a text. Most readers seek to approximate authorial intent, though, and limit the breadth of their interpretation well within the boundaries of the agreed-upon semantic system.

(03-01-2014 04:30 PM)Timber1025 Wrote:  I also see how you need to play with words and meanings to give the religious books any validity - is that all I have to do, some bending and twisting?

Why can't they have validity as interesting insights into people's conceptualizations of the universe and its meaning? Certainly I'm not playing with words or meanings to find value in that, am I? Are you so cold and sterile that meaning is only found in empirical data, or is that just a role you're playing for rhetorical effect? Maybe you don't understand the value art or poetry, or have never bounced your foot to the beat of a song, or hate human contact.

(03-01-2014 04:30 PM)Timber1025 Wrote:  I would rather take in an ounce of reason than take in a ton of your hogwash.

I have said nothing unreasonable whatsoever. On the contrary, I find your aesthetic to be entirely unreasonable.

(03-01-2014 04:30 PM)Timber1025 Wrote:  I am punching out Maverick!

Have a good one.

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03-01-2014, 04:41 PM
RE: [split] maklelan and others discuss evidence
(03-01-2014 02:03 PM)evenheathen Wrote:  Just a passing observation. I do quite enjoy your knowledge and appreciate your contributions here, to be honest. I'd be in way over my head to try to challenge you on any of these subjects, I was just noting a discrepancy (in my eyes at least) as to how you make your points. Given your position, it's easy to see how and why you would do that (I'm sure it wasn't deliberate), I'm just trying to keep the field level.

Sorry, I missed this in trying to catch up. I apologize if I came across curt. I don't mean any disrespect, although sometimes that isn't clear.

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03-01-2014, 05:12 PM
RE: [split] maklelan and others discuss evidence
(03-01-2014 04:40 PM)maklelan Wrote:  Yes, creative readers can get virtually whatever they want out of a text. Most readers seek to approximate authorial intent, though, and limit the breadth of their interpretation well within the boundaries of the agreed-upon semantic system.
I think this is were the primary point of disagreement between you and the other users in this thread (myself included) lies.

I consider "interpreting [a text] within the boundaries of an agreed-upon semantic system" to be equivalent with "taking [a text] at face value".

(03-01-2014 04:40 PM)maklelan Wrote:  
(03-01-2014 04:30 PM)Timber1025 Wrote:  I also see how you need to play with words and meanings to give the religious books any validity - is that all I have to do, some bending and twisting?

Why can't they have validity as interesting insights into people's conceptualizations of the universe and its meaning? Certainly I'm not playing with words or meanings to find value in that, am I? Are you so cold and sterile that meaning is only found in empirical data, or is that just a role you're playing for rhetorical effect? Maybe you don't understand the value art or poetry, or have never bounced your foot to the beat of a song, or hate human contact.
I believe that Timber1025 was alluding to a post you made earlier in this thread in which you argued that certain falsehoods in The Book of Mormon do not trouble you because your interpretation of it is different from ours.

One cannot help but wonder whether you interpret TBoM this way because of them or in spite of them. Consider

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