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Applied Religious Logic

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169 thoughts on “Applied Religious Logic

  1. I must admit I don’t know the cat in the hat. I am from Germany, maybe that is not a world religion? But I always like to learn something new.

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  2. Your list might benefit from “The Varieties of Religious Experience” by psychologist philosopher William James who studied and documented human experiences of God. People are lying, crazy, or telling the truth.

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    • Clergy = Lying theives
      Evangelicals = Batshit Crazy

      There is no Truth in any religion. We’ve been through this before: if there was it would have appeared twice, naturally and independently.

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      • Truth, thy wonderful Truth.

        Each person has a perspective that is unique. That is the truth.

        If you want to know the Creator’s feelings towards every living thing, Create something wonderful yourself, a work of art, or a child.

        You know it is not perfect and yet you love and nurture it unconditionally. That is the Truth. Try to think in terms of Universal truths (things that are true for each and every person no matter of age, sex, culture, or race. Is it not true we all laugh and cry, we all need purpose, love and acceptance.)

        The Greek word for “truth” is aletheia, which literally means to “un-hide” or “hiding nothing.” It conveys the thought that truth is always there, always open and available for all to see, with nothing being hidden or obscured. The Hebrew word for “truth” is emeth, which means “firmness,” “constancy” and “duration.” Such a definition implies an everlasting substance and something that can be relied upon.

        “For this I have been born, and for this I have come into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.” Messiah

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      • Yes, yes Nate… now the question was, show me a truth revealed by any religion. Literally. Something that was not already known and simply dressed up in a different cloak. Something honestly new, and demonstrably true.

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      • You know full well what you ask I can not do, and you also know it is up to every person to approach the door, knock, and then take hold of the doorknob, open the door and step through.

        “Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.”

        or

        Everyone who is of God hears His voice.

        Look in the mirror John. Take five minutes, stare into your eyes and search your heart. If you don’t see Truth you are lost.

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      • hmm… I would say Evangelicals implies batshit crazy since not all batshit crazies are evangelicals….I thought this discussion was based in logic?

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      • Good grief. Do you not see that it appeared in the same form many times and independently? Feel free to be critical, but ignoring the facts is not a sane strategy. Do you imagine that Lao Tsu stole his ideas from Sufism?

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      • No, they boldly claim knowledge of truth. They claim that you personally can know what it is. No approximations necessary. The approximations are to do with communicating truth, not with knowing it.

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      • You ever read God’s Debris by Scott Adams? It’s a short book, available on the web on pdf. It’s an interesting concept. If you have troubles finding it just send me an email and i’ll attach my copy.

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      • I think maybe you need to look into this. Claiming truth is exactly what they do. This is why they are called wisdom traditions. Anyway, good to chat John, but I’ll go on my way.

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    • One who is searching Nate.

      The Christians passed out Bibles and I read mine and I have many questions. They teach and I listen. I ask the same questions about proof and the old one tells me things their Messiah said.

      He tells me to look into a mirror and ask, then listen to my heart. He told me to listen and if it is for me, I will know theproof. He said it is not for some to know the truth but I am not sure right now what that means.

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  3. I”m dumb on bigotry, that is.
    Oprah is an evangelical and she may have some crazy ideas (I don’t get the new age Tolle hysteria) but she does a lot of good. President Obama says Jesus is his Saviour; depending one’s politics, he’s nuts, crazy etc. However Romney would’ve really failed my test.

    I mentioned James because he documented and analyzed various people’s experiences of god, spirit, soul, psyche. Some of it matches your test but I won’t waste your time with an example. Atheist Guru Dawkins seems a bit nuts to me, at least in debates I watched on YouTube…but he makes good points and is brazen.

    All the best!

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  4. I once saw a talk on cave art. First we were shown prehistoric caves in France, with primitive drawings of stick people, animals, and events. Then, from the same time period, similar drawings, but in Mexico. How did these ancient humans know to draw in similar styles, familiar objects of their day, yet an ocean apart? The point of the talk was that humans had long sought to be artists, and that art expresses innermost thoughts and simple everyday life. But it’s one of many examples of seemingly independent occurrences of similar behavior. I don’t say this proves a divine being or that it proves anything; I only say I found the talk interesting and it’s always stuck in my mind. There’s always the possibility the continents were connected by land, traveled to by boats or space ships.

    In my personal experience, years ago I had the brilliant idea to pray the Psalms of the Jewish scripture three times a day. I was new to meditation and everything related and wanted a system to keep me grounded. It worked! And eventually I learned that praying Psalms three and even more times a day has been done by monks and others for centuries, across religions. I think I tapped into the collective unconscious and it instructed me. Eventually I began waking at 2 AM and I’d get up and pray or meditate, or just sit and enjoy that wee hour, then return to bed. Same thing: I eventually read somewhere that through the ages people have woken at 2 AM to contemplate; it’s thought to be biological as well as psychological and spiritual.

    So yeah, there are independent natural occurrences of people seeking truth, experiencing the divine, finding God in the same way, yet independent of each other– and I’m one of them.

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    • I often wake up about 0200, needing a wee tinkle. On a truly cold morning I resist the urge until it becomes irresistible, the result is almost orgasmic in intensity—revalationary blissful, in fact. (Think Peter Sellers in the movie ‘The Party’).

      I should start a cult with guaranteed replicable (ergo scientifically based) results. (Fame, and fortune at last~!)

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      • The shallowness of some human beings is certainly an argument supporting that there is no intelligent designer, but for me, science, among other things, proves God.

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      • Science may be able to … God can’t.

        Human beings shallow? Naaaaa … thank Dog I am a god.

        (Oops, damned dyslexia—bugger, it makes just as much sense anyway)

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  5. Time for a confession. I haven’t read a single religious text, but have read The Cat in the Hat and believe that Dr. Seuss really did exist.

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    • The Seussist pentagonian is surely real! Theodor Seuss Geisel, Dr. Theophrastus Seuss, Theo LeSieg, Rosetta Stone, and Dr. Seuss are each elements of the single Creator Spirit 😉

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  6. Christianity is indeed one of the few theologies that teaches its dogma as scientific fact, and kept it that way by burning (figuratively now, as opposed to literally) those at the stake who scientifically proved otherwise.

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    • Sadly you can’t prove it false any more than that blessed Cat can. But if I were a gambler I’d bet against it (then wait forever to collect) (they covered that one quite well …)

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      • Hmm I didn’t realize Dr. Seuss also discusses prophecies, scientific facts of life we are merely coming to realize today, historical accounts and social guidelines. I guess I’ll pay more attention next time I read about the cat in the hat.

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      • Yes, exactly. Having actually studied one of the books used in this analogy, I feel confident in making this claim.

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      • Why yes I am! So I feel like you must know something about the Quran and science then?

        Since this is a HUGE topic, I am just going to highlight some verses. Keep in mind that this book was revealed 1400 years ago, and we are only making relevant scientific discoveries today. Also, not a single alphabet of the Quran has been changed since it was revealed 1400 years ago (both Muslim and non-Muslim scholars of the Quran will attest to this – look it up).

        Big bang theory:

        Do not the unbelievers see that the heavens and the earth were a closed-up mass, then We clove them asunder? (21:31)

        Expansion of universe:

        “The heaven, We have built it with power. Verily. We are expanding it.” (51:47)

        Everything created from water:

        “..with water did We create every living thing.” (21:31)

        What happens in the womb:

        “(God) fashions you inside the bodies of your mothers, formation after formation, in three (veils of) darkness.” (39:6)

        “We fashioned the thing which clings into a chewed lump of flesh and We fashioned the chewed flesh into bones and We clothed the bones with intact flesh.” (23:14)

        Orbits of celestial bodies:

        “…everything is gliding along smoothly in its orbit.” (21:34)

        Again, this is a vast topic. I just quickly mentioned some verses.

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      • And yes, the Quran also supports evolution – just not that humans evolved from apes (which hasn’t been proved anyways).

        “That you shall assuredly pass on from one stage to another.” (84:20)

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      • “…everything is gliding along smoothly in its orbit.”… Wrong. Planets are falling in a straight line over curved space. And anyway, Anaximander (611-547 B.C) nailed it long, long, long before Mo was around. He made the first detailed maps of the Earth and the sky. He knew that the Earth was round, and believed that it was “free-floating and unsupported.” He measured its circumference, and was the first to put forward the idea that celestial bodies make full circles in their orbits. One of his greatest contributions was the fact that he was the first to conceptualize space as having depth.

        You see, 1,000 years before Mo orbits were already known.

        Moreover, Pythagoras (569-475 B.C) put forward the idea that the universe is made of crystal spheres that encircle the Earth. According to him, the Sun, the Moon, the planets, and the stars travel in separate spheres: orbits.

        Further still, Aristotle (384-322 B.C) proved that the Earth is spherical, and believed that it was at the center of the universe. His reason for believing this was actually quite scientific: he knew that if the Earth revolved around the Sun, then we should see the stars shift position throughout the year. Since he did not have the technology to detect this shift, as we do today, he concluded that Earth must rest at the center of the universe. According to him, the Sun, planets, and stars were located in spheres that revolved around the Earth… Orbits!

        You see, your Quran is just poetic drivel, I’m afraid. It is about as scientific as Nostradamus is prophetic. I’m betting you just love Dr Zakir Naik, right? That seems to be where all these silly, categorically erroneous claims come from.

        I won’t even bother with the rest. If you actually believe the likes of Naik then you’ve lost your mind and have jettisoned reason and rational thought.

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      • Sorry, but if you actually knew anything about evolutionary biology you’d know it is a quite well established fact that man evolved from apes. It’s in the chromosomes.

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      • Not sure how planets falling in a straight line over curved space is an argument against planets following an orbit?

        I think you misunderstood – the argument being made is not that the Quran was the first book to make any type of discovery (in some cases). It gives detailed accounts and proofs of facts mystics (such as Pythagoras) discussed. It proves that religion and science go hand in hand.

        I agree with all of the discoveries you have mentioned, it doesn’t go against what I said previously at all. Many people over the centuries, have been driven by rational thought and inspired by revelations. But I do find your mention of Aristotle ironic, as he believed in God (like a lot of other notable scientists).

        No, I do not care about Dr Zakir Naik. I have heard of his name, don’t know anything about him.

        I’m guessing you have an educational background in evolutionary biology? In that case, please provide me the proof you are talking about.

        You’re calling me irrational but I don’t see any rational arguments from your side so far in this thread? Or anything that nullifies what I’ve said?

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      • Merely pointing out that our traditional notion of an orbit is in fact wrong. There is no such thing as an orbit. Planets are all travelling in a straight line.

        If you’re admitting the Quran is not a scientific book then why on earth did you try to make the point that it was? I mentioned Aristotle only to demonstrate another person who knew about orbits long before Mo… as you seem to claim Mo was the first, which is utter bullocks, and I proved it.

        Here’s a 4 minute video for you regarding evolution.

        “Nullify anything you’ve said”… I’m not entirely sure you’ve said anything except make a false claim that quran is some sort of magic book… which I’ve already debunked.

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      • First, if one doesn’t want to even try and see another’s perspective, there’s no use in going further. The original argument I had made was that the Quran is a book that supports and reinforces science rather than try to falsify it. Many scholars who are NOT Muslim would agree with this. People who have actually studied this subject more than you and I, I am sure. Early Muslims have done a lot in setting the foundation of science and the scientific process as it is seen today.

        When it comes to the apes discussion – there’s some who claim we do and some who claim we don’t. I can also post a video of a scientist claiming the opposite of what you posted. Just as some reports claim drinking 5 cups of coffee a day is good for you while other reports suggest coffee should be eliminated from the diet altogether. Only time will tell.

        Second thing I wanted to point out is that it’s okay to disagree. But that does not mean that you have to resort to insults to make your point. If you have something you feel is worth saying, than say it and make logical arguments rather than resorting to language that people might find demeaning or rude. I never said that Prophet Muhummad was the first of anything. He wasn’t a scientist. Don’t shift the argument.

        In essence, the original post has no value when it comes to making an argument. By being oversimplified and buried in logical fallicies, it only purports to mislead people.

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      • Don’t try and backtrack. Your original claim was “Keep in mind that this book was revealed 1400 years ago, and we are only making relevant scientific discoveries today.”

        You have tried to claim the Koran is a magic book and I’ve proven to you it isn’t and your Mo was nothing but a temporal lobe epileptic, and a child molester.

        “Many scholars who are NOT Muslim”… unsubstantiated appeal to authority. Please, show me these “many scholars” you speak of.

        “When it comes to the apes discussion – there’s some who claim we do and some who claim we don’t.”…. No, Eclipse, there are no scientists who don’t accept the fact of human evolution from the great apes. Please stop your rather pathetic appeals to authority. It’s childish and won’t stand the test of scrutiny here.

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      • Childish is being angry and not doing proper research or understanding the definition of truth. I really wonder where you get your info from…stay in your bubble if that makes you happy. I don’t feel the need to respond to your irrelevant and falsified claims anymore. Peace out (:

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      • Who’s angry?

        So, you can’t produce these “many scholars” huh? I knew you couldn’t… because they don’t exist.

        Honestly, Eclipse, you have to lift your game if you’re going to play here.

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  7. up).

    Wow. So according to the scientific Qur’an there are scientific stuff in it that we are discovering today… Let me see:
    Big bang theory:
    “Do not the unbelievers see that the heavens and the earth were a closed-up mass, then We clove them asunder? (21:31)”
    I know the verses in Arabic and it doesn’t say closed-up masses. It describes them (Earth and Heavens) as if they were a seed and were broken. This is bullshit as there was no Earth and no Heaven to split. Earth is just a byproduct of an old explosion of an old Supernova where heavy elements were fabricated. Besides, earth is inexistent compared to heavens and Qur’an is describing it as if Earth and heavens were the same size.

    Expansion of universe:
    “The heaven, We have built it with power. Verily. We are expanding it.” (51:47)

    Everything created from water:
    “..with water did We create every living thing.” (21:31)
    Sure, but that doesn’t make Qur’an a special book. I say: “with Carbon We create every living thing” … Name one living thing that doesn’t contain Carbon and I will become a Muslim! The Qur’an emphasized on this fact because it was written in a desert where water is so precious and people really appreciate it.

    What happens in the womb:
    “(God) fashions you inside the bodies of your mothers, formation after formation, in three (veils of) darkness.” (39:6)

    Man if you read the Arabic text you will laugh! According to your Qur’an a woman’s gestational period could last 3 years. How bullshit is that? Explain this to me please.

    “We fashioned the thing which clings into a chewed lump of flesh and We fashioned the chewed flesh into bones and We clothed the bones with intact flesh.” (23:14)
    Chewed huh?

    Orbits of celestial bodies:
    “…everything is gliding along smoothly in its orbit.” (21:34)

    Smoothly is a ridiculous description. Shoemaker-Leavy hitting Jupiter is proof that it is not smooth. Also, our Galaxy is on a head-on collision with Andromeda… Call that smooth!

    Again, this is a vast topic. I just quickly mentioned some verses

    Sure, bring more bullshit so we can debunk it

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    • Eclipsedmind, I don’t know where did you get you Qur’an from, but you stated this:

      That you shall assuredly pass on from one stage to another.” (84:20)

      84 is Surat Al Inshikaak and it has nothing of what you say. I’d suggest you go back and read your book.

      Also what you claim to be the big bang is not 21:31 it is 21:30 and I can site the exact verse in Arabic if you prefer. So please, first study your Qur’an then when you know how to read it let us talk, don’t just copy & paste from a text you almost know nothing about.

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      • Thanks for the advice, I ask you to do the same and not talk about something you know nothing of. Figurative language and symbolic description might be a little over your head I think.

        Yes I made a typo with 21:30, thank you.

        I will only address this verse as I don’t see you saying anything significant for the others.

        This verse is saying that the heavens and earth, universe, or solar system has developed out of amorphous or nebular mass. The mass of matter was split and its scattered bits became units of the solar system. Then all life was created out of water.

        The words “heavens and the earth were a closed up mass” might signify that there is no rain from heaven, and the earth becomes dried up and grows no vegetation.
        The words “then We opened them out” might refer to the throwing off of the planets of the solar system.

        No one has perfect knowledge of the Quran. That is the mystery and beauty of it. We are still in the process of deciphering it. It’s not simplistic and not meant to be taken literally.

        After this, I don’t feel the need to respond to your further as I can understand your personality through your writing skills. I’m not sure what you are angry about, I feel sorry that you do. Where there is no room for respect or logical assertions, there is no need to respond.

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      • Who’s this “We” everyone keeps quoting?

        I can understand it in a Christian (just one God, all three of him) (another miracle of nomenclature) or otherwise polytheistic context …

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      • Miss Eclipse … I can’t be sure but I’d say that Mike — judging by the brief resumé he posted — has quite a few reasons to be a bit grumpy.

        But he’s right, Arabia (Libya, as known a few years back) did indeed serve as civilisation’s university when my own ancestors were peering fearfully out of caves. Sadly we got religious ‘power-wannabes’ come along and stuff it all up.
        Happens all the time, even now; and every one of them is (a) unique (has the sole monopoly on truth) and (b) guaranteed by Holy Writ.

        Please don’t stop now, this is getting interesting …

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  8. I haven’t read the Koran. I haven’t read the Bible. I haven’t read the Jewish texts. I haven’t read the Gitas, Popul Vuh … in fact: man, am I EVER ignorant!

    I put it down to having a weak stomach and too brief a lifespan. So here’s possible solution:

    Let’s invite the most learned men (always male? Why not?) to a gathering in a large hall with oodles of beer and no toilets, and no exit until they have a 100 percent agreement on the true Holy word of God. (To speed things up we could have racks of clubs and maces along one wall …)

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      • Been meaning to ask you: What is it with you and them stupid cats? Why not the far more intelligent Sneetches … even come pre-packaged with stars on ’em; you know, see at a glance which ones are true and which are pretenders—?

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      • When I have more time I shall write back but in the meantime who is angry here? When an argument touches your guts and you don’t know how to reply then you accuse others of being angry!

        My mother tongue language is Arabic and I have read the Qur’an more than once and was obliged to study it at school for at least 9 years. I also read the Bible (old and new testament) and none of them made sense to me as a single scientific book for dummies!

        Yes there were Muslim scientists, nobody deny them! 2/3 of the stars have Arabic names. Algorithm is an Arabic word coming from Al Khawarizmi. Algebra is Arabic. The numbers we use are Arabic. Arabs introduced the Zero to the western world. Islam preserved science and added much when Europe was living in the dark ages and were killing witches and burning heretics on the stick. I don’t deny this and nobody can. But does that give Islam the credit for everything? Newton invented Calculus and discovered the laws of Gravity. Plank started Quantum Physics. So does that mean that Christians science is better than Islamic one? Does that indicate a competition on who’s book is the true one?

        None of these books make sense! They are full of “irrational, impossible, childish, imaginary, old, supernatural” arguments that does not stand a second for scrutiny of logical science.

        Seriously the Qur’an talks about Mountains that have roots (as if they were a tree), and the creation myth is always about the Earth and Heavens but earth is really nothing, it is ridiculous to talk about them as if they were the same size!

        The Qur’an in some aspects is just a cut and paste from the bible. It also talks about a flat earth that God shakes from its extremes to remove the unbelievers!

        If you don’t want to be rational and you insist in discussing a very important thing using all of the ridiculous arguments that come from any religious book then being ridiculed is inevitable! Not because we want to make you look ridiculous but because the argument you support IS ridiculing itself!

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      • Dammit … Gertie McF, back to google … told you I was ignorant, but does anyone ever listen to an old dog? Noooo …

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      • Good grief! There really is a Gertrude McFuzz! It says so in google, so it must be true—

        —which makes you her prophet! All hail John Zande!*

        * PS Can I be a saint?

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  9. (Bummer … my last reply went in the wrong place, so here ’tis again, and hopefully this time will seem more relevant:

    MISS ECLIPSE … I can’t be sure but I’d say that Mike — judging by the brief resumé he posted — has quite a few reasons to be a bit grumpy.

    But he’s right, Arabia (Libya, as known a few years back) did indeed serve as civilisation’s university when my own ancestors were peering fearfully out of caves. Sadly we got religious ‘power-wannabes’ come along and stuff it all up.
    Happens all the time, even now; and every one of them is (a) unique (has the sole monopoly on truth) and (b) guaranteed by Holy Writ.

    Please don’t stop now, this is getting interesting …

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    • ECLIPSE:
      Oops … for whatever reason I thought you were a damsel of the species. Just been to your webbie, my mistake; and apologies for any inadvertent offense.

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  10. Hey John I have a hard core Christian that just posted on my site under the reblog under not my beautiful god. I don’t have much time to throw him a bone. Thought I would give you the info to see if you wanted to stir the pot. I am typing by finger on on the phone and terrible at it. So if there are typos then you known just how bad I am at it. His name is Oliver.

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  11. Hmm. I see that religion is again being associated exclusively with naive theism and opposed to naïve atheism. In reality ‘religious logic’, or just logic, is excellent at refuting theism, and is regularly used for this purpose in religion. Sure, make fun of the stereotypical dogmatic theists, but we shouldn’t imagine that this is a criticism of religion.

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      • Hi John. There is probably a grey area but Buddhism, Taoism, Sufism, Kabbalism and other wisdom traditions are atheistic. According to Keith Ward in his excellent book ‘God: A Guide for the Perplexed’, even classical Christianity did not make the simple claim that God exists. I think these things are not quite as straightforward as many atheists (and theists) assume. The best proof of God’s non-existence that I know of is found in Buddhism. So I’m okay with your argument against dogmatic superstition, but see this as fairly irrelevant to the wider question of whether there is any truth in religion.

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      • Understood. Memes are just a little fun.

        I’m a huge fan of wisdom ‘traditions’ (religions), not so much of the revealed kind. It’d serve our species well to see a reanimation of some of the eastern mysticism. Fortunately, i don’t see the revealed religions lasting much longer so there is always hope we can find an appropriate balance.

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  12. Oops. I just replied to a comment and it appeared somewhere completely irrelevant. Sorry about that.

    It seems odd that you say you are a fan of the wisdom traditions and yet state somewhere that there is no truth in religion. Perhaps you mean a particular religious doctrine rather than the whole of religion.

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      • Hell. My comments keep appear in the wrong place for some reason. I’ll just say before moving on, John, that if you are going to criticise religion effectively you’re going to have to know more about it. It is clear that it is not your area of interest. But I won’t bang on. Thanks for the chat.

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