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Author:  furrykef [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 3:49 pm ]
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Interruptor Jones wrote:
Just listen to the rhythm of my heart.


You have tachycardia, Interruptor Jones. Perhaps you should see a doctor. ;)

Author:  Didymus [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 3:58 pm ]
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My dad had a mild heart attack last month. He's okay now.

Author:  lumberpeg vegeplank [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 4:18 pm ]
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Not to be redundant, but doesn't love speak of God?

I think love is the ultimate science-buster. Meaning that it can't be explained by science.

I guess you could boil it down to chemicals or psychological speak, but the feeling of being in love, or loving your parents or sister or kids...We love because God loved us first. I do believe that.

In regards to right and wrong, love is right and non-love is wrong: Success comes from loving and avoiding non-loving. That's what my religion is, basically.

Author:  furrykef [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 4:22 pm ]
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There's lots of things science can't explain, but I don't think such things are "science-busters". As for divinity in the concept of love, well, I'm not really gonna touch that. If there's somebody who hasn't a friggin' clue what love is, it's me.

(Not to say that I'm unloved, or that I don't love. I'm just clueless as to what it really is, heh...)

Author:  lumberpeg vegeplank [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 4:25 pm ]
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Yeah, the term "science-buster was unclear. I am a big fan of science.

Author:  Ingiald [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 4:29 pm ]
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On a "Science Busting" note, I read somewhere that organic materials randomly forming together to create a living thing, then, by a process of random natural selection, over 3.5 billion years, forming into an intelligent species without divine intervention is as likely as someone winning the lottery 3 times in a row. Not that I don't beleive in evolution with divine influence...

Author:  Didymus [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 4:34 pm ]
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I suppose if you try hard enough, you could explain anything away with science. Love might be one of the tougher ones, though.

Author:  furrykef [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 4:36 pm ]
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Ingiald wrote:
I read somewhere that organic materials randomly forming together to create a living thing, then, by a process of random natural selection, over 3.5 billion years, forming into an intelligent species without divine intervention is as likely as someone winning the lottery 3 times in a row.


Considering how many planets there must be in the universe -- there are a gazillion in our galaxy alone -- I don't think the statistics are actually against that.

Author:  Didymus [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 4:40 pm ]
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I'll take a shot at it, Kef.

Our modern culture defines it in terms of affection (ie sex drive or companionship) but that's inaccurate. Love is that emotional drive in human beings that seeks another's best interests rather than our own. Love is what compells you to give the homeless guy something to eat, or to help a friend with some very difficult homework. No greater love can a man have than this: that he would lay his life down for his friends. That is why Christ's love is so important to Christians, because he did exactly that: laid his life down for all of us, an innocent man dying in the place of a criminal, yet forgiving those who were killing him. Now that's love.

Author:  lumberpeg vegeplank [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 5:04 pm ]
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Yeah, Jesus loved all people, including the ones hard to love: Prostitutes, tax collectors, non church goers, very poor people, Roman soldiers...

Today, He would've loved death row inmates, sex workers, pornography addicts, spammers, ex-Presidents...

Author:  Didymus [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 5:40 pm ]
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Drug addicts...

Author:  InterruptorJones [ Sat Jul 24, 2004 8:03 pm ]
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I'm sorry, lumberjack, but in terms of brain chemistry love is no more special than anger or fear or lust.

Which doesn't necessarily refute what you say, because there's more things that scientists don't know about how the brain works than what they do. This comes right back to the is-there-a-soul quandry.

But do I love my niece because your god loved me first? Maybe, but from where I stand it's just as likely that I'm evolutionarily and neurally compelled to love her.

And Ingiald, I'd like to know where you read that, but at any rate, something being statistically unlikely does not make it impossible. There's a man from Virginia who's been struck by lightning 7 times in his life, and not by virtue of being a telephone linesman or anything. If you flip a coin enough times, you will get fifty heads in a row. I think others here will agree that statistics are not a way to prove the existence, or even the likely hood of the existence, of a god.

Author:  Prof. Tor Coolguy [ Sun Jul 25, 2004 6:14 pm ]
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I highly beleve that there was natural selection and everything that had us come up to the point we are at today. I also think that a devine hand put something into the puddles of goo to spark the single celled organisms that after hundreds of billions of years humans came out of that one devine push in the right direction.

Author:  furrykef [ Sun Jul 25, 2004 6:17 pm ]
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Prof. Tor Coolguy wrote:
hundreds of billions of years


The universe hasn't even been around that long. It's more like a couple billion.

Author:  Prof. Tor Coolguy [ Sun Jul 25, 2004 6:23 pm ]
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what I was thinking of when I wrote that was "think of a really really long time" so I guess I overshot my goal

Author:  InterruptorJones [ Sun Jul 25, 2004 9:50 pm ]
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I was reading a post on another forum (I can't recall where) that mentioned a bumper sticker or something they saw. It said something like this:
Quote:
Occam's Razor:
  • God created the universe. God just exists.
  • The universe just exists.

Oversimplified, sure, but fun to think about.

Author:  InterruptorJones [ Sun Jul 25, 2004 10:18 pm ]
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Hey, Tom found it:

Image

Don't get me wrong, I'm not offering this up as part of any argument (I can already think of half a dozen ways a person of faith could respond reasonably), I just think it's interesting.

Author:  furrykef [ Sun Jul 25, 2004 10:56 pm ]
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Yeah, I mentioned that animated GIF some pages back.

Author:  Tom [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 12:15 am ]
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furrykef wrote:
Yeah, I mentioned that animated GIF some pages back.

Oh yeah, right here.

Author:  Didymus [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 12:50 am ]
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There is a story I heard once about three monks discussing the number of teeth a horse has. The first proposed a brilliant deduction from Plato about the number of teeth a horse has. The second monk countered with an argument based on Aristotle. As the debate between the first two monks became even more heated, the third got very frustrated. Finally, he stood up and said, "We have a horse out in the barn. Why don't we just go out there and count his teeth?" The other two monks insulted him for engaging in such unphilosophical reasoning.

Author:  furrykef [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 1:09 am ]
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Tom wrote:
furrykef wrote:
Yeah, I mentioned that animated GIF some pages back.

Oh yeah, right here.


Geez, man, I think you look stuff up more often than I do. And I look up stuff all the time. Like a word I want to write but I'm not sure how it's spelled...

Author:  Prof. Tor Coolguy [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 1:06 pm ]
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google is a great invention

Author:  furrykef [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 1:23 pm ]
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AgentSeethroo wrote:
I've read about this guy who was in a tribe in Africa. He felt some presence, and he couldn't figure out exactly what it was. He somehow understood certain things to be true and was acting differently from the rest of his tribe due to these new "convictions" he discovered.

Eventually, a missionary showed up in his part of the continent and started "givin' em Jesus".
When he heard the missionary's teachings, he was floored.
He said somethings along the lines of "That's him! That's what I've felt! It's Jesus!"


I lay in bed this morning, recalling this quote and I wonder if the guy could have experienced so-called "sudden enlightenment", in the Zen sense. Jesus and the Buddha are more similar than you might think (although Buddhists do not worship the Buddha as some worship Jesus), and I dare suggest that Jesus himself was a buddha.

Keep in mind one need not hear the Buddha's teachings before attaining enlightenment. After all, the Buddha himself didn't!

- Kef

Author:  InterruptorJones [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 1:33 pm ]
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Didymus wrote:
Finally, he stood up and said, "We have a horse out in the barn. Why don't we just go out there and count his teeth?"


This is a cute anecdote (it's usually a little longer, isn't it?), but the argument seems to hinge on the sentiment that it's somehow obvious that we have a proverbial horse in the barn, so why don't we just check out the horse. Once again, this may be something that's difficult for Christians to comprehend, but, well, I ain't got no barn, and I ain't seen no horse.

Author:  InterruptorJones [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 2:00 pm ]
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I think a fair extension of this metaphor would be something like this:

I get lost in the country and come upon a barn. In the barn is a monk and a vast, uncountable number of horses, each with wildly varying amounts and sorts of teeth. Some of the horses are covered with layers of enormous teeth, some have a handful if tiny tooth fragments. Some of the horses are hidden in pitch darkness, others are all but invisible, some look docile and friendly and others look as if they might kill me if I get too close. The monk says "Tell me how many teeth the horse has and you'll recieve eternal life." I ask, "Which horse?" But the monk won't answer; he just replies, "Answer wrong and you'll spend eternity in hell."

(Anybody ever see Return to Oz? Ooh, deja vu.)

Some people (the metaphor gets a little ridiculous, here) might just pick the horse that their parents told them was the right one. Others might pick the one their friends or spouses wanted them to choose. Some might choose the one that looks the friendliest, or the one whose teeth look easest to count. Some people might get lucky and feel "inspired" by a particular horse, or might feel a particular horse "calling" to them in some abstract, intangible way that they can't really adequately explain to anybody who hasn't chosen the same horse, or at least a similar one.

Tell me how you would pick your horse.

Me, I'd probably just trip the monk, steal his car keys, and get the hell out of the barn.

Author:  furrykef [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 2:12 pm ]
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Excellent analogy, Interruptor Jones. :eek:

As everybody can hopefully see, things are not so clear cut or simple.

Author:  lumberpeg vegeplank [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 3:12 pm ]
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InterruptorJones wrote:
I'm sorry, lumberjack, but in terms of brain chemistry love is no more special than anger or fear or lust.
Which doesn't necessarily refute what you say, because there's more things that scientists don't know about how the brain works than what they do. This comes right back to the is-there-a-soul quandry.
But do I love my niece because your god loved me first? Maybe, but from where I stand it's just as likely that I'm evolutionarily and neurally compelled to love her.
I have been thinking about souls lately. I think it makes me a better person to think that I have an eternal part of me that is a legacy of life. I am far more likely to reach my potential as a human being.

Does everyone agree that there is a certain amount of potential? Doesn't potential smack of the existence of God?

I must admit, I haven't kept up on the nihilist/existentialist authors lately. What I read when I did want to go on the darker side (and maybe I will later in my life, but there are so many other life espousing- connection to God authors that inspire me)They are very optimistic despite their views, not because of them. I have no idea how Kafka pulled off such gorgeous writing, he must have been a mess inside. I wouldn't think he believed in the eternal soul, either, but I wouldn't trade places with him.

Do you love your niece because God loved you first? I say yes. Are you afraid because God invented fear to protect you? Yes. Did God invent Anger, Lust, Self Control? Yes, yes, yes.

You are fearfully and wonderfully made! Chemical reactions, the nuclear energy that holds your atoms together, your gravity taking hold as you spin quickly through the universe, your instincts to procreate, each too delicate to ever fully understand!

Mathematics can never discuss the human brain. That's enough proof for me. There is no equation to describe why you would enjoy the smell of a flower.

Author:  InterruptorJones [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 3:35 pm ]
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lumberjack vegetable wrote:
Does everyone agree that there is a certain amount of potential? Doesn't potential smack of the existence of God?


No. I'm sorry, this is the fourth time you've made an analysis like this without actually explaining how it makes sense. Your formula seems to be "Science has yet to find an explanation for X, so it's evidence of the existence of my god." This one is pretty standard, and really the only response is pretty obvious: Just because it hasn't been explained by mere mortals doesn't mean it; a) won't be explained sooner or later, and/or b) couldn't just be the result of random chance.

Quote:
I must admit, I haven't kept up on the nihilist/existentialist authors lately. What I read when I did want to go on the darker side (and maybe I will later in my life, but there are so many other life espousing- connection to God authors that inspire me)They are very optimistic despite their views, not because of them.


Firstly, don't lump nihilism and existentialism in the same group, and don't unnecessarily categorize them as "the darker side". You seem to have categorized me as a nihilist or existentialist (correct me if I'm wrong), but I'm not sure why. I haven't shoehorned you, and I'd appreciate the same favor.

Quote:
Mathematics can never discuss the human brain. That's enough proof for me. There is no equation to describe why you would enjoy the smell of a flower.


I don't know where you got this idea, but once again, I'd like you to explain your reasoning. Just because something's difficult to describe mathematically (who brought up math anyway?) doesn't make it impossible, and just because science hasn't worked out every intricacy of the brain yet, (which, need I remind you, is popularly the result of a few billion years of evolutionary change; not exactly the kind of stuff you can fit into a mass market paperback) it still doesn't mean they won't succeed sooner or later.

Author:  InterruptorJones [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 3:41 pm ]
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lumberjack vegetable wrote:
I think it makes me a better person to think that I have an eternal part of me that is a legacy of life.


[retracted]

I have an eternal part of me, too. It's called my children. It's called every shred of wisdom I can possibly manage to pass on to the future of humanity. And to me, how my children and their children get to live is a whole lot more important than how devout I was or how some god feels about how I lived or how I end up in some uncertain afterlife. And if that's not motivation enough for me to live up to my "potential", then I don't know what is.

Author:  furrykef [ Mon Jul 26, 2004 3:43 pm ]
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InterruptorJones wrote:
lumberjack vegetable wrote:
I think it makes me a better person to think that I have an eternal part of me that is a legacy of life.


Better than whom, lumberjack? I have a feeling I know where this is going.


Um, better than he would be if he thought otherwise?

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