Why so close-minded and biased against Christian faith?

Discussion in 'Religion' started by Arne Saknussemm, Mar 26, 2014.

  1. Arne Saknussemm trying to figure it all out Valued Senior Member

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    Moderator kmguru recently started this thread:http://www.sciforums.com/showthread.php?141170-My-thinking-in-world-civilization. I urge you to have a look-see.

    Not wanting to get off topic, I post my astonished question here:

    Please explain to me, someone, why I get shouted down for supporting the Christian faith, and told that my sources which are better documented than any historical source anyone can name are fabrications and nonsense, but all the books they have read are indisputable fact because they say so. I have often shown the above-mentioned only to be told my sources do not count because they are believers.

    And then I see kmguru has the views he has, and he gets to be a moderator!

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    Do not suppose I have the slightest interest in being a moderator. I just want to know why views such as his are tolerated - as plainly riddled with inaccuracies as they are, while views such as mine (belief in the Gospels), which as I have shown in other threads to regarded by many (I won't say 'most', because I don't know that) serious scholars as absolutely authentic, and the narration of astonishing, but definitely historical events - are dismissed as lies and nonsense.
     
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  3. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    I don't know the specifics of your case, but in general I think a lot depends on WHERE you post this sort of thing. Speaking as someone with a lot of respect for thought-through religious positions, I can say I have never yet been shouted down on this forum when I have defended Christian perspectives. But I have been careful where I make comments of this sort.
     
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  5. quinnsong Valued Senior Member

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    I do realize that some have a knee-jerk reaction to belief in any gods and especially the Abrahamic God on this forum. You have to understand Arne, sciforums rarely gets a religious intellectual or scholar that will or can defend his/her spiritual beliefs to the satisfaction of our agnostic/atheist members. Personally, i like you Arne and hope that you stick around. Piece of advice, remain as objective as possible and present credible research and resources to bolster your belief or position. Yeah, sometimes it gets personal and mean-spirited but all I can tell you is be the adult in the room. No one here really wants to hear the Good News Arne, just the facts, is what I am trying to say.
     
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  7. Arne Saknussemm trying to figure it all out Valued Senior Member

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    But did you see kmguru's post? Leonardo Da Vinci invented fire 300,000 years ago? Is that what he means?

    .

    So what next? Leonardo Di Caprio is Krsna's latest avatar incarnation, and he's going to un-invent fire? :wtf:
     
  8. Sorcerer Put a Spell on you Registered Senior Member

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    And you think Genesis is any better.....
     
  9. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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  10. Arne Saknussemm trying to figure it all out Valued Senior Member

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    Jean-Luc Picard having yet another bad hair day? I don't get it.
     
  11. Sorcerer Put a Spell on you Registered Senior Member

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    You wouldn't. It's a face-palm, reserved for a terminally stupid comment.
     
  12. river

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    Why so closed minded ?

    Because in the end , Humanity , and the existence of Humanity , held captive by this god
     
  13. Sorcerer Put a Spell on you Registered Senior Member

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    I think you're the one who is close-minded, because your opinion is fixed in terms of belief and not open to logical discussion. If you want to progress with your argument, please supply some proof of what you're saying. You could start with some proof that your god exists.
     
  14. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

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    I'm not closed minded, but you are ignorant of the state of historical knowledge pertaining to the Bible. While it might have reference to historical places and larger events, it is in no way an accurate historical record. And it's full of lies and nonsense.
     
  15. Arne Saknussemm trying to figure it all out Valued Senior Member

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    Why? Because you say so? The Gospels have more eyewitnesses than most historical events - hundreds of witnesses who died rather than recant their beliefs. Over the next three hundred years they transformed the Roman Empire, and then the world. How? Because some clever, but disappointed Hebrew scholars got together after the destruction of the Temple, stirred up Plato and Mithras and what not and "faked" a new religion? Even if that were true, don't you think these fellows must have been awfully clever to turn their Scripture on its head and come up with such an amazing character as Jesus? A man who went against everything traditional Jews believed and not only dared to pronounce the name of God (YWH -Yahweh), but called Him his papa (Abba) and said they were actually the same person - that He (Jesus) was The Lord and had been around since the very beginning, and was older than Moses. Hard to believe pious Jews would write that! Hard to believe any Greek or other gentile would know enough to even think of it, and play so freely with the story, and feel confident they had a religion that would take over the world. What genius!

    No, you can't just pronounce The Gospels nonsense without knowing what they say, what they mean and how they came to be - and call yourself a "scientist". I know it's miracles make it difficult to believe, but that's the very reason they have always been and remain controversial. Even in the bit of the John gospel where the Father spoke of the Son directly to the people, some said it was thunder, while others heard God's words. "Father, glorify your name!" (said Jesus) Then a voice came from heaven, "I have glorified it, and will glorify it again." (John 12:28) There have always been doubters even among the potential eye (ear) witnesses.

    If you are going to choose a side, at least become familiar with what you presume is nonsense, but may not have studied in depth. I know it is hard to see past the hypocritical and ignorant people who call themselves Christians, but it is worth it to gain eternal life. Jesus said this about them:
    If someone made all this up, he was a genius and a true prophet, or He was precisely who He claimed to be - you know who I'm talking about.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2014
  16. Arne Saknussemm trying to figure it all out Valued Senior Member

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    Also please not that I have been talking about The Gospels here. One of your many assumptions, brother forum members, is that The Bible is the same thing.

    Another incorrect assumption is that this thread is abouth the truth of Christianity. No, my original topic question is:

    Why are views such as kmguru's tolerated while Christian views are not?

    None of you have addressed this issue, except perhaps Sorcerer. He's on my ignore list, so I don't know what remarks he has contributed. Experience has taught me that anything he will have to say will be baiting and attention-seeking with no regard to what any other poster is actually talking about.
     
  17. gmilam Valued Senior Member

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    The Gospels depend on the rest of the Bible. There is no separating them. The need for a "saviour" rests in a "fall from grace". There was no Garden of Eden; therefore, no fall from grace.

    As for me, as long as you aren't trying to base the laws of the land on your mythology, you can believe whatever you want.
     
  18. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

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    kmguru gets away with it because no one knows what the fuck he's talking about.

    No one who was an eyewitness to Jesus' alleged supernatural powers actually wrote the Bible. Even if they did, the Bible can't be evidence for itself. The gospels were not written by the disciples, even if they are titled after them. Lots of people died over religions, it doesn't make them true. And it's popularity doesn't make it true. Islam is almost as popular, and you don't believe Mohammed rode up to heaven on a winged horse, do you? You seem to belittle the Greeks, but all we know of the gospels is from Greek manuscripts. In my view, it's faith itself that is the problem. Christianity is only a symptom.
     
  19. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    Setting aside the rest of what Spidey said, and resting this question on what do we know then we have to address the accuracy of the key facts of the matter, as you are propounding them, which evidence, not "what we say" holds in controversy. There simply is no other way to state a true thing.

    If your intent is to state that the legend told in the Gospels alleges itself to be true, and offers a list of legendary characters as eyewitnesses to itself, then that is an honest statement. If your intent is to state that the world knows of any competent witness who left an autograph giving testimony of any substantial piece of the legend, then that would be untrue.

    The key here is to try to be accurate.

    Ok but that's like saying all Americans who ever lived are eyewitnesses to Paul Bunyon and his giant blue ox. We're still confronted by the nature of legendary stories and the impossibility of connecting them to eyewitnesses. Certainly people who lived in later centuries can't break that logic.

    Christianity did not spread all over the Roman Empire and then all over the world. It did work its way to Rome, split into eastern and western halves, setting the stage that it would become the default religion of the Holy Roman Empire that ensued, and of the member countries who eventually went off to colonize the Americas. Most of the world is not Christian.


    You will probably get more mileage out of this by inquiring into whether any religious texts have been faked rather than asking if the religion is a fake. Religions begin with oral tradition. Oral tradition is the transmission of myths, legends, and fables that are woven into the story. "Faking" takes place later, after the stories are written down into "scriptures". Here I'm referring to known cases of fraud in which the writer purports to be authentic, but fabricates the text.

    The problem with taking umbrage at the suggestion that the text you hold sacred may have been faked, is that, to maintain that honest objectivity we are all striving for -- you must put the shoe on the other foot. Decide for example whether this document is faked. This is the Gospel of Thomas. It was found buried in a sealed jar near Nag Hammadi, Egypt in the 1940s:

    http://gnosis.org/naghamm/gosthom.html

    From a rhetorical perspective, Jesus is portrayed as a fairly wooden character. His persona is flat and aloof, more mythical in construction than needed to propagate the legend. Odds are, this reflects a long gestation in oral tradition before ever being committed to text.

    To illustrate my meaning, consider this introduction to the character of Socrates:

    I went down yesterday to the Peiraeus with Glaucon, the son of Ariston, to pay my devotions to the Goddess, and also because I wished to see how they would conduct the festival since this was its inauguration. I thought the procession of the citizens very fine, but it was no better than the show, made by the marching of the Thracian contingent.

    Compare with Jesus, who lacks any persona. He speaks almost entirely in adages:

    Give to everyone who begs from you; and of him who takes away your goods do not ask them again. And as you wish that men would do to you, do so to them.

    Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.

    Little children, you are from God, and have conquered them; for the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in this world.
    :
    and so on. There simply is no persona in this character at all. It's simply a vehicle for transporting somebody's list of adages, from who knows what source.


    Jesus is not the first demigod who claims to be "God and man". There are quite few. Here is a list:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_demigods

    Considering the many factions of Jews who were competing for domination when the Romans nearly wiped them from the face of the Earth, identification with piety would be no different than identification with each person's faction.

    In any case, odds are no one actually wrote it, that it persisted as oral tradition before some unknown parties first transcribed the legend in uncial Greek.


    That's like saying it's hard to imagine anyone in the Levant would ever come up with the works of Homer or Virgil.

    It's that playing with the story which gives variations like you see in the Gospel of Thomas.

    It was armies who took over the western world. They just happened to be Christian. The rest of the world was barely influenced by Christianity--excluding the Orthodox regions and those who were targeted by missionaries.

    We pronounce them legends for that very reason. What we pronounce as nonsense is the conflation of evidence and historical narrative

    This is called exegesis

    This is called anthropology/archaeology

    It's pretty obvious many members do not call themselves scientists. They do call anthropologists and archaeologists scientists. They call themselves informed, rational--some when pressed will admit to an education. That leads them to the recognition of what the Gospels say, what they mean, and how they come to be as a matter of exegesis, anthropology and archaeology.

    The association of peals of thunder with supernatural intervention is a common theme in the history of all superstition. As we now know, the electric discharges do produce acoustic shock waves strictly as in connection with the laws of electromagnetics.

    Facts are on trial every day, in every healthy mind everywhere. Even a lot of unhealthy ones. The challenge for the trier of fact is to be able to apply the principles of geometry, to draw the best conclusions from those facts. Otherwise you get what we see today: the conflation of myth, legend and fable with historical narrative. Yes: more doubt is needed to prevent that logical fallacy from taking over vulnerable minds and denying them the truths which religions would obscure from them.

    If you are going to address the audience at large you shouldn't presume that there are not readers of both high and low scholarship in such matters. It just depends who's reading. How about yourself? I'm assuming you're familiar with the Apochrypha since you once mentioned you were advocating Catholicism. Are you familiar with the Pseudoepigrapha?

    Watch out for the unusual irony of casting that aspersion too far.

    I'm not one to complain about this, certainly not with you. But when you cast a statement in form of an admonition about how to live, according to religious principle, it puts you in the tenuous position of preaching, which goes against site policy.


    For those folks who recognize possession by demons as psychoses we would certainly equate exorcisms by licensed professionals--through standard therapeutic intervention--as "doing the will of" the God of the Bible, in the sense that this could count as one of those corporal acts of mercy Catholics famously espouse,in conformance with the mandate Jesus gave you in Matt 25 to render aid to "these the least of my brethren". It's that or be counted as a goat and cast into the Lake of Fire. The rest I would endorse outside of the legendary context. Namely, that people who go around pretending to be clairvoyant are indeed evil. However, I would cut them a wide berth, first sending them to the exorcists, inasmuch as hearing voices and experiencing time-travel are signs of serious disorders which need immediate intervention.
     
  20. Arne Saknussemm trying to figure it all out Valued Senior Member

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    (Heavy sigh) I don't know why you thought anyone was interested in your repeating your same old notions. The main discussion here is why kmguru gets to write nonsense and is not only left alone, but is made a moderator. And it looks like Spidergoat has provided a response that is somewhat satisfactory.

    All you have done here is show that I am correct in saying that many of you are bogus in your claims to be objective and scientific. My italics and bold above: the eye witnesses are not legendary characters, they are real people and real people by the dozens, if not hundreds. As I have said, your summary dismissal of them as legendary does not make it so. How could you possibly know that? What arrogance for someone to claim 2,000 years after the fact that certain events must be made up or the witnesses incompetent because he finds the events they saw and recorded far-fetched. And if they are unbelievable, why then of course, they are impossible. What a small universe you live in, my friend!

    No, no no. 'Getting mileage' out of a post on this forum is of no interest to me. I am merely asking a question with the intent of pointing out the obvious bias and non-objectivity of an overproud science forum. If this thread ended after my current post that would be all right by me. I am not one to pick apart another's post to tease them into ad infinitum responses. That's your game.
    Now you're just getting sloppy. C'mon! Hercules, Helen of Troy? Your list is mostly Greek mythical figures who were the bastard offspring of playful Zeus. Even if they were real, and of course, they are not, they didn't go around claiming to be God in order to teach people the truth about their existence. I am disappointed in you.

    Thank you for sharing with us that you know the meaning of words like exegesis and anthropology, but we all know these word too and there's really no need to tell us, unless you suppose you are showing us how clever you are.

    More evidence that you have no idea what you are talking about. Jesus unemotional? You mean like when he wept at the sight of Jerusalem from a nearby hill? Or perhaps the time he made a whip and went berserk at the temple market? Or one of my favorite incidents: the cursing of the fig tree. That story shows to me Christ's humanity. Sure he was God incarnate, but he would get grumpy in the morning before breakfast, just like me. (I can curse all the fig trees I want though and nothing ever happens to them)

    Say what? You think Socrates' trip to Piraeus is warm and fuzzy? I don't see it.

    Yes, those are adages all right. I'd expect as much from a God who takes the trouble to walk among His beloved creatures and try to teach them a few things. However, you've set up a straw man here. Where's this scientific objectivity of which you so proudly go on and on about? There's a lot more to Jesus than you want to believe. However, G.K. Chesterton refutes your point of cool guy Greek philosophers and wooden christs better than I can:

     
  21. elte Valued Senior Member

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    There isn't anything that I wish for more than a loving god like often mentioned in the gospels. The gospels are part of the Bible, which has no good evidence showing it is a book written by people who were guided by divine inspiration. More, there is no decent evidence of divine inspiration at all in anything.

    Unlike religions based on alleged god-inspired scriptures, some ideas that can't be supported by evidence will go away on their own.

    At least there are groups supporting Christianity where people who share that belief can support each other. There aren't a lot of non-Christian people to share my sadness about how humanity got to this point using the crutch of religion to give it the moral boost it needed to progress, only now to apparently be headed toward a cold-hearted future. I admit that people I see raised in Christianity are generally nicer than those not, however, since Christianity is based largely on mythical stuff, I find the situation unsatisfying--a no-win situation. I agreed with LG pretty much on this before I saw him allude to it, yet wouldn't tolerate getting beat over the head with it. It's bad enough already.

    I just stepped on a lot of toes, probably those of most people here, and I prefer not to step on any, so I apologize.
     
  22. Maggnum Registered Member

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    (HEAVIER SIGH) You know, it has been my experience that those who post such questions on a science site, even one whose rules allow for such posting with strong caveats, do so with an agenda by which they are seeking the means to preach their beliefs to those they consider as needing it. It is rarely, if ever, the case that the leading questions they start with are intended to elicit knowledge and reasoned discussion; rather they are intended as a means by which to strike open a discussion by which they can attempt to enlighten those who respond by attempting to impose their belief upon them.

    You response here to the well considered comments of Aqueous Id show you are simply attempting the same thing. You invited discussion, then condemn the commenter when the content does not meet your desired (and preconceived) level of enlightenment.

    The moderator you discuss was given that position because the owner of the site likes him. If you have a specific complaint about a specific comment, then you should report him. If you don't like what he has to say, ignore him. If you find your religious belief system is offended, consider where you are posting. :bugeye:
     
  23. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

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    It appears you aren't familiar with the concept of burden of proof. It's up to those making the claim (especially an extraordinary one that appears to contradict natural law) to show that an event actually happened. Unless you are admitting that you will believe any story wherein it is written that it was observed by hundreds of people.
     

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