Was life on Earth created by an evil designer?

Discussion in 'Religion' started by pluto2, Jul 16, 2016.

  1. mtf Banned Banned

    Then you don't seem to understand how religion works.

    Of course.

    No, and I don't have to. I just understand how religious appeals to authority work.

    You were the one giving the information that you have spent so and so many years in the Catholic religion and suggested this qualifies you.
    I am pointing out that there's one thing you didn't learn there, and this is how religious appeals to authority work. I have found out that about you even before you offered any further information about your background.

    No. You just don't understand how religious appeals to authority work.

    Carefully look at the first reply in this thread, by CC:
    Terms have still not been fully defined, hence the discussion is still in its beginning phase.

    Pffft. No. I've been in these discussions for a while, I know how they go.

    And you are forgetting some crucial points. See CC's post above.

    And let me empahsize this again:

    Of course. That's the whole point I'm making. It's also how religions have usually been practiced, for centuries, for millennia even.
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  3. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    It is not about religion, it is about civil discourse. Any argument is judged on its merit alone, not on who says it. (Thus, also, no appeal to authority).

    All right. You don't feel the topic is discussible.
  4. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  5. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    So after all that, mtf is discussing something he doesn't think can be discussed??
    It's a ludicrous assertion, of course: can discuss any religious claim one wishes - it is just a matter of with which rule-book you use to arrive at conclusions. And of course, having that rule-book means that you can also examine the view from inside.

    On a side note, I always wondered why the bible and Christian religions keep using the metaphor of the shepherd and his flock of sheep. But if you accept that Catholics, for example, are supposed to unquestionably believe whatever their priest says, then they can indeed be viewed as sheep, with no grounds for thinking for themselves on such matters.

    Personally I don't think a catholic does need to unquestionably believe their priest. Priests are merely guides to understanding, not the arbiters of thought. The only person in the catholic faith who I think should be believed unquestionably by other Catholics is the Pope, and only then when invoking papal infallibility.
    The rest of the time both he and priests are simply men with a certain education, and one need no more believe them than any other similarly educated person, and even then their education/position only gives you an initial guide to any actual authority they may have, and only in certain areas.
    And given what some priests tell their congregation, the wide variation in quality and message of what they espouse, it would surprise me that, if judged on the need to unquestionably believe your priest, there are any "true" Catholics left. And so what good then is a requirement that excludes everyone from the club?
  6. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  7. mtf Banned Banned

    Then you can't discuss religion, at least not in line with the requirements of religion.
    The religious discourse is not purported to be a civil discourse; it's a discourse of authority and obedience.
    Religious claims, especially in theistic religions, are purported to be divine revelation. They are not intended to be understood in some philosophical sense. They are intended to be believed, wholesale, with no critical thought applied.

    Of course I don't. And I am surprised how anyone thinks it can be. Hence the discussion.

    I am discussing why it cannot be discussed.

    And yet it is each priest who, per Catholic doctrine, has the power (invested in him) to forgive sins. Priests are the arbiters of much more than just thought -- they are the arbiters of who gets to go to heaven and who to hell. Per Catholic doctrine, that is.

    The Catholics don't seem to have much a problem with it. Church doctrine is revealed from a divine source, it is not somehow derived from actual beliefs or behavior of people who claim to be Catholic.
    This is the aspect that I am more interested in, but it looks like it's not possible to discuss it here.
  8. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    And yet the discussion goes on. If you honestly don't think such can be discussed, why do you wish to side-track threads that are discussing them by insisting that they can not be discussed? Why not simply let people do what they're doing, even if you don't think they are doing it?
    While they have the power to forgive sins they are not the arbiter of who enters heaven. That rests solely with God. Catholic doctrine teaches that those die with remaining venial sins - or even sins that have been absolved (even if absolved by God himself) for which the soul has not been cleansed through sufficient suffering - enter purgatory.
    This while a priest might fast-track the absolution of non-original sins, one does not need to be forgiven by a priest to do so, although they might spend longer in purgatory as a result. This is why prayers are offered for the deceased, that their time is shortened in purgatory.
    Well, according to you anyone who does have a problem with it (and thus does not unquestionably believe) is not a true Catholic. Yours appears to simply be a no-true-Scotsman argument.
    That some Catholics do believe as you would require of them does not mean that all Catholics have to. Some priests even encourage that in the matter of religion the person thinks for themselves, and the priest will happily advise would they have questions
    This is not the thread for it, sure. If you want to discuss it I suggest you start a specific thread for it.

    Bear in mind also that this thread is not exclusively about Catholics but generally about God. Catholics don't have proprietary rights over what people consider God to be.

    Secondly, even the Catholic Church went through a period in its past when the current doctrine was established not only from the various written sources available but from the actual beliefs and behaviours of those who, at the time, claimed to be Catholic. Those people's individual beliefs and behaviours would have informed their interpretation of the written documents, and their subsequent arguments, that ultimately led to the doctrine of the modern Catholic Church.
    Even now the current pope is looking to examine those old documents to see how they can accommodate women being ordained as deacons, which, if successful, would be a change in doctrine (that currently prevents it) based on "beliefs and behaviours of people who claim to be Catholic".
  9. mtf Banned Banned

    I think metaissues are every bit part of a topic and as relevant to as the topic itself.

    Sure, but after purgatory, it goes straight to heaven. I didn't want to go into too many details, otherwise the post would be too long.

    Uh. No.
    See for a discussion about the relativity of the NTS charge: http://www.sciforums.com/threads/what-is-a-real-christian.156759/page-9#post-3394651

    Of course they do.

    Of course, this is the modern trend. But it's not consistent with Catholic doctrine.
    And no, the priests do most certainly NOT "happily advise would they have questions." I know, I was there!!

    Thanks, but I probably won't, as I probably won't stay here much longer.

    Sure. The point is that any idea of God that is not held by an actual theistic religion, is at best, an individual idiosyncratic invention that cannot be distinguished from any other fantasy. We currently working with Catholicism, because this is what the participants here seem to be most familiar with. We could also take a Hindu idea of God etc.

    Sure, in the big-picture, long-term view, retrospectively this is sometimes so. But it's not the case for an actual, ordinary Catholic or prospective Catholic.
    Even some of the people who were later beatified, were not considered proper Catholics at the time when they were alive. Just think of all those that Catholics themselves have tortured or killed, and who only much later have been beatified (e.g. Joan of Arc, St. John of the Cross). St. John of the Cross is now a relatively important figure in the CC, but when he was alive, his fellow Catholics tortured and persecuted him.

    Catholic doctrine is, by definition, unchageable. It is possible to add to it, to extend it, in line with the previous tenets, but it cannot be changed in the sense that what was once forbidden could later be allowed.
  10. mtf Banned Banned

    This isn't to be taken lightly. Part of the madness in Protestantism is that each individual themselves tries to think of themselves as having the same authority in matters of faith as the Catholic pope. But this is epistemologically untenable.
    Further, unless we take for granted the the religious doctrine is divinely revealed and that the priest are fully empowered representatives of God on earth -- the whole edifice of religion crumbles, it loses its credibility.
  11. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

    Who or what do you envision?

    So the creator is a human being?

    That's not true.
    What other statements do you have?

    Show that the earth is evil.

    The Un-created?

  12. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Not when they swamp the actual question at hand such that it becomes lost. That's why I suggest moving such issues to another thread.
    There's no guarantee of reaching heaven. As said, that is up to God, the ultimate arbiter.
    Merely saying that it is not an NTS does not mean that it is not. If you can show me where in the doctrine it says that Catholics are to unquestionably believe whatever their priest says, then perhaps you might have a case, but at the moment, based on your mere say-so, you seem to be committing an NTS fallacy, and the onus is on you to show that it is not (beyond merely saying that it isn't).
    And I can assure you that they don't.
    You were where? Where my priest told me that exact thing? Where the ordained teachers at my school said as much to me in their capacity as priests? Maybe you were at the same school

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    Okay - but please don't trample the flowers while you're here.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    And many would find even those ideas of God held by some of the mainstream religions to be indistinguishable from fantasy. The broader the religion's notion of God the more acceptable it might become, though.
    "ordinary Catholic"... are you now talking about the true Scotsmen or the millions that merely claim to be "ordinary Catholics"?

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    Sure, there is a notion of what Catholicism is and requires, otherwise it would be simply a subjective personal religion with just general principles binding them together. But nowhere I am aware of does it require unquestionable belief in what one's priest says. I may be wrong; experience suggests not (unless none of the priests I have conversed with are to be deemed true Catholics) but I would welcome being shown to be wrong.
    So they weren't considered proper Catholics at the time. Given that you are claiming that Catholicism has a strict doctrine that can be used to identify true Catholics from false ones, I'm not quite sure of your point. Care to elaborate?
    By adding to it one can change it (by adding exceptions, for example), or they can do so simply by "reinterpreting" the doctrine in light of modern times. As the Pontiff recently said: "Christian doctrine is not a closed system incapable of generating questions, doubts, interrogatives -- but is alive, knows being unsettled, enlivened.... It has a face that is not rigid, it has a body that moves and grows, it has a soft flesh: it is called Jesus Christ." Where there is a will there is a way, as it is oft said.
  13. mtf Banned Banned

    It depends on who is discussing it, what knowledge those people have. I'm sure that if this question would be addressed, for example, solely by Yazata, CC, and myself, this thread would look vastly different, while still being about the same question.

    Of course the doctrine doesn't say so directly. But it can be inferred from a number of other claims in the CCC:

    150 Faith is first of all a personal adherence of man to God. At the same time, and inseparably, it is a free assent to the whole truth that God has revealed. As personal adherence to God and assent to his truth, Christian faith differs from our faith in any human person. It is right and just to entrust oneself wholly to God and to believe absolutely what he says. It would be futile and false to place such faith in a creature.17

    To believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God

    151 For a Christian, believing in God cannot be separated from believing in the One he sent, his "beloved Son", in whom the Father is "well pleased"; God tells us to listen to him.18 The Lord himself said to his disciples: "Believe in God, believe also in me."19 We can believe in Jesus Christ because he is himself God, the Word made flesh: "No one has ever seen God; the only Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he has made him known."20 Because he "has seen the Father", Jesus Christ is the only one who knows him and can reveal him.21

    To believe in the Holy Spirit

    152 One cannot believe in Jesus Christ without sharing in his Spirit. It is the Holy Spirit who reveals to men who Jesus is. For "no one can say "Jesus is Lord", except by the Holy Spirit",22 who "searches everything, even the depths of God. . No one comprehends the thoughts of God, except the Spirit of God."23 Only God knows God completely: we believe in the Holy Spirit because he is God.

  14. mtf Banned Banned

    144 To obey (from the Latin ob-audire, to "hear or listen to") in faith is to submit freely to the word that has been heard, because its truth is guaranteed by God, who is Truth itself. Abraham is the model of such obedience offered us by Sacred Scripture. the Virgin Mary is its most perfect embodiment.


    Article 9

    748 "Christ is the light of humanity; and it is, accordingly, the heart-felt desire of this sacred Council, being gathered together in the Holy Spirit, that, by proclaiming his Gospel to every creature, it may bring to all men that light of Christ which shines out visibly from the Church."135 These words open the Second Vatican Council's Dogmatic Constitution on the Church. By choosing this starting point, the Council demonstrates that the article of faith about the Church depends entirely on the articles concerning Christ Jesus. the Church has no other light than Christ's; according to a favorite image of the Church Fathers, the Church is like the moon, all its light reflected from the sun.

    749 The article concerning the Church also depends entirely on the article about the Holy Spirit, which immediately precedes it. "Indeed, having shown that the Spirit is the source and giver of all holiness, we now confess that it is he who has endowed the Church with holiness."136 The Church is, in a phrase used by the Fathers, the place "where the Spirit flourishes."137

    750 To believe that the Church is "holy" and "catholic," and that she is "one" and "apostolic" (as the Nicene Creed adds), is inseparable from belief in God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. In the Apostles' Creed we profess "one Holy Church" (Credo . . . Ecclesiam), and not to believe in the Church, so as not to confuse God with his works and to attribute clearly to God's goodness all the gifts he has bestowed on his Church.138


    Paragraph 1. THE CHURCH IN GOD'S PLAN

    1581 This sacrament configures the recipient to Christ by a special grace of the Holy Spirit, so that he may serve as Christ's instrument for his Church. By ordination one is enabled to act as a representative of Christ, Head of the Church, in his triple office of priest, prophet, and king.

    1552 The ministerial priesthood has the task not only of representing Christ - Head of the Church - before the assembly of the faithful, but also of acting in the name of the whole Church when presenting to God the prayer of the Church, and above all when offering the Eucharistic sacrifice.31

    1553 "In the name of the whole Church" does not mean that priests are the delegates of the community. The prayer and offering of the Church are inseparable from the prayer and offering of Christ, her head; it is always the case that Christ worships in and through his Church. The whole Church, the Body of Christ, prays and offers herself "through him, with him, in him," in the unity of the Holy Spirit, to God the Father. The whole Body, caput et membra, prays and offers itself, and therefore those who in the Body are especially his ministers are called ministers not only of Christ, but also of the Church. It is because the ministerial priesthood represents Christ that it can represent the Church.


    Now summarize all these things, and you get: The Catholic Church and its priests are Christ's (God's) fully empowered representatives on earth; we must obey God, which, in earthly terms means, we must obey the Church and its priests.

    Oh they do. It's just that they can get by without actually complying with the doctrine. Catholics are notorious for having a poor grasp of Catholic doctrine -- this is no secret, they themselves often complain about the low level of doctrinal knowledge among Catholics.

    I had questions. No Catholic priest nor any other Catholic wants to discuss them with me.
    You said priests are happy to answer questions -- and my experience is that they aren't.

    In the context of that sentence, I was referring to the ordinary, lowly person, the ordinary men in the pews -- as opposed to the hotshots and the VIP's that are higher up in the formal or informal hierarchy within the CC.
    The latter are allowed much more freedom than the former.
    For example, if I were to attempt to join the CC, I would be at the bottom of the hierarchy, with no rights to any crticial thinking, I would not be allowed to actually ask any questions (or the Catholics might tolerate them, but consider me rude and uncivilized for doing so). I know this because I've tried it.

    We can infer that. Both from the things the CCC says, as well as from the negative reactions people tend to get when they don't comply with the priest.

    Sure, there are some modernist tenedencies within the CC. In my experience, though, those modernists soon show their teeth.

    See above about hotshots and VIP's (high church officials, saints) and ordinary people with no ecclesiastic title to their name.

    Of course they say that. What exactly that means, is another matter.
    Unless you're some kind of VIP within the CC, you have to keep quiet, or you'll get kicked out.
  15. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    We're not having a religious discourse, we're having a logical one. It just happens to be about religious teachings.

    The OP's question is not in the context of a believer (not necessarily anyway). The OP may not have to believe in order to get a satisfactory answer, just one that's plausible.

    Again, a Star Trek watcher might require at least a plausible form of propulsion to not dismiss the show outright as silly. Yet, even in accepting this, the watcher does not have to believe Star Trek.
    (It's not the best analogy because Star Trek really is fictional - something, as you pointed out - we cannot assert about God.)

    It really loops all the way around to what I started with: suspension of disbelief. The OP (and you, and I) can suspend our personal beliefs (whether pro or con) to discuss some of the logic of old school God.
  16. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    IMO, the expression; "I believe in Christ is as meaningless as saying I believe in Darwin.

    The correct expression should be I believe in Christian Philosophy (Christianity), just as we say I believe in Darwinian Evolution (Darwinism). The individuals themselves are not important, it is the work they produced that remains relevant.

    I am a Bohmian, in spite of the allegations leveled at Bohm's personal life, which I would not believe in or accept. But whatever else he may have been personally, he was a brilliant theoretical physicist. Belief does not depend on the person, but in his/her work product.
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2016
  17. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    True, though I don't see the relevance to this thread. It is afterall about The Big G.
  18. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    That's true. but as long as Christ is equivocated with God (the son of God) my argument can be applied to "I believe in God".

    In context, it's not God which should be object of worship (God is an implacable, emotionless creative process), it's the work (the Universe) that should be worshipped. Then all could agree on the majesty of the Universe.
  19. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    Hm. Would that constitute Idol Worship?

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

  20. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    I would call it Naturalism, the recognition that, as humans we are able to appreciate our very existence and have the responsibility to act within the natural limits of our environment. IMO, this addresses the RW problems we face and which demand control over our *movement in the direction of greatest satisfaction" which so far has not been very successful as evident in the current state of the earth's ecosphere.
    There is no absolution to be found in nature, therefore the promise of absolution by confession (to a representative of God) of individual sins is not pertinent to natural functions, but just another expression of human ego.
  21. mtf Banned Banned

    Just like I don't do LSD (despite your avatar inviting me to do so), I sometimes don't suspend disbelief. For good reasons.
    It's possible to be so open-minded that your brain falls out.
  22. Bowser Namaste Valued Senior Member

    Don't know about you, but I'm happy being alive. I've come to the conclusion that imperfection is perfection.

    If we knew that, then we would be gods ourselves.
  23. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    When acting in their remit as representative, yes. But that still requires one to discern when such occurs. Or would you suggest a catholic jump off a cliff simply because their priest tells them to? They key is to believe in God and in the Church, not necessarily and unquestionably in the vassals that they work through.
    "150: Faith is first of all a personal adherence of man to God. At the same time, and inseparably, it is a free assent to the whole truth that God has revealed. As personal adherence to God and assent to his truth, Christian Faith differs from our faith in any human person. It is right and just to entrust oneself wholly to God and to believe absolutely what he says. it would be futile and false to place such faith in a creature."
    Priests, last time I looked, were considered among human people?
    As said, doctrine is one thing but interpretation of said doctrine is another.
    [qupte]Oh they do. It's just that they can get by without actually complying with the doctrine. Catholics are notorious for having a poor grasp of Catholic doctrine -- this is no secret, they themselves often complain about the low level of doctrinal knowledge among Catholics.[/quote]No true Catholic, eh.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    But I can assure you that they do not. Maybe in your experience they do but in mine they do not.
    I would suggest you not tar the entire membership with the same brush. As you said to DaveC: "You trust me enough to give me some of your time and attention. The question is whether you can trust that I might know more about the topic at hand than you."

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    In my experience you get a variety of priests from those who offer no help, to those that simply lecture, to those that fully engage with you and seek to lead you to their path, no matter how futile they think their help might be.
    If you don't mind me asking, which country are you in?
    The former is open to interpretation, and the latter can be a matter of peer pressure and/or politics. Your inference may not hold for everyone.
    While I don't doubt your experiences, they are alien to me and not part of the CC that I know.

Share This Page