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Old 07-29-2013, 10:18 PM   #1
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THE most trusted news source IN america part TWO

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Originally Posted by AEON
Hey Jive,

The "truth" of the New Testament comes from a light that not everyone sees - for one reason or another.

I'm sure you've read you fair share of Bible over the years - but I was hoping you could indulge me to read the Gospel of John just as if you were reading a story (it would only take one night). If you can - please write down some adjectives that would describe Jesus as you read his words and follow him around Israel. I'm not trying to convert you - I have no power to do such a thing - I am curious what you would think about Jesus after read that Gospel.

I promise to read any other similar amount of pages on any topic (that is wife and family safe) that you want me to.
I will take you up on this, but on another night.
I'm not sure my opinion on Jesus will change (as my current opinion on Jesus is that, as he has been presented to us, he's a pretty solid dude). But that doesn't speak to the historical fact or provenance of the bible or the stories within.

As far as the light within, that sort of reasoning holds little weight with me; it's unfalsifiable and circular... but I'm sure that's no surprise to you
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Old 07-29-2013, 10:41 PM   #2
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I will take you up on this, but on another night.
I'm not sure my opinion on Jesus will change (as my current opinion on Jesus is that, as he has been presented to us, he's a pretty solid dude). But that doesn't speak to the historical fact or provenance of the bible or the stories within.

As far as the light within, that sort of reasoning holds little weight with me; it's unfalsifiable and circular... but I'm sure that's no surprise to you
I do hope you do read it. And selfishly, I hope you give me something to read.

Yes, I know the the logic is circular - if it is logical at all. For me - logic only took me so far, well pretty far.... As in String Theory - some things only make sense after something, even a theory, fills the void.
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Old 07-30-2013, 08:00 PM   #3
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Oh, I ended up reading it last night, Aeon.
My opinion on Jesus really didn't change; those verses are well known, so I had read nearly all of it before, though admittedly in fragments (curious why you had me read that one instead of something more 'obscure'). He's perhaps a little more curt than I tend to remember, if I'm being perfectly honest. Stoic. errr a bit of a messiah complex But overall a thoughtful, well intentioned man
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Old 07-30-2013, 10:52 PM   #4
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Oh, I ended up reading it last night, Aeon.
My opinion on Jesus really didn't change; those verses are well known, so I had read nearly all of it before, though admittedly in fragments (curious why you had me read that one instead of something more 'obscure'). He's perhaps a little more curt than I tend to remember, if I'm being perfectly honest. Stoic. errr a bit of a messiah complex But overall a thoughtful, well intentioned man

I just wanted to see if the word "zealot" came to mind when you read it.

Thank you so much for taking the time. I chose John because 1) I wanted you to read about Jesus and his hear his words in one "package" - meaning not cut and paste and it is still my favorite of the four gospels and 2) he does make Messiah claims (whether you accept that of course is up to you - but many seem to deny he ever claimed to be the Messiah and he most certainly did).

Galatians is a good short read and perhaps a bit more obscure if you're ever feeling crazy...

Do you have a blog or article you want me to read? That was our deal! Don't cheat me!
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Old 07-30-2013, 11:05 PM   #5
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Zealot definitely doesn't come to mind. Not sure it applies to someone apparently so passive.

Like I say though, I think they're nice, sometimes beautiful, stories. Emphasis on the last bit (not meant as a dig)

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Do you have a blog or article you want me to read? That was our deal! Don't cheat me!
I've been thinking about this!
I'm not sure what yet though. Most of the things I read are full length books - at least the kind of stuff that sticks with me - so that's not fair per the deal. You know what though? I'm not sure where you stand on a lot of things yet. Evolution? The beginning of the Universe? There's a great book (and hour long lecture online) by Lawrence Krauss outlining how it's well within the laws of physics - expected even - for the Universe to come into being from nothing at all.... You may have already seen it.
Or maybe just a short essay by Hitchens or Harris about religion in general? What are you up for?

Oh, the best thing I read last year... and again, it's a little long as far as the deal goes (still only 100 pages).... was Mortality by Christopher Hitchens. Just a collection of his essays from the time of his diagnosis with cancer to his death. I had a good friend die of cancer around this time last year and read the book shortly afterward. It really struck a chord with me. If you're curious about the sort of existential thoughts from a non believer, and in particular one facing a quickly approaching death, I couldn't recommend it more.
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Old 07-30-2013, 11:47 PM   #7
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Zealot definitely doesn't come to mind. Not sure it applies to someone apparently so passive.

Like I say though, I think they're nice, sometimes beautiful, stories. Emphasis on the last bit (not meant as a dig)



I've been thinking about this!
I'm not sure what yet though. Most of the things I read are full length books - at least the kind of stuff that sticks with me - so that's not fair per the deal. You know what though? I'm not sure where you stand on a lot of things yet. Evolution? The beginning of the Universe? There's a great book (and hour long lecture online) by Lawrence Krauss outlining how it's well within the laws of physics - expected even - for the Universe to come into being from nothing at all.... You may have already seen it.
Or maybe just a short essay by Hitchens or Harris about religion in general? What are you up for?

Oh, the best thing I read last year... and again, it's a little long as far as the deal goes (still only 100 pages).... was Mortality by Christopher Hitchens. Just a collection of his essays from the time of his diagnosis with cancer to his death. I had a good friend die of cancer around this time last year and read the book shortly afterward. It really struck a chord with me. If you're curious about the sort of existential thoughts from a non believer, and in particular one facing a quickly approaching death, I couldn't recommend it more.
I LOVE Mr. Hitchens! I obviously don't agree with him on Christianity and God - but he is one my favorite debaters of all time.

Regarding evolution and Astro-physics - since I do not take Genesis literally I see no contradiction as I am always fascinated by everything from String Theory to Dark Matter/Energy.

I will find Mortality and read it! Thanks!
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Old 07-31-2013, 12:09 AM   #8
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I LOVE Mr. Hitchens! I obviously don't agree with him on Christianity and God - but he is one my favorite debaters of all time.

Regarding evolution and Astro-physics - since I do not take Genesis literally I see no contradiction as I am always fascinated by everything from String Theory to Dark Matter/Energy.

I will find Mortality and read it! Thanks!
I kinda figured that about you re evolution and astrophysics. Pleasantly surprised to hear you like Hitchens. I think you'll find Mortality quite interesting. I'd love to hear your thoughts if you get around to it

I'll try to think of something a little more concise in the mean time.

thanks for posting the vid, Cobbo!

Jealous you're going to see him talk. I keep seeing him tweeting from Australia. The guy must go there every other week
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Old 07-31-2013, 12:10 AM   #9
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I'm seeing Krauss in a couple of weeks at this event, really looking forward to it - Is it reasonable to believe there is a God? | Life, the Universe and Nothing
Sounds like a fascinating discussion. Krauss wrote the Physics of Star Trek, so I will automatically give him a pass...
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Old 07-31-2013, 12:21 AM   #10
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Oh no, Cobbler. William Lane Craig is a Twat
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Old 07-31-2013, 12:55 AM   #11
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I think he was here promoting a book or something, he was on some talk shows, but yeah he's been here a while. Maybe he's here on a project, or lives here

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Oh no, Cobbler. William Lane Craig is a Twat
I'll be the judge of that

(judging by the bios I'll be siding with Krauss I reckon but really interested to hear another perspective, don't know Craig)
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Old 07-31-2013, 10:34 AM   #12
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I think Craig is a quality debater. He is not at the level of Hitchens (who is really?) and he comes across sort of cold and redundant, but he does make some solid arguments even if you have to make assumptions on his premises.

When it comes to these sorts of debates, I try my best to separate my personal beliefs (yes, I'm a Christian and yes I would like to see that slam dunk comment) and simply enjoy the art of debate.

Over the years - since I know very few people are actually persuading one way or another in these discussions - I simply enjoy them as great debates. That's why I really learned to appreciate Hitchens. (And he will take on anyone).

EDIT: BTW - Love the "hitch-slap" highlights on YouTube
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Old 07-31-2013, 11:11 AM   #13
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I'm about 1/3 of the way through. So far, he's fairly engaging.

One small point - he lumps all religions together a little too easily. It seems he is attacking the more literalist/fundamentalist cosmological view - while there a quite a few traditions that don't have that mindset. Scientists are not the only ones that like the word Mystery - as it is peppered throughout the New Testament.

As a Christian, when I come across great scientific breakthroughs or fascinating theories - I see these (as someone once said) as signposts on a road through a foggy night, I know they're leading into a certain direction, but I can't see the destination. That is Mystery. And the excitement is in the driving - the moving forward - of expanding our knowledge and understanding of our universe (or multiverse perhaps).

As a Christian I do not need, nor do I think I can ever attain - ALL ANSWERS. So, Dr. Krauss is wrong about this Christian at least. But I understand that for the sake of discussion he needs to go after the most visible stereotype of Christianity - the science hating Fundamentalist.

What I do know - on a subjective, "un-provable" level is that Jesus Christ is the Messiah, the Son of God. I had reasons that brought me to His door (mostly Platonic philosophy), but it was only by faith that I entered it.

And I think that if anything else - Quantum Physics now teaches us is that just about ANYTHING is possible, that our old way of understanding reality no longer applies - and because of this, a Virgin Birth and Miracles fall within this circle of possibility.

Anyway - I'll try to finish the rest of the video know - he is an engaging speaker.
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Old 07-31-2013, 11:24 AM   #14
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I think Craig is a quality debater. He is not at the level of Hitchens (who is really?) and he comes across sort of cold and redundant, but he does make some solid arguments even if you have to make assumptions on his premises.
All the arrogance of Hitchens, none of the charm or intellect. He only argues with assumptions, false conclusions, and a clear misunderstanding of the science he's trying to debate. It's word play and little else.

I also appreciate the debates for debate's sake (and yes, the Hitchslap compilations are glorious), but there are better debaters on the religious side than Craig
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Old 07-31-2013, 11:34 AM   #15
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I'm about 1/3 of the way through. So far, he's fairly engaging.

One small point - he lumps all religions together a little too easily. It seems he is attacking the more literalist/fundamentalist cosmological view - while there a quite a few traditions that don't have that mindset. Scientists are not the only ones that like the word Mystery - as it is peppered throughout the New Testament.

As a Christian, when I come across great scientific breakthroughs or fascinating theories - I see these (as someone once said) as signposts on a road through a foggy night, I know they're leading into a certain direction, but I can't see the destination. That is Mystery. And the excitement is in the driving - the moving forward - of expanding our knowledge and understanding of our universe (or multiverse perhaps).

As a Christian I do not need, nor do I think I can ever attain - ALL ANSWERS. So, Dr. Krauss is wrong about this Christian at least. But I understand that for the sake of discussion he needs to go after the most visible stereotype of Christianity - the science hating Fundamentalist.
But the very core of his argument is that to place a god at the beginning of the universe is unneeded and overcomplicated. In that sense, lumping all Christians - and all religious people in general - together is just.

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And I think that if anything else - Quantum Physics now teaches us is that just about ANYTHING is possible, that our old way of understanding reality no longer applies - and because of this, a Virgin Birth and Miracles fall within this circle of possibility.
This is a bit of a Deepak Chopra style interpretation of Quantum Physics. I don't think you'll find any theoretical physicist who will agree with you. The strangeness of the quantum world doesn't leave the door open for virgin births or miracles.

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on the video though!
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