Kingfisher

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Everything posted by Kingfisher

  1. Aren't all theistic religions nationalistic? They all draw a line between their tribe and others. Atheists and universalists even do this. They don't have mundane borders, but they erect walls between them nonetheless. Thanks for your feedback. I wanted to consider your words carefully before I replied directly. Much of human communication is non-verbal, for which the internet (and text in general) is poorly suited to transmit, yet it also offers us the advantage of conversations which may take place in a more timeless fashion. Whether the gain of this benefit is sufficie
  2. Thanks for not taking offense where none was intended. It's very strange being told that my interpretation of my own words is incorrect. I don't think it's unreasonable to state that this particular conflict has dominated the global stage for the last century (and perhaps a great deal longer than that). It's quite obvious that there are many shades of gray, however from where I stand the core of that struggle seems to revolve around faith/faithlessness, and the whole world is fractured as folks lean to varying degrees in one direction or the other, with increasing polarization toward the extre
  3. I wasn't attempting to conflate them. I was attempting to distill the two philosophies down to their essence in order to compare and contrast the essential aspects, and applying that to a similar (not identical) relationship I've been observing among the participants in this forum in order to draw focus away from personal attacks and illuminate a much wider conflict which exists in global society. (Secondarily, to gently steer the discussion back toward the topic at hand, that being apologetics.) You can call my input BS if you disagree, however the "dirty and shameful" accusation was a biased
  4. I'm afraid you've misunderstood both my argument and intent. I've never been hostile towards atheists, in this forum or elsewhere, and I've never presumed to assign particular beliefs to an individual based on how they choose to identify themselves. If you wish to confront my logic or condemn my motives, I'd appreciate it if you didn't talk about me as if I'm not here.
  5. I think Republicans are dumbing it down because most voters aren't philosophers, but they sense their entire understanding of reality coming under attack and the message resonates with them. A similar campaign can be seen coming from Democrats, who have taken a sharp left turn in recent years. No war is waged by only one participant. I'm still painting the conflict with a pretty wide brush myself. There are, of course, many variations across society, but I think it strikes to the heart of the matter when we examine the big picture. There is a particularly militant strain of atheism, born of so
  6. Are you suggesting that there isn't an ideological war between theistic realism and dialectical materialism? It seems to me that this philosophical divide is the primary engine of discontent in contemporary society in general, and this thread in particular. I'm not saying that the intellectual conflict is a bad thing, if y'all want to keep metaphysically punching each other in the face that's your own business, I'm just making an observation. I've known most of you for a long time and I hate to see my friends tearing this sanctuary apart like wild beasts, but if nothing else this conversation
  7. Definitions can change according to context, both literary and cultural. An interpreter who is "wrong" may simply be looking at things from a different point of view. For example, in a strict linear sense it would be wrong to associate the contemporary vulgar definition of "Sin" with the ancient Mesopotamian/Arabian lunar deity of the same appellation (represented by a bull, or an old man with a flowing beard - the father of the sun - He who presides over the court of death and provides abundance to mankind, whose name in Old Babylonian literally translates to "underworld of divine bitterness"
  8. That's a good question. It depends on your definition of the term. I've never personally claimed to be persecuted as a Christian, but I've witnessed some who have died for their faith. I won't get into the gory details except to say that the world is a very troubled place. There are many people who will not tolerate the existence of any beliefs but their own. That has caused me a great deal of suffering. “See, I lay a stone in Zion, a chosen and precious cornerstone, and the one who trusts in him will never be put to shame.”
  9. My name, roughly translated from the tongue of my ancestors, means "shepherd king". How does that old saw go... "God never gives you anything more than you can handle, I just wish He didn't trust me so much." Welcome home, Brother. I look forward to seeing things from your point of view. Every seat is a hot one around here, ain't it? ⚸ 𒀭 ☸
  10. "In any case, you can't have effective allegory in times when people are swept this way and that by momentary convictions, because everyone will read it differently. You can't indicate moral values when morality changes with what is being done, because there is no accepted basis of judgment. And you cannot show the operation of grace when grace is cut off from nature or when the very possibility of grace is denied, because no one will have the least idea of what you are about." - Flannery O'Connor
  11. Thinking Visually About Higher Dimensions
  12. Even if I presume the most common usage of language, I haven't done any of the measurements myself. I have faith that the Earth is "spherical" (although viewed in higher dimensions I'd call it something else, and agree that it was flat in two) because I have confidence in the methodology. Other minds with empirical evidence might know, but based on the subjective standard of consensus we've arbitrarily just agreed upon, I don't. My intuitive sense tells me that dogs know things, but I've yet to make any gnostic observations about the geometry of the Earth. It seems kinda silly to describe the
  13. Aye, I could say I know it's an oblate spheroid, it all depends on your point of view. That's the problem - it depends on the definition of knowledge. I assume epistemological reflection was the point of this exercise, but I didn't pose the question and I don't want to assume the definition, ergo I don't know if I know the answer (or even can, if we're talking about intellectual purity). Could be false, could be true. I don't know. I have no frame of reference. I could have just asked, or supplied my own, but I know this ain't the kiddie pool so I figure as long as I'm jumping in I might as we
  14. Are you calling my wife a whore? 🖖 "The wild beasts of the desert shall also meet with the wild beasts of the island, and the satyr shall cry to his fellow; the screech owl also shall rest there, and find for herself a place of rest. There shall the great owl make her nest, and lay, and hatch, and gather under her shadow: there shall the vultures also be gathered, every one with her mate." - Isaiah 34:14-15 [KJV]
  15. If you choose not to decide you still have made a choice.
  16. I recall one summer morning while visiting close friends, I rose early and walked into the bamboo garden to watch the sunrise and feed the mosquitoes for a couple hours. Not ascetically, but gladly and compassionately. Loving life on its own terms was a very enlightening experience. If asked now about the Nature of God my scripture would be a traditional creative verse: ... up high in the saddle I belong ... ... wild where the horse and the cattle'll roam ... ... when the skies and the prairie are steeped in the glowan ... ... and the wind blows us all along ... like
  17. Books are a relatively new method of spreading the gospel, but some of those hearthfire stories go back a million years. Or in the old Hebrew idiom, "forty days and nights". Can you imagine that? The collected wisdom of mankind's journey through the wilderness over those vast aeons, all condensed into such a frail volume as the Bible. We must have been really spooked by that early Holocene flooding to be so determined to establish a more permanent record. How easily all trace of who are, and who were, can be erased from the world... but I digress. I don't reckon you could fit everything of val
  18. It's a frequent bugbear that appears in every corner of human society - too many chiefs and not enough Indians.
  19. I would profess not to care about such ephemeral things, but apparently the rank I've got here is Cherished Friend and I must confess I rather like that one. I've been called worse. I was thinking about joining the nihilists, but I didn't see the point.
  20. Farewell, my friend. It was an honor, and my deep pleasure, to have shared this road with you. "It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived." - Gen. George S. Patton, Jr.
  21. My "church" is Nature. The environments of civilization and human society are merely reflections of concepts we hold in our minds. We manifest those beliefs upon our surroundings and declare them to be reality, and they in turn influence our perception and further bind us to the illusions we have created. As I sit and play my flutes I learn to harmonize with the natural world and lose the desire to impose my will upon it. This sort of meditation can be accomplished anywhere, I just find it simpler and more efficient to distance myself from the the temporal distractions in which we tend to plac