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Everything posted by cuchulain

  1. I try to blend religious belief and science, as in my own personal opinion, intuition is as valid as science in many cases. I see them both as one side of the coin, and so part of each other, to an extent. Science explains as much of the world as it can, but sometimes there are gaps that can be filled in by belief. Of course, speaking for myself, I have no problem changing my beliefs when science shows I am wrong. I think that is critical. So, using intuition to decide what the above messages mean might be perfectly acceptable for Dan, don't you think Mererdog? If he uses intuition, which I believe Christianity refers to as the holy spirit, then his interpretation of the messages is correct for him at least. For me? Well, that doesn't really matter, because every persons intuition is unique to that person, in my opinion.
  2. Now that is interesting, Pastor Dave, I never really thought that Christianity had much use for the dream aspect, thank you for sharing.
  3. In my particular brand of Druidism, I find that I place a little bit of faith in some of my dreams. So I got to wondering, again, what other faiths believe dreams might be sacred, or significant in any way? Anyone willing to share?
  4. I can agree with Dan on that one. Not every particular sentence is going to be applicable to every other particular sentence.
  5. yep, I think the communicator didn't understand that I was debating his views. He kept explaining his views as if I didn't understand what they were, and I kept refuting them, but despite the refutation, he just tried to explain them in a different way so that I would agree. I can understand how that may have been frustrating, but doing the same thing over and over expecting different results is the definition of insanity, I believe. I just don't agree with Brother Kaman's particular view of reality, and was explaining such. Maybe neither of us communicated well, but I think in the end we both easily agree to disagree about this particular subject, with no hard feelings.
  6. I appreciate your discussing your views with me Brother Kaman, and as it seems as though you are getting frustrated with me, I will relent. I do not agree with you on this subject, but that is perfectly ok friend, as we don't have to agree about everything or anything to have cooperative discussion. I was simply pointing out that reality is not subjective in all cases, it is objective sometimes, as Johnathan said. Thank you for your discussion nonetheless, it has been interesting for me. I apologize if it got aggravating to explain and debate repeatedly.
  7. if you create reality by perceiving reality, then the botulism wouldn't exist until you perceived it, no? Therefore, if nobody perceived it, it wouldn't exist. You could eat it, anticipating that the food is wholesome, and never perceive the botulism, yes? Or are you suggesting that after you eat the food, you would get sick and that is when you perceive it? Because if it is a product of your perception, it doesn't exist until you perceive it, meaning you couldn't get sick from it because it doesn't exist yet. And if it doesn't exist until you perceive it, then you have to perceive it BEFORE you get sick, in order for it to have an affect on you, yes? As you said, if you eat the food and get sick from it, it is already a part of your reality, BEFORE you perceive it, otherwise nobody could suffer the effects, unless they believed the food to be tainted before they ate it, in which case it would be their own fault.
  8. I can understand that Dan, and I wasn't implying that Joseph Smith was a prophet, or correct even. I was appreciate the answer given on the end, but...the new testament is not very compatible and in some cases is contradictory to the old testament, at least in my opinion. I understand you view it as not contradictory, but conceding that point, you realize the God of the old testament isn't very much like the God of the New? How then does this mesh? Brother Kaman, that is the bottom line I have been trying to get to. Reality is independent of the observer, your PERCEIVED reality may be created by your perceptions, but that does not negate the fact that reality will kick you in the butt whether you perceive it or not. Food poisoning for example, is not perceived in any way, shape or form by the consumer, neither does the seller know about it often times, and in some cases neither does the producer. The fact that none of the people involved with the food knows about the food poisoning, does not negate its effects. Perception is irrelevant to the bacteria, which still affect the person eating them, regardless of the fact that nobody knows the bacteria are present.
  9. then not everything in reality is created by our perceptions, yes?
  10. except light, which is a part of reality, yes? apparently an independent part of reality, according to the theory of relativity.
  11. concepts introduced by the theory of relativity: measurements of various quantities are relative to the velocities of the observer(not the actual observer); space and time should be considered together and in relation to each other; the speed of light is nonetheless invariant, the same for all observers. The laws of physics are the same for all observers in uniform motion relative to one another. the speed of light in a vacuum is the same for all observers, regardless of their relative motion or the motion of the light source. That is a summary of course. Really though, there is nothing about reality being relative to the observer, especially when you consider the speed of light being the same regardless of the observers velocity. It is a lot about motion, not reality itself, in my opinion and in the opinion of Wikipedia. Various quantities are relative to the velocity of the observer, not the observer themselves. Reality doesn't change just because someone else thinks it does, in other words. Physical measurements might change, dependent on several factors, including the velocity of the people observing, and so if two people are observing at different speeds, then yes the numbers would change in relativity to their velocities, yes? In other words, if I am running at 5 miles per hour, and you are running at 8 miles per hour, and a bicycle goes by at fifteen miles per hour, I observe in relation to me that it is moving at ten miles per hour, while you observe that in relation to you it is moving at seven miles per hour. Still, regardless of our perceptions, the bicycle is moving at fifteen miles per hour in relation to everything else which we view as immobile.
  12. what if the new material is genuinely inspired, though? And how could a reasonable person tell the difference?
  13. I can understand all of the above responses, and I guess it all boils down in the end to faith, eh? There is very little evidence that Jesus as a person actually existed, beyond the typical 'Many historians agree...', that is. For me that isn't enough, but I can appreciate that it is plenty for other people. Science seems more concrete to me, with its acceptance of change, at least these days, and its basis on experiment and observation. I suppose that is the fundamental difference, in the end, between religion and science. Religion accepts on faith, and science accepts on observation. Hypothesis is, of course, unproven, or it would be called theory. But science takes what it knows from other things that it knows, and builds. Religion seems to say that the world is this way, and leave it at that. Just my views of course.
  14. I can understand belief as a choice completely, especially in Christian circles, where free will is a consideration. In my own personal beliefs, I choose what to follow, what to disallow, and what I think might be hogwash altogether. I would hazard that it is much the same with many other belief systems, if a person follows some particular denomination and disagrees with one of its ideas, they have limited compunctions at best about changing it and forming a new branch. Eventually, such becomes watering down the original, of course, because over the centuries different ideas get mixed in, some get thrown out, and then you have something that doesn't look much like what it started as. I wonder what the disciples of Christ would think of Christianity today, in its many forms, allowing of course that Christ lived and had disciples. I wonder how much the original messages have changed over the centuries. I know there are some, such as Dan, who believe the message remained relatively intact due to divine influence, and I would be silly not to allow them that belief. I just wonder how that jives with the various formats Christianity has taken in the here and now, some of which contradict each other, if not the bible. Two Christian organizations that have conflicting beliefs cannot both be correct, can they?
  15. Then you have the impetus to create differing mythologies, differing methods. Hence, the many branches of Christianity. If it were one perfect message, why would there be so many interpretations? There are new religions popping up all over the place these days. Who is to say that one of those might not do away with some of these basic flaws, as science sees them, and incorporate a little reality into their new religion? And that it might take off, becoming a predominant faith? Doubtful, of course, with the fundamentalists I have encountered, but still one can hope. Kind of reminds me of a family friend. He was a minister, I forget which denomination of Christianity, one that didn't believe in divorce. He performed the wedding for me and my first wife. When I divorced her, he shunned me pretty much. A couple of years ago, he got divorced. Convenience sometimes expedites understanding.
  16. You realize, Dan, that the obligation doesn't exist to disprove religion, right? The whole proving a negative thing? Of course, that being said, I can understand perfectly believing in something without evidence, until evidence comes along to prove otherwise, and since there is no evidence to prove otherwise, I agree, you don't have to change your views whatsoever. However, and knowing you as I have come to on this forum, I think you will grant us the equal right of not having to believe, since there is no direct provable evidence that the bible is correct on all counts, either. I think the problem comes in when religious groups mass together and try to force their opinions on others, claiming they are complete fact, then asking others to disprove that they are fact, and when it cannot be disproven, can see how it goes. I think here lately I have come to the understanding that there are certain individuals and groups in the world who just don't make any sense to anyone but themselves, but I have also realized that it impacts me very little if at all and I have no obligation to disprove anything, so I just let people be as they will. Kind of the definition of "You can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink", in my opinion. In essence, the problematic people of religion are those who push it, and by pushing so hard create Anti-theists, and then rail against the Anti-theists, as if they hadn't come about as a direct response to the zealots. They create their own problem, and then create their own entity to rail against, their own cause, if you will. Of course, the same can be said of atheists, on occasion. Sometimes a person pushes the faithful so much that they turn that faithful into a zealot, instead of just a friendly believer.
  17. Couldn't have(and didn't) phrased it better, Seeker.
  18. Life is inherently good, emalpaiz, and I would go so far as to suggest that people are inherently good, as well.
  19. Thank you friend. Witchcraft is always one of those things that I used to pick on when I was much younger, but I think that came primarily from ignorance, both on my part and on the part of the people I would debate with. The claim was always an ancient unbroken line, and I never bought it. But then as I grew older I realized, it wasn't up to me to buy it. Wasn't my choice, so why was I worrying so much about someone else's path? And who ever decided it was only valid if it was ancient anyway? The idea had to be new at some point. Anyway, thanks to everyone for responding. Much appreciated.
  20. That is the marvelous thing, is it not? Doesn't matter if I believe the world is flat, you can still sail around it. Just like my belief in some supernatural elements doesn't interfere with the laws of thermodynamics in any way, shape or form...that is very appreciable.
  21. Indeed Brother Kaman, I just thought I would share my view, since I never have before that I am aware at least. Thanks for taking the time to read.
  22. I realize, looking back, that rarely if ever have I defined what I view as druidry. So, I place this here as my discourse. There are those who refer to themselves as druids. Some of them claim an ancestral link, some sort of passed down tradition allegedly dating back to the time of the ACTUAL druids. They always typically refer to themselves as ACTUAL druids, while everyone else must inherently be a pretender, I suppose. These are people who claim druids can only be taught by other druids, who are ancestral. I ask them, who taught the first druid, at which point they usually quit talking to me. I don't intend to alienate anyone with this, it is a legitimate question in my view, and if they could answer it great. Ah well. Then there are those who claim I can't be a druid, because all the druids died or were killed off, and there aren't any written records left. I ask them, how did the first druids become druids, without written records? At that point they stop talking to me. So, for my brand of druidry, I explain that I believe it to be a living system, evolving, incorporating, expanding and excluding. There are ideas behind how the original druids practiced, and why. Those are what I feel are important to any modern druid in the making. Sure, we will all look different in the end, but the core values of what make up a druid are still there. The dimensions I refer to are community, art, healing, metaphysical, natural philosophy, teaching, and service. Any modern druid would probably incorporate these dimensions within their practice, but since this is my view of druidry I can say these are the points that I consider to be crucial. A druid should incorporate themselves into the community. The druids of old had no issue with politics, in point they subsumed politics as a part of their domain. I have no issue getting into political debates, as well as suggesting ideas to the politicians in my town and county for improvement of the community. This is something that any good citizen should feel able to do, I believe. Art doesn't necessarily refer to music, or painting, or the like. Rather, art as in doing something exceptionally. Make what you love an art, and pursue it with the vigor it deserves. Become skillful at something useful, so that you have the ability to take pride in your work. For myself, I take pride in any job I have at the time. But my primary job is that of cleric, for which I do not charge. I am artful in my approach and interactions with the people of my community. Healing refers to physical, emotional, and spiritual for me. This can come in many forms, but usually the people I interact with come away with something, or at least I would like to think they do anyway. I have counseled others from time to time, usually to their benefit. Metaphysical for me denotes anything that might be considered occult, spiritual, or for the atheists, nonexistent. I believe in spirit of place, I feel like certain places have an energy all of their own that can be altered and manipulated. I believe in ritual to alter the state of mind in practices such as meditation. I understand that not everyone believes, and some require proof. The thing is, I am not required to prove anything, as I don't infringe on other people with my practices. I don't ask others to believe, I simply believe myself. Natural philosophy, any sort of philosophy really. As those on this forum probably know, I like to debate, whether on the side I believe or the other, it doesn't really matter. The act of debating philosophy strengthens the mind terrifically. I also incorporate knowledge of biology and physical sciences here. I think a druid should be able to identify various muscle tissues, which plants are which, and constellations. Not all druids agree, of course. Teaching, that is almost self explanatory, eh? I like to teach, and I think passing on knowledge is half the point at least of gaining the knowledge in the first place. Of course, the teacher often learns from the student. Shaping is a principle I believe in. Force and counterforce work together, I shape the world I live in, but of course I am shaped by the world I live in as well. Interaction on a dynamic scale. Service is the highest calling, in my opinion, and I have seen that somewhere before but cannot recall where. In service, we give to others our time, something that is valuable to me. But beyond that, what good is having ability and skill if it isn't shared? At least, that is my view. Feel free to disagree, I am certain there are many here who do These are the basics of my brand of druidry, incorporated with Celtic mythology and the Celtic year. When I read mythology, I incorporate what it might mean in terms of druidry with my understanding and decide whether I believe it to be relevant or not. Sometimes it isn't. Usually I can find a piece of truth or two in most myths. And they are fun to read. I just thought I would share what I view to be the druidic path, since I have never done so comprehensively before on this forum about sharing our beliefs(or non beliefs, as the case may be, Johnathan). Feel free, of course, to interact and debate with me, I enjoy it.
  23. Science as an idea doesn't care one way or the other, true. My religion doesn't reject science. I am sure there are others who don't as well. If science disproves something I believe, then I reevaluate my beliefs, and determine where the error occurred, and redesign accordingly. Admittedly, I haven't heard of many religions willing to do that.
  24. I am cynically inclined, nowadays, that is true. Still, I recognize THAT as a flaw as well, and so try to trust in some things, even as I question. Difficult balance to maintain, eh?