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Everything posted by ULCneo

  1. Actually, legal privilege does not continue to exist after the death of the person having the privilege. In general, some states allow both the minister and the congregant to invoke the privilege, where other states require that only the congregant has the right to invoke. If the latter is the case, you could be subpoenaed before a court of law after the death, and forced to tell what you know. Practically, speaking, we keep confidence after death as much as possible, insofar as it is the right thing to do.
  2. Legally, you'll need to form an organization, and keep meticulous records of how you spend donation money (which should never be place in personal accounts for any reason) in order to avoid the government from coming after you for allegations such as tax fraud, running a scam, running a shell corporation, or other violations of white collar business law that can have severe legal consequences if mishandled. This is a situation where you need the advice of a good business law attorney.
  3. Absolutely NOT- they want the address of the LOCAL CONGREGATION's business office, which can also be the address of the minister's residence or parsonage.
  4. You file the complaint with CPS as a mandatory reporter, and if they come back and say "unfounded" your off the hook legally. However, you also have to consider the reasonable credibility of the reasons you think abuse is going on before you report- this is because being a mandatory reporter will not absolve one of being charged with false reporting automatically, say per. Other than that, it is not your business to "investigate" but rather to report what you know and see- as "investigating" within the context of what goes on outside the church is a law enforcement function that is beyond the scope of a minister, and can be dangerous.
  5. Yes its perfectly legal, and you can do so by one of two ways: 1. The easiest would be to register a congregation with the ULC. I can provide a fillable PDF form for this if you like. 2. The other way to do this is to file a corporation called "Universal Life Church of _____" in your state- the name is not trademarked, so this is perfectly legal. Plus, ordination confers the right to do this anyways.
  6. Marriage laws are implemented at the state level. The applicable law to answer your question will be found in New York State Domestic Relations Law.
  7. Possible, but statistically less likely, because the several accounts were written several hundred years apart, on opposite parts of the globe, by people who never knowingly met each other. (when we compare the Bible to the Secular Roman and Greek Records which tend to support it) Therefore, it begs alot of difficulty to suggest that ALL of these people were wrong about the exact same account of the material facts. Though, theoretically still possible.
  8. Its really not- if Eyewitnesses are shown to be unreliable then how much more unreliable are ear witnesses considering that the majority of human communication is not auditory in nature, in the first place?
  9. No its not- Its a preposition, and the word "force" is the object of the preposition. There's no such thing as a "relative" preposition. Any variation of the words In, out, or on are not adjectives- as adjectives in these settings modify the object of the preposition, not the preposition directly. (i.e. your either outside or inside, there's no "qualification" of outside.) Consider the following expressions (hint, the adjectives are underlined the prepositions are bold face): Called out of the meeting married to him is better for your Waited Outside the door The general rule (with a number of exceptions, usually related to tense.) is that if you can stick the word "the" in the middle of the two words, the word immediately before "the" is ALWAYS a preposition, and the word following is usually the object of the preposition. This is because the word "the" is an article adjective, and an adjective can never properly modify a preposition, but may only modify the object of the preposition or else another noun, by definition.
  10. This is very true, but the historical record shows that the majority of the people spoke Aramaic as the common every day language, and that the upper class and the educated learned the Greek language in addition to the Aramaic. This was due in large part to Greece and Rome being the two dominating world powers during this time period. We also know that the Romans were hevily influenced by Hellenistic culture. Hence, it becomes that, writers like Paul (whom the secular historical record shows to have had excellent Greek language skills, and whom would have, as a Roman citizen, been required to be able to speak and write Greek fluently) would not be subject to the situation you describe- that of a writer not writing on paper what he means to express.
  11. Oh, OK. So YOUR THE ONLY ONE that has a defective conscience, then? Great. That means I'm Marry Poppins perfect "in every way", by your own line of reasoning. I don't think I have to tell you how fallacious that argument is. After all, mankind has this habit of avoiding impunity to themselves at all costs, and we needn't look very far to see that acceptance by the majority does not render something kosher. Otherwise, communism invariably sets in before all is said and done, and the whole concept your trying to establish implodes on itself in short order. Fact is that there is nothing new under the sun. We all have many of the same vices, albeit in differing forms. Therefore, where you go with this is nothing more than the notion of a black pot calling a kettle silver because the black pot wants to see itself as being silver, even though both objects, are in fact black- whereas Christianity teaches that in fact, that we are all black pots to begin with, thus avoiding the logical problem you impart to your argument.
  12. Id disagree with that point- the law of Gravity is quite divine, as it is impossible to explain exactly WHY gravity exists in the first place, outside the INTELLIGENT notion that its probably NOT a good idea for people to go floating off the face of the planet. (which, in some cases, I think not to be the wisest thing in the world, but there is a difference between intelligence and wisdom.) Hence, Gravity is by intelligent design, outside of the extremely minute chance of the multiple coincidences that would have to exist in order for gravity to exist in the first place, if not of intelligent design. Hence, basic reasoning implies creationism, outside the one in practically infinity chance that all of these things coexist by luck and probability. Also, The term outside is not relative, rather it is contextual to the noun to which it applies. Basic English 101: A preposition CANNOT be relative.
  13. I'm just offering some rational reasoning as to why I think the argument is suspect straight out of the box. Such a position is one that the vast majority of the scientific community will not and does not accept- as most of the research goes against it. As I've said before, Therefore, it gets into exactly why the research you cite is incompatible with virtually all the other research of like nature. You might watch the following video, which lays out my point precisely from an expert's point of view: Scott Fraser: Why Eye Witnesses Get it Wrong
  14. Not quite- If there is no preliminary evidence of a change, the charge that it was changed is a mere conclusory allegation that has no support in actual facts or reasoning. As opposed to the ability of an oral tradition to change over time, which has been scientifically documented. I'm not going to do your research for you to support your argument. I leave that to you.
  15. "Unchanged for eons"?... the problem is that while that is an opinon, if there's no written record, what evidence do we have that things weren't somehow changed at each and every retelling, without anyone having ever known about it? After all, if we take for example, a creation story- its a fat chance that anyone is going to retell a creation story orally without departing from the original story in significant ways. Most of us, especially in today's world" couldn't recite a chapter from a novel without changing significant details in one way or another, without being aware that you did it. In fact, this is exactly why courts of law transcribe oral testimony given in court to refer back to later. Science has proven that "eyewitness" testimony is the least reliable form of evidence, because the human brain has the natural biological tendency to "fill in the gaps" of what wasn't actually perceived at the moment.
  16. Evolution is one thing: However the point and principle is, that even where evolution is permissive, its always a good idea to be able to trace that evolution back from whence it came. Otherwise, history has a tendency to repeat itself.
  17. This is why we study the lexicon and the oldest acceptable original texts. In the original Greek texts . Looking up 1 Cor 13:13 in strong's reference, we see that the word translated "charity" in the KJV and "love" in the NIV is stongs #G26, the Greek word "agape". Which, in Greek is literally defined as the following: " agápē, ag-ah'-pay; from G25; love, i.e. affection or benevolence; specially (plural) a love-feast:—(feast of) charity(-ably), dear, love. " Other Greek Lexicons define "agape" similarly. Therefore, unless you can present a very strong argument that the original text didn't read "agape", the argument that the text was somehow "changed" runs out of gas rather quickly. The thing is that when we have word's written on the paper, it becomes that there is much more credence to be able to trace back to the original texts to compare. Also, I find that the argument of "scribal error" is most usually employed where the text doesn't support the position that person wants, in order to justify a probable erroneous position. We also have to remember that languages like Hebrew and Greek are much more expressive than English and most other languages of the world. Hence, it is sometimes imposible to translate a precise shade of meaning, but the translation into English can still drive home the basic concept the author intended. Even then, this is why the Bible says in 2 Timothy 2:15 (KJV) : "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
  18. One of the fundamental teachings of Darwinism is vast diversity within a species. In fact, it is the starting point for the theory that a life form can somehow "evolve". Without diversity you cannot have "evolution" without "creationism" of some kind or another, because then the evolution would have to be projected from some form of outside force. I think perhaps you really misunderstand Darwinism.
  19. The problem is that if all you have is oral tradition, etc. Then what you have evolves over time in such a way that nobody consciously knows that it has evolved. That is because it is human nature to insert one's own opinions into a subject matter when giving oral discourse, without even realizing they've even done it. It's the basic concept of the "telephone game". Therefore, in such a case, there is really no "religion" by definition of terminology, because of the fact that there is not a set "belief system" because things are changing from one generation to the next to the point to where things become to fluid to constitute a religion proper, by strict dictionary definition of "religion". However, we also note that the Koran is remarkably similar in at least some ways to it's contemporary Jewish religious literature. Therefore, it stands by basic reasoning, that since we can predate the Jews to Mohamed, that at least statistically speaking, Mohamed most likely ripped of the broad concept and went from there, if we are to hold that he didn't plagiarize the Koran outright. The thing is that where people disagree on "interpretation" of a written text, it becomes that in the religious context, we have "rules for interpretation" called hermenutics. Its not so much people haven't read the text, say per, its the fact that they haven't been educated in the ground rules for proper interpretation of that text. It's the same as if I were to give you a copy of the Untied States Code, and then tell you to go practice law without giving you any education as to what the confines of the interpretation of the text are, and what the ground rules of that interpretation are in terms of broad principle. You'd most likely be lost, or else extremely gifted in ways that the majority of people just aren't. We must remember that Christianity in particular, roots in a concept of a given law. Thus, it becomes that we are doing a "legal analysis" of a sort. Thus the disciplines of Philosophy and analytic reasoning come into play, while considering the historical implications of a given text, as NOTHING happens in a vacuum. That is the problem today- too many people are not capable of doing their own research because either they aren't empowered with the proper skills necessary to do it, or else they are too lazy to do it. After all, ignorance is the default state of mankind, and learning means doing work of some kind or another.
  20. So then, since you admit that your own conscience is defective, and you go with the argument that people should look to their own conscience to determine right from wrong, it becomes that the world in all reality is an endless pit of moral relevants. In theory, this becomes the direct cause of anarchy, and history shows us that such is neither feasible nor functional. Yet isn't highly odd, if we are to seriously entertain your position, that most people believe that certain things are wrong or immoral? (being the reason, if we are to adhere to your apparent argument, that we are able to form a system of secular law?) Yet the theory of Darwinism teaches that there should be so much diversity among the human species that it would be unlikely for two people to have an agreement of conscience. Therefore, it seems that your argument collapses under its own ponderosity.
  21. Which creates a bit of a circular problem- It's illegal to accept donations without incorporating. (tends to run afoul of criminal fraud laws and/or money laundering laws, among other things.) But, in some states you can't even incorporate unless you have an established place of worship. Hence, the law requires "building first" in some states. Unless of course, you want to front your own money for rental of space OR you have a house with gracious neighbors that don't end up complaining about you to the police.
  22. First I think you fail to see that I don't even use "Higher Power" in the context of a form of "religion" say per. I use it rather loosely in terms expressed in 12-step programs such as AA/NA. BUT, how do you know that "your own conscience" isn't defective? What? is it built in complete with an cyclic-redunant error checking system? Psychopaths don't THINK they have any problem whatsoever based upon their own conscience (which exists in defective form)- rather its "everyone else" that has the "problem". So therefore, one has to subject their "Conscience" to an outside source as a standard of measure. Further we also know that intoxicants alter one's conscience over time in ways that are not obvious. Further we have in psychology what we refer to as "cognitive distortions". I'll let you do your own research on that.
  23. Not quite- rather its the "conception" of the majority that builds consensus of definition of terminology. The other definitions of religion have little bearing upon a sense of "spirituality". So then HOW then do you propose that the statement of a lack of belief isn't STILL inherently merely a statement of belief in the negative? A statement of belief in non-existence is STILL, notwithstanding, a statement belief is it not? Otherwise we get to a standard of judgment that atheism because it is NOT a "religion" (i.e. it doesn't fit the dictionary definition) isn't afforded first amendment protections under the analysis of strict-construction properly due to first-amendment interpretation. Therefore, we quickly see that your logic gets into dangerous territory.
  24. In ULC V. United States, way back in the 1970s, the ULC admitted under oath to being formally organized as a Christian Church.
  25. There applies the rule of common sense here. There are certain times when violence will forced out of one's hand by virtue of the failure to act- in that violence includes in its definition violence against self. Rather, there comes a point that you have to become reliant on a higher power independent of and outside yourself, least you declare yourself creator of the Universe or subscribe to Darwinist thinking (and mind you Darwinism is deeply flawed- in that the theories are not demonstrated to be in operation anywhere today without explanation.)