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Everything posted by VonNoble

  1. I can appreciate your reasoning. For evolutionary biology - with a historic reckoning in the neighborhood of 65 billion years in the making.....even the much briefer history of life in this planet requires a wee bit more than 100 or do years to reconstruct in detail...perhaps. Mankind has had the mere blink of an eye to process the information coming to us anew. Arriving daily. From a myriad of sources. Allowing young people to understand the process and allowing them to marvel at what is possible might well expedite the few missing proofs. Eh.... not to mention not all physical evidence survives millions of years in the making .... organic material does decompose over time. However the fragments, bones and DNA collected so far has caused proofs to leap forward at exponential rates of late. I find it all pretty amazing in the last 50 years. It is amazing what is knowable now. Adding to that is big chunks of information made possible by the Hubble telescope. And in less than two years the data streaming in from the new Webb telescope will jump our understanding forward at rates that will astound us still. Compters are cranking out lots lots of proof of lots of things. We need more scientists to collaborate, coordinate and share things known only to a few currently... but it is being released as quickly as it is verified, tested retested as valid. It is encouraging that speculation items are able to predict outcomes with such pinpoint accuracy. It is also a good thing that science is more than willing to correct the record whenever better evidence is provided. I am happy the record no longer is offered to us to have a “flat earth” point of view. I feel fortunate to have lived long enough to see what is likely ( or even possible) to know. I won’t live long enough to see the conclusion of the story but it is grand to see how far we have come. I am happy with the chances humans have for the next 1,000 plus years. On whatever planet they might add for inhabitation. In the last three million years the evidence points to an ever increasing brain power for humans. I have met a couple of people that might cause a person to question that as fact .... but a glance at our collective advances is convincing. von
  2. I find we are very much on agreement on this one. von
  3. I agree. We add and delete traits etc as they prove useful to us..... or so it seems. I am told that others disagree with that.... and I am not particularly well read on the matter. It is just an observation in my own life. von
  4. New input.....interesting quote... attributed to more than one person ( I am choosing to believe it was Aristotle) ”....morals are the child of habit...” This would indicate not so much of it arrives with us at birth.... Woukd that then also be true of the many who choose immoral behavior? All (largely) a matter of habit? von
  5. Our last “ God project” today Eight people on a team.... 45 minutes to complete our assignment. Before beginning the assignment we each had to share our inner most feelings about of God with the group. (We did not take that as a literal requirement in our group) As a group we had to write a 75 word essay for the three major positions (theist, agnostic, atheist). Then condense each essay into a standard form argument. The group sharing went well. Four theists ( 3 of them Catholic....one generic Christian) ..... three Agnostics .... one very strong atheist. When we were done sharing.... we had less than 30 minutes to go. We cheated. Rather than ALL OF US WORKING AS a single unit..... we divided into three small groups.... the atheist working alone ....and finished with a whole 1.4 minutes to spare. As far as I could tell those who tackled it as a larger group got bogged down and did not finish. Next up..... ethics von
  6. Thank you VERY MUCH! We receive our final exam topic the end of the month von
  7. I could not tell. The question was put to me. I could understand how the person explaining it to me came to the conclusions (so I could see the end picture was likely suppose to be a duck..... ) However my own thought processes could derive other options -so I was curious where the normative range if conclusions might fall. (Since we know from class I am not in the normative range in Philosophical thought) (that teacher is a doozie) Then again I have seen some parenting with extremely liberal hands off approaches produce some rule following kids.... so there may be no cause and effect ever... I am just mulling things over von
  8. Some variation of this has been around - apparently since the days of ancient philosophers, however it is new to me. It seems some wise old guys gathered a random few children around and encouraged them them to have a piece of candy even though the old duffers were well aware that the mothers had admonished the kids NOT to accept sweets before their next meal. The story goes...the kids thought it over, knew the men in question (or at least some of them) and knew they were important men...authority figures recognized in the community. Perhaps, in the mind of a kid wanting candy - perhaps even more of an authority than mom. So they each accepted the candy and enjoyed it. Before leaving the authority figures (who were doing this experiment just to see the impact of being authority figures with the children) put a second "test to the kids"......they asked them to come into another room in pairs. Once in the room one kid was then asked to punch the other. For no reason. Just punch them. Just punch them in the face ! But the children would not do this. They refused to punch another kid for no reason. They refused to punch another kid even for greater rewards than on piece of candy, for refused for praise - or simply because the authority figures ordered them to do so....they even refused when there was a threat to tell mom that they did not do as asked by people with even greater authority (after all that was the rationale for taking candy).......they refused flatly to punch someone with no reason. The conclusion was that kids seem to be able to sort out some degree of right and wrong - possibly even in spite of authority. They show signs of having a fairly balanced sense of right and wrong on their own. If that whole thing were true - - can we conclude kids to some extent develop a moral compass naturally most of the time? Just curious. von
  9. Ta da! I actually recognize the format! I learned something in this class after all. I was pleased I got it ( are you helping me prep for the final?) i didn’t have anything to add to the conversation so I am .... but happy this morning (before yet amother quiz) that I “got” something. It is an omen I am making progress von
  10. It seems perhaps those choosing faith in Christianity do so hinged on the operative word “faith” In the New Testament..... after Easter Sunday..... Jesus appeared to the disciples. Thomas was not there. When told the Lord had appeared Thomas did not believe and said he would not believe until he himself examined the Risen Lord....which eventually happened. When they met up Thomas recognized it was Christ and fell down to worship Jesus. Jesus gently put things aright ..:but noted those who believe without proof (all those to follow this...his last appearance till the Rapture.... all the millions of our times who believe without concrete evidence... those will be found virtuous for being faithfilled. They believe without the benefit of direct physical evidence Therefore anyone searching for proof is out there more than likely to shut up the faithless. The faithful have accepted the story as reality.... and go about their business (most of them) without need to prove anything except their loyalty ....to God. von
  11. I am by far not the most learned person in this Forum about such things. if I can try a rephrasing? Since Genesis begins with creation of all living things.... and notes the Garden if Eden and the serpent...& the Apple and the fall and banishment.....with that provided .....it does allow for some question. Or maybe curiosity. If the Torah’/old testament provides detailed ancestors linking the roots of the one true belief back to the beginning of time.... the the question (I think?) is placing Christianity as claiming to be there in the beginning.... maybe 1. I am agreeing with Pastie Dave....it seems Christianity does not claim to be Christian..... until AFTER THE APPEARANCE OF CHRIST! 2. The Old Testament-Torah established the reason for the Arrival of the Savior.... and indicates the lineage necessary to “ know Him” 3. Only after the arrival of Jesus who fulfilled the aforementioned predictions.... articulating the new covenant (New Testament) did the Christian (followers if Christ) emerge 4. If you want an archeological item dating to the Garden of Eden .... an instrument that actually was in play ...a tangible between God and man...... the Muslims have it. As I understand it the original altar used by Abraham is in Mecca. if I managed to screw any of this up.... my apologies to true believers.... I am hoping I got the basics correct. von
  12. I just read that Pew research indicates agnostics/atheists tend to be more often male (64%)..... And I am wondering why that would be so? Additionally the majority are white? i have no idea what to conclude about that-perhaps nothing at all. The majority of the population the last time I looked was female.... additionally there are much higher numbed if women entering colleges now....especially areas of science..... I just found that a quirky statistic...... i wonder why that that is the statistic? von
  13. Just to be clear....I applaud Rabbi0’s diplomacy and kindness. To which I add my thanks to you, Rabbi0...... Although she (my mother) practice no religion..... my maternal grandparents are Jews.... making me (according to custom) a Jew as well. I know absolutely nothing about it.... but one of my sister’s keeps a kosher house..... is fluent in Hebrew.....and I certain she would be far less diplomatic making her points. Rabbi0... shalom and my thanks von
  14. We have only one class remaining on the topic of Metaphysics. Our BIG EVENT (this week) - was actually MUCH tamer than I imagined it would be for whatever reason. Of interest were the presentations by two Theists (each of whom identified themselves as Christian) used a justification "by personal experience" for their reasons for believing in the existence of God. One went on at length about feeling God's presence. The other actually "hears" God. No one challenged those presentations. Which in my opinion was a good thing. This is what they believe. In a room of young adult peers it seemed like a bold move and I thought everyone should be respectful of their beliefs. Everyone seemed to be. On the other side we had a very bold young atheist. There was no "agnostic" tie to it - he was REALLY loud and proud (articulate) and sort of edgy challenging any one who believed remotely in any higher power. Interestingly enough - he was not challenged either. The vast majority were "believers" in some higher power-God but they did not attempt to deride or sway anyone else to that point of view. Like I said - it was pretty tame. Each person had time to explain their position. The only challenges were very mild (and done by the professor largely) and that was it. A statement - an occasional mild and gentle pushback on the position by way of asking for clarification. Then it was over. A handful of people refused to participate in the exercise. (I didn't know we had that option ) and they were allowed to take a "pass" for participation. It was completely unclear to me how that factors into the grading. I thought participation was required. I thought that because there was no "opt out" clause in any of our instructions. In the Forum here - we certainly generate FAR MORE information, history, depth of understanding - but then again this is an introductory class with mostly very young adults. Conclusion: The information from the Forum had me at ease enough to simply observe and absorb without entanglements so we got through it and I thank all posters for that. The Agnostic Atheist position (not an official option but one after reading this thread seemed to fit well enough I could present it decently) actually seemed to be one that was of no interest the professor. I was thankful for that. I can cross that assignment off the list. ONE MORE class to go......we have a team project (we do not have the instructions till we get to class next week) and whatever that is - we then move on to Ethics. Thanks to all for helping me jump through this section. von
  15. It boggles my mind...... I do appreciate the more detailed walk through. This requires a bit more work on my part. von
  16. By sheer dumb luck..... I did not know enough to even remotely goof that up.... nonetheless.... your point is well made and I thank you. von
  17. Believe it or not....I gave this some time to sink in So..... I am wondering if the terminology chosen is more lax ....perhaps because God/Supreme Being is not relative to me? Or perhaps ..... it is more critical than I realized till now..... because it matters to the listener? Therefore I am obliged to reduce confusion....maybe I avoid this topic often because it’s a bit like Loch Ness monster theories (or so it seems).....I am okay with Nessie being real... but fully expect it is not. Run this invisible assumptions by me one more time.... please AND THANK YOU! von
  18. Just to make sure I have this ( thx 4 quick refresher course) When I am referring to a spiritual being of a specific religion (as in a deity or title or name) it goes on caps. If we are making a generic point about an entity ....such as....a god figure often has this or that trait.... I am okay to not caps? von
  19. Perhaps there is a difference? In class the prof uses the words Supreme Being and God..... alternately or interchangeably..... is there a difference? I also wondered why the two words are in caps..... it seems they would work to discuss a room full of diverse beliefs in “ not caps” - I didn’t ask in class. It didn’t bother me.... so much as I am curious if there is a grammatical reason. Shortly we move over on to Ethics so the delve into Metaphysics will move off the front burner. von
  20. Well I appreciate the help. I don’t remember using the term Supreme Being in general....until this Philosophy class. It has slipped in largely because it is a common use in class I expect I think in the use above...my frame of mind has sort of been stuck on the Supreme part of “being” .... and sorting through the concept of the Supreme often displaying what seems decidedly to be human frailties and sometimes pettiness...... thx for continuing to pitch in.... Way back when....it seemed simple way back then ....when I moved out of mom and dad’s....go out in the world and see what is out there.... the Eastern point of view seemed far less confrontational/combative... von
  21. Very good thoughts to add at this juncture. Thank you von
  22. I pretty much always figured I was where I am suppose to be... ....moving towards peace and away from turmoil.... which is not always a straight line.... and often a slow and thoughtful journey.....learning from so many many teachers....I am grateful for all of them von