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mererdog

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33 posts in this topic

5 hours ago, mererdog said:

You would he wrong. Not everyone agrees. There are, in fact, ministers who represent no religion.  Now, I suspect the reflexive response will be to say that those people are not really ministers. I will point out that such a response simply reinterates the notion that their conception of a minister is not "real," while yours is.

As an example, I do not represent any religion, but I am a minister. I speak only for myself. My ordination came without question of faith, which also means it came with no obligation to represent a faith. Otherwise a person like myself, who has no religious beliefs, would be unable to be a minister. Once again, that would run counter to the ULC's commitment to religious freedom through religious equality.

Has nothing to do with "conception" of anything so much as it has to do with  dictionary definition of the terminology. The dictionary defines "minister" in the following way-

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Minister (n)-  1. An Agent of someone or something. 2. "a person whose job involves leading church services, performing religious ceremonies (such as marriages), and providing spiritual or religious guidance to other peoplea member of the clergy in some Protestant churches".

"Religion" is defined as--

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Religion (n)-  4.  a cause, principle, or system of beliefs held to with ardor and faith

In order to be as inclusive as possible we might  the broadest sense, ie.. a "minister" is a Agent of a religion, or an agent of the powers that be. The thing is that in your last post you represented a "Religion" because a statement of "non religion" is a "Religion" unto itself in its own right, by definition.

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5 hours ago, mererdog said:

If I am talked into accepting the proposition that there are exceptions to the rule against violence, would I not also be talked into believing there are exceptions to the rules against theft and adultery? How can I both believe morality matters, and that I should ignore the only way I have for determining morality?

 

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.)

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Posted (edited)

15 hours ago, ULCneo said:

Has nothing to do with "conception" of anything so much as it has to do with  dictionary definition of the terminology.

Same thing. The dictionary defines words based on common usage. Common usage is shaped by individual conception. Note that you did not cite every definition of religion, but merely the one that fit the conception of minister you are attempting to sell. Note also that dictionaries do not list all definitions, but only those that meet arbitrary standards of common usage, that vary from publisher to publisher.

Just to be clear, if you have to define lack of religion as a religion in order to make your point, your pont loses credibility in my eyes. If we can't differentiate between what is and is not religion, the word loses all meaning.

Edited by mererdog

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Posted (edited)

15 hours ago, ULCneo said:

Rather, there comes a point that you have to become reliant on a higher power independent of and outside yyourself

No higher power has made itself known to me, in a way that makes it possible for me to believe in it. This is not a complaint or an excuse, but a simple statement of fact. I cannot depend on what I do not believe in. If this is simply a weakneas on my end, it is not one I have any control over.

So, once again, if I don't listen to my conscience, I have no alternative moral determiner. I can listen to my conscience, or I can ignore morality completely. Which of the options actually available to me do you suppose is better?

Edited by mererdog

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9 hours ago, mererdog said:

Same thing. The dictionary defines words based on common usage. Common usage is shaped by individual conception. Note that you did not cite every definition of religion, but merely the one that fit the conception of minister you are attempting to sell. Note also that dictionaries do not list all definitions, but only those that meet arbitrary standards of common usage, that vary from publisher to publisher.

Just to be clear, if you have to define lack of religion as a religion in order to make your point, your point loses credibility in my eyes. If we can't differentiate between what is and is not religion, the word loses all meaning.

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".

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Just to be clear, if you have to define lack of religion as a religion in order to make your point, your point loses credibility in my eyes. If we can't differentiate between what is and is not religion, the word loses all meaning.

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.

 

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Posted (edited)

9 hours ago, mererdog said:

No higher power has made itself known to me, in a way that makes it possible for me to believe in it. This is not a complaint or an excuse, but a simple statement of fact. I cannot depend on what I do not believe in. If this is simply a weakness on my end, it is not one I have any control over.

So, once again, if I don't listen to my conscience, I have no alternative moral determiner. I can listen to my conscience, or I can ignore morality completely. Which of the options actually available to me do you suppose is better?

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.

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So, once again, if I don't listen to my conscience, I have no alternative moral determiner. I can listen to my conscience, or I can ignore morality completely. Which of the options actually available to me do you suppose is better?

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.

Edited by ULCneo

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Posted (edited)

On 5/15/2017 at 1:11 PM, ULCneo said:

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?

The difference lies in the phrase "I don't know." I neither believe that God is real, nor do I believe that God is not real. I do not believe either way. Allow me to demonstrate how this works.

You have never seen me. If asked what color my hair is, the honest answer is "I don't know." You do not believe I have brown hair. You do not believe I have blonde hair. You do not know.

Edited by mererdog

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On 5/15/2017 at 1:17 PM, ULCneo said:

BUT, how do you know that "your own conscience" isn't defective? 

I know that it is. I also know that it is all that I have to work with.

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