Mudcat Café message #1714175 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #90369   Message #1714175
Posted By: Little Hawk
09-Apr-06 - 10:18 PM
Thread Name: BS: Book of Judas
Subject: RE: BS: Book of Judas
Fine....I understand your thinking on that. It sounds exactly as I once thought, when I described myself as an atheist. I don't think what age I was matters a whole lot. I was brought up as an atheist, so it was what I was familiar with, and people usually go with what they are familiar with as long as it isn't causing them a lot of pain...in which case they may go against it. (that happens with a lot of people brought up in religious households, and they either turn against religion altogether...or they turn to a completely different religion than that of their parents) I experienced no pain from being brought up as an atheist. I gradually begin to be attracted to spiritual ideas in my 20's, and I think the main reason for it, initially, was that my favorite singers (Buffy Sainte-Marie, Joan Baez, Bob Dylan) all appeared to believe in God. That made me wonder, because I admired them more than I did anyone else at the time. I figured, "Well, they're not stupid people. Maybe they know something I don't." That's what started me investigating the whole thing.

I am not a Christian. (as I've said before) But I do believe in "God"...but...I do NOT think of God as a super being of some kind who judges, condemns, casts into hell, rewards and punishes, or demands prayer or ritual or anything else from people. I don't believe in God as a separate being of some kind. (I would regard such a belief as primitive and foolish.)

It would be foolish for either one of us, you or me, to underestimate the other's intelligence or maturity on mere supposition.

I object to the same thing you do...being treated without respect, merely because our beliefs differ in some way.

Now, a few responses to what you said...

When you argue or debate points and issues with someone, you stick to the facts that are presented. If you cannot trump them, you admit defeat.

We were discussing whether or not Jesus might have existed. I am not aware that there ARE any verifiable facts that can be brought to bear on the argument. There are just a bunch of books written by various people some time after his (presumed) death. Those are interesting, they strongly suggest that he might have existed, but they are not proof, and I know it. How do we "stick to the facts" when, as far as I can see, there are no indisputable, verifiable facts we can find about it?

All we can do is express an opinion based on probabilities, and our own guesswork. I think it's probable he existed. You clearly don't. Fine. I can live with that. It's all guesswork anyway.

You go on at some length about "reviewing the evidence". What evidence? I am not aware there is any evidence either for or against the idea that Jesus existed. There are simply opinions about it.

I think he did. You think he didn't. Neither one of us knows for sure.

I think people have immortal souls. You probably don't think so. Neither one of us knows for sure.

I think people probably reincarnate. I imagine you don't think they do. Neither one of us knows for sure.

What you are objecting to, it seems to me, is that I don't take you seriously. Well, that's the same thing I find objectionable in you.

As for arguing from gut emotional reaction...I honestly think that everybody does that, once they are involved in an argument. They get more and more wrapped up in defending their position. That's an emotional reaction. That's what keeps you and me returning to this thread, day after day, when we could be doing any number of far more useful things with our time, I can assure you! ;-) This thread is a bunch of hot air. It can be fun to talk, and that's why I do it, it gives me something to think about. If someone comes into the conversation and treats what I say with absolute contempt, ridicule, and hostility...well, I'm human too, and I tend to give them some of their own back. And around and around it goes, forever and a day.

I am capable of laughing at myself for doing it, and I am capable of recognizing my weakness in that sense. If I point out the same weakness in you, is that so terrible? We all do it.