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Thread: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven?

  1. #1 Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Can a rich Church or man get into heaven?

    Matthew 19:23
    Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven.

    Matthew 19:21
    Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.

    Genesis 13:2
    And Abram was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold.

    Matthew 19:24
    And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

    There seems to be a theme throughout scripture that says that wealth is not a good thing yet the Church amasses wealth for itís own sake and glorification.

    Can a Church that does not practice what it preaches lead us to heaven or is wealth actually a good thing.

    What comes to mind is Indiana Jones and the Holy Grail.
    In selecting the cup of Christ, the proper cup was the poor manís cup. In contrast, if asked to select the cup of the Church, he would have selected the riches cup.

    One has to wonder if the Church is right or if Jesus was.
    Many say they have faith in Jesus but few follow His line of thought when their wealth is in question.

    Would God reject our rich Church?
    Is our Church imperfect because of itís wealth?
    Will God reject the rich man?

    Your thoughts?

    Regards
    DL


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  3. #2 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Your thoughts?
    It seems that a humble lifestyle is pretty common theme in philosophical traditions. It doesn't surprise me in the slightest that the christian mythos would promote it, any more than that it surprises me that men and women exploit the system for personal gain. But to be perfectly honest, if people weren't giving their money to the church, the church wouldn't have any money, no?


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  4. #3 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Your thoughts?
    It seems that a humble lifestyle is pretty common theme in philosophical traditions. It doesn't surprise me in the slightest that the christian mythos would promote it, any more than that it surprises me that men and women exploit the system for personal gain. But to be perfectly honest, if people weren't giving their money to the church, the church wouldn't have any money, no?
    I have no problem with the Church having some money. I have a problem when it is quite a lot of it and children are starving by the thousands daily.

    They should walk their talk. Not do as I say and not as I do.

    Regards
    DL
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  5. #4 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Your thoughts?
    It seems that a humble lifestyle is pretty common theme in philosophical traditions. It doesn't surprise me in the slightest that the christian mythos would promote it, any more than that it surprises me that men and women exploit the system for personal gain. But to be perfectly honest, if people weren't giving their money to the church, the church wouldn't have any money, no?
    I have no problem with the Church having some money. I have a problem when it is quite a lot of it and children are starving by the thousands daily.

    They should walk their talk. Not do as I say and not as I do.

    Regards
    DL
    I was merely pointing out that the people you were referring to would not have money unless others were giving it to them. Call it "stating the obvious", but I think the church-going public shares part of whatever blame is discussed.
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  6. #5 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Your thoughts?
    It seems that a humble lifestyle is pretty common theme in philosophical traditions. It doesn't surprise me in the slightest that the christian mythos would promote it, any more than that it surprises me that men and women exploit the system for personal gain. But to be perfectly honest, if people weren't giving their money to the church, the church wouldn't have any money, no?
    I have no problem with the Church having some money. I have a problem when it is quite a lot of it and children are starving by the thousands daily.

    They should walk their talk. Not do as I say and not as I do.

    Regards
    DL
    I was merely pointing out that the people you were referring to would not have money unless others were giving it to them. Call it "stating the obvious", but I think the church-going public shares part of whatever blame is discussed.
    Jesus was clear about giving to the poor. He did not say give so much and retain a few million for personal needs.

    Most wealth is amassed through exploitation of labor and markets.
    This makes the accumulation of wealth immoral.

    Are there moral ways to amass great wealth and what are they?

    Regards
    DL
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  7. #6 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Jesus was clear about giving to the poor. He did not say give so much and retain a few million for personal needs.
    Yes, the character jesus is said to have said this. Not sure how this is in any way related to the point I was making (i.e. yes, some ministries exploit their followers, but the followers bear some culpability for allowing themselves to be exploited).

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Most wealth is amassed through exploitation of labor and markets.
    This sounds like a difficult premise to prove.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    This makes the accumulation of wealth immoral.
    Only insofar as one rejects the idea that it is possible to accumulate wealth morally. You seem to be suggesting something of a false dichotomy here (either be dirt poor and moral or have money and be immoral).

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Are there moral ways to amass great wealth and what are they?
    Err...work hard, save money.
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  8. #7 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am

    Are there moral ways to amass great wealth and what are they?
    You could win a lottery.
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    As a child, I learned that one of the main differences between "the rich" and the "the poor" was quite often not how much money they made but how they spent the money which they did make. This might seem ridiculous, but I think my observation was restricted to those whom I saw everyday in the middle class.

    My point is that it is not what we have but what we do with it. The rich quite often spend their money more carefully than the poor and that might mean that they do not help others when they can. But this is not necessarily so. Those who spend their money unwisely can be just as selfish and miserly as those who spend wisely. The ideology of Marx is BS. If the capitalist is a good steward of that which he has then he serves the community well. The communists certainly demonstrated that putting all the property in the hands of the state was not a good alternative to this. Besides the passages from the Bible that GIA has quoted to us, we also have the parable of the talents.

    I think that the point is that weath like power is a spiritual hazard. It is a source of temptation to loose track of what is really important. Certainly everyone who puts personal desires ahead of the well being of others is not in touch with what is really important. Seeking wealth or power at the expense of others is of course a path of evil. But I think the more important point is that we are accountable for our choices and those with wealth and power have choices which those without wealth and power do not have, and thus they are accountable for them.

    But I personally find the self-righteousness of the poor to be little better than the self-righteousness of the rich. Niether being rich nor being poor automatically makes one a better person.

    As for the church, well... it this an old controversy. Wealth and power does not hold the cure to all the ills of the world but they can be valuable tools for helping people and I think it is clear that the Bible has given us a mandate to help other people as best we can, but that does not mean that we have to be stupid about it.
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  10. #9  
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain

    I think that the point is that weath like power is a spiritual hazard. It is a source of temptation to loose track of what is really important.
    Considering that money makes the world go round in our current society, money is one of most important things in society. Spirituality does little more than give pseudo-comfort to those who refuse to acknowledge that, while they dumpster-dive for their next meals.

    Seeking wealth or power at the expense of others is of course a path of evil.
    In order for us not to be evil, we must close every business enterprise on the planet.

    As for the church, well... it this an old controversy. Wealth and power does not hold the cure to all the ills of the world but they can be valuable tools for helping people and I think it is clear that the Bible has given us a mandate to help other people as best we can, but that does not mean that we have to be stupid about it.
    I'm sure the Pope would agree with you as he enjoys all the Vatican has to offer while thousands of his followers starve to death every day. He's a smart guy, that Pope.
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  11. #10 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Jesus was clear about giving to the poor. He did not say give so much and retain a few million for personal needs.
    Yes, the character jesus is said to have said this. Not sure how this is in any way related to the point I was making (i.e. yes, some ministries exploit their followers, but the followers bear some culpability for allowing themselves to be exploited).
    The victim bears guilt for being victimized. Ok.


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Most wealth is amassed through exploitation of labor and markets.
    This sounds like a difficult premise to prove.
    It is a premise that is impossible to refute.
    Where else does wealth come from?

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    This makes the accumulation of wealth immoral.
    Only insofar as one rejects the idea that it is possible to accumulate wealth morally. You seem to be suggesting something of a false dichotomy here (either be dirt poor and moral or have money and be immoral).
    No one said be dirt poor. Just not that rich.

    Quote Originally Posted by

    "Greatest I am"
    Are there moral ways to amass great wealth and what are they?
    Err...work hard, save money.
    Work hard at exploiting workers or the market place. Yes.

    Exploitation for personal gain to excess is immoral.

    Regards
    DL
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  12. #11 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Q)
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am

    Are there moral ways to amass great wealth and what are they?
    You could win a lottery.
    One winner 1,000,000 losers. Hmm.

    Is that exploitation of the greed of others?

    Regards
    DL
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    As a child, I learned that one of the main differences between "the rich" and the "the poor" was quite often not how much money they made but how they spent the money which they did make. This might seem ridiculous, but I think my observation was restricted to those whom I saw everyday in the middle class.

    My point is that it is not what we have but what we do with it. The rich quite often spend their money more carefully than the poor and that might mean that they do not help others when they can. But this is not necessarily so. Those who spend their money unwisely can be just as selfish and miserly as those who spend wisely. The ideology of Marx is BS. If the capitalist is a good steward of that which he has then he serves the community well. The communists certainly demonstrated that putting all the property in the hands of the state was not a good alternative to this. Besides the passages from the Bible that GIA has quoted to us, we also have the parable of the talents.

    I think that the point is that weath like power is a spiritual hazard. It is a source of temptation to loose track of what is really important. Certainly everyone who puts personal desires ahead of the well being of others is not in touch with what is really important. Seeking wealth or power at the expense of others is of course a path of evil. But I think the more important point is that we are accountable for our choices and those with wealth and power have choices which those without wealth and power do not have, and thus they are accountable for them.

    But I personally find the self-righteousness of the poor to be little better than the self-righteousness of the rich. Niether being rich nor being poor automatically makes one a better person.

    As for the church, well... it this an old controversy. Wealth and power does not hold the cure to all the ills of the world but they can be valuable tools for helping people and I think it is clear that the Bible has given us a mandate to help other people as best we can, but that does not mean that we have to be stupid about it.
    Well said.

    Regards
    DL
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  14. #13  
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    [quote="(Q)"]
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain

    I think that the point is that weath like power is a spiritual hazard. It is a source of temptation to loose track of what is really important.
    Considering that money makes the world go round in our current society, money is one of most important things in society. Spirituality does little more than give pseudo-comfort to those who refuse to acknowledge that, while they dumpster-dive for their next meals.

    Seeking wealth or power at the expense of others is of course a path of evil.
    In order for us not to be evil, we must close every business enterprise on the planet.

    quote]

    Not really. You can have a business that enriches you or you can have a business that enriches all those that labor for you.

    A CEO in the U S will make 100 times the wage of the man on the production floor. In Japan the CEO will make 10 times the amount as the man on the production floor.

    Regards
    DL
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  15. #14  
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Q)
    Considering that money makes the world go round in our current society, money is one of most important things in society. Spirituality does little more than give pseudo-comfort to those who refuse to acknowledge that, while they dumpster-dive for their next meals.
    Psychology, which in my opinion is the modern form of spirituality(just like astrology/astronomy, numerology/mathematics, alchemy/chemistry, etc) is a very lucrative business and is not just limited to the prescription of pills and chemical manipulation which might be termes "psudo-comfort." Psychology also includes leadership training(which very wealthy businesses and schools spend great deals of money on... but you claim only brings comfort... hmm, maybe your just psudo-uncomfortable)

    Spirituality is not comforting, actually it is quite frightening sometimes, most of the time. I ask you to experiment and try to abandon your preconceived notions about reality and tell me how comfortable you begin to feel.

    also

    I know many atheist dumpster divers, in fact, most dumpster divers I know of are devout secular activists. What does dumpster diving and spirituality have to do with each other?
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  16. #15  
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    Do you actually ever try to refute arguments or is your schtick to turn everything into a strawman?

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Jesus was clear about giving to the poor. He did not say give so much and retain a few million for personal needs.
    I believe that I already agreed that the character of jesus allegedly said that. I don't know why you felt it needed to be repeated.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    The victim bears guilt for being victimized. Ok.
    I'll repeat myself since you appear to have missed it the first time:

    "the followers bear some culpability for allowing themselves to be exploited"

    If any of those words are confusing, you can either ask for clarification or look them up in a dictionary.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    It is a premise that is impossible to refute.
    I guess it's a good thing for me that the burden of proof doesn't work that way. You are responsible for supporting your claim. I am not responsible for disproving it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Where else does wealth come from?
    Sometime people work. When they do, they are typically paid money. The amount of money is usually agreed upon (either formally or informally) by both parties in a free market system.

    See? No "exploitation of labor and markets" required. In other words, your false premise fails.

    [quote]
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    This makes the accumulation of wealth immoral.
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    No one said be dirt poor. Just not that rich.
    Well I guess you'll need to be more specific then. What do you mean by rich? By third world standards, our impoverished are wealthy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Work hard at exploiting workers or the market place. Yes.
    I'm sure that's one way to do it, but it's not the only way as you seem to want to insist.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Exploitation for personal gain to excess is immoral.
    Nice use of qualifiers here. So exploitation for personal gain to non-excess is not immoral?

    You're being slippery here, so I'm not 100% clear on your point.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Jesus was clear about giving to the poor. He did not say give so much and retain a few million for personal needs.
    I believe that I already agreed that the character of jesus allegedly said that. I don't know why you felt it needed to be repeated.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    The victim bears guilt for being victimized. Ok.
    I'll repeat myself since you appear to have missed it the first time:

    "the followers bear some culpability for allowing themselves to be exploited"

    If any of those words are confusing, you can either ask for clarification or look them up in a dictionary.
    So when a con man cons someone, that someone is also to bear blame for being coned.

    Is that like a rape victim that should not have worn a short dress?


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Work hard at exploiting workers or the market place. Yes.
    I'm sure that's one way to do it, but it's not the only way as you seem to want to insist.
    Show how then.


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Exploitation for personal gain to excess is immoral.
    Nice use of qualifiers here. So exploitation for personal gain to non-excess is not immoral?

    You're being slippery here, so I'm not 100% clear on your point.
    I have an employee.
    He is paid 25 thousand a year.
    He invents a new process for our work.
    I make million from the new process.
    His salary I bump to 30 thousand a year after negotiations.
    I am exploiting this employee.

    Regards
    DL
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  18. #17  
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    The strawman arguments continue.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    So when a con man cons someone, that someone is also to bear blame for being coned.
    Bears some (there it is a third time) responsibility, yes. No one forces you to be conned.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Is that like a rape victim that should not have worn a short dress?
    Is that some sort of sick joke?

    Please help me understand how willingly and purposely sending money to someone is similar to be sexually assaulted against your will.

    I'm one step closer to becoming convinced that you're trolling.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Show how then.
    Work hard and save your money.

    You have the burden of proof for your own argument. Please stop attempting to shift it to me. It won't work.

    [quote]
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    I have an employee.
    He is paid 25 thousand a year.
    He invents a new process for our work.
    I make million from the new process.
    His salary I bump to 30 thousand a year after negotiations.
    I am exploiting this employee.
    Yes, in that example (which you just completely pulled out of your ass), you would be exploiting your employee. Back here in the real world though, some people just go to work, earn a fair wage, and save their money. Over time, they accumulate wealth.

    P.S. I notice that you didn't define "wealth" or address my question re: excessive vs. non-excessive. Was there a particular reason you skipped those?
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  19. #18  
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    Quote Originally Posted by marcusclayman
    Psychology, which in my opinion is the modern form of spirituality
    There's your first mistake, making the rest of your argument pointless.
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  20. #19  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am

    Not really.
    Yes, really. Businesses are defined as 'ongoing concerns' with the expectation of turning a profit.
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  21. #20 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Can a rich Church or man get into heaven?
    Yes:

    Acts 16:31 -

    "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house."
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    The rich are in heaven now! Their problem is that they want to be the richest.

    When people stuff themselves with excessive dollars that they do NOT need, then that indicates that they are using those dollars like a DRUG.

    That is the main problem with this 'dollar republic' the republicans have foisted on us all.

    My solution is that this free market economy be controlled by the government rather than the dollar influences by the wealthy.

    You see what happened to Christ for preaching REFORM.

    So being on the internet promoting my opinions is a safer way to preach. HaHa.

    Well, not entirely since I have had a couple of MAJOR hackers giving me problems.

    I consider that our US Constitution INDIRECTLY endorses Christ as a
    preacher/reformer.

    The trouble is that it does NOT get the respect that it should .

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  23. #22 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by sysvr4
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Can a rich Church or man get into heaven?
    Yes:

    Acts 16:31 -

    "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house."
    If only those poor starving people knew about this...
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
    "All people know the same truth. Our lives consist of how we chose to distort it." - Harry Block
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG

    P.S. I notice that you didn't define "wealth" or address my question re: excessive vs. non-excessive. Was there a particular reason you skipped those?
    I note that you do not understand that a victim is just that, a victim and not an accomplice so ok, lets see if you can understand an economy.


    A good socio economic pyramid will look like a nice triangular pyramid.

    If the upper levels, where the rich money is show, are wider than the lower ones, where the poor money is shown, then it is showing a disproportional number of poor money, at the bottom, as opposed to the rich at the top. Any excess at the top levels that exceed the ones below show a disproportional variance between the rich of a nation over the poor of that nation.

    If you consider the French revolution, you would note that in that day, their demographic pyramid had lost it's nice triangular shape with the few aristocrats owning much of the wealth and the greatly larger number of serfs with basically nothing.

    Their pyramid would have looked like a block with an umbrella over it. Way to wide at the top and way too thin yet high, at the bottom.

    There must always be men of wealth at the top and poor at the bottom.
    The trick for a healthy economy is to maintain the triangle shape and just keep the money moving.

    The rich must get rid of their money to the poor and the poor will spend it to keep it flowing back up the chain to the rich man that must keep giving it away or spending it.

    This is a healthy economy. When accumulation begins then the economy lags.

    Even in our last recession, did you not notice politicians encouraging us to keep spending?
    Did you also note that the banks, rich money, pumped more of it through lending, to the poor?

    It is therefore unethical for a rich men to amass great wealth because it causes suffering or poverty further down the demographic pyramid, proportional to what he hoards.

    So the answer to your question of what is wealth. Wealth is meaningless. It is not a number. Excess wealth is what is important and this is the overhang that exists on a socio economic demographic pyramid.

    If I was a demographer with his charts it would be simpler to see but this is the best way I know of explaining it. I hope it is clear.

    Regards
    DL
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  25. #24  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    I note that you do not understand that a victim is just that, a victim and not an accomplice so ok, lets see if you can understand an economy.
    Indeed, and had members of the church broken into homes or hacked their way into bank accounts in order to take money, I would most certainly see how you would have a point.

    People made bad choices. Did they do so based on bad information? Certainly. Do the people intentionally spreading bad information (a debatable point, since some people will no doubt argue that the evangelists are simply trying to spread the word of god) have some 'spainin' to do. Absolutely. Does that absolve the people that wrote the check, affixed the stamp the envelope, and then walked down to the mailbox to send it off of their responsibility. Not in the slightest.

    If you drive a lemon off the car lot and it breaks down a week later, is that the dealers fault for selling you a piece of junk, or your fault for not getting the car checked out before you bought it? The correct answer is both.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    A good socio economic pyramid will look like a nice triangular pyramid.
    Do the rich or the poor go at the bottom? Top?

    Wouldn't a prettier shape be a diamond (i.e. most of the wealth spread amongst the middle class, with very little poverty?).

    Oh well, I only studied economics for several years while getting both a undergrad and graduate degree in business, therefore I probably don't know what I'm talking about.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    If the upper levels are wider that the lower ones then it is showing a disproportional number of poor as opposed to the rich. Any excess at the top levels that exceed the ones below show a disproportional variance between the rich of a nation over the poor of that nation.
    Quite. And???

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    If you consider the French revolution, you would note that in that day, their demographic pyramid had lost it's nice triangular shape with the few aristocrats owning much of the wealth and the greatly larger number of serfs with basically nothing.
    Actually that was common in all feudal societies, not just in France.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Their pyramid would have looked like a block with an umbrella over it. Way to wide at the top and way too thin at the bottom.
    And???

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    There must always be men of wealth at the top and poor at the bottom.
    Indeed. This doesn't tell me anything though. If I have 1 rich person and 1 poor person and 98 middle class people, I still have "men of wealth at the top and poor at the bottom".

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    The trick for a healthy economy is to maintain the triangle shape and just keep the money moving.
    And here I thought it was exchanging money for good and services in a free market. I didn't realize geometry had anything to do with it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    The rich must get rid of their money to the poor and the poor will spend it to keep it flowing back up the chain to the rich man that must keep giving it away.
    This is a healthy economy. When accumulation begins then the economy lags.
    I think we have ample evidence that trickle-down economics doesn't work.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Even in our last recession, did you not notice politicians encouraging us to keep spending?
    The rich politicians who were benefiting from the economic policies which led the the recession? Yeah, those guys were awesome.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    It is therefore unethical for a rich man to amass great wealth because it causes suffering further down the demographic pyramid proportional to what he hoards.
    You're paragraphs into this and you've yet to define any of the terms I've asked you to.

    What does "great wealth" mean? $1,000? $10,000? $100,000? Or is it some magic number that only you know?

    If I earn money, do I not have a right to do whatever I want with it (after taxes)?

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    So the answer to your question of what is wealth. It is not a number, it is the overhang that exists on a socio economic demographic pyramid.
    That doesn't tell me anything. It suggests that if you have $10 in your bank account that you're not using (which would feed a homeless person for a week), then you're accumulating wealth and therefore an immoral person.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    If I was a demographer with his charts it would be simpler to see but this is the best way I know of explaining it. I hope it is clear.
    As clear as mud. Thanks for your insightful post.
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Q)
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am

    Not really.
    Yes, really. Businesses are defined as 'ongoing concerns' with the expectation of turning a profit.
    Certainly but what is done with the profit and how much from where is what will decide if it is a moral venture or not.

    If hoarded by the owner then not. If distributed to labor and the market then yes it would be moral.

    Profit to keep is evil, profit to share is good.

    Regards
    DL
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Profit to keep is evil, profit to share is good.
    You and Karl Marx are going to get along like gangbusters.
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  28. #27 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by sysvr4
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Can a rich Church or man get into heaven?
    Yes:

    Acts 16:31 -

    "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house."
    Luke 6:24
    But woe unto you that are rich! For ye have received your consolation.

    We can use thump against thump forever and get nowhere.

    If you believe in Jesus then you know what he said to do with your wealth before following him.

    If I need say more then you are not a literal reading believer so no thumps please.

    I do not interpret his words to mean give all away but to not be burdened by savings and to share them within the greater economy.

    Regards
    DL
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmo
    Greatest

    The rich are in heaven now! Their problem is that they want to be the richest.

    When people stuff themselves with excessive dollars that they do NOT need, then that indicates that they are using those dollars like a DRUG.

    That is the main problem with this 'dollar republic' the republicans have foisted on us all.

    My solution is that this free market economy be controlled by the government rather than the dollar influences by the wealthy.

    You see what happened to Christ for preaching REFORM.

    So being on the internet promoting my opinions is a safer way to preach. HaHa.

    Well, not entirely since I have had a couple of MAJOR hackers giving me problems.

    I consider that our US Constitution INDIRECTLY endorses Christ as a
    preacher/reformer.

    The trouble is that it does NOT get the respect that it should .

    Cosmo
    What makes you think the governments do not control the economy?

    Have you not seen them swing great chunks of wealth in the last two years?

    Regards
    DL
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG
    ...
    The perfect demographic shape is whatever society would decide but you diamond shape is not too bad. Like any shape though, it need the excess at the top to go down and create the shape.

    Other than this gem, your other ideas are goofy.

    Regards
    DL
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Other than this gem, your other ideas are goofy.
    Really? Why?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    What makes you think the governments do not control the economy?

    Have you not seen them swing great chunks of wealth in the last two years?

    Regards
    DL
    If you are talking about the 'interest rates' of government monies, well yes, that just provided the banks to make a good profit on those 'cheap' rates

    So that is a good reason to get rid of this YO YO market philosophy and use 'fixed' rates. This would take the gambling out of the housing market and would eliminate a good percentage of these foreclosures. My opinion.

    Cosmo
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Certainly but what is done with the profit and how much from where is what will decide if it is a moral venture or not.

    If hoarded by the owner then not. If distributed to labor and the market then yes it would be moral.
    Considering the owner is the one who takes the risk, and of course, we're talking about HUGE risks here, financially, he is certainly obliged to keep those profits. No one else assumed the same risks as him within that venture, hence he need not share in the profits.

    Profit to keep is evil, profit to share is good.
    I would suggest you start cutting lawns or something along that line, that way you'll begin to understand why you wouldn't want to share in your profits.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmo
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    What makes you think the governments do not control the economy?

    Have you not seen them swing great chunks of wealth in the last two years?

    Regards
    DL
    If you are talking about the 'interest rates' of government monies, well yes, that just provided the banks to make a good profit on those 'cheap' rates

    So that is a good reason to get rid of this YO YO market philosophy and use 'fixed' rates. This would take the gambling out of the housing market and would eliminate a good percentage of these foreclosures. My opinion.

    Cosmo
    Now that we --agree-- on the government control of the economy we should recognize that they do whatever the experts in the field tell them to do.

    Perhaps some day they will fix rates. Who can say.

    Regards
    DL
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Q)
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Certainly but what is done with the profit and how much from where is what will decide if it is a moral venture or not.

    If hoarded by the owner then not. If distributed to labor and the market then yes it would be moral.
    Considering the owner is the one who takes the risk, and of course, we're talking about HUGE risks here, financially, he is certainly obliged to keep those profits. No one else assumed the same risks as him within that venture, hence he need not share in the profits.

    Profit to keep is evil, profit to share is good.
    I would suggest you start cutting lawns or something along that line, that way you'll begin to understand why you wouldn't want to share in your profits.
    Just who is taking what risk?

    There is a major company going bankrupt here as we speak. The Government is bringing the management to task for their million $ bonuses even as they have lost the pensions of their workers.

    Yep, big risk for these millionaires while their workers go on welfare.

    Regards
    DL
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Other than this gem, your other ideas are goofy.
    Really? Why?
    You recognize the demographical shape required for a good economy yet do not recognize that those who break the pattern hurt the whole system.

    As to your idiot victim being a contributor to the con crime, well that is just goofy to beat the band.

    Stupidity is a sorrow, not a condition that makes anyone a complicit contributor to their own victimization.


    Regards
    DL
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    Greatest,

    You didn't actually provide an answer, you simply repeated yourself.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    You recognize the demographical shape required for a good economy
    First, "shapes" have nothing to do with economic. This isn't geometry.

    Second, the distribution of wealth (or "shape" as you like to call it) has nothing to do with the health of an economy. You can have a thriving economy with seriously out of whack wealth distribution. You might not have much in way of social justice, but that's a topic for the philosophy sub-forum.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    ...required for a good economy yet do not recognize that those who break the pattern hurt the whole system.
    Further evidence that you have absolutely no idea what you're talking about. Either you've never seen the inside of an Econ 101 classroom or you passed the course with Ds.

    There is no "pattern". In a free market, agents act in their own interests (ever heard of a guy named Adam Smith?) in accordance with the laws of supply and demand.

    If you want a planned economy with "patterns" and "shapes" move to Cuba. Come back in 5 years and tell me what you think about how communist socialism looks in the real world.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    As to your idiot victim being a contributor to the con crime, well that is just goofy to beat the band.
    No more so than your apparent desire to excuse individuals all responsibility for what they do with their money.

    Take care.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am

    Just who is taking what risk?

    There is a major company going bankrupt here as we speak. The Government is bringing the management to task for their million $ bonuses even as they have lost the pensions of their workers.

    Yep, big risk for these millionaires while their workers go on welfare.

    Regards
    DL
    Utterly irrelevant to the fact that businesses are going concerns and that those who put up the money are the ones taking the risks. Your example does not support your argument in the least.
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    (Q) as far as risk taking is concerned i believe you are ignoring the declining marginal value of money, the risk for the worker, the investor and the executive is not exactly calcuable as economicists recognize today the relative value of money
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  40. #39 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Quote Originally Posted by sysvr4
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Can a rich Church or man get into heaven?
    Yes:

    Acts 16:31 -

    "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house."
    Luke 6:24
    But woe unto you that are rich! For ye have received your consolation.

    We can use thump against thump forever and get nowhere.

    If you believe in Jesus then you know what he said to do with your wealth before following him.

    If I need say more then you are not a literal reading believer so no thumps please.

    I do not interpret his words to mean give all away but to not be burdened by savings and to share them within the greater economy.

    Regards
    DL
    Ah, but the question is can a rich man get into heaven. Speaking in a literally Biblical context, he can.
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  41. #40 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by sysvr4
    Ah, but the question is can a rich man get into heaven. Speaking in a literally Biblical context, he can.
    Matthew 9:23-24

    Then Jesus said to his disciples, "I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

    Mark 10:24-25

    The disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said again, "Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

    Luke 18:24-25

    Jesus looked at him and said, "How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."
    "PhoenixG makes me puke that why I quoted him." - esbo
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    I'm going to heaven, though, thanks to the invention of the blender, no matter how rich I get.
    "The major difference between a thing that might go wrong and a thing that cannot possibly go wrong is that when a thing that cannot possibly go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at or repair." ~ Douglas Adams
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  43. #42 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG
    Quote Originally Posted by sysvr4
    Ah, but the question is can a rich man get into heaven. Speaking in a literally Biblical context, he can.
    Matthew 9:23-24

    Then Jesus said to his disciples, "I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

    [...]
    The quoted passage(s) discuss wealth within the context of macroscopic afterlife probabilities. My point is that there is no explicit ban on wealth in the Bible with regards to salvation.
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  44. #43 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by sysvr4
    The quoted passage(s) discuss wealth within the context of macroscopic afterlife probabilities. My point is that there is no explicit ban on wealth in the Bible with regards to salvation.
    Here is your post again, since you seem to be unclear as to what you actually said:

    "Ah, but the question is can a rich man get into heaven. Speaking in a literally Biblical context, he can."
    "PhoenixG makes me puke that why I quoted him." - esbo
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  45. #44 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG
    Quote Originally Posted by sysvr4
    The quoted passage(s) discuss wealth within the context of macroscopic afterlife probabilities. My point is that there is no explicit ban on wealth in the Bible with regards to salvation.
    Here is your post again, since you seem to be unclear as to what you actually said:

    "Ah, but the question is can a rich man get into heaven. Speaking in a literally Biblical context, he can."
    ...exactly?
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  46. #45 Re: Can a rich Church or man get into heaven? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by sysvr4
    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG
    Quote Originally Posted by sysvr4
    Ah, but the question is can a rich man get into heaven. Speaking in a literally Biblical context, he can.
    Matthew 9:23-24

    Then Jesus said to his disciples, "I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

    [...]
    The quoted passage(s) discuss wealth within the context of macroscopic afterlife probabilities. My point is that there is no explicit ban on wealth in the Bible with regards to salvation.
    Luke 6:24
    But woe unto you that are rich! For ye have received your consolation.

    Jesus was clear. Give all you have and follow me.

    I think what he was saying was, keep enough to live in your community but work for the community.

    Regards
    DL
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    Nor sure what this thread has to do with the scientific study of religion.

    Before we angel-pin dance about whether and how people can get the make-believe land, shouldn't we try to establish whether is really exist at all. And given that it probably doesn't, explore why certain faiths developed memes that teach rich people can't get that big reward after death?
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    Quote Originally Posted by ishmaelblues
    (Q) as far as risk taking is concerned i believe you are ignoring the declining marginal value of money, the risk for the worker, the investor and the executive is not exactly calcuable as economicists recognize today the relative value of money
    What about them? Explain.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    Nor sure what this thread has to do with the scientific study of religion.

    Before we angel-pin dance about whether and how people can get the make-believe land, shouldn't we try to establish whether is really exist at all. And given that it probably doesn't, explore why certain faiths developed memes that teach rich people can't get that big reward after death?
    Because they recognize that wealth is acquired by exploitation of labor and markets. Simple. It almost always is.

    Regards
    DL
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    Nor sure what this thread has to do with the scientific study of religion.

    Before we angel-pin dance about whether and how people can get the make-believe land, shouldn't we try to establish whether is really exist at all. And given that it probably doesn't, explore why certain faiths developed memes that teach rich people can't get that big reward after death?
    The idea of a conflict between the pursuit of wealth and the imperatives of religion (including Christianity) is a pretty pervasive idea in the religion world wide. Certainly there could be a more scientific approach to the examination of this issue and idea than has been presented so far, but I think there is plenty of room here for scientific inquiry. Anyone, how can we examine and comment on the presence of this theme in religion from psychological and sociological perspectives? I am certainly not the social scientist here. So from the social science perspective what could be the reasons for this recurring theme in religion worldwide?
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    Nor sure what this thread has to do with the scientific study of religion.

    Before we angel-pin dance about whether and how people can get the make-believe land, shouldn't we try to establish whether is really exist at all. And given that it probably doesn't, explore why certain faiths developed memes that teach rich people can't get that big reward after death?
    Because they recognize that wealth is acquired by exploitation of labor and markets. Simple. It almost always is.

    Regards
    DL
    Perhaps. If so, it's an obsolete notion that seems an anathema of Capitalism. I know the view seems true of traditional Christianity, a hole which Jews filled as money lenders through the middle ages, when they weren't being persecuted. Islam, as well has strict limitations of what to lend money for as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    Nor sure what this thread has to do with the scientific study of religion.

    Before we angel-pin dance about whether and how people can get the make-believe land, shouldn't we try to establish whether is really exist at all. And given that it probably doesn't, explore why certain faiths developed memes that teach rich people can't get that big reward after death?
    If God exists, and He does exist, then Heaven (and probably Hell as well) exists.

    I doubt that is possible to prove that God does not exist. However, I wonder if it is possible to use scientific methodology to create evidence that God does exist. This may be possible.

    You would probably have to use some research methods from social sciences in study design, since you would be dealing with human behaviors and beliefs.

    What I mean is, I doubt you could create experimental conditions that would compel God to demonstrate some physical manifestation of power to people who do not seek Him.

    However, could nonbelievers who were motivated to seek God as part of a study, actually find God and give evidence for this to an investigator in the course of a study?

    I don't know if this has been tried.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    If God exists, and He does exist, then Heaven (and probably Hell as well) exists.
    What evidence do you have for any of this?

    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    I doubt that is possible to prove that God does not exist.
    Indeed. I also doubt that it's possible to prove that invisible pink unicorns, russell's teapot, zeus, thor, ra, etc don't exist. I don't think very many people find that to be a convincing argument for belief though

    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    However, I wonder if it is possible to use scientific methodology to create evidence that God does exist. This may be possible.
    It would certainly go a long way toward legitimizing the claims made by theists. No longer would non-theists be able to argue that theists are delusional.

    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    You would probably have to use some research methods from social sciences in study design, since you would be dealing with human behaviors and beliefs.
    No, not really. Physical sciences should be sufficient. Unless of course you want to establish that some people belief in (all manner of) things. But I don't think that this is contested.

    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    What I mean is, I doubt you could create experimental conditions that would compel God to demonstrate some physical manifestation of power to people who do not seek Him.
    That might be one way to do it. Another might be to establish some sort of measure for which no other explanation other than a supernatural being would be sufficient than then test for that. The down side is that if such an experiment were successful, all you would establish is the existence of a supernatural being. All claims/assumptions re: gender, disposition, etc would still be left untouched (i.e. "you proved that a god exists, but that doesn't mean that your god exists").

    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    However, could nonbelievers who were motivated to seek God as part of a study, actually find God and give evidence for this to an investigator in the course of a study?

    I don't know if this has been tried.
    Considering how burden of proof works, I don't know that there's anything here that worth too much time contemplating.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    If God exists, and He does exist, then Heaven (and probably Hell as well) exists.
    Perhaps you assume that "God" means the God of the Bible and thus by "If God exits" you implicity mean "If the Bible is true", or something like that.


    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    I doubt that is possible to prove that God does not exist. However, I wonder if it is possible to use scientific methodology to create evidence that God does exist. This may be possible.
    I don't think so. Anything that you could prove exists in that way is not something I would call God, but rather some kind of alien.


    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    However, could nonbelievers who were motivated to seek God as part of a study, actually find God and give evidence for this to an investigator in the course of a study?

    I don't know if this has been tried.
    I don't know if it has. Sounds interesting. But I hardly think that positive results in such an experiment would be considered proof that God exists. It is more likely to be simply taken as proof that properly motivated people are capable "finding God" and thinking that they have evidence, which can easily be interpreted as an innate human capacity for irrational belief.
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    [quote="Greatest I am"]
    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmo
    Greatest

    The rich are in heaven now! Their problem is that they want to be the richest.

    When people stuff themselves with excessive dollars that they do NOT need, then that indicates that they are using those dollars like a DRUG.

    That is the main problem with this 'dollar republic' the republicans have foisted on us all.

    My solution is that this free market economy be controlled by the government rather than the dollar influences by the wealthy.

    You see what happened to Christ for preaching REFORM.

    So being on the internet promoting my opinions is a safer way to preach. HaHa.

    Well, not entirely since I have had a couple of MAJOR hackers giving me problems.

    I consider that our US Constitution INDIRECTLY endorses Christ as a
    preacher/reformer.

    The trouble is that it does NOT get the respect that it should .

    Cosmo
    What makes you think the governments do not control the economy?

    Have you not seen them swing great chunks of wealth in the last two years?

    Regards
    DL
    Well, the government may now experience some reform.
    Too bad it did not happen in 2004.

    Cosmo
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixG

    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    You would probably have to use some research methods from social sciences in study design, since you would be dealing with human behaviors and beliefs.
    No, not really. Physical sciences should be sufficient. Unless of course you want to establish that some people belief in (all manner of) things. But I don't think that this is contested.

    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    What I mean is, I doubt you could create experimental conditions that would compel God to demonstrate some physical manifestation of power to people who do not seek Him.
    That might be one way to do it. Another might be to establish some sort of measure for which no other explanation other than a supernatural being would be sufficient than then test for that. The down side is that if such an experiment were successful, all you would establish is the existence of a supernatural being. All claims/assumptions re: gender, disposition, etc would still be left untouched (i.e. "you proved that a god exists, but that doesn't mean that your god exists").
    I was thinking that social science techniques would be superior, because I do not have an idea of how construct an experiment where a supernatural being would participate to produce a physical manifestation.

    However, social science investigators do research in ways that are a different from physical sciences. It seems that these investigators often do long interviews and look for patterns etc. It is still science.

    If several resolute atheists were to "seek God", and then changed their views about whether God exists, this might constitute "evidence" although calling this "proof" is something else.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Quote Originally Posted by dedo

    I doubt that is possible to prove that God does not exist. However, I wonder if it is possible to use scientific methodology to create evidence that God does exist. This may be possible.
    I don't think so. Anything that you could prove exists in that way is not something I would call God, but rather some kind of alien.
    Then there would need to be another section: "The scientific study of alien life."


    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    However, could nonbelievers who were motivated to seek God as part of a study, actually find God and give evidence for this to an investigator in the course of a study?

    I don't know if this has been tried.
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    I don't know if it has. Sounds interesting. But I hardly think that positive results in such an experiment would be considered proof that God exists. It is more likely to be simply taken as proof that properly motivated people are capable "finding God" and thinking that they have evidence, which can easily be interpreted as an innate human capacity for irrational belief.
    This might be the argument that would make it hard to fund such a study.

    Perhaps, even if several studies like this were done and produced amazingly positive results eg: "A high percentage of nonbelievers becoming believers"--it might not effect whether or not people change their beliefs any more than if you could produce a physical manifestation of the supernatural.

    Perhaps people seek God when they are ready. When this happens then a relationship forms.

    Anyway, I did not want to move too far from "whether a rich man can get into Heaven".

    It is strange how much many of us think of ways to "become rich", when we might be thinking of ways to reduce the chance of entering heaven. The other contradiction to this are the Bible verses that encourage people to give their "first fruits" back to God as a means of becoming rich. So perhaps being rich is not so bad, it is how you get there.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Quote Originally Posted by dedo

    I doubt that is possible to prove that God does not exist. However, I wonder if it is possible to use scientific methodology to create evidence that God does exist. This may be possible.
    I don't think so. Anything that you could prove exists in that way is not something I would call God, but rather some kind of alien.
    Then there would need to be another section: "The scientific study of alien life."
    There is no 'scientific' study of alien life. Nobody can provide suitable evidence for the existance of alien life, let alone study it scientifically.

    Religion, however, almost certainly exists, and can be directly studied.
    "The major difference between a thing that might go wrong and a thing that cannot possibly go wrong is that when a thing that cannot possibly go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at or repair." ~ Douglas Adams
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    Nor sure what this thread has to do with the scientific study of religion.

    Before we angel-pin dance about whether and how people can get the make-believe land, shouldn't we try to establish whether is really exist at all. And given that it probably doesn't, explore why certain faiths developed memes that teach rich people can't get that big reward after death?
    Because they recognize that wealth is acquired by exploitation of labor and markets. Simple. It almost always is.

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    Perhaps. If so, it's an obsolete notion that seems an anathema of Capitalism. I know the view seems true of traditional Christianity, a hole which Jews filled as money lenders through the middle ages, when they weren't being persecuted. Islam, as well has strict limitations of what to lend money for as well.
    I see Capitalism as permission and indeed compulsion to exploit labor and markets. this is what drives Capitalism. The problem is not so much Capitalism, it is that the rich have placed too large of a discrepancy between themselves and the poor. Our demographic pyramid is top heavy and as shown by western governments in the last recession, government is the one who has to force the adjustment. If the rich are not careful then the government will nationalize or find another way to control their wealth.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    If God exists, and He does exist, then Heaven (and probably Hell as well) exists.
    Perhaps you assume that "God" means the God of the Bible and thus by "If God exits" you implicity mean "If the Bible is true", or something like that.


    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    I doubt that is possible to prove that God does not exist. However, I wonder if it is possible to use scientific methodology to create evidence that God does exist. This may be possible.
    I don't think so. Anything that you could prove exists in that way is not something I would call God, but rather some kind of alien.


    Quote Originally Posted by dedo
    However, could nonbelievers who were motivated to seek God as part of a study, actually find God and give evidence for this to an investigator in the course of a study?

    I don't know if this has been tried.
    I don't know if it has. Sounds interesting. But I hardly think that positive results in such an experiment would be considered proof that God exists. It is more likely to be simply taken as proof that properly motivated people are capable "finding God" and thinking that they have evidence, which can easily be interpreted as an innate human capacity for irrational belief.
    A perfect God would by definition, create a perfect system of life. The only possible proof of God then would be a recognition that we live in a perfect system. I see this perfection all about but most do not.

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    DL
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    Even if an alien God were found, why would men think that we should be lead by an alien?

    We are natural animals. In a natural world, each animal looks to it's own for the rules of life.

    An ant looks to the God of ants, an ant.
    A lion looks to the God of lions, a lion.
    Man then should look to it's God, a man. not some alien that the Religionist say we can never understand and works in mysterious ways.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    I don't know if it has. Sounds interesting. But I hardly think that positive results in such an experiment would be considered proof that God exists. It is more likely to be simply taken as proof that properly motivated people are capable "finding God" and thinking that they have evidence, which can easily be interpreted as an innate human capacity for irrational belief.
    A perfect God would by definition, create a perfect system of life. The only possible proof of God then would be a recognition that we live in a perfect system. I see this perfection all about but most do not.
    As I see it, the above observation of 'perfection', interestingly falls a little short due to the obvious - an insatiable need for death to be a part of the scenario.

    Apart from vegetation, every living thing that moveth upon the face of the planet requires the death of something else in order to survive for another day. Some can survive on sustenance from within the vegetation itself, while others require the death of another living and moving 'thing'.

    We have necessarily surrendered to the seeming inevitability in this prevailing platform of our existence, and even though the ongoing slaughter is fundamentally repugnant to our sensitivities, we have somehow permitted an unnatural enjoyment of such into our consciousness to the point where amazingly, we now actually find a sense of satisfaction in the most vile and gruesome depictions of death and destruction - even of ourselves - in the name of entertainment, no less.

    If this (above) observation be 'perfect', then I would like to seek a second opinion.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Apopohis Reject
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    I don't know if it has. Sounds interesting. But I hardly think that positive results in such an experiment would be considered proof that God exists. It is more likely to be simply taken as proof that properly motivated people are capable "finding God" and thinking that they have evidence, which can easily be interpreted as an innate human capacity for irrational belief.
    A perfect God would by definition, create a perfect system of life. The only possible proof of God then would be a recognition that we live in a perfect system. I see this perfection all about but most do not.
    As I see it, the above observation of 'perfection', interestingly falls a little short due to the obvious - an insatiable need for death to be a part of the scenario.

    Apart from vegetation, every living thing that moveth upon the face of the planet requires the death of something else in order to survive for another day. Some can survive on sustenance from within the vegetation itself, while others require the death of another living and moving 'thing'.

    We have necessarily surrendered to the seeming inevitability in this prevailing platform of our existence, and even though the ongoing slaughter is fundamentally repugnant to our sensitivities, we have somehow permitted an unnatural enjoyment of such into our consciousness to the point where amazingly, we now actually find a sense of satisfaction in the most vile and gruesome depictions of death and destruction - even of ourselves - in the name of entertainment, no less.

    If this (above) observation be 'perfect', then I would like to seek a second opinion.
    I know of no one with an insatiable need for death. Perhaps you do.

    Death is part of our reality, this is undeniable, but I do not see people hanging about the abattoirs and other places where death is to just have a peek.

    Most know what is entertainment is and what life is.
    Both are to be enjoyed.

    When Darwin found the Galapagos Islands, do you think he thought the system he found to be perfect or imperfect?

    Regards
    DL
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    Firstly, I would think it a mistake to base my reasoning on what Charles Darwin (might have been) thinking - nearly 200 years ago.

    On the other hand, I'm sure if he were alive today, he would likely be making the decidedly unfortunate observation of the rapidly accelerating devolution of human intellect, and as a direct result; also the general planetary environment - due to the deleterious effects of a rapidly expanding avarice fuelled largely by a delinquent and complicit media.


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    I know of no one with an insatiable need for death. Perhaps you do.
    When was the last time you observed a vegetarian vulture?


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Death is part of our reality, this is undeniable, but I do not see people hanging about the abattoirs and other places where death is to just have a peek.
    You don't need to venture to such environs, for your local movie theatre will suffice.


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Most know what is entertainment is and what life is.
    Both are to be enjoyed.
    So because perfection is all around us, and we are to enjoy the abundant death that is a part of this perfect reality - (perhaps) highlighted by the plethora of deeply disturbing depictions presented for our general consumption and gratification, would you also recommend - on the basis of such observation; I obtain a copy of (perhaps) 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre' for the enjoyment of all at the local bible study group or pre-school?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Apopohis Reject
    Firstly, I would think it a mistake to base my reasoning on what Charles Darwin (might have been) thinking - nearly 200 years ago.

    On the other hand, I'm sure if he were alive today, he would likely be making the decidedly unfortunate observation of the rapidly accelerating devolution of human intellect, and as a direct result; also the general planetary environment - due to the deleterious effects of a rapidly expanding avarice fuelled largely by a delinquent and complicit media.


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    I know of no one with an insatiable need for death. Perhaps you do.
    When was the last time you observed a vegetarian vulture?


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Death is part of our reality, this is undeniable, but I do not see people hanging about the abattoirs and other places where death is to just have a peek.
    You don't need to venture to such environs, for your local movie theatre will suffice.
    That is not real. You should not treat it as real.


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Most know what is entertainment is and what life is.
    Both are to be enjoyed.
    So because perfection is all around us, and we are to enjoy the abundant death that is a part of this perfect reality - (perhaps) highlighted by the plethora of deeply disturbing depictions presented for our general consumption and gratification, would you also recommend - on the basis of such observation; I obtain a copy of (perhaps) 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre' for the enjoyment of all at the local bible study group or pre-school?
    Why not? They have probably already seen worse.

    Better that than the garbage that most Bible schools teach. Like the belief in real talking snakes and donkeys. Now that will really screw up their thinking. Death is normal. Talking snakes and donkeys are not.

    Regards
    DL
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    Quote Originally Posted by Apopohis Reject
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am

    A perfect God would by definition, create a perfect system of life. The only possible proof of God then would be a recognition that we live in a perfect system. I see this perfection all about but most do not.
    As I see it, the above observation of 'perfection', interestingly falls a little short due to the obvious - an insatiable need for death to be a part of the scenario.

    Apart from vegetation, every living thing that moveth upon the face of the planet requires the death of something else in order to survive for another day. Some can survive on sustenance from within the vegetation itself, while others require the death of another living and moving 'thing'.

    We have necessarily surrendered to the seeming inevitability in this prevailing platform of our existence, and even though the ongoing slaughter is fundamentally repugnant to our sensitivities, we have somehow permitted an unnatural enjoyment of such into our consciousness to the point where amazingly, we now actually find a sense of satisfaction in the most vile and gruesome depictions of death and destruction - even of ourselves - in the name of entertainment, no less.

    If this (above) observation be 'perfect', then I would like to seek a second opinion.
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    I know of no one with an insatiable need for death. Perhaps you do.

    Death is part of our reality, this is undeniable, but I do not see people hanging about the abattoirs and other places where death is to just have a peek.

    Most know what is entertainment is and what life is.
    Both are to be enjoyed.

    When Darwin found the Galapagos Islands, do you think he thought the system he found to be perfect or imperfect?

    Regards
    DL
    If you contrast the wonderful perfection of the Galapagos at the time of Darwin with the terrible abuse of nature from man, then is it possible for the world to be perfect?

    Could it be that the "imperfection" we see in the world inhabited by man, helps to create "perfection" in something we cannot see as well such as the character, or spirit of man?

    This may be one area where religion and science meet. We know that we have the capability to destroy ourselves. Statistics of war casualties (power laws etc.) tell us that whatever causes war is probably still with us.

    Maybe we have a choice. If we continue our "culture of death" as Apopo describes, then our fate is almost certainly a rapid or sudden population decline even to the near extinction of mankind. Then whoever is left will rebuild and will have a "higher moral consciousness" that what we have shown so far.

    Or we can choose to preserve life and take care of our planet and each other. Either way, through the growth experienced in preserving the planet, or from the horrific lesson of near extinction, the character of man advances.

    From a religious perspective, maybe this is the lesson of Noah. We can choose
    by our actions to destroy ourselves to the point of near extinction?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Quote Originally Posted by Apopohis Reject
    So because perfection is all around us, and we are to enjoy the abundant death that is a part of this perfect reality - (perhaps) highlighted by the plethora of deeply disturbing depictions presented for our general consumption and gratification, would you also recommend - on the basis of such observation; I obtain a copy of (perhaps) 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre' for the enjoyment of all at the local bible study group or pre-school?
    Why not? They have probably already seen worse.
    Now ain't that a real shame - in so many ways I don't know where to begin.


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Better that than the garbage that most Bible schools teach. Like the belief in real talking snakes and donkeys. Now that will really screw up their thinking.
    I could almost agree with you on that my friend, except for one very essential thing; you are reading the words with an entirely incorrect focus - which has severely screwed up your interpretation thereof.

    I hope you understand I'm not blaming you, much less accusing you of being alone in this. For it is fundamentally the responsibility of those we have generically; long held and honoured as being responsible for our necessary correction according such things. They have all failed us miserably - thereby screwing up our societal thinking, due in part to their unseemly gathered wealth for the extremely poor results, as delivered.

    Did I just write 'poor'? I meant reprehensible and malignant - yet even these words seem to fall short of sufficient.

    After all, why would they ever need to try harder to get to the core essence of the human dilemma? We seem to enjoy every opportunity to fawn over their highly polished exterior display of piety and reverence, without ever calling them to account for being utterly 'filled with dead men's bones', but that is not news, right?


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Death is normal. Talking snakes and donkeys are not.
    Indeed death has become accepted as normal and inevitable, however have you not noticed how after so much time, we still haven't arrived at the place where we are comfortable with it?

    In fact, I would argue that it still goes against everything we live out our lives for. Against our every sensitivity in fact. Against everything we stand for and work towards.

    It still after all these years, goes thoroughly against our grain - we hate it with a severe passion.

    Are you getting the point here? I am aware of how radical it might seem, yet perhaps I thought you might appreciate the extreme irony - of being human in our 'perfect' world.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    Nor sure what this thread has to do with the scientific study of religion.

    Before we angel-pin dance about whether and how people can get the make-believe land, shouldn't we try to establish whether is really exist at all. And given that it probably doesn't, explore why certain faiths developed memes that teach rich people can't get that big reward after death?
    The idea of a conflict between the pursuit of wealth and the imperatives of religion (including Christianity) is a pretty pervasive idea in the religion world wide. Certainly there could be a more scientific approach to the examination of this issue and idea than has been presented so far, but I think there is plenty of room here for scientific inquiry. Anyone, how can we examine and comment on the presence of this theme in religion from psychological and sociological perspectives? I am certainly not the social scientist here. So from the social science perspective what could be the reasons for this recurring theme in religion worldwide?
    Nietzche's ideas of master-slave morality may be relevant to this. He argued that Judean morality has it's origins in slave morality, thus things that would be bad for a slave are viewed as morally bad.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Master-slave_morality
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    Quote Originally Posted by i_feel_tiredsleepy
    Nietzche's ideas of master-slave morality may be relevant to this. He argued that Judean morality has it's origins in slave morality, thus things that would be bad for a slave are viewed as morally bad.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Master-slave_morality
    I don't see the connection. Slaves managing their masters assets represented a great deal of wealth in this world, Daniel was the supreme example of this. Slaves could not only hope for being given their freedom, but also inheritance and having learned the trade of their master could do quite well after that. In fact the way that the whole story of the slavery of the Jews in Egypt is written suggests that the whole thing was planned by God as a way that the Jews would come out of it with a good deal of wealth taken from Egypt.
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    Nietzche's use of words is perhaps not the best. By slave-morality he really means a populace morality, one that is ruled by the majority (i.e. the lower classes). His opinion is that the morality of Christianity would be shaped by the world-view of the poor, the slave, the oppressed, etc. If we accept the proposition that the views of the poor would have more influence on Christianity than the views of the rich, it is not unreasonable to expect some resentment towards the rich and powerful to manifest itself within Christianity.

    Edit: In general I think most popular world religions are populace in nature.
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    Quote Originally Posted by i_feel_tiredsleepy
    Nietzche's use of words is perhaps not the best. By slave-morality he really means a populace morality, one that is ruled by the majority (i.e. the lower classes). His opinion is that the morality of Christianity would be shaped by the world-view of the poor, the slave, the oppressed, etc. If we accept the proposition that the views of the poor would have more influence on Christianity than the views of the rich, it is not unreasonable to expect some resentment towards the rich and powerful to manifest itself within Christianity.

    Edit: In general I think most popular world religions are populace in nature.
    I am not sure that fits either. The story of the Buddha, renouncing weath and power seems typical of the religious experience. You find similar stories throughout relgion. St. Francis of Assisi is another example. The poor do not renounce weath, they struggle for survival. It is the wealthy who become disillusioned with the pursuit of wealth, it is only the wealthy who discover that wealth is not the key to happiness. I do not see how the experience of the poor and their struggles fit into this.

    It seems much more likely to me that religion is a bourgeois phenomenon and the way it seems to serve the poor has more to do with acquiring empathy and a sudden realization and awareness of the plight of the poor by the wealthy. We see the same sort of phenomenon in communism, for it seems to come more from disillusionment in the educated upper class rather than truly from the working class, who again are kept busy with the struggle to survive.
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    Very interesting perspective i_feel_tiredsleepy.

    I am not sure that fits either. The story of the Buddha, renouncing weath and power seems typical of the religious experience. You find similar stories throughout relgion. St. Francis of Assisi is another example. The poor do not renounce weath, they struggle for survival. It is the wealthy who become disillusioned with the pursuit of wealth, it is only the wealthy who discover that wealth is not the key to happiness. I do not see how the experience of the poor and their struggles fit into this.
    I think what religion strives towards and facilitates, if Nietzsche’s idea is close to the truth, is contentment. Be happy with what you have, with what the Lord has given you. Trust in the Lord to provide for you. These all fall nicely within a framework geared towards the engendering of contentment. Buddha renouncing wealth gives more a message that it is ok not to have much along with the symbolic act of joining with his followers, rather than that you have to renounce your wealth.
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    [quote="dedo"][quote="Apopohis Reject"]
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am


    Or we can choose to preserve life and take care of our planet and each other. Either way, through the growth experienced in preserving the planet, or from the horrific lesson of near extinction, the character of man advances.

    From a religious perspective, maybe this is the lesson of Noah. We can choose
    by our actions to destroy ourselves to the point of near extinction?
    Perhaps but I cannot see ancient man thinking of self extinction.
    Since it was the trend in that day to fear God, it is more likely that the flood myth was included to promote this silly idea by those in power to help them keep power. Let us remember that Constantine was a tyrant.

    Regards
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    Quote Originally Posted by Apopohis Reject
    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Quote Originally Posted by Apopohis Reject
    So because perfection is all around us, and we are to enjoy the abundant death that is a part of this perfect reality - (perhaps) highlighted by the plethora of deeply disturbing depictions presented for our general consumption and gratification, would you also recommend - on the basis of such observation; I obtain a copy of (perhaps) 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre' for the enjoyment of all at the local bible study group or pre-school?
    Why not? They have probably already seen worse.
    Now ain't that a real shame - in so many ways I don't know where to begin.


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Better that than the garbage that most Bible schools teach. Like the belief in real talking snakes and donkeys. Now that will really screw up their thinking.
    I could almost agree with you on that my friend, except for one very essential thing; you are reading the words with an entirely incorrect focus - which has severely screwed up your interpretation thereof.

    I hope you understand I'm not blaming you, much less accusing you of being alone in this. For it is fundamentally the responsibility of those we have generically; long held and honoured as being responsible for our necessary correction according such things. They have all failed us miserably - thereby screwing up our societal thinking, due in part to their unseemly gathered wealth for the extremely poor results, as delivered.

    Did I just write 'poor'? I meant reprehensible and malignant - yet even these words seem to fall short of sufficient.

    After all, why would they ever need to try harder to get to the core essence of the human dilemma? We seem to enjoy every opportunity to fawn over their highly polished exterior display of piety and reverence, without ever calling them to account for being utterly 'filled with dead men's bones', but that is not news, right?


    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Death is normal. Talking snakes and donkeys are not.
    Indeed death has become accepted as normal and inevitable, however have you not noticed how after so much time, we still haven't arrived at the place where we are comfortable with it?

    In fact, I would argue that it still goes against everything we live out our lives for. Against our every sensitivity in fact. Against everything we stand for and work towards.

    It still after all these years, goes thoroughly against our grain - we hate it with a severe passion.

    Are you getting the point here? I am aware of how radical it might seem, yet perhaps I thought you might appreciate the extreme irony - of being human in our 'perfect' world.
    I have seen too many crave death to agree that we all fear and loath death.
    Ever hang with the very old?

    I am not that old but I have no fear or loathing of death. It is a part of life. I do not loathe or fear life.

    Regards
    DL
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    Quote Originally Posted by Apopohis Reject
    Are you getting the point here? I am aware of how radical it might seem, yet perhaps I thought you might appreciate the extreme irony - of being human in our 'perfect' world.
    I have seen too many crave death to agree that we all fear and loath death.
    Ever hang with the very old?
    Have you ever come across the concept 'compassion', my 'Greatest' friend?

    Are you sure they crave death, or could it be that they see no other, or better alternative to their distaste for the remnant 'life' they still 'enjoy'? Or could it be that their memory banks are shot to pieces by the enormous amount of crap they have lived through? You know - crap like young people might spout, such as; 'The old don't have any right to enjoy life, coz they ain't young and virile and pretty - like me!"

    Truly, there are many hues, sub hues and facets to this thing we call consciousness, that it wouldn't surprise anyone, even if some doctor somewhere started making it his business to organise the death of 'willing' participants, would it now?

    I remember thinking years ago that death was really to be regarded as a beautiful thing, but that was when I too was a little green behind the ears, and the REAL THING hadn't as yet touched my consciousness.

    I'm afraid it might be back to the drawing board - and a lesson or two on compassion for you, my friend.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greatest I am
    I am not that old but I have no fear or loathing of death. It is a part of life. I do not loathe or fear life.
    Well, if that is your convoluted way of reasoning, Itís not a too hard exercise to discover why your efforts at expressing yourself sometimes lack a certain cohesion, and how you might perhaps in future think about - getting REAL!

    Or I guess, you could, like too many others; meander your detached existence away, until you too wake up one morning to discover the unthinkable - that you are dwelling inside the painful body of a 'very old' person in some ghastly hospital bed, with a heartless young obdurate 'hanging' as he peers down his nonchalant nose at you, that you are no longer the 'Greatest' - in a 'perfect' world, and wondering why you don't fear death - like maybe you should.

    Except - it is likely you will (be fearing death), even if you fail to appreciate this right now.

    I'm not saying we should 'fear' death, as much as - it's a mistake to disregard it or the natural hatred for it, and that some of us have a certain need - to be REAL!

    **BTW, given your lacking in human sensitivity; it comes as little surprise you failed to challenge me, or even acknowledge the infinitely more essential (previous) observation of my last post. Perhaps telepathy resolved that one for you, huh?
    sunshinewarrior: If two people are using the same word, but applying different meanings to it, then they're not communicating.
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