What Is The Meaning Of Life?

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davidm
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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by davidm » Sat Sep 23, 2017 4:22 pm

Immanuel Can wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 3:23 am
davidm wrote:
Fri Sep 22, 2017 9:08 pm
You want me to teach you about Nietzsche? 50 bucks an hour.
Yeah, I thought so. No answer.
Yeah, thought so. No apology for mutilating Nietzsche by taking a single passage of his out of context and pretending that this passage represented the entirety of Nietzsche's thought -- exactly the way creationists cherry-pick Darwin to try to prove Darwin didn't believe his own theory!

Typical recycled apologetics tard. Yawn.

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Immanuel Can
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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Immanuel Can » Sat Sep 23, 2017 5:17 pm

Dubious wrote:
Fri Sep 22, 2017 10:56 pm
Immanuel Can wrote:
Fri Sep 22, 2017 11:51 am
Dubious wrote:
Fri Sep 22, 2017 5:28 am


What do you think Nietzsche was referring to when he said that god was dead?
It's clear to everyone, most theists included as mentioned, that Nietzsche was referring to a Belief System...
Of course! You can't literally "kill God." You may as well talk about "extinguishing the universe." Good luck with that! Likewise, you cannot do the things he attributed to the same event, in the Madmans' speech -- "drink up the sea," "wipe away the entire horizon." Good heavens, man. Of course he was speaking metaphorically. How could you, or anyone else, imagine anyone wouldn't get that?

Who doesn't realize that Nietzsche did not believe God ever existed. If he had, he would never have said anything so absurd. Really, the wording of your question was the problem. It was easy to misread what you were asking, because it invited a literal response.

Now, if you had asked, "What do you think Nietzsche meant when he said 'God,'" I'd have answered differently. But you didn't ask that.

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Immanuel Can
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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Immanuel Can » Sat Sep 23, 2017 5:46 pm

Harbal wrote:
Fri Sep 22, 2017 10:26 pm
Immanuel Can wrote:
Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:48 pm
Harbal wrote:
Fri Sep 22, 2017 6:46 pm

The belief in God and that he wills you to act in a certain way is a subjective judgement, otherwise we would all believe it.
There's no reason to expect that. There are plenty of facts that are facts, but many or even most people do not believe. A thing can be objectively true regardless of the number of people who know it is.
No, I didn't put that very well, did I? I'll try again: If I believe in the conscience, and that it has moral authority, and you believe in God, also having moral authority, what is the difference between our beliefs as far as objectivity/subjectivity is concerned?
Oh, that's a different question. Sorry I misunderstood.

But there's still an important difference. For the conscience may well be like a defective fire alarm -- going off when there's really no "fire," or not going off when there is one. "Right and wrong" would still objectively exist; it would only be our ability to detect them that would be flawed. And I think it's pretty clear that we humans, being fallible, cannot always trust our consciences, in this respect. Much of the time they may be right; but not all the time. In such cases, we don't know whether to respond to the conscience or not. It can mislead us.

But if there is a God, then the "fire" is objectively present; and to that fact, it matters not whether or not the "alarm" is sounding. Our conscience may have fallen asleep, but if there's objective wrong present, or objective right, then they are still what they are. The fault then would simply be with our consciences.
But did you ever ask yourself what a "conscience" actually is,
No, not with any expectation of coming up with a conclusive answer. Did you ever ask yourself what God actually is?[/quote]
Constantly. It's the question of the most intense interest to me. I do know some things about Him, but there is SO much more to know. And, well, how could it be otherwise, with an infinite Being?
"Religion" is merely a set of traditions of human invention, man's attempt to know the gods, but on man's terms.
But surely, believing in God tells you nothing beyond "the fact" of his existence. [/quote]
Right you are. That would be merely to state a formal proposition, like "China exists," even if I know nothing more about China. That's the difference between knowing about God's existence, on the one hand, and knowing God on the other: the latter is more than factual head-knowledge, it's personal relationship, dynamics, or as we might say, living knowledge.
Unless you construct a story around that "fact" and call it a religion how do you know what its implications are, or that it actually has any?

Why must we construct such a story? If a Supreme Being exists (let's just hypothesize here), how would we imagine it would be hard for such a One to issue his own directives as to what we ought to believe and do? It seems to me that if we are already prepared to attribute to such a Being the ability to create a universe, including human beings who speak and communicate every day, it couldn't possibly be problematic for the Creator of all that to do the same, could it?
I believe the Sun exists and that it is essential to our existence but I don't feel I am under any obligation to do anything about it.

True. And with the Sun, that's enough...even though we couldn't live a second without it being there. But as I suggest above, that's not what "knowing" God means.
I know of no one, however, who has genuinely entered into a relationship with God and then has "lost their faith." If you know of one, I'd be interested in hearing about that.
I'm sorry, IC, but I think you're trying to slip another version of the "no true Scotsman" malarkey past me, stop cheating. :)
Not at all. I'm just asking you how you would say so confidently that you know of the opposite case...people who have had their faith and lost it. And I point out the difficulty of really detecting what another person believes. So the "Scotsman" is in your earlier claim, really, if he's anywhere. I just ask how you managed to recognize him as a "Scot" in the first place.
We do, however, have a remarkable ability to "get over" the annoyances of conscience when we find incentives strong enough. If it were not so, all people would be conscientious and moral. However, the responsibility we have to God is not something that can be "gotten over."
Come on now, IC, people are just as inventive at rationalising their way round the will of God as they are their own conscience.
Again, which "people"? Human beings in general? Yes, I agree. But to be a Christian is to know God, not merely to follow conscience (though that should be part of it, of course). Really, it's about a relationship one enters into with the Creator.

Christ Himself spoke of it. He calls it, in John 3, being "born from above." (sometimes translated, "born again": the implication is pretty much the same either way). The idea if of the reconstitution of the person as related to God, not merely the "being good" of the person by the conscience. And in that new relationship, everything depends really on what God does from His side, not the reinvigorated efforts of the human person to "come up to" a religious standard of goodness whereby he attempts to ingratiate himself to God and earn his position. (The latter attempt is really what is meant by "religion.")
An over-rated quality, I do believe. (self esteem)
I'm not sure I'd call it a quality but the lack of it can cause problems. I think the dangers of underestimating its value are greater than those of over-rating it.
Debatable. As I say, lots of evil people have great self-esteem. I think Stalin was not short on it. Or Kim Jong Un. Likewise, the Hillary and Donald Trump haters, for all their complaints, never seem to say that those two candidates' real problem has been "a lack of self-esteem."
I was talking about the type of self esteem that emanates from doing the right thing, which, admittedly, is not latent in everyone.
That's the problem, though. "Self-esteem" isn't a good indicator of good judgment or good behaviour. All it may mean (and certainly does, in some cases) is that the person in question, in addition to his misdeeds, has added "pride" to the list of his sins.
The sermons of Jesus Christ, for example, while morally profound and capable of provoking two thousand years of debate by some of the greatest scholars on the planet (Bacon, Newton, Locke, Shakespeare, Donne, Milton, etc....to say nothing of the theologians), are on the surface so straightforward that a rural first-century audience could understand them. So I would say the difficulty isn't as great as all that.
Well I am aware of the paraphrased version of some of the teachings of Jesus and I don't need to believe he was the son of God to be able to see the value in them but I don't have the patience to go to the raw Bible version.
I think you'd be astonished about how easy they are, if you did. How easy, and yet how profound. But whether or not you'll choose to do that is always up to you, of course. I just think it would make a big difference to how you see Jesus Christ. He's not difficult for anyone to understand, just difficult to deal with when you do.
It's really quite a marvel of accessible writing, when you look at it.
I can only ask you to trust me when I say that I don't find it so.
It's hard to judge what one doesn't want to read, though, isn't it?
Last edited by Immanuel Can on Sat Sep 23, 2017 6:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Immanuel Can
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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Immanuel Can » Sat Sep 23, 2017 6:03 pm

Belinda wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 10:37 am
Immanuel Can wrote:
An over-rated quality, I do believe. I've spent some time in work with prisoners, and have always found that the worst offenders have excellent self-esteem. I'm not sure self-esteem indicates anything about morality. We all do think pretty highly of ourselves anyway.
Are you perhaps confusing self esteem with lack of remorse?
No, not at all. The two may easily be of-a-piece, though. Psychopaths are notoriously high in self-esteem, it's true. But humble people are often very pleasant, thoughtful, generous and unassuming, as I'm sure you've experienced.

All I'm saying is that the "self-esteem" button is the wrong one to press here. It doesn't tell us if the person is good or bad, and it doesn't produce good more than bad. It's a kind of "handle that fits all pots," but for that reason cannot be used to decide what kind of "pot" it came from.
BTW I am not accusing you of thinking that 'Christ' was the surname of Jesus, you know better than that I am sure.
No, I understand. "Christ" is a title, the Greek form of the Hebrew "Messiah," meaning, "the One anointed [by God]." We should rightly refer to Him as something Hebrew, like "Yeshua Ha Mashiach." But if we did, nobody outside of the Jewish community would even know Whom we meant.

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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Harbal » Sat Sep 23, 2017 6:28 pm

Immanuel Can wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 6:03 pm
All I'm saying is that the "self-esteem" button is the wrong one to press here. It doesn't tell us if the person is good or bad,
I know you're addressing Belinda here but I'm going to have to chip in: When I brought up self esteem it wasn't as an indicator as to whether someone is good or bad. I was pointing out that a person's self esteem -or feeling of personal worth and integrity, if you prefer- is important enough to them to act as motivation in regard of behaving in compliance with their conscience.

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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by davidm » Sat Sep 23, 2017 8:32 pm

Immanuel Can wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 5:46 pm
It's hard to judge what one doesn't want to read, though, isn't it?
You mean, like, uh, Nietzsche? :lol:

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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Harbal » Sat Sep 23, 2017 9:33 pm

Immanuel Can wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 5:46 pm
Sorry I misunderstood.
My fault, entirely.
But there's still an important difference. For the conscience may well be like a defective fire alarm -- going off when there's really no "fire,"
Yes it can, but that can also apply to judgement, in this case, the judgement leading to belief in God. Belief in God is a subjective belief, regardless of whether God exists or not. What about those who have beliefs -comparable in firmness to yours regarding God- in illuminati lizard people? Are their beliefs objective? I readily agree that my beliefs concerning morality are subjective but so are everyone else's.
but if there's objective wrong present, or objective right,
This is a definite stumbling block, objective right and wrong are not logical possibilities to me. As you say yourself, we humans are fallible, therefore we must concede that our beliefs may not always be correct. From your perspective, God is real, from mine, he isn't. Regardless of which one of us is right, both our opinions are subjective, aren't they? Even if God does exist, his view of right and wrong is only his subjective opinion. Is that taking things a bit too far? :D
Why must we construct such a story? If a Supreme Being exists (let's just hypothesize here), how would we imagine it would be hard for such a One to issue his own directives as to what we ought to believe and do? It seems to me that if we are already prepared to attribute to such a Being the ability to create a universe, including human beings who speak and communicate every day, it couldn't possibly be problematic for the Creator of all that to do the same, could it?
In theory, no. How exactly does he communicate his wishes to you?
I just think it would make a big difference to how you see Jesus Christ. He's not difficult for anyone to understand, just difficult to deal with when you do.
I have enough difficult things to deal with at the moment, perhaps I'll pencil him in for some time in the future.
It's really quite a marvel of accessible writing, when you look at it. / It's hard to judge what one doesn't want to read, though, isn't it?
I have had a couple of cracks at reading the Bible. Both times I started at the very beginning and carried on for as long as I could stand it and barely scraped the surface of Genesis. It was complete gobbledygook to me, I'm afraid, maybe part two is more accessible. I'm just not a Bible kind of person, IC, but I do try to be morally good, except when I'm on the forum, of course.

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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Belinda » Sat Sep 23, 2017 10:31 pm

Harbal wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 6:28 pm
Immanuel Can wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 6:03 pm
All I'm saying is that the "self-esteem" button is the wrong one to press here. It doesn't tell us if the person is good or bad,
I know you're addressing Belinda here but I'm going to have to chip in: When I brought up self esteem it wasn't as an indicator as to whether someone is good or bad. I was pointing out that a person's self esteem -or feeling of personal worth and integrity, if you prefer- is important enough to them to act as motivation in regard of behaving in compliance with their conscience.
I agree with Harbal and can add nothing to Harbal's excellent account of self esteem and its relation to conscience.

Self esteem with regard to criminals in prison has to be fostered in them if they are to be rehabilitated. Self esteem is not cockiness as Immanuel seemed to be saying.

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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Dubious » Sat Sep 23, 2017 11:14 pm

Immanuel Can wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 5:17 pm

Of course! You can't literally "kill God." You may as well talk about "extinguishing the universe." Good luck with that! Likewise, you cannot do the things he attributed to the same event, in the Madmans' speech -- "drink up the sea," "wipe away the entire horizon." Good heavens, man. Of course he was speaking metaphorically. How could you, or anyone else, imagine anyone wouldn't get that?

Who doesn't realize that Nietzsche did not believe God ever existed. If he had, he would never have said anything so absurd.
N was an atheist in the sense that God's existence was of no concern to him personally, existentially or philosophically. To him there was no sense to discussing something that could never be known and is therefore without effect. Atheism is amenable to differences not unlike theism itself.

Fine, you get it!

Unfortunately it hasn't prevented you from making all kinds of stupid ignorant comments on his thought and philosophy which is obvious to anyone who knows him just a little. Thoughtful theists take a different approach more in tune with what he said and meant noting its importance. The commentary on Nietzsche they provide can be especially interesting, their insights far exceeding yours without negating their beliefs. This creates an interesting blend of views, where they meet, collude and separate.

This is the final paragraph of Gile Fraser's article on Nietzsche. The whole article was a pleasure to read. Clearly Nietzsche's effect on a mind which isn't hermetically sealed by the covers of the "Holy Book" is very different from the effect he has on yours.
Nietzsche hated Christianity with all the intensity of someone who had once been caught up in its workings, but he would have equally loathed the high priests of new atheism and their overwhelming sense of intellectual superiority. "How much boundlessly stupid naivety is there in the scholar's belief in his superiority, in the simple, unsuspecting certainty with which his instincts treat the religious man as inferior and a lower type which he himself has evolved above and beyond", he wrote. Nietzsche's big idea goes much deeper than a belief that there is no God. His extraordinary project was to design a form of redemption for a world beyond belief. And to this extent he remained profoundly pious until his dying day.
The whole article is here for those who care to read...https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... -nietzsche

How different these comments are from all your misconceptions and denigrations of Nietzsche.

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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Immanuel Can » Sun Sep 24, 2017 9:25 pm

Harbal wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 6:28 pm
Immanuel Can wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 6:03 pm
All I'm saying is that the "self-esteem" button is the wrong one to press here. It doesn't tell us if the person is good or bad,
I know you're addressing Belinda here but I'm going to have to chip in: When I brought up self esteem it wasn't as an indicator as to whether someone is good or bad. I was pointing out that a person's self esteem -or feeling of personal worth and integrity, if you prefer- is important enough to them to act as motivation in regard of behaving in compliance with their conscience.
And yet, if "in compliance with their conscience" means "automatically morally good," there's no difference between the claim that self-esteem makes people conscientious, and the claim that it makes them good. But if the implication is that conscientiousness is not associated with good, then why would would wish people to be motivated to obey it? It might be a bad conscience that they are motivated to follow.

If so, both claims -- that it makes people good or that it motivates them to follow conscience -- are far too optimistic; for we know that high-self-esteem people are often very bad. And their consciences may be too.

I suppose we could argue that conscience never misleads. But I don't think that's an easy claim to sustain. There seem to be plenty of people who feel very self-certain about very wrong or bad attitudes and behaviours.

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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Immanuel Can » Sun Sep 24, 2017 10:22 pm

Harbal wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 9:33 pm
Immanuel Can wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 5:46 pm
Sorry I misunderstood.
My fault, entirely.
But there's still an important difference. For the conscience may well be like a defective fire alarm -- going off when there's really no "fire,"
Yes it can, but that can also apply to judgement, in this case, the judgement leading to belief in God. Belief in God is a subjective belief, regardless of whether God exists or not. What about those who have beliefs -comparable in firmness to yours regarding God- in illuminati lizard people? Are their beliefs objective? I readily agree that my beliefs concerning morality are subjective but so are everyone else's.
I think I see what you're trying to point out. "Belief" is a subjective action, in the sense that it is a person who is doing it, and he or she always does it from a personal position. That's fair enough.

However, "belief" is about facts too. When one says, "I believe in lizard people," the problem is not that the belief is too objective; it's that it fails to conform to reality...it gets the facts wrong. On the other hand, when one says, "I believe the Earth is round, not flat," one is subjectively agreeing with an objective truth. So to say a belief is "subjective" is not to imply that truth no longer matters, or that it's made up, or that the belief itself has power to make the unreal real. It's only to say that we humans have a marvellous faculty of making "beliefs" about facts. And the more our beliefs line up with the facts, the better off we are.

One thing you and I probably agree on: if God does not objectively exist, my subjective belief won't make Him exist. But similarly, if God does exist, the cynicism of the skeptic, no matter how skeptical he may be, does not have the slightest power to make Him not exist. In both cases, it's the objective facts that will vindicate...or defeat...the subjective belief.
but if there's objective wrong present, or objective right,
This is a definite stumbling block, objective right and wrong are not logical possibilities to me. As you say yourself, we humans are fallible, therefore we must concede that our beliefs may not always be correct. From your perspective, God is real, from mine, he isn't. Regardless of which one of us is right, both our opinions are subjective, aren't they? Even if God does exist, his view of right and wrong is only his subjective opinion. Is that taking things a bit too far? :D
Well, see if you agree with what I just said above. Our beliefs are correct if they conform to reality, and incorrect if they do not. Our subjectivity is subject to the facts.

If God exists, and if we understand what the meaning of the word "God" is, then we wouldn't think that right and wrong are subjective for God. He'd be right, and we'd be the ones whose subjective beliefs would stand or fall by the measure in which they reflect his moral intentions and valuations.
Why must we construct such a story? If a Supreme Being exists (let's just hypothesize here), how would we imagine it would be hard for such a One to issue his own directives as to what we ought to believe and do? It seems to me that if we are already prepared to attribute to such a Being the ability to create a universe, including human beings who speak and communicate every day, it couldn't possibly be problematic for the Creator of all that to do the same, could it?
In theory, no. How exactly does he communicate his wishes to you?
Through a number of means. Of course, I believe in a written revelation. But as a Christian, I also believe in God's Word Incarnate, Jesus Christ. I practice reading, meditation, and prayer. But to list these things does not do justice to the spiritual dynamics of what is involved in a relationship with God; they're just methods, not the substance -- it's a bit like we might say that letters, or gifts, or looks, or smiles, or past deeds, or future promises are things that are involved in a human relationship, but are not the relationship itself. You can't always do justice to the dynamics of something by listing some of the elements involved.

I don't want to sound indefinite or evasive. Your question's a fair one. I'm just hard-pressed to put something so profound and complex into any comparison or analogy that will serve. But in fact, Jesus already said that no analogy will work. He said, "Unless a person is born from above (or "born again") he cannot see the kingdom of God." And I'm afraid that's how He's established things. We don't get to look at the whole picture from outside. He seems to want us to make a commitment in order to realize what follows.
I just think it would make a big difference to how you see Jesus Christ. He's not difficult for anyone to understand, just difficult to deal with when you do.
I have enough difficult things to deal with at the moment, perhaps I'll pencil him in for some time in the future.
Don't leave it too long. :wink: A lot of things can seem more important, until they aren't.
It's really quite a marvel of accessible writing, when you look at it. / It's hard to judge what one doesn't want to read, though, isn't it?
I have had a couple of cracks at reading the Bible. Both times I started at the very beginning and carried on for as long as I could stand it and barely scraped the surface of Genesis. It was complete gobbledygook to me, I'm afraid, maybe part two is more accessible. I'm just not a Bible kind of person, IC, but I do try to be morally good, except when I'm on the forum, of course.
When I was not a Christian, I had not a great knowledge of the Bible. But I knew enough to know this: if Jesus Christ was not who He said He was, then I would never need to plumb the depths of Deuteronomy or Ezekiel, and not even Genesis. It wouldn't matter what they said anyway, then, since the centrepiece of everything was the question of whether or not God had spoken in Jesus Christ. And I had a memory of the fact that the story of His life is recorded in the first four books of the New Testament. So I went to the first of those, and read there.

I read Matthew. But I could have read John, or Mark, or Luke, and probably got the same information I needed. Anyway, it was not hard to do. And I think that, at the end of the day, that's about what we're supposed to do; to decide honestly, for ourselves.

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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Immanuel Can » Sun Sep 24, 2017 10:30 pm

Dubious wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 11:14 pm
...all your misconceptions and denigrations of Nietzsche.
I have not denigrated Nietzsche. I've disagreed with some of what he says, but made common cause with him where possible. But had I denigrated him, it would not make a shred of difference to the main point: a point which you seem to throw convulsions in attempting to avoid.

Atheism rationalizes amorality, and fails to rationalize any meaning to life.

I think Nietzsche knew it did, and was courageous enough to say so; but you think if he didn't, or if maybe you imagine he was too scared to say so, it wouldn't matter one iota.

Prove it wrong.

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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Harbal » Sun Sep 24, 2017 10:51 pm

Immanuel Can wrote:
Sun Sep 24, 2017 9:25 pm
And yet, if "in compliance with their conscience" means "automatically morally good,"
I'm not making any claims about the quality of the morality that stems from the conscience, but neither would I accept that anything claimed to be the will of God is automatically morally creditworthy.
there's no difference between the claim that self-esteem makes people conscientious, and the claim that it makes them good.
I am citing self-esteem, or the attainment of it, as an incentive. It could well be an incentive to do something bad, but, in the case that I am making, it's the incentive to follow the conscience. You said an atheist had no reason to act in accordance with his conscience, I am putting forward self-esteem as the reason. I am neither saying that self-esteem, per se, is a good nor a bad thing or that it can tell us anything about a person's moral standards.
But if the implication is that conscientiousness is not associated with good,
I'm sorry, IC, I don't know where this particular implication that you have identified has actually come from.
It might be a bad conscience that they are motivated to follow.
That is true, this is just a fact of life that we have to accept, just as we have to accept that there will always be those who do bad things in the name of God.
for we know that high-self-esteem people are often very bad. And their consciences may be too.
Well, actually, I don't know that high-self-esteem people are often very bad, I'll have to take your word for that and trust you, I'm sure your conscience wouldn't let you say it if it weren't true. However, it doesn't alter the fact that there are those with a good conscience who will feel obliged to adhere to it out of their need to maintain their sense of self-esteem.
I suppose we could argue that conscience never misleads. But I don't think that's an easy claim to sustain. There seem to be plenty of people who feel very self-certain about very wrong or bad attitudes and behaviours.
Yes and there are people who are very certain that God wants them to do things that you and I would consider abominable.

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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by Dubious » Sun Sep 24, 2017 11:03 pm

Immanuel Can wrote:
Thu Sep 21, 2017 3:36 am
But even though you would surely insist humans are just a kind of animal, you seem to feel some special responsibility devolves upon us to care.... :shock:
...absolutely! As a mind which has retreated behind a 2000 year old text when morality was dictated by local customs, I’m not in the least surprised this would shock you!
Interesting. You seem to imagine we're "so much more important" that you can expect us to have a sense of moral duty not to harm things. But you don't expect that from anything else.
While we are indeed human and another “kind of animal” we shouldn’t forget the meaning of “humanity” inherent in the word. It’s obvious there is a vast difference between us and the rest of creation and it is precisely this which invokes the responsibility to acknowledge the suffering we inflict on other lesser compatriots which accompany our existence on this planet. It is a difference which forces a gratuitous duty into one that is absolute.

I realize this must sound foreign to you but in fact, you and others who have subordinated themselves to God for the last 2000 years have been operating precisely on this principle in your claim that god loves us, cares for us, has mercy on us, etc.

Somewhat one-sided of you that you’re not willing to pass the favor!

Have you ever considered what it means when you make reference to God’s love and mercy?

Love in it's manifestation of compassion is the ultimate equalizer between greater and lesser.

What is meant when we speak of the love of God if not the power which delimits His omnipotence and places it on the footstool of all the myriad forms of mortality which may exist throughout Creation. Omnipotence does not have the option of compassion as if it were a mere decision to be merciful.

A God without compassion is therefore inconceivable because ANY infinite power requires a conduit to its creations; this is a destiny, a duty, a necessity imposed upon any form of omnipotence. Even beings like ourselves in recognizing our own affinities with other creatures are not exempt from that kind of empathy but often act as if we are!

It's the 'primal' power of Love which creates but it's compassion which BINDS it to itself. Without compassion, the daimon would have NO power! God becomes not only functionally useless but psychologically inert.

Mostly WE speak of Love as if it were our own personal superiority, a self-made creation, a kind of love with little or no empathy in it. Such a being is capable of creating only a degenerate form of grandeur rooted in its own image in service only to its own needs.

There are far greater “modulations of divinity” to quote myself, than that contained within a single deity...something Nietzsche also makes explicit.

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Re: What Is The Meaning Of Life?

Post by SpheresOfBalance » Mon Sep 25, 2017 10:23 am

Immanuel Can wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 3:25 am
SpheresOfBalance wrote:
Fri Sep 22, 2017 10:26 pm
The Fundamental Social Axiom: "Treat others, as you would have others treat you, to the extent, that all parties knowingly agree, at that time."

And that seems to be as perfect as it ever can be. Revisions anyone?[/color]
Yeah. Sez who? Why do we have to follow that axiom -- or any axiom you, or anybody else may devise at all --
My axiom is the GR repaired, as philosophers have mentioned the need.

if we're Atheists? Nobody's ever been able to give me a reason. Maybe you can.
You're not paying attention, the answer is "reciprocity."

Here so it's easier for you:

reciprocity [res-uh-pros-i-tee]
noun
1. a reciprocal state or relation.
2. reciprocation; mutual exchange.
3. the relation or policy in commercial dealings between countries by which corresponding advantages or privileges are granted by each country to the citizens of the other.

Is that better?

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