SCIENCE VS RELIGION

General discussions of interest to readers and fans of Harlan Ellison.

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Ezra Lb.
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Postby Ezra Lb. » Mon Dec 03, 2007 9:51 am

Unfortunately Frank, because HIS followers are busy little beavers...

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/03/us/03 ... ref=slogin
“We must not always talk in the marketplace,” Hester Prynne said, “of what happens to us in the forest.”
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*sigh*

Postby Peggy » Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:12 pm

Sometimes I'm simply ashamed of my brethren.... I have no problem considering both viewpoints, and the fact that others may or may not agree with how I prefer to see them doesn't make me want to lash out. Seems so many christian "activists" have to take every aspect of the world that disagrees with their view and see it as an attack on their faith and belief to which they must respond and conquer.

Sadly that's not actually what the Bible calls them to do. Point in fact it says the rest of the world ain't gonna agree with you, and you might as well learn you're gonna be persecuted. Doesn't say you're gonna change politics, education, or any other social structure. Really no support for political/social activism on a grand scale in any way - it's all about individual or church community sacrifice and action on a small, interactive, personal scale.

(FYI - I realize there are many around these parts who see science and faith as opposites or mutually exclusive. I don't. I appreciate mutual tolerance in this area where our stances may differ....)

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Postby Moderator » Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:47 pm

I find it fascinating that in this new world of "offensensitivity", we have a significant population of Christians who argue that the majority is being persecuted by the minority -- and yet themselves do all they can to persecute the minority.

It is a reversal of definitions.

"There is a war on Christmas. We need to insist that everyone wish us a Merry Christmas, even if they celebrate Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or none of the above. If they don't wish us a Merry Christmas they are persecuting us!!! And how DARE they call it a Holiday Tree!?! It's OUR pagan religious symbol, and they can't make it more all encompassing -- they must call it a Christmas tree and celebrate Christmas, otherwise they are persecuting us!! And now the secular heathens are telling us we have to include Menorahs on public lands!!! This is a Christian nation -- founded by Christians (except for the native Americans, but we converted them) and must be reserved as a land of Christians even if those nasty people on the left say we have to be fair to all beliefs!! They are making war upon us, persecuting us, the majority. My rights are being violated. I demand my First Amendment right to shout down their First Amendment right! My domination and denomination as a White, Anglo-saxon evangelical protestant is threatened and I will not have it!!!..."

And so on.

(And yes, I am painting with a very broad brush, since the vast majority of Christians are sensible, reasonable people for the most part. Hyperbole crafted and deliberate.)
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Postby David Loftus » Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:58 pm

Barber wrote:I find it fascinating that in this new world of "offensensitivity", we have a significant population of Christians who argue that the majority is being persecuted by the minority -- and yet themselves do all they can to persecute the minority.



I hope nobody finds the analogy too inflammatory, but this process is not so different from -- though obviously less virulent than -- what the Germans were doing in the 1930s.

Most bigotry operates this way, though.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Ezra Lb.
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Postby Ezra Lb. » Thu Dec 06, 2007 12:21 pm

If I can play social analyst for a minute or two what I think is happening is, slowly but surely, organized Christianity is losing its long held position of privilege in our society. There are many reasons for this, and it is not a new thing. It certainly didn't start with Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris.

Of course many Christians interpret this reduction of their status as "persecution", and being one of many competing voices in what the right calls the "free market of ideas" is frightening and confusing. For the first time in their lives they are being asked to explain and defend themselves. Many of them can't handle it.

In my opinion the whole modern Evangelical political movement is the result of this. It is a misguided and destructive attempt to halt or slow a change that has been a long time coming.

Yes I am a secularist and a sceptic and do believe that faith and science are mutually incompatible. I have tried to explain my reasons in my earlier posts. But consider this.

Just as I would question and criticize others I also expect and invite questioning and criticism. I expect to be asked to make my case. That's what toleration is - everybody gets to make their case.

I can be convinced by a good argument. I can change my mind. I don't have all the answers and I can live with the prospect of maybe never knowing all the answers.

But nobody gets a free pass anymore. And bad ideas are not beyond examination just because they have a holy glow.
“We must not always talk in the marketplace,” Hester Prynne said, “of what happens to us in the forest.”
-Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter

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Postby David Loftus » Thu Dec 06, 2007 12:47 pm

Now the fundies are getting into a lather about the movie of "The Golden Compass," even though the filmmakers have smoothed away Philip Pullman's anti-Christian themes.

All they will accomplish with their call for a boycott is drive more kids to the movie and ultimately the books, as well as instruct them what to look for.

If they'd left well enough alone, not much would have happened, even with the kids who read the His Dark Materials trilogy. All they'd notice would be the interesting characters and cool plot. You don't tend to see deeper and darker content unless you're ready for it, or already thinking in that direction.

I can remember lots of grownup ideas and humor that went past me in "The Wizard of Oz" and many other books and films for years on end.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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FrankChurch
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Postby FrankChurch » Thu Dec 06, 2007 3:29 pm

What anti-Christian themes?

Christians do the best anti-pr without our help.

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Postby Ezra Lb. » Thu Dec 06, 2007 4:58 pm

Read the book Frank.

A friend at work told me her last Sunday's church bulletin contained a message from the minister advising the congregation to not go see the movie.

Imagine having a faith so fragile it could be threatened by a fantasy movie?
“We must not always talk in the marketplace,” Hester Prynne said, “of what happens to us in the forest.”
-Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter

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FrankChurch
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Postby FrankChurch » Fri Dec 07, 2007 3:00 pm

I don't read that junk. lol

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Ezra Lb.
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Postby Ezra Lb. » Sat Dec 08, 2007 3:29 pm

Frank, how do you know it's junk if you haven't read it?




Did anybody else check out Milt Romney's "I'm one of the good ones" speech?

http://www.kutv.com/content/news/specia ... 81e217d220

An inherent contradiction glares out of his rhetoric.

"There are some who would have a presidential candidate describe and explain his church's distinctive doctrines. To do so would enable the very religious test the founders prohibited in the Constitution."

But, then

But in recent years, the notion of the separation of church and state has been taken by some well beyond its original meaning. They seek to remove from the public domain any acknowledgment of God. Religion is seen as merely a private affair with no place in public life. It is as if they are intent on establishing a new religion in America - the religion of secularism. They are wrong.

"The founders proscribed the establishment of a state religion, but they did not countenance the elimination of religion from the public square. We are a nation 'Under God' and in God, we do indeed trust."


Mr Romney is typical of many believers in that he wants it both ways. He insists that religion be fully present in the "public square" but he doesn't want his beliefs either examined or critiqued.

Well he (and they) can't have it both ways.

Shouldn't the American people know that the Morman church, until 1978, considered black folks an inferior form of humanity that was excluded from "salvation" in this and the next life?

Shouldn't the American people know that Mr Huckabee is a creationist who holds the ludicrous belief that the universe was created 6000 years ago by divine fiat, in the face of 200 hundred years of overwhelming evidence to the contrary?

Somebody should be asking these questions.

Haven't we had enough "faith based" reality?
“We must not always talk in the marketplace,” Hester Prynne said, “of what happens to us in the forest.”
-Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter

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Ezra Lb.
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Postby Ezra Lb. » Mon Jan 07, 2008 11:59 am

I just posted this over in the PAVILLION but for you five people who read this but not that...

The National Academy of Sciences has gradually accepted the very real threat of the creationist boobs and lunatics in our country and has begun to fight back.

They have issued a short, plainly written introduction to the evidence for and importance of evolution to modern biology, SCTENCE, EVOLUTION and CREATIONISM. It explains the science and gives a layman's overview without getting bogged down in areas of concern to specialists. Really excellent!

I'm interested anyway but if I had a child attending school I would especially want to educate myself on what is literally a struggle against barbarism and stupidity and for enlightenment and civilization.

It is available here.

http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=11876

And if 12 bucks american is too much for you there is also a link to a FREE 8 page PDF summary.


And just to give you a taste of the religionist mindfuck against which we struggle contact this! Identify with this!

http://yementimes.com/article.shtml?i=1 ... munity&a=6
“We must not always talk in the marketplace,” Hester Prynne said, “of what happens to us in the forest.”
-Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter

rich

Postby rich » Mon Jan 07, 2008 12:59 pm

Hey, Ezra, thanks for the link to the Yemen Times. I'm speechless. I'm sure some of you around here hate that for me, but don't worry, I was only speechless for a couple of seconds.

I don't like Christianity. I don't like religions of any sort, quite frankly, but Christianity always held a dear spot in my black heart just 'cause I'm American and did time in Massachusetts and Alabama where I was exposed to the wonderful tenets of Catholicism and Southern Baptists, but this...this isn't the ravings of a country hick. This is the rationalizations, done intellegently, but still a rationalization, of someone extremely fucked.

And it appears to be the norm. Someone please tell me differently. (And for the masochistic, I actually blogged about this kinda stuff awhile back.)

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Postby Moderator » Mon Jan 07, 2008 1:42 pm

Well sonovabitch. I didn't know you was a Blogger, Rich.

I'm gonna have to do me some catch-up readin'.

(I've tried blogging a couple of times but can never do it consistently enough to make it worthwhile for me or any readers.)

Sorry for the interruption -- please resume the conversation.

(Nothing to see here, move along)
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Postby Steve Evil » Tue Jan 08, 2008 6:48 am

David Loftus wrote:Now the fundies are getting into a lather about the movie of "The Golden Compass," even though the filmmakers have smoothed away Philip Pullman's anti-Christian themes.

.


Is it too late to weigh in on this one? The Catholic School Board in my community has recently voted to remove all of Pullman's books from their libraries. This despite the recomendations of a review comittee (on which my mother sat) who enthusiastically endorsed the book.

"We were disapointed with the committee's decision" said one Board member, as they voted to ban the book anyway.

I just finished reading The Golden Compass. It's one of they most wonderful books I've ever read. To actively prevent children from getting their hands on it is a crime. I take a little consolation in knowing that more curious kids are going to be drawn to the book than might have been before.

Arrogance, superstition and idiocy. The nail in the coffin of my religious faith.

Coincidentally enough, I have also recently complete God is Not Great by Christopher Hitchens.

rich

Postby rich » Tue Jan 08, 2008 7:36 am

It's never too late. I'm a little surprised, though. I thought Canada deported all the rednecks and inbreeds to their southern neighbor, America. Don't tell me there's pockets of Canada that are irrational??

I simply cannot believe that the country that gave us chewing gum, lacrosse, and Michael J Fox would ban books. Won't believe it. Nope.


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