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Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? - Religion (4) - Nairaland

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Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by LordReed(m): 10:09pm On Apr 09, 2019
NnennaG6:

Most theologians I've heard on this subject think that all created intelligences are held at an epistemic distance during their moral development - including angelic beings. Its slightly ridiculous to causally state as though it were a verified datum what conditions obtained for beings about which we know almost nothing in realms about we know almost nothing.

LoL! WOW! You actually unironically wrote this down! WOW! LoL!
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Nobody: 10:29pm On Apr 09, 2019
NnennaG6:

The only indirect argument is: given that there are good arguments for Christian Theism, and the Christian Bible speaks of angels, angels must exist.
Even if that was the only argument. The fact remains that the bible provides details of angels, added to that, multiple well-known and respected Theologians provide very specific information about angels (Barth, Augustine, Pannenberg and Aquinas for example). Also if you're going to accept Swinburne's argument for "Religious Experience" (which i think is the argument you're trying to make), then you have no room to deny their existence and subsequent details about them, because there are very many testimonies of angel encounters and experiences, especially under the "principal of credulity".

It seems awfully like you're intentionally denying their existence or any knowledge about them and not applying principals you seem so willing to direct people to about the "truth" of your theism, to angels, just so you can avoid valid criticisms of your arguments.

So to summarise;
a) You've got the bible detailing information about angels.
b) You've got Theologians detailing information about angels.
c) You've got many testimonies of religious experiences with angels

So are you going to cherry pick when to apply the principals and arguments (principal of credulity and argument from religious experience) you accept to avoid having to face a refutation of the opposite problem of certain knowledge?

Ihedinobi3:

What does it have to do with anything?
Obviously you believe the epistemic nature or condition of angels can be known. That is why you can conclude confidently that angels (e.g Lucifer) have the ability to choose freely even with their knowledge of god.

Nnenna is claiming that the epistemic condition of angels is unknowable, in fact, Angelology is a complete mystery. You do know what this means, right?

If you agree with her that Angelology is a complete mystery, then how do you folks come accross the epistemic knowledge for God, who should even be more complex than angels? Is it just me or are the two of you grossly contradicting yourselves?

One of you needs to clear things up for me. I'm getting a headache honestly.

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Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Ihedinobi3: 10:48pm On Apr 09, 2019
IAmSabrina:
Obviously you believe the epistemic nature or condition of angels can be known. That is why you can conclude confidently that angels (e.g Lucifer) have the ability to choose freely even with their knowledge of god.

Nnenna is claiming that the epistemic condition of angels is unknowable, in fact, Angelology is a complete mystery. You do know what this means, right?

If you agree with her that Angelology is a complete mystery, then how do you folks come accross the epistemic knowledge for God, who should even be more complex than angels? Is it just me or are the two of you grossly contradicting yourselves?

One of you needs to clear things up for me. I'm getting a headache honestly.
You are talking with Nnenna, and she is answering you. Why do you need me to speak for her? Can you not deal with each of our arguments on their own merit? Is that not how I treat you and your friends? Do I hold you responsible for what other atheists say?
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Nobody: 10:52pm On Apr 09, 2019
Ihedinobi3:

You are talking with Nnenna, and she is answering you. Why do you need me to speak for her? Can you not deal with each of our arguments on their own merit? Is that not how I treat you and your friends? Do I hold you responsible for what other atheists say?
At this stage i can't continue this argument because you're both contradicting yourselves! How am i going to know who's telling the truth if two of you can't agree on a single issue?

Two of you need to sort yourselves out and meet at a crossroad. Is the epistemology of angels knowable or not? Till then, i see no reason to continue this argument.
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by NnennaG6(f): 11:09pm On Apr 09, 2019
LordReed:


LoL! WOW! You actually unironically wrote this down! WOW! LoL!
Can you finally offer a proper rebuttal for once?
Or are you going to keep taking the piss?
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by NnennaG6(f): 11:14pm On Apr 09, 2019
IAmSabrina:

Even if that was the only argument. The fact remains that the bible provides details of angels, added to that, multiple well-known and respected Theologians provide very specific information about angels (Barth, Augustine, Pannenberg and Aquinas for example).
Why are you trotting this out again? As I said, I am not under any obligation to accept Newton's views on alchemy just because I think his laws of physics are true. And so, mutatis mutandis, Aquinas et al.

IAmSabrina:

Also if you're going to accept Swinburne's argument for "Religious Experience" (which i think is the argument you're trying to make), then you have no room to deny their existence and subsequent details about them, because there are very many testimonies of angel encounters and experiences, especially under the "principal of credulity".
Nope. The argument does not entail a commitment to particular detailed claims about finite spiritual entities. Go back to my initial post and take your time please.

IAmSabrina:

It seems awfully like you're intentionally denying their existence or any knowledge about them
Exactly right. Because as I have already explained there are precisely zero direct lines of evidence for the existence of angels.

IAmSabrina:

So are you going to cherry pick when to apply the principals and arguments (principal of credulity and argument from religious experience) you accept to avoid having to face a refutation of the opposite problem of certain knowledge?
Of course I am. I am going to pick very carefully those arguments which have a sound logical structure, premises which are more plausibly true than their negations, and which (if the arguments are synthetic) use what seem to me to be correct inductive criteria. For God there are at least 10 such arguments; for angels, 0.

Whether I believe in angels on faith or just because I feel like it is another matter that has no place in a philosophical debate. And anyway: whether the existence of angels can be shown or known or not - none of this can tell us anything about what epistemic conditions obtained for angels before the Fall.
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by LordReed(m): 11:14pm On Apr 09, 2019
NnennaG6:

Can you finally offer a proper rebuttal for once?
Or are you going to keep taking the piss?

LoL! What piss? You need an epistle from me stating the obvious?
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by NnennaG6(f): 11:22pm On Apr 09, 2019
LordReed:


LoL! What piss? You need an epistle from me stating the obvious?
Only thing obvious here is that you have nothing to say and are deliberately trying to waste my time.
Stay off my mentions pls
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by LordReed(m): 11:36pm On Apr 09, 2019
NnennaG6:

Only thing obvious here is that you have nothing to say and are deliberately trying to waste my time.
Stay off my mentions pls

I will mention you when and how I like, you don't get to tell me that. If the super obvious contradiction you posted is not glaring enough for you thats your headache, I am just here laugh at dumb ideas.
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by NnennaG6(f): 12:00am On Apr 10, 2019
LordReed:


I will mention you when and how I like, you don't get to tell me that. If the super obvious contradiction you posted is not glaring enough for you thats your headache, I am just here laugh at dumb ideas.
That it's a public forum doesn't automatically translate to "i must get involved".
Obviously you wouldn't know that. What else should one expect from a troll?
Please, by all means, carry on with your antics. Let's see how much good it'll do you here.
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Nobody: 12:27am On Apr 10, 2019
[img]https://media./images/408129e8a0a3e453d4ab44c42e99f25f/tenor.gif[/img]
NnennaG6:

Why are you trotting this out again? As I said, I am not under any obligation to accept Newton's views on alchemy just because I think his laws of physics are true. And so, mutatis mutandis, Aquinas et al.
What do you mean again? You know, I recall when I first brought up the point that you replied with:
Most theologians I've heard on this subject think that all created intelligences are held at an epistemic distance during their moral development - including angelic beings. Its slightly ridiculous to causally state as though it were a verified datum what conditions obtained for beings about which we know almost nothing in realms about we know almost nothing.
- NnennaG6(f): 7:05pm on Apr 09

To start with, your reply implies that you're not at all at odds with the existence of angels, otherwise highlighting what theologians think about this so called being held at "epistemic distance", does not compute.

You present this as a rebuttal or a counter to what I'm saying which, funnily enough, appeals to "most theologians". However, I present you some Theologians (well respected ones) that provide detailed reasoning and descriptors of angelic beings. These details provided specific information about that which would apply to my argument refuting the opposite problem of certain knowledge". But you now seem to just want to omit their possible existence altogether, how convenient.

Cc. LordReed

Nope. The argument does not entail a commitment to particular detailed claims about finite spiritual entities. Go back to my initial post and take your time please.
Matthew 1:20-21
But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.

This seems to describe, using Mathew 1:20-1, what Swinburne classes as a "religious experience" where someone experienced an angel. This type of experience is of course not that uncommon, and what Mathew 1:20-1 describes is something many people around the world report experiencing.

Clearly, you don't even understand your own argument cause it seems your bold assertion that it has been "carefully disputed" is an entirely bunk assertion.


Exactly right. Because as I have already explained there are precisely zero direct lines of evidence for the existence of angels.
Wrong. According to your principals and arguments, which I've highlight are still valid and according to Swinburne.


Of course I am. I am going to pick very carefully those arguments which have a sound logical structure, premises which are more plausibly true than their negations, and which (if the arguments are synthetic) use what seem to me to be correct inductive criteria. For God there are at least 10 such arguments; for angels, 0.

Whether I believe in angels on faith or just because I feel like it is another matter that has no place in a philosophical debate. And anyway: whether the existence of angels can be shown or known or not - none of this can tell us anything about what epistemic conditions obtained for angels before the Fall.
SMH Nnenna!

Ihedinobi3:

A more important thing to note, IAmSabrina, is that human beings and angels, while quite similar in many respects, are different orders of beings. Therefore, their tests are different.

Angels are spirits without flesh and blood. Humans are spirits with flesh and blood. Because of the nature of the former, their test was not about whether or not God exists. The angels have never doubted that. The issue, as it actually also is for humans, was whether they trusted Him.

Humans, being flesh and blood on the other hand, are necessarily tested differently. We have a rather larger sphere of deniability. This is possible precisely because of our bodies which shield us from perceiving the spiritual realm. Man was deliberately created to be weaker than the angels in order to demonstrate to the faithful ones that Satan had absolutely no excuse to sin. For this reason, he was made with a handicap, so to speak, one that makes him able to do even what Satan could not do: deny the very existence of God.

In spite of this real handicap, many humans throughout history have done what Satan would not do: they have chosen to trust God beyond the sight of their eyes, the hearing of their ears, and other such evidence that may seem more compelling for physical creatures. Satan never had any such impediments. He saw God. He saw the perfect creation that God made for the angels. He lacked for absolutely nothing. He was the highest ranking moral creature in existence. Yet he sinned.

Believers today are undeniable proof that trusting God does not require all those advantages. One can trust God even in far less desirable circumstances than Satan had.
I understand the argument you're making. But you said this in your initial post:

"Each sighting was deniable on the part of those who saw it. If it wasn't, then the sighting of God would destroy their free will.

A similar principle applied for the angels. During their own time of testing, their knowledge and sighting of God was not such that they could not choose to disobey Him. He was still in essence hidden even to them, although not quite in the same way that He is from us who are flesh and blood.
"

Problems like these plague all of your arguments, Ihedinobi. Hence, my fatigue

If God has arranged things such that people who might have loved him but didn't because they were rationally and empirically unsure of his existence, then it is surely because he wanted it this way. Which means that the existence of such a being is cast into doubt when you consider that there are people who are rationally unsure of God's existence, but argue that they would surely believe in him and might even enter into such a love relationship with him, if they were convinced that he was real. And God would know, for certain who these people were!

God knows who would believe and love him if his existence were revealed, and he knows who wouldn't love him if they learned of his existence. So God doesn't need to gamble at all on who would accept him or reject him - he already knows this information!

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Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by LordReed(m): 7:17am On Apr 10, 2019
NnennaG6:

That it's a public forum doesn't automatically translate to "i must get involved".
Obviously you wouldn't know that. What else should one expect from a troll?
Please, by all means, carry on with your antics. Let's see how much good it'll do you here.

LoL! Because you think I am here to "evangelise" right? Again I am here to laugh at silly ideas for my entertainment and I will point them out and ridicule them as I please.
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by NnennaG6(f): 7:35am On Apr 10, 2019
IAmSabrina:

To start with,
No, Sabrina. This objection is dead. It is boring. It is stupid. Theists are under no obligation to accept as true what theologians or anyone else says about angels; nor do they contradict themselves just by disagreeing with the theologians on subjects unrelated to the subjects on which they does agree with them.

IAmSabrina:
Most theologians I've heard on this subject think that all created intelligences are held at an epistemic distance during their moral development - including angelic beings.
Yes, my view is that angels were held at an epistemic distance from God. I have no argument for this. It is a conjecture. If Theologian A makes the same conjecture as me, I am free to note this. It does not mean I think he or I can demonstrate what we believe. And if Theologian B disagrees, well and good, with the same caveat. But the discussion is philosophically worthless.

This must be the third time I have had to state this obvious truth. Why are you repeating yourself?

IAmSabrina:

Matthew 1:20-21
But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.

This seems to describe, using Mathew 1:20-1, what Swinburne classes as a "religious experience" where someone experienced an angel. This type of experience is of course not that uncommon, and what Mathew 1:20-1 describes is something many people around the world report experiencing.
You search and find the word "angel" in it and think you can rest your case? It is clear you haven't even read or don't understand Swinburne's argument.

I said that the argument, "does not entail a commitment to particular detailed claims about finite spiritual entities."

Let's remember this.

The section you have quoted is not part of the argument. It is part of a classification of religious experience.

What the argument shows is that anyone who has an experience apparently of God has, on the Principle of Credulity, a good reason for believing that there is a God, and anyone who has not himself had an experience apparently of God has, on the Principle of Testimony, a good reason for believing that there is a God on the testimony of many others who have had such experiences.

The only way to circumvent this conclusion is to falsify the two principles of rationality discussed (Swinburne shows that this cannot be done without incoherence) or provide a proof of atheism - since no objection or special consideration can be universally applied to religious experience without that proof. It is not possible to prove atheism. Therefore the arguments stands.

But the reason that the argument establishes the evidential force of experiences apparently of God, and not of experiences apparently of particular finite entities, is that the argument allows that experiences apparently of particular finite entities can be falsified inductively while experiences of God cannot.

For example: Suppose I have a forceful religious experience apparently of some particular finite spiritual entity, an angel called Om, who created the Sun. I then discover that there is a rational proof for a supreme transcendent creator of all material reality, God, and, moreover, experiences of God as the creator of all material reality are more numerous and better authenticated. Swinburne writes and i quote

It is true that sometimes religious experiences do entail doctrinal commitments that are in conflict. An apparition of Christ, for example, commits one to a belief in the Incarnation which an orthodox Jew, perhaps reporting an apparition of his own, would not accept. In that case, Swinburne says, the opponent of the doctrine must produce good grounds for rejecting it—say, that conflicting claims are more numerous and better authenticated. But even if he can do so, the subject of the religious experience need not withdraw his original claim completely but only describe it in a less committed way—such as, “I was aware of some supernatural being, though not necessarily Dionysus, as I originally claimed.”

Swinburne makes the further point that religious experiences in traditions outside of Christianity are of beings having similar properties to God or of lesser beings but not of beings whose existence is incompatible with the existence of God.

His point is that these beings are compatible with and consistent with the existence of God - are indeed evidence for the existence of God - but are of limited evidential force for the particular finite entity since that can be falsified inductively. An example of this would be two simultaneous apparitions of Mary. Since Mary is not omnipresent she cannot be in two places at the same time. This would in principle count against the authenticity of at least one of the experiences but the experiences (ceteris paribus) would remain evidence for the existence of God. And this is because however much we are forced by contradictory evidence to re-describe our experiences in a less committed way - that is, however many of the details we are required to withdraw - a religious experience of any kind will remain evidence for the existence of God.

Therefore the argument, "does not entail a commitment to particular detailed claims about finite spiritual entities," since it allows that these can be falsified inductively. And most certainly it does not entail a commitment to particular detailed claims about the epistemic conditions that obtained for any finite spiritual entity at any time!

You are working so hard to try and make this objection work but I think this simply reflects a lack of good intellectual judgement on your part. For it has been obvious from the very beginning that neither atheist nor theist knows or can know what epistemic conditions obtain for angels if they exist. And it has been obvious that you need this datum for your objection to have any warrant. And it has been obvious, therefore, that your objection is without any possible warrant.

It's strange. You don't want to cede an inch of ground, even when reason and common sense require it, and so end up holding to this totally insignificant objection on pain of irrationality. One cannot help wondering what ulterior factors are at play here.
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by NnennaG6(f): 7:38am On Apr 10, 2019
LordReed:


LoL! Because you think I am here to "evangelise" right? Again I am here to laugh at silly ideas for my entertainment and I will point them out and ridicule them as I please.
OK
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Ihedinobi3: 9:08am On Apr 10, 2019
IAmSabrina:
I understand the argument you're making. But you said this in your initial post:

"Each sighting was deniable on the part of those who saw it. If it wasn't, then the sighting of God would destroy their free will.

A similar principle applied for the angels. During their own time of testing, their knowledge and sighting of God was not such that they could not choose to disobey Him. He was still in essence hidden even to them, although not quite in the same way that He is from us who are flesh and blood.
"

Problems like these plague all of your arguments, Ihedinobi. Hence, my fatigue

If God has arranged things such that people who might have loved him but didn't because they were rationally and empirically unsure of his existence, then it is surely because he wanted it this way. Which means that the existence of such a being is cast into doubt when you consider that there are people who are rationally unsure of God's existence, but argue that they would surely believe in him and might even enter into such a love relationship with him, if they were convinced that he was real. And God would know, for certain who these people were!

God knows who would believe and love him if his existence were revealed, and he knows who wouldn't love him if they learned of his existence. So God doesn't need to gamble at all on who would accept him or reject him - he already knows this information!
First, does this argument account for other humans who are rationally and empirically sure of God's existence? I don't think it does. Human beings are necessarily the same in terms of spiritual resources. That is, we are all able to make decisions on the basis of information we possess: we all possess a free will. Why are some absolutely sure and others not? Either one group is lying or the other is. Objective reality is never doubtful just because moral creatures possess the ability to make subjective judgments about them.

Second, I am not sure what your statements about gambling are really about. If you are asking why God is testing moral creatures, it is not because there is any information He lacks. The test is to give every moral creature a real chance to choose their own eternal destiny. What God wants is an eternal family composed of moral creatures that actually want to be with Him eternally. That is, He does not want to force anyone to be part of His Family. So, everyone is given ample opportunity to make a choice about that. That is what the testing is about. It is not a gamble of any sort.

But I've told you all this a lot of times already.
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Nobody: 9:46am On Apr 10, 2019
NnennaG6:

Theists are under no obligation to accept as true what theologians or anyone else says about angels; nor do they contradict themselves just by disagreeing with the theologians on subjects unrelated to the subjects on which they does agree with them.
I'm not saying you have to or a theist has to. I just find it highly suspicious that your initial comment was indeed citing what "most theologians" say, as though that carried some weight and placed doubt on my argument.


Yes, my view is that angels were held at an epistemic distance from God.
Funny that. I wonder why, of all conjecture you'd come to, you'd uncannily come to the one that would cast my criticism into doubt!


This must be the third time I have had to state this obvious truth. Why are you repeating yourself?
Because you gloss over how incredibly suspicious your comments and stance has been towards my argument.


You search and find the word "angel" in it and think you can rest your case? It is clear you haven't even read or don't understand Swinburne's argument
Nah. I looked it up, read through it and then afterwards did a search to see where your argument "carefully disputes" it.


The section you have quoted is not part of the argument. It is part of a classification of religious experience.
Yes and Swinburne himself uses an example of someone experiencing an angel as being a valid "religious experience" of an angel.


What the argument shows is that anyone who has an experience apparently of God has, on the Principle of Credulity, a good reason for believing that there is a God, and anyone who has not himself had an experience apparently of God has, on the Principle of Testimony, a good reason for believing that there is a God on the testimony of many others who have had such experiences.
Then what's your problem? Replace God with "angel" and the same holds. There is no reason why it can't and hence why, like I've said, Swinburne himself uses angel encounter as an example!

So to summarise, like you've said above:
a) Someone claims they experienced an angel. This, under Swinburne's "religious experience" segment, said person had a "religious experience".
b) Using the principal of credulity, it is reasonable to believe the person probably did experience an angel.
c) Using the principal of testimony, we can gather lots of different claims of experiences of angels and assuming we have a cohort of trustworthy and reliable sources, it is safe to assume they did indeed experience an angel.
This means, we have good evidence to support the existence of angels!! Unless of course you somehow omit "angels" from "religious experiences"!

Now, considering we have good evidence to support angels, we also have some good sources of information about angels, directly from theologians themselves. This might shed light on what angels are etc right?


His point is that these beings are compatible with and consistent with the existence of God - are indeed evidence for the existence of God - but are of limited evidential force for the particular finite entity since that can be falsified inductively.
None of what you say from that sentence on actually discounts angels in any way shape or form. What Swinburne writes is about experiences that contradict or conflict with doctrinal commitments, did you actually read it?. Which does nothing to discredit religious experiences of angels associated with Christianity, because the doctrines specifically details angels in it. As highlighted earlier, Swinburne himself uses the angel in Mathew 1:20 as an example of a valid religious experience.

You adding in "but are of limited evidential force for the particular finite entity since that can be falsified inductively." is just your own assertion and I would press you, to falsify Christian religious experiences of angels, inductively. There is no conflict with scripture/doctrine and it is perfectly compatible!


You are working so hard to try and make this objection work but I think this simply reflects a lack of good intellectual judgement on your part.
Ah yes, once all the casual assertions and frantic ad nauseum that doesn't actually address the criticism as been done, turn to snarky remarks.
[img]https://media1./images/9394ddc9e6ae2b74e2e03b661d653610/tenor.gif[/img]


For it has been obvious from the very beginning that neither atheist nor theist knows or can know what epistemic conditions obtain for angels if they exist.
The bible makes it pretty clear that angels are way above the human connection to God. You'd have to be rather obtuse to disagree with that. So your only real port of objection is your "they were held at epistemic distance", which seems like a made up assertion just so you can try and wriggle out of what is clearly a troubling argument for you. This is so very you, Nnenna.


It's strange. You don't want to cede an inch of ground, even when reason and common sense require it, and so end up holding to this totally insignificant objection on pain of irrationality. One cannot help wondering what ulterior factors are at play here.
Why would I? I keep having valid responses and criticisms to your replies. I'm not making anything up and I'm using your own sources, principals and arguments against you. Unlike you, who adds in additional information and make unwarranted conclusions from the sources you quote. It isn't an insignificant objection either, it is quite a serious one, because it dents one of your first lines of defence for divine hiddenness.

My ulterior motive? My motive is to call you out! You haven't been honest thus far in this course of our back and forth! I find your heavily-reliant-on-Swinburne copy and paste, is ripe for giving would-be readers who may not be entirely versed with these line of arguments, the impression that your position is somehow sound, when it really isn't.

It seems like you have barely looked into criticisms of Swinburne's material and arguments, of which in academia, there is a lot but you do not seem to present these and instead only post "objections" which are easy to dismiss. However, if you actually were interested in being impartial, I would suggest one book that does a good job of covering not only Swinburne's arguments but also a wide range of other arguments for God, being Theism and Explanation by Gregory Dawes. For a bit of background info, Dawes was on his way to becoming an ordained Catholic priest (steeped in the same classical theism you study) and is now a Professor of Philosophy and quite the atheist (as most professional philosophers are).

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Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by LordReed(m): 10:40am On Apr 10, 2019
Ihedinobi3:

First, does this argument account for other humans who are rationally and empirically sure of God's existence? I don't think it does. Human beings are necessarily the same in terms of spiritual resources. That is, we are all able to make decisions on the basis of information we possess: we all possess a free will. Why are some absolutely sure and others not? Either one group is lying or the other is. Objective reality is never doubtful just because moral creatures possess the ability to make subjective judgments about them.

Second, I am not sure what your statements about gambling are really about. If you are asking why God is testing moral creatures, it is not because there is any information He lacks. The test is to give every moral creature a real chance to choose their own eternal destiny. What God wants is an eternal family composed of moral creatures that actually want to be with Him eternally. That is, He does not want to force anyone to be part of His Family. So, everyone is given ample opportunity to make a choice about that. That is what the testing is about. It is not a gamble of any sort.

But I've told you all this a lot of times already.

Question: what is/was the point of creating a thinking, feeling being to suffer and die, only emerge into another level of existence where they will still suffer unendingly. This being done with full knowledge of the outcomes and full preparation to create the eternal hell condition. What is/was the point of such an exercise?

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Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by NnennaG6(f): 11:44am On Apr 10, 2019
IAmSabrina:

I just find it highly suspicious that your initial comment was indeed citing what "most theologians" say, as though that carried some weight and placed doubt on my argument.
This is very obtuse. Look back over the discussion. As you rightfully said, i have been repeating ad nauseum that my view about the epistemic distance between God and angels is pure conjecture of no philosophical value. And I do not need that conjecture to place doubt on your argument. Indeed, it is because it can only ever be conjecture one way or the other that your argument is not worth the pixels composing it.

You are still accusing me of saying a conjecture holds weight when I have been emphasising for some time now that it does not. That is intellectually dishonest.

IAmSabrina:

Funny that. I wonder why, of all conjecture you'd come to, you'd uncannily come to the one that would cast my criticism into doubt!
Here you sound paranoid, self-important and irrational. I have held my view for some time - and long before this discussion with you - because I think it follows from other arguments that seem to me sound. That is, it coheres with what common experience and common sense has to tell us about the conditions which conduce to the unmitigated exercise of moral liberty.

It is quite bizarre that you should think I hold my position simply because it disagrees with yours - as though the criterion by which I selected my beliefs is: "They oppose IAmSabrina."

IAmSabrina:

So to summarise, like you've said above:
a) Someone claims they experienced an angel. This, under Swinburne's "religious experience" segment, said person had a "religious experience".
b) Using the principal of credulity, it is reasonable to believe the person probably did experience an angel.
c) Using the principal of testimony, we can gather lots of different claims of experiences of angels and assuming we have a cohort of trustworthy and reliable sources, it is safe to assume they did indeed experience an angel.
This means, we have good evidence to support the existence of angels!! Unless of course you somehow omit "angels" from "religious experiences"!
I feel like you have skipped over the key points - the very thrust - of my reply. I said that the Argument from Religious Experience holds that particular detailed claims about finite entities can be falsified inductively. Therefore, the argument does not in principle entail a commitment to, and cannot in principle prove, particular detailed claims about finite entities since someone could, even just in principle, come along with inductive evidence to refute it.

The difference between angels and God that is of great importance to the dispute is this: If God exists then, being all powerful, all knowing and all present, he is necessarily present at, aware of and causally active throughout any religious experience. So: Some detail of my experience apparently of a particular finite supernatural being can be falsified inductively (perhaps conflicting experiences are better authenticated and more numerous; or perhaps the same non-omnipresent being was experienced in two places at the same time) but even if I am required to withdraw some details of my claim it will remain evidence of a supernatural entity of some kind which is consistent with the claims of theism; and even if I am required to withdraw my claim to an experience apparently of some finite entity altogether, what I am left with is an experience apparently of some supernatural being and that is evidence for God.

In short: There are in principle ways to inductively falsify a religious experience apparently of finite entities but there is no available way to inductively falsify a religious experience apparently of God without a proof of atheism. Therefore, the Argument from Religious Experience holds for experiences apparently of God but not necessarily for experiences apparently of angels.

Still more important: All of this is quite irrelevant to your objection because whether or not the Argument from Religious Experience can prove that angels exist it would still not tell us a thing about the epistemic conditions that obtained for angels before and at the Fall or whether angels are even sufficiently like us to justify comparison. And all this is what you need to establish to give your objection even a scintilla of warrant.

IAmSabrina:

I find your heavily-reliant-on-Swinburne copy and paste, is ripe for giving would-be readers who may not be entirely versed with these line of arguments, the impression that your position is somehow sound, when it really isn't.
Then why don't you give some rigorous argumentation to demonstrate to them that the overall case for Christian Theism isn't sound? Those poor, ignorant would-be readers have yet to hear this from you. If only IamSabrina can tie up her hair back in a bun, roll up her sleeves, and save them from their own stupidity. Here you are just resorting to personal attack without any substantive engagement with the issues. This suggests to me that you have run out of arguments.

IAmSabrina:

It seems like you have barely looked into criticisms of Swinburne's material and arguments, of which in academia, there is a lot
Whatever position anyone stakes out, it will be possible to find someone who objects to it fiercely. Counting heads who disagree with Swinburne or anyone else counts for nothing. You need to present the counterarguments. Feel free to do so.

And if you think I have not looked at what atheists have to say about these arguments you are quite mistaken. My path to Christianity began with me reading books on atheism (Dawkins, Hitchens, Harris, Grayling, Dennett, Mackie, Schellenberg, Oppy and many others) while still an agnostic in the university. After reading evenly from both sides of the battlefront I saw that the scientific, philosophical and historical evidence was clearly weighted in favour of Christian Theism.

IAmSabrina:

Dawes was on his way to becoming an ordained Catholic priest (steeped in the same classical theism you study) and is now a Professor of Philosophy and quite the atheist (as most professional philosophers are).
I've never heard of him (and nor has Wikipedia) but who cares? This gets us nowhere. Francis Collins was the director of the Human Genome project and is now a Christian based on the evidence for theism. Allan Sandage was the foremost physical cosmologist of the century and followed the same path. Alisdair McIntyre is considered one of the most important anglophone philosophers of the twentieth century and converted to Catholicism after trying, and failing, to refute Aquinas. Should i go on? Need i say more?

Again, counting heads gets us nowhere, though if it did, it would favour theism, since in the philosophy of religion (the only philosophical discipline to take God as its direct object) we find that 70-odd percent of philosophers hold to or lean towards theism. But I am interested in hammering out the arguments, not name dropping.
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Nobody: 12:40pm On Apr 10, 2019
NnennaG6:

This is very obtuse. Look back over the discussion. As you rightfully said, i have been repeating ad nauseum that my view about the epistemic distance between God and angels is pure conjecture of no philosophical value.
I'm saying that you did not start like that. You started with citing what you think most theologians say about the subject but then quickly renege on that. If you think it does not, then why start with that?


It is quite bizarre that you should think I hold my position simply because it disagrees with yours - as though the criterion by which I selected my beliefs is: "They oppose IAmSabrina."
No, it is because I bring up a point as a refutation of part of an argument you present and go straight to offering an opinion that directly counters my argument. You also seem to conveniently disagree with a number of theologians and, of course, the bible on the existence and details of angels. Which, again, seems to be very convenient, considering the point I raised.


I feel like you have skipped over the key points - the very thrust - of my reply. I said that the Argument from Religious Experience holds that particular detailed claims about finite entities can be falsified inductively. Therefore, the argument does not in principle entail a commitment to, and cannot in principle prove, particular detailed claims about finite entities since someone could, even just in principle, come along with inductive evidence to refute it.
I never said anyone has to commit to anything. I'm saying that, using the same arguments and principals you agree with, I've argued for the existence of angels and that is all it needs to do. Once it has done that, we can start looking at information from theologians or the bible to gain more information about angels.

And as I said earlier, you're welcome to present inductively, arguments that refute such evidence for angels. I've presented my argument using your methods.


In short: There are in principle ways to inductively falsify a religious experience apparently of finite entities but there is no available way to inductively falsify a religious experience apparently of God without a proof of atheism. Therefore, the Argument from Religious Experience holds for experiences apparently of God but not necessarily for experiences apparently of angels.
And again, no one is saying it IS necessarily angels. It could be God or it could be angels. The bible details that there are more than 1 angel and these sorts of experiences have been recorded by thousands of people before, so using all those arguments and principals, which I've laid out earlier, it IS evidence for angels. And I am not interested in disputing God at the moment, I'm interested in angels.


Still more important: All of this is quite irrelevant to your objection because whether or not the Argument from Religious Experience can prove that angels exist it would still not tell us a thing about the epistemic conditions that obtained for angels before and at the Fall or whether angels are even sufficiently like us to justify comparison. And all this is what you need to establish to give your objection even a scintilla of warrant.
No, but we can turn to theologians, whose speciality and training is to ascertain such knowledge, correct? But for some reason, you deny even the most prominent theologian's conclusions about angels, strange. Conclusion that support my argument, so it does seem very convenient and uncanny that you'd deny it.


Those poor, ignorant would-be readers have yet to hear this from you. If only IamSabrina can tie up her hair back in a bun, roll up her sleeves, and save them from their own stupidity.
[img]https://media./images/33c3d8ebbe6e3522012a6d7bc2d97609/tenor.gif[/img]

And if you think I have not looked at what atheists have to say about these arguments you are quite mistaken. My path to Christianity began with me reading books on atheism (Dawkins, Hitchens, Harris, Grayling, Dennett, Mackie, Schellenberg, Oppy and many others) while still an agnostic in the university. After reading evenly from both sides of the battlefront I saw that the scientific, philosophical and historical evidence was clearly weighted in favour of Christian Theism.
@bolded. Uncanny indeed grin

Of course, you're free to choose whatever conclusion you make. But it is certainly not because of scientific, philosophical and historical evidence. The mainstay to your belief (classical theism) is prided upon divine revelation and faith. Human reason is only but the handmaiden to theology and thus no amount of scientific, philosophical or historical evidence against that, can thwart what knowledge is attained by faith and divine revelation. But of course, I cannot know what underlying factors play in your being convinced, although I certainly know for many, fear of death + life after death, solace in the thought of a magical being that looks out for you and the by-proxy community support and acceptance are often key factors in their decision smiley

Francis Collins was the director of the Human Genome project and is now a Christian based on the evidence for theism.
Wow, really? cheesy

I decided to look him up, and have you read his book which outlines the reason he converted? And also, something he says which supports the paragraph just above this one smiley. Quoted from an interview with him:

Nobody gets argued all the way into becoming a believer on the sheer basis of logic and reason. That requires a leap of faith. And that leap of faith seemed very scary to me. After I had struggled with this for a couple of years, I was hiking in the Cascade Mountains on a beautiful fall afternoon. I turned the corner and saw in front of me this frozen waterfall, a couple of hundred feet high. Actually, a waterfall that had three parts to it — also the symbolic three in one. At that moment, I felt my resistance leave me. And it was a great sense of relief. The next morning, in the dewy grass in the shadow of the Cascades, I fell on my knees and accepted this truth — that God is God, that Christ is his son and that I am giving my life to that belief.


Allan Sandage
LOL. The man who argued from personal incredulity? I.E "The universe is just too complex, couldn't have been chance, must be God". I'm crying grin grin grin

Cc. Martinez39

Alisdair McIntyre
I do not know of him. But if he turned to Aquinas' theology then again, reason is not most important.


Again, counting heads gets us nowhere, though if it did, it would favour theism, since in the philosophy of religion (the only philosophical discipline to take God as its direct object) we find that 70-odd percent of philosophers hold to or lean towards theism. But I am interested in hammering out the arguments, not name dropping.
Ah yes, but that is accounted for by selection bias. However, philosophers of religion make up a small amount of philosophers overall. The selection bias comes from the vested interest people who are already believers going into it, there is little to no movement within philosophers of religion either way. However, many who were theist going into other areas of philosophy are often philosophised out of it. There is a survey somewhere that highlights that.

But sure, crank out those "arguments" grin grin

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Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Ihedinobi3: 2:39pm On Apr 10, 2019
LordReed:


Question: what is/was the point of creating a thinking, feeling being to suffer and die, only emerge into another level of existence where they will still suffer unendingly. This being done with full knowledge of the outcomes and full preparation to create the eternal hell condition. What is/was the point of such an exercise?
Just for the sake of readers who may not quite notice...

This question of yours was answered in the post it was querying. So I won't be answering it again. As I said, this response is not for your sake, or else it would not be made at all.
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by LordReed(m): 3:09pm On Apr 10, 2019
Ihedinobi3:

Just for the sake of readers who may not quite notice...

This question of yours was answered in the post it was querying. So I won't be answering it again. As I said, this response is not for your sake, or else it would not be made at all.

Your post only looks at those who purportedly will make it into the family of the god while my question is focused on the suffering of tohse who you say don't make the cut. Is their suffering merely to highlight the enjoyment of the others or is there some other purpose to it?
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Ihedinobi3: 3:16pm On Apr 10, 2019
LordReed:


Your post only looks at those who purportedly will make it into the family of the god while my question is focused on the suffering of tohse who you say don't make the cut. Is their suffering merely to highlight the enjoyment of the others or is there some other purpose to it?
First, the post that mine responded to already addressed the other group. I was merely balancing it out.

Second, what is the natural outworking of rejecting God? It is always hostility toward Him and toward those He loves. Given how much harm that this results in, in what way is the suffering of such people unjustified?
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by LordReed(m): 3:39pm On Apr 10, 2019
Ihedinobi3:

First, the post that mine responded to already addressed the other group. I was merely balancing it out.

Second, what is the natural outworking of rejecting God? It is always hostility toward Him and toward those He loves. Given how much harm that this results in, in what way is the suffering of such people unjustified?

Can you quote the place, I am not seeing it.

How much harm? So now that I have rejected a belief in god what harm have I caused that will justify unending punishment?
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by NnennaG6(f): 5:19pm On Apr 10, 2019
IAmSabrina:

I'm saying that you did not start like that. You started with citing what you think most theologians say about the subject but then quickly renege on that. If you think it does not, then why start with that?
What have I reneged on?

I have said from the beginning that I believe in angels and that I believe that they were held at an epistemic distance from God. I did not claim to have an argument for either of these beliefs but, on the contrary, affirmed that whatever anyone says about the epistemic distance that obtains for angels at the Fall is based on conjecture.

IAmSabrina:

No, it is because I bring up a point as a refutation of part of an argument you present and go straight to offering an opinion that directly counters my argument. You also seem to conveniently disagree with a number of theologians and, of course, the bible on the existence and details of angels. Which, again, seems to be very convenient, considering the point I raised.
This part of your last two replies is boring and pointless. Let's drop it.

IAmSabrina:

I never said anyone has to commit to anything. I'm saying that, using the same arguments and principals you agree with, I've argued for the existence of angels and that is all it needs to do.
And I've carefully demonstrated that the Argument from Religious Experience cannot establish the existence of angels because any religious experience apparently of an angel is (according to the argument itself) inductively falsifiable even if only in principle. You have not said anything of interest against that demonstration.

IAmSabrina:

Once it has done that, we can start looking at information from theologians or the bible to gain more information about angels.
If you have an analytic or synthetic argument showing the epistemic conditions that obtained for angels at the Fall, by all means let's hear it.

Note, however, two things: A conjecture made by a theologian is not a philosophical argument and a verse of scripture is not a philosophical argument.

IAmSabrina:

No, but we can turn to theologians, whose speciality and training is to ascertain such knowledge, correct? But for some reason, you deny even the most prominent theologian's conclusions about angels, strange.
This is ridiculous. Do you think that every claim must be viewed as true by a theist if a theologian says it? It does not matter who makes a claim. It matters only whether the argument they offer for that claim is a good one. I am not aware of any good arguments demonstrating the epistemic distance that obtained for angels at the Fall. Are you? No. It is all conjecture about an unknowable and a conjecture about an unknowable cannot be the basis for a good argument.

IAmSabrina:

you're free to choose whatever conclusion you make. But it is certainly not because of scientific, philosophical and historical evidence.
It is precisely because of scientific, philosophical and historical evidence.

IAmSabrina:

Frank Collins:
Nobody gets argued all the way into becoming a believer on the sheer basis of logic and reason.
I completely agree. A Christian is someone who comes to have a relationship with a divine person. Everyone who comes to Christ tells a similar story. I myself had paranormal experiences at the end of my intellectual conversion. But part of that journey for Collins was awakening to the evidence for God which lead him on to the religious and mystical experiences:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EGu_VtbpWhE

IAmSabrina:

LOL. The man who argued from personal incredulity? I.E "The universe is just too complex, couldn't have been chance, must be God". I'm crying grin grin grin
Carl Sandage was persuaded by the Argument from Cosmic Teleology and the Argument from Adequation.

Also
ME: Alasdair MacIntyre
YOU: I do not know of him. But if he turned to Aquinas' theology then again, reason is not most important.
A glib ipse dixit that is equivalent to saying, "No!"
To be persuasive here you need to show the flaws in MacIntyre's defence of Aquinas' theology

IAmSabrina:

Ah yes, but that is accounted for by selection bias.
So the philosophical evidence massively weighted toward atheism and the majority of professional philosophers of religion who hold or learn towards theism are all self-delusional? I take it that is your claim. If so, I suggest you make your case and create a thread about it here on Nairaland. I'm being serious. Anyone can claim anything about the state of a philosophical field but if you actually do the heavy lifting and lay out your case you would get both my attention and my respect. Will you do it or will you tentatively withdraw your insinuation as unsubstantiated? There is no third option - at least, not one that avoids intellectual dishonour.

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Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Ihedinobi3: 5:52pm On Apr 10, 2019
LordReed:


Can you quote the place, I am not seeing it.

How much harm? So now that I have rejected a belief in god what harm have I caused that will justify unending punishment?
"If God has arranged things such that people who might have loved him but didn't because they were rationally and empirically unsure of his existence, then it is surely because he wanted it this way. Which means that the existence of such a being is cast into doubt when you consider that there are people who are rationally unsure of God's existence, but argue that they would surely believe in him and might even enter into such a love relationship with him, if they were convinced that he was real. And God would know, for certain who these people were!

God knows who would believe and love him if his existence were revealed, and he knows who wouldn't love him if they learned of his existence. So God doesn't need to gamble at all on who would accept him or reject him - he already knows this information!"


That's the quote.

As for your question, I am not your judge. However, I assure you that at the Great White Throne, you will be free to ask that question again, and you will receive a very comprehensible answer from your Judge then.
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Nobody: 6:06pm On Apr 10, 2019
NnennaG6:

And I've carefully demonstrated that the Argument from Religious Experience cannot establish the existence of angels because any religious experience apparently of an angel is (according to the argument itself) inductively falsifiable even if only in principle. You have not said anything of interest against that demonstration.
That is because you've not falsified it and saying "in principal" is unjustified. You've to explain why it can be or even gone about falsifying it. Seems odd that Swinburne himself would use it as an example.

But I'm going to leave it at that. That you personally are not convinced is beside the point, I do not think you're sticking to your principals and arguments consistently. So I'll await to see how you can falsify the angels argument.


A glib ipse dixit that is equivalent to saying, "No!"
To be persuasive here you need to show the flaws in MacIntyre's defence of Aquinas' theology
No I am saying that, as soon as you depart from reason and assert divine revelation or faith, you appeal to something that is indistinguishable from fabrication or someone having mental health issues. I cannot investigate what you claim is divine revelation or on faith. So it leaves me with nothing to assess what you're saying with, or if it is true or not. This is of course, a large part why I reject particularly Christian theism.


So the philosophical evidence massively weighted toward atheism and the majority of professional philosophers of religion who hold or learn towards theism are all self-delusional?
Lol, What?!. How did you arrive at this from my previous post?

They are just not basing the main reason for what they believe on reason or philosophy! Again, the most important thing is faith and/or divine revelation, this is something that in particular Christianity advocates and stresses the importance of. It makes complete sense that theists have a vested interest in "philosophy of religion" (PoR) and in fact, that so much of PoR is theist dominant is literally because of a selection bias as investigated here.

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Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by budaatum: 7:00pm On Apr 10, 2019
IAmSabrina:


They are just not basing the main reason for what they believe on reason or philosophy! Again, the most important thing is faith and/or divine revelation, this is something that in particular Christianity advocates and stresses the importance of. It makes complete sense that theists have a vested interest in "philosophy of religion" (PoR) and in fact, that so much of PoR is theist dominant is literally because of a selection bias as investigated here.

I must say, we have enough evidence for the following on here:

It has been argued that many philosophers of religion suffer from cognitive biases and group influence, and that the field as a whole is too partisan, too polemical, too narrow in its focus, and too often evaluated using criteria that are theological or religious instead of philosophical. Recent work in cognitive science of religion suggests that analytic thinking is a pathway to atheism (Norenzayan and Gervais 2013), and it has been observed that analytic thinkers show weaker religious belief and tend to lose their religious fervour, even if they were originally raised in a religious environment (Shenhav et al. 2012). Experimental work supports these correlations and provides additional evidence for causal connections between analytic thinking and erosion of religious beliefs (Gervais and Norenzayan 2012).

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Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by NnennaG6(f): 8:38pm On Apr 10, 2019
IAmSabrina:

That is because you've not falsified it and saying "in principal" is unjustified. You've to explain why it can be or even gone about falsifying it. Seems odd that Swinburne himself would use it as an example.
I don't know what more I can do if you do not attend to the argument or cannot understand it after repeated readings.

IAmSabrina:

No I am saying that, as soon as you depart from reason and assert divine revelation or faith, you appeal to something that is indistinguishable from fabrication or someone having mental health issues. I cannot investigate what you claim is divine revelation or on faith. So it leaves me with nothing to assess what you're saying with, or if it is true or not. This is of course, a large part why I reject particularly Christian theism.
What are you talking about? This was in response to Alisdair MacIntyre's conversion to Catholicism which came about as a result of his failed attempt to disprove Aquinas. To quote his Wiki page,
In an interview with Prospect, MacIntyre explains that his conversion to Catholicism occurred in his fifties as a "result of being convinced of Thomism while attempting to disabuse his students of its authenticity."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alasdair_MacIntyre

He followed the philosophical argumentation to theism.

IAmSabrina:

They are just not basing the main reason for what they believe on reason or philosophy!
So they're delusional. Remember: These professional philosophers who hold to or lean towards theism all claim to be persuaded by the philosophical arguments for theism. You are saying that they are mistaken. Therefore, they are self delusional.

Again: Anyone can claim anything about the state of a philosophical field but if you actually do the heavy lifting and lay out your case you would get both my attention and my respect. Will you do it or will you tentatively withdraw your insinuation as unsubstantiated? There is no third option - at least, not one that avoids intellectual dishonour.

Also, I did a little reading on Aquinas' view of angels about which I knew very little in response to your repeated invocation of him during our discussion, i.e.,
YOU: multiple well-known and respected Theologians provide very specific information about angels (Barth, Augustine, Pannenberg and Aquinas for example)
and,
YOU: This ignores the fact that theologians the likes of Thomas Aquinas (who I think you'd hold in higher regard than WLC) have written a specific treatise on angels

I am grateful to you for motivating this. To be honest, the question of the epistemic distance between angels and God is not something I've looked into or cared to look into because it is pure conjecture and I am interested in the philosophy of religion. But if we were to include the conjectures of theologians like Aquinas as you seem to think we should (though again I remain persuaded that it is philosophically pointless) then in any case it would appear to favour my view.

Aquinas held that the angels did not possess the full beatitude of heaven (that is, were held at an epistemic distance) at the Fall. Aquinas thinks they basically underwent a period of trial and those that made the choice to serve and to love the Lord and to remain faithful to Him attained the full happiness of heaven, whereas those that rebelled were cast into hell - much like us here on Earth, as it turns out.
http://www.newadvent.org/summa/1062.htm
See Q. 62, Article 8.

So even if your objection were not worthless, which it is, it would still be worthless.

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Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Nobody: 9:14pm On Apr 10, 2019
NnennaG6:

I don't know what more I can do if you do not attend to the argument or cannot understand it after repeated readings.
Because your whole disputing it is saying "it can be inductively refuted" but do not provide any rationale for that!


What are you talking about? This was in response to Alisdair MacIntyre's conversion to Catholicism which came about as a result of his failed attempt to disprove Aquinas.
I was responding to the fact that in almost every single conversion story, at some point they divorce themselves of reason and adopt faith and claims of divine revelation. As I've said, those methods for claiming knowledge are indistinguishable from being made-up and ultimately special pleading.


So they're delusional. Remember: These professional philosophers who hold to or lean towards theism all claim to be persuaded by the philosophical arguments for theism. You are saying that they are mistaken. Therefore, they are self delusional.
No, that is your strawman and putting words in my mouth!

As I've said above, if you divorce yourself from reason and adopt a form of knowledge that steps outside of that, are they being "reasonable"? How is one supposed to figure out whether someones supposed knowledge gained through faith or divine revelation is indeed knowledge, them making it up or their mental health is unstable? Indeed we cannot, mere human reason cannot touch such knowledge claims, such a sentiment is found throughout much of theology, both historically and present day.


Aquinas held that the angels did not possess the full beatitude of heaven (that is, were held at an epistemic distance) at the Fall.
That seems like a very strange conclusion and point to and keep injecting, when a read of what is said, reveals that it doesn't support your case again.

All it states is that Angels were created in beatitude and did not have it from the beginning, but I do not get why you conclude "epistemic distance" from that. Especially considering my point was wrt the fact that finite beings would lose ability to make free choices should they have a heightened awareness or knowledge of God, which I assume the argument is making a direct reference to humans. However, what you've linked also talks about angels being created in sanctifying grace, which humans are not created in. Also article 6 in the same link talks about angels having more grace and glory and thus "so it is reasonable to suppose that the angels who had a higher nature, were turned to God more mightily and efficaciously." (than humans).
Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by NnennaG6(f): 9:30pm On Apr 10, 2019
IAmSabrina:

Because your whole disputing it is saying "it can be inductively refuted" but do not provide any rationale for that!
It has been clear from the beginning that you have trouble understanding the argument. At this point I can only assume that you cannot, or will not, make an intelligent reply and are going to continue to stonewall the discussion by pretending that no argumentation has been given for you to reply to. Whatever the reason, forward progress here is impossible.

IAmSabrina:

I was responding to the fact that in almost every single conversion story, at some point they divorce themselves of reason and adopt faith and claims of divine revelation. As I've said, those methods for claiming knowledge are indistinguishable from being made-up and ultimately special pleading.
God! Sabrina! Can you be any more obtuse & unsophisticated? McIntyre states explicitly, "I was lead to theism by philosophy." Your reply is, "Other people convert to theism on faith so McIntyre is no different."

If you really think that is a satisfactory response then I am happy to let the matter rest here. A profitable discussion with you will not be possible.

IAmSabrina:

No, that is your strawman and putting words in my mouth!
You are claiming that they do not have philosophical grounds for their theism as they claim and so are delusional for thinking that they do. The real reason for their theism, you are suggesting, is private religious experience.

IAmSabrina:

As I've said above, if you divorce yourself from reason and adopt a form of knowledge that steps outside of that, are they being "reasonable"? How is one supposed to figure out whether someones supposed knowledge gained through faith or divine revelation is indeed knowledge, them making it up or their mental health is unstable?
Easy: Instead of declaring by fiat that the majority of professional philosophers of religion are delusional, you can substantiate the claim on which the logic of this objection is based; i.e., that they do not in fact have sound philosophical grounds for theism.

Anyone can claim anything about the state of a philosophical field but if you actually do the heavy lifting and lay out your case you would get both my attention and my respect. Will you do it or will you tentatively withdraw your insinuation as unsubstantiated? There is no third option - at least, not one that avoids intellectual dishonour.

IAmSabrina:

Aquinas
Given everything that has gone before, it should not surprise me in the least that you misread and misunderstand Aquinas. The Summa is very clear on this point and, unlike you, other theologians and commentators have had no trouble understanding him - see for yourself.

Aquinas thinks that if the angels had the beatific vision it would have been impossible to sin. Some of the angels sinned. Therefore, the angels did not enjoy the beatific vision when they sinned.

To enjoy the beatific vision is to see God face-to-face. Anything less that the beatific vision is a result of divine hiding; that is, epistemic distance.

Aquinas's speculations on this subject are incompatible with your objection and compatible with my argument. So again, even if your objection from theological speculation were not philosophically worthless, which it is, it would still be worthless.

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Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Nobody: 10:59pm On Apr 10, 2019
NnennaG6:

It has been clear from the beginning that you have trouble understanding the argument. At this point I can only assume that you cannot, or will not, make an intelligent reply and are going to continue to stonewall the discussion by pretending that no argumentation has been given for you to reply to. Whatever the reason, forward progress here is impossible.
Yes, I'm the one making bold assertions that I refuse to elaborate on, right? SMDHLOL!!!

You keep making insisting claims and assertions and when I ask you questions to support what you're saying, you don't, it is as if you just simply do not read what I'm saying or you just think it can be glossed over.


God! Sabrina! Can you be any more obtuse & unsophisticated?
Projecting...


McIntyre states explicitly, "I was lead to theism by philosophy." Your reply is, "Other people convert to theism on faith so McIntyre is no different."
He might say that, but if he adopts classical theism, it is specifically in its tenets that faith and divine revelation is the only method to reach the "truth". To accept classical theism is to accept faith and divine revelation.

If you want to ignore that fact then so be it, I expect it in this case.


You are claiming that they do not have philosophical grounds for their theism as they claim and so are delusional for thinking that they do. The real reason for their theism, you are suggesting, is private religious experience.
Theism is not solely "philosophical" and it never has been! In fact, for many years it prided itself on asserting that mere human reasoning and philosophy were simply the hand-maiden to theology, used to support the faith but not argue against it (a view held by the likes of William Lane Craig). That changed over time but certainly, things like classical theism and so on, were formed and built on such belief. That you keep trying to peddle that philosophy on its own is what brings people to theism is
a) abundantly not apparent for MOST people who consider themselves believers and
b) ignoring the specific claims and tenets within most lines of theism detailing that this is NOT the case for reaching the "truth".

Also, what you keep ignoring is what I linked you. That there is already strong evidence, based on the survey conducted on PoR respondents, highlighting that they were ALREADY theist before going into PoR!


Easy: Instead of declaring by fiat that the majority of professional philosophers of religion are delusional, you can substantiate the claim on which the logic of this objection is based; i.e., that they do not in fact have sound philosophical grounds for theism.
[img]https://media1./images/ce1fae97169ba14cd41bd9c45eaa4f08/tenor.gif[/img]
LOL. Please STOP your strawman and dishonest putting of words in my mouth!

There is no need for this. All you need to do is demonstrate that theism does not assert that "faith" and "divine revelation" or "inner-witness of the holy spirit" are the only means of attaining the complete "truth" of theism. But seeing as, you cannot deny it because it is specific to it then you're left with accepting it and it is THAT point which leaves us with the following difficult to answer question: How can we truly tell whether people, aside from them saying so, become convinced of theism based solely on reason and philosophy or if it is actually faith etc which is the primary factor?

Why is this difficult? Because often, rational people acknowledge that things like faith and divine revelation etc, are essentially highly contentious if one is being skeptical. However, within circles of theism of course, it is highly praised and required. But this makes it a point of contention because rarely do people actively espouse and embrace "faith" as an intellectually sound venture, in the face of skeptical criticism. This could bring people to turn to other reasons for accepting theism even though that may not necessarily be the case, how to figure out what is the truth?


To enjoy the beatific vision is to see God face-to-face. Anything less that the beatific vision is a result of divine hiding; that is, epistemic distance.
This ignores the fact that there are differing levels of "beatitude" and that "perfect" beatitude is only applicable to God. Indeed Aquinas writes that no creature can actually truly "see God as he is" because its nature does not allow for such. At least not in this life.

I guess, what you need to flesh out and make clear then, is, what level of beatitude would prevent the free will of man? Considering that the ultimate level of beatitude cannot be attained. This also presents claims against your argument in that;

It is not clear what level of beatitude humans have and why they cannot or could not have more (i.e for God to be less hidden), considering that other finite beings, like angels, have a higher level of beatitude, by virtue of their knowledge of glory.

So it seems, you're making an argument against divine hiddenness using conjecture and "what if". This is not really an argument at all!

1 Like

Re: Why Do Christians Act As Disturbed Fellows? by Nobody: 11:30pm On Apr 10, 2019
barapistis:


Ride on bro,

You doing great
Thank you very much for your comments, but i'm not surprised because I could relate to a lot of the things you're saying.

I'm going to pm you soon because I think we have a lot in common, so we definitely have a lot to talk about.

God be with us!

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