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 Post subject: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 6:55 pm 
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In response to the powerhouse atheist Christopher Hitchins, Dan Peterson quotes someone or other saying

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“Christianity was never meant to be an explanation of anything in the first place,” Eagleton retorts.
Read more at http://www.patheos.com/blogs/danpeterso ... 2vKLzd8.99


Uh, Jesus and the resurrection? It's not meant to explain even that?! :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 8:10 pm 
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Every once and a while an admission comes out. They have nothing. All god would have to do is appear and say hello and that we should follow Jesus. Also, he could give us Jesus' actual words. But there's nothing.

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 9:36 pm 
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Exiled wrote:
Every once and a while an admission comes out. They have nothing. All god would have to do is appear and say hello and that we should follow Jesus. Also, he could give us Jesus' actual words. But there's nothing.


Right? I have said it numerous times, and it can't get through thick noggins. Jesus obviously, and I mean obviously has no interest in spreading his truth in his vastly superior and successful way. We have here a deity who literally (according to the invented theology men cling to, so we will go with it) will never run out of time, and cannot in any fathomable way be too busy (being omnipotent, the proper suspicion is this here deity might be able to multitask) to come around a little bit and .....uh ........ you know, sorta like witness a bit or maybe hold a few town meetings or something?

All we ever get is some ad hoc excuse as to why he won't. And virtually none of it is satisfactory.

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"Being and nonbeing arise mutually. Thus not to see the unity of self and other is the fear of life, and not to see the unity of being and nonbeing is the fear of death." Alan Watts

"The problem is most religions proceed to try and explain the truth and then insist that you agree with their explanation." Brad Warner


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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 9:43 pm 
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Eagleton retorts. “It’s rather like saying that thanks to the electric toaster, we can forget about Chekhov.” For Eagleton, believing that religion is a botched attempt to explain the world” is on the same intellectual level as “seeing ballet as a botched attempt to run for a bus.”
/////from the link in the first post.
Makes pretty straightforward sense to me.

Exiled. Why should god come and tell you to follow Jesus? If you like Jesus you will try to follow him because of the value you see in his path. If you do not see value there then you wont much fallow it whether told to or not.

I think we have plenty of Jesus words. He left a lot for us to figure out about how to live. It is best that way I feel quite sure.

I think Paul saw that it was best not to try to fence people in with a lot of laws created out of Jesus said this and Jesus said that. Jesus said you know what is right , it is best to actually do it.


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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 10:59 pm 
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Throw us a bone and let us know if Jesus isn't just some person like the life of brian where myth was created around some itinerant preacher or if he was complete myth. If he was so important, why the dearth of information about this guy?

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 11:33 pm 
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huckelberry wrote:
Why should god come and tell you to follow Jesus?


So that a person would know what they should believe and follow if that is required for heavenly rewards.

Quote:
If you like Jesus you will try to follow him because of the value you see in his path.


What path? Everything Jesus taught about how to be a good person doesn't originate from Jesus, so why believe in Jesus?

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 12:09 am 
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Themis wrote:
huckelberry wrote:
Why should god come and tell you to follow Jesus?


So that a person would know what they should believe and follow if that is required for heavenly rewards.

Quote:
If you like Jesus you will try to follow him because of the value you see in his path.


What path? Everything Jesus taught about how to be a good person doesn't originate from Jesus, so why believe in Jesus?


Themis, I think you have a point that what Jesus taught was not all that original. In fact I suspect we all know the things he taught. That does not make it less of a path just because we already have knowledge of it. It does give us fewer excuses for wandering off on different paths. (should such a thing ever befall a person)

And besides you should follow because you know it is true not for some heavenly reward. I mean what if there are no heavenly rewards?


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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 12:13 am 
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Exiled wrote:
Throw us a bone and let us know if Jesus isn't just some person like the life of brian where myth was created around some itinerant preacher or if he was complete myth. If he was so important, why the dearth of information about this guy?


I think we know what we need to know about Jesus.

Then the question as to whether or not myths were created about him. I do not think you will know how far that extends. I feel sure that you will live your life and never know for sure if he walked on water.


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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 12:30 am 
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Why him, huckelberry? He isn't here and is therefore subject to varying interpretations and exaggerations. The bible is contradictory about the man. Who was he really? His absence allows religionists like our q12 to claim some special audience with the man, for their own agrandizement. His absence also allows other christians to make all sorts of claims while passing around the collection plate. Maybe a 300 ft Jesus exists but I have my reservations.

My biggest problem is his apparent death for sin. It makes no sense to me. I prefer to imagine a god who has the power to forgive like you and me. If one is imagining, why not give the imagined god a few more powers?

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 12:40 am 
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huckelberry wrote:
And besides you should follow because you know it is true not for some heavenly reward. I mean what if there are no heavenly rewards?

Most Christian religions tell us we have to believe and accept Jesus as Christ to be saved in a supposed after life. Many have lived Christ like lives without ever hearing claims Jesus as savior of the world. If you don't thinking believing in Jesus or accepting him as savior of the world has any impact in rewards in this life or the next then no problem. If you do then that should answer the question of why God should tell us to follow Jesus.

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 2:08 am 
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I think I know what Eagleton is saying there, and I don't think it can be dismissed so easily. On this occasion, DCP has a valid point (or is quoting someone else who had a valid point).

What Eagleton is arguing against is the idea that religion is a mechanism for providing answers to unresolved questions about the natural world. This can range from "there was thunder and lightning last night, so Zeus must be angry" to "there was a Big Bang, so a transcendent monotheistic deity must have pushed the button to set it off". No doubt religion fulfils this function for some people in some cases, but it's inadequate as a general explanation for how religious faith arises and is maintained. Eagleton isn't an apologist (he's a hardcore Marxist who is severely critical of Christianity in his political writings), but he understands religion well enough to avoid Hitchens' God-of-the-gaps model in which God disappears because there aren't any gaps left.

Anyway, whether his point is right or wrong, it isn't fair to call it "utterly stupid".


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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 5:41 am 
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From the blog post linked in the opening post.
Quote:
Famously, by the way, Eagleton — who, as far as I’m aware, isn’t himself a religious believer but who, interestingly, taught a two-week faculty seminar at Brigham Young University a number of years ago in which I was a participant — mocked Richard Dawkins for his ignorance of serious religious thinking and scholarship, observing that reading Dawkins on theology was rather like reading a writer on ornithology whose only acquaintance with the subject had come from glancing at The Book of British Birds.
If Dawkins isn’t qualified to talk about religious thinking, on what basis is a morbidly obese professor of Islamic Studies and Arabic qualified to comment science or health codes?

*and lest anyone think the mocking of DCP is unfair, he opened the door by lauding Eagletons mocking of Dawkins.

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 7:41 am 
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Quote:
huckleberry
I mean what if there are no heavenly rewards?


Then people, if they actually understood this, would finally quit worrying about an imagined after life and get on with living this one well. One can never really know if there are heavenly rewards, so why imagine there are. Live for the earthly rewards that we know are available here and now. Heaven can wait. We don't live there, we live here.

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"The problem is most religions proceed to try and explain the truth and then insist that you agree with their explanation." Brad Warner


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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 1:07 pm 
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I saw a promo for the TV show about that nerd from Big Bang Theory when he is a kid. I think his name is Sheldon.

Anyway, Sheldon is a kid talking to another kid at the lunch table about religion.

Sheldon confidently says to the other kid that Sheldon has no sin.

The other kid tells Sheldon that is pride, and pride is a very bad sin.

Sheldon says that idea is starting to make him feel bad.

The other kid says that's how you know it's working.

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 9:02 pm 
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Religion is about providing human community in the guise of solving problems that don’t exist or failing to solve problems that do and seeking to reconcile these contradictions and conceal the failures in bogus explanations otherwise known as theology.


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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 9:23 pm 
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wow reverend, i'd say that's about as good of a definition as I've ever seen.


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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 9:26 pm 
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Kishkumen wrote:
Religion is about providing human community in the guise of solving problems that don’t exist or failing to solve problems that do and seeking to reconcile these contradictions and conceal the failures in bogus explanations otherwise known as theology.

Mega kudos for that incredibly succinct yet entirely accurate summary of organized religion.

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 9:30 pm 
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Boy, I feel like Kish just summarized politics, too.

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 10:20 pm 
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Kishkumen wrote:
Religion is about providing human community in the guise of solving problems that don’t exist or failing to solve problems that do and seeking to reconcile these contradictions and conceal the failures in bogus explanations otherwise known as theology.


I know some might appreciate this for its iconoclasm or some for its apparent cynicism, but for me this definition perfectly encapsulates why religion is so appealing and why even I, an atheist for all intents and purposes, am so deeply attracted to religion: it's about failure, which is how most things end up in life for most people.

Anyway, I take Eagleton's point but I doubt Daniel Peterson barely grasps it. By his own admission, Peterson doesn't know much about Eagleton, only that he is famous (as academics go), which is of course why he reminds us that he once sat in the same room as Eagleton. But the Mormonism that Peterson so vigorously defends is indeed about explanation, and I'm sure Eagleton would find the Mormon Interpreter and its whole project to be as ridiculous and wrongheaded as Dawkinsian atheism, and for some of the same reasons.

Eagleton is only partially right, though, or right depending on who we're talking about. Generally, religion gradually assumes a greater explanatory role the farther down you go on the information literacy scale; if you don't know very much about geology or about evolution beyond the cartoonish mischaracterizations out there, then of course the Adam and Eve story sounds reasonable by comparison. In the case of someone like Daniel Peterson and the other Interpreters out there, we seem to meet a paradox: high information literacy in company with a high level of belief in religion as an explanatory mechanism. That's a very unique and special form of ridiculousness.

Peterson should read a bit more about that famous academic he once occupied space with before wading into such unwitting irony.

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 10:30 pm 
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Kishkumen wrote:
Religion is about providing human community in the guise of solving problems that don’t exist or failing to solve problems that do and seeking to reconcile these contradictions and conceal the failures in bogus explanations otherwise known as theology.

This needs to be engraved on a monument somewhere.

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 Post subject: Re: Dan Peterson's Utterly Stupid Quote
PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 10:48 pm 
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Kishkumen wrote:
Religion is about providing human community in the guise of solving problems that don’t exist or failing to solve problems that do and seeking to reconcile these contradictions and conceal the failures in bogus explanations otherwise known as theology.


Wonderful, concise explanation. I want to put this in my tagline if you will allow me to do so. So, I can remember it and publish it for others to enjoy. This encapsulates all the problems I have with religion.

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