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Have you investigated Gnostic Christianity?

Sarpedon

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Are we talking about the same Gnosticism? I'm talking about the one who has a perfect, unacting god, who radiates energy, and all creation comes about through interaction of this energy with the surrounding gross matter, Jesus being the first and purest of the resulting creation, but with the important distinction of NOT being actionless, therefore potentially a savior.

I don't seem to grasp the significance of your distinction between 'solving' and 'avoiding' the Problem of Evil. To me, avoiding it is the same as solving it, in that a problem that you avoid is as good as a problem you solve. For me, the POE is a criticism of monotheistic theology, and for a theological system that 'avoids' isn't subject to the critique, therefore the critique doesn't work on them. Which is as good as 'solving' it. Gnosticism also solves (or avoids) the problem of god's motive, which is always a sticking point for other religions: God created the earth. Why?

The gnostics were not able to solve or avoid the Problem of Stabbing, however.
 

Gnostic Christian Bishop

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But it's not required.
Judging religions by their moral codes does not help us identify which religion has the right take on the gods that exist. For that, we'd need to have independent access to the gods.
If those here are not also elsewhere fighting poor moral beliefs that effect us all in terms of the law of the land, then they are not moral men as moral men recognize their social conscience and their duty to humanity and their own families.
Grand.
But I don't oppose the Ten Commandments being on courthouse steps because i dislike the morality. I oppose that because it's unconstitutional.
Others can live by the moral code, but they cannot expect me to live by their moral code, jus tbecause their god says its a good code.
A good example is the equality of women and gays. If those here do not fight for that then they do not care if their own wives and female children are considered second class citizens.
Kind of a sweeping generalization and a pompous judgment on people you've never met, Bishop.

Quite right and I have no shame for doing it.

I have all the backing I need for my statement. Mind you, the worst offenders are the right wings and I should perhaps qualify my statement and reduce the size of my brush.

Regards
DL
 

Gnostic Christian Bishop

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Are we talking about the same Gnosticism? I'm talking about the one who has a perfect, unacting god, who radiates energy, and all creation comes about through interaction of this energy with the surrounding gross matter, Jesus being the first and purest of the resulting creation, but with the important distinction of NOT being actionless, therefore potentially a savior.

Wrong Jesus. Gnostic Christians or anyone else has ever been condemned so we do not see a need for a savior. As to Jesus being special, No. He and we teach that we all have a spark of God in us.

John 14:23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.

Luke 17:21 Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.

Romans 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.


I don't seem to grasp the significance of your distinction between 'solving' and 'avoiding' the Problem of Evil. To me, avoiding it is the same as solving it, in that a problem that you avoid is as good as a problem you solve. For me, the POE is a criticism of monotheistic theology, and for a theological system that 'avoids' isn't subject to the critique, therefore the critique doesn't work on them. Which is as good as 'solving' it.

I did not offer a solution to evil because, as a part of evolution, competitions that produce losers, it is a needed component of evolution. End it in any creature and it will eventually go extinct.

We may be able to reduce the harm and evil of these competitions but I don't think it a good idea. Evolution demands it.

Gnosticism also solves (or avoids) the problem of god's motive, which is always a sticking point for other religions: God created the earth. Why?

Our myths say that an evil God created the earth and in that day, that is how they explained evil. Today modern Gnostics know that nature created the earth and not some God.

The gnostics were not able to solve or avoid the Problem of Stabbing, however.

Huh. You will have to explain what you mean.

Regards
DL
 

Random Person

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Pardon the interruption, but that's not a solution to the problem of evil. That's simply positing a god to whom the problem of evil doesn't apply. There are thousands of such gods in mythology. Any god who lacks the ability to eliminate all evil is not amenable to the POE. Any god who lacks the knowledge of the existence of evil is also excused. Any god who lacks the absolute, unabated desire to eliminate all evil gets a pass.

But a god who is unlimited in power, unlimited in knowledge and unlimited in desire to eliminate evil cannot exist in the same universe where evil exists. There is no scenario whereby such a god would not eliminate evil.


If a god existed that had unlimited power, knowledge and desire then he would also define what evil is and not humans.

True and the absentee Gods we have on the menu just aren't showing up.

Other than the God I am that is and he does not have the ear of the masses. Without that, no God will ever be acknowledged.


Regards
DL

I don't understand the sentences I bolded. Are claiming to be a god? Gods are acknowledged whether they actually exist or exist only in the minds of the acknowledgers don't they?

Could you elaborate more? I think I'm missing your point.


John 10; 33 The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.

34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?

35 If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken;

---------------------------------
Psalm 82 King James Version (KJV)

82 God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the gods.
6 I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.


The way I understand all these passages plus what is in this link, ----

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alRNbesfXXw&feature=player_embedded

Is that the Jews and Jesus lived in a world, sort of, where all are lower case gods. Somewhat like Gnostic Christians and our belief that we all have a spark of God within us.

From this assembly of gods, a God would have been elected. Jews always had men speaking in God's name and their power came from all the other gods.

At present new have many gods but not God.

If you read revelation, only at times of great stress or trouble do the masses elect themselves a God. So to speak.

A poor analogy would be how people thought of the U.S on D day. the God of gods or in political jargon, the King of kings had arrived.

I can mix political philosophy and religious theology metaphors, as above so below, because to me, it is all the same unless one wants to get stuck in semantics. I think it keeps thoughts fluid.

I am not that familiar with your U. S. politics. Can your Senators acclaim a president?

That is somewhat the way I see the old Jewish customs and their thinking about their God.

Thanks, I wasn't sure if it was a typo or sentence structure. Are you a god unto yourself or do you feel as though you have been elected, appointed ordained or whatever the appropriate word would be?
 

Random Person

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Pardon the interruption, but that's not a solution to the problem of evil. That's simply positing a god to whom the problem of evil doesn't apply. There are thousands of such gods in mythology. Any god who lacks the ability to eliminate all evil is not amenable to the POE. Any god who lacks the knowledge of the existence of evil is also excused. Any god who lacks the absolute, unabated desire to eliminate all evil gets a pass.

But a god who is unlimited in power, unlimited in knowledge and unlimited in desire to eliminate evil cannot exist in the same universe where evil exists. There is no scenario whereby such a god would not eliminate evil.


If a god existed that had unlimited power, knowledge and desire then he would also define what evil is and not humans.

That's not a solution to the problem of evil, that's simply redefining evil. Nonetheless, if any god existed who had unlimited power, unlimited knowledge and unlimited desire to eliminate x, then there would be no x, whatever x is. The existence of x in any amount anywhere would demonstrate that either that god lacked the power to get rid of it, lacked the knowledge that it existed or was not totally committed to the desire to eliminate x.

I understand the argument. The flaw seems to be this sentence, "That's not a solution to the problem of evil, that's simply redefining evil." If I am redefining the definition of evil then whose definition am I redefining?

You aren't referring to gods definition of evil so I assume you are referring to mans. We are back to the original problem. If there is a god why would we hold our definition of evil over his? On what basis would be able to force a god to behave the way that we preferred?
 

Tom Sawyer

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I understand the argument. The flaw seems to be this sentence, "That's not a solution to the problem of evil, that's simply redefining evil." If I am redefining the definition of evil then whose definition am I redefining?

You aren't referring to gods definition of evil so I assume you are referring to mans. We are back to the original problem. If there is a god why would we hold our definition of evil over his? On what basis would be able to force a god to behave the way that we preferred?

Well, take child rape. Define omnibenevolence in such a way as it includes sitting there watching someone rape a child and not do anything about it.
 

Gnostic Christian Bishop

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Pardon the interruption, but that's not a solution to the problem of evil. That's simply positing a god to whom the problem of evil doesn't apply. There are thousands of such gods in mythology. Any god who lacks the ability to eliminate all evil is not amenable to the POE. Any god who lacks the knowledge of the existence of evil is also excused. Any god who lacks the absolute, unabated desire to eliminate all evil gets a pass.

But a god who is unlimited in power, unlimited in knowledge and unlimited in desire to eliminate evil cannot exist in the same universe where evil exists. There is no scenario whereby such a god would not eliminate evil.


If a god existed that had unlimited power, knowledge and desire then he would also define what evil is and not humans.

True and the absentee Gods we have on the menu just aren't showing up.

Other than the God I am that is and he does not have the ear of the masses. Without that, no God will ever be acknowledged.


Regards
DL

I don't understand the sentences I bolded. Are claiming to be a god? Gods are acknowledged whether they actually exist or exist only in the minds of the acknowledgers don't they?

Could you elaborate more? I think I'm missing your point.


John 10; 33 The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.

34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?

35 If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken;

---------------------------------
Psalm 82 King James Version (KJV)

82 God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the gods.
6 I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.


The way I understand all these passages plus what is in this link, ----

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alRNbesfXXw&feature=player_embedded

Is that the Jews and Jesus lived in a world, sort of, where all are lower case gods. Somewhat like Gnostic Christians and our belief that we all have a spark of God within us.

From this assembly of gods, a God would have been elected. Jews always had men speaking in God's name and their power came from all the other gods.

At present new have many gods but not God.

If you read revelation, only at times of great stress or trouble do the masses elect themselves a God. So to speak.

A poor analogy would be how people thought of the U.S on D day. the God of gods or in political jargon, the King of kings had arrived.

I can mix political philosophy and religious theology metaphors, as above so below, because to me, it is all the same unless one wants to get stuck in semantics. I think it keeps thoughts fluid.

I am not that familiar with your U. S. politics. Can your Senators acclaim a president?

That is somewhat the way I see the old Jewish customs and their thinking about their God.

Thanks, I wasn't sure if it was a typo or sentence structure. Are you a god unto yourself or do you feel as though you have been elected, appointed ordained or whatever the appropriate word would be?

Yes. I do not give a name to God as I am a perpetual seeker but when I name God, I am, I mean me.

I sort of did the following on my own and later saw that I fit well with Gnostic Christian thinking.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aGx4IlppSgU

Regards
DL
 

Gnostic Christian Bishop

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I understand the argument. The flaw seems to be this sentence, "That's not a solution to the problem of evil, that's simply redefining evil." If I am redefining the definition of evil then whose definition am I redefining?

You aren't referring to gods definition of evil so I assume you are referring to mans. We are back to the original problem. If there is a god why would we hold our definition of evil over his? On what basis would be able to force a god to behave the way that we preferred?

Well, take child rape. Define omnibenevolence in such a way as it includes sitting there watching someone rape a child and not do anything about it.

A believer would blame man's free will for that as his explanation. They forget all the other times that God has killed many of us, so scriptures say, and that definitely play havoc with our free will that defaults to not wanting to get murdered by God.

Typical half baked Christian theology.

Yet they will support human laws that say that if we can help prevent a crime and do not, we too are held as culpable for that crime. Hypocrisy that.

Regards
DL
 

Tom Sawyer

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Yes. I do not give a name to God as I am a perpetual seeker but when I name God, I am, I mean me.

Well then, why don't you just say "me". If you have a perfectly good word which exactly sums up what you're talking about, why ignore it in favour of a different word that already means something completely different and serves no purpose but to confuse whatever point you're trying to make?
 

Gnostic Christian Bishop

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Yes. I do not give a name to God as I am a perpetual seeker but when I name God, I am, I mean me.

Well then, why don't you just say "me". If you have a perfectly good word which exactly sums up what you're talking about, why ignore it in favour of a different word that already means something completely different and serves no purpose but to confuse whatever point you're trying to make?

Because I am tying it to Jesus as his is the way I show the most as I live and communicate mostly with Christians.

As I said, any belief will do and even no belief which is what I had when I had my apotheosis.

That also gives me ready access to work that was done ahead of me.

Like this bit.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alRNbesfXXw&feature=player_embedded

The less newness I bring to a discussion, the better I think it is and most know of Christianity while not knowing what Jesus really taught.

Regards
DL
 

Tom Sawyer

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Yes. I do not give a name to God as I am a perpetual seeker but when I name God, I am, I mean me.

Well then, why don't you just say "me". If you have a perfectly good word which exactly sums up what you're talking about, why ignore it in favour of a different word that already means something completely different and serves no purpose but to confuse whatever point you're trying to make?

Because I am tying it to Jesus as his is the way I show the most as I live and communicate mostly with Christians.

As I said, any belief will do and even no belief which is what I had when I had my apotheosis.

That also gives me ready access to work that was done ahead of me.

OK, at least you have a bit more of a reason than most people who randomly shoehorn the word God into their philosophy. I still see it as an unnecessary obfuscation, though.
 

Random Person

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Pardon the interruption, but that's not a solution to the problem of evil. That's simply positing a god to whom the problem of evil doesn't apply. There are thousands of such gods in mythology. Any god who lacks the ability to eliminate all evil is not amenable to the POE. Any god who lacks the knowledge of the existence of evil is also excused. Any god who lacks the absolute, unabated desire to eliminate all evil gets a pass.

But a god who is unlimited in power, unlimited in knowledge and unlimited in desire to eliminate evil cannot exist in the same universe where evil exists. There is no scenario whereby such a god would not eliminate evil.


If a god existed that had unlimited power, knowledge and desire then he would also define what evil is and not humans.

True and the absentee Gods we have on the menu just aren't showing up.

Other than the God I am that is and he does not have the ear of the masses. Without that, no God will ever be acknowledged.


Regards
DL

I don't understand the sentences I bolded. Are claiming to be a god? Gods are acknowledged whether they actually exist or exist only in the minds of the acknowledgers don't they?

Could you elaborate more? I think I'm missing your point.


John 10; 33 The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.

34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?

35 If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken;

---------------------------------
Psalm 82 King James Version (KJV)

82 God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the gods.
6 I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.


The way I understand all these passages plus what is in this link, ----

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alRNbesfXXw&feature=player_embedded

Is that the Jews and Jesus lived in a world, sort of, where all are lower case gods. Somewhat like Gnostic Christians and our belief that we all have a spark of God within us.

From this assembly of gods, a God would have been elected. Jews always had men speaking in God's name and their power came from all the other gods.

At present new have many gods but not God.

If you read revelation, only at times of great stress or trouble do the masses elect themselves a God. So to speak.

A poor analogy would be how people thought of the U.S on D day. the God of gods or in political jargon, the King of kings had arrived.

I can mix political philosophy and religious theology metaphors, as above so below, because to me, it is all the same unless one wants to get stuck in semantics. I think it keeps thoughts fluid.

I am not that familiar with your U. S. politics. Can your Senators acclaim a president?

That is somewhat the way I see the old Jewish customs and their thinking about their God.

Thanks, I wasn't sure if it was a typo or sentence structure. Are you a god unto yourself or do you feel as though you have been elected, appointed ordained or whatever the appropriate word would be?

Yes. I do not give a name to God as I am a perpetual seeker but when I name God, I am, I mean me.

I sort of did the following on my own and later saw that I fit well with Gnostic Christian thinking.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aGx4IlppSgU

Regards
DL


Once you have found god in yourself what are you now seeking?
 

Random Person

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I understand the argument. The flaw seems to be this sentence, "That's not a solution to the problem of evil, that's simply redefining evil." If I am redefining the definition of evil then whose definition am I redefining?

You aren't referring to gods definition of evil so I assume you are referring to mans. We are back to the original problem. If there is a god why would we hold our definition of evil over his? On what basis would be able to force a god to behave the way that we preferred?

Well, take child rape. Define omnibenevolence in such a way as it includes sitting there watching someone rape a child and not do anything about it.


I think it's evil but that's my definition. If god does something we don't like then we say it can't be god. Then god does not have dominion over us so is therefore not god.

I'm not making a case for god but if you create rules that prevent him from existing according to rules that you have outlined then you haven't proved he doesn't exist. You've only proven taht a gos that isn't acceptable to you or me doesn't exist.
 

Tom Sawyer

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I think it's evil but that's my definition. If god does something we don't like then we say it can't be god. Then god does not have dominion over us so is therefore not god.I'm not making a case for god but if you create rules that prevent him from existing according to rules that you have outlined then you haven't proved he doesn't exist. You've only proven taht a gos that isn't acceptable to you or me doesn't exist.

I didn't ask you for your definition. I asked you for a possible definition that God could be using. You can't just randomly assert that someone thinks that a child getting raped is a positive outcome and yet somehow ranks at the "moderately decent guy" level or above without backing it up. Defining omnibenevolence to include that is like saying that someone's omniscient but can't do a Rubik's Cube because what is knowledge anyways?
 

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I think it's evil but that's my definition. If god does something we don't like then we say it can't be god.

Then god does not have dominion over us so is therefore not god.
Where does dominion come into it?
If God does something evil, then he's not omnibenevolent. Anyone claiming a tri-omni god, THAT god can't exist.
Loki, Set and Aphrodite can still exist, though. They can be complete jackasses and the PoE doesn't apply.
 

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I like the Jungian nutshell explanation of god.

There is an archetype of perfection, which is exclusionary. IOW, to understand something, we separate it from the universe. Perfection is a male archetype.

Then there is wholeness, which is inclusive but imperfect. Wholeness is a female archetype.

God is the attempt to reconcile the two. While we separate things in order to understand them, we experience the world as a whole.

Jung also said that alchemy was Gnosticism in a guise acceptable to the Inquisition. When the Inquisition ended, alchemy died out. Newton was an alchemist, btw.

The future of the Christian church will be Gnostic or something like it. The sci fi extravaganza ain't gonna last.
 

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They are the only ones to have a convincing explanation of how there could be an all good god and an evil world. By positing that creation was an involuntary act, hijacked by an imperfect lesser being, Gnosticism avoids the inevitable conclusion that God is Evil that all other monotheistic sects fall into (yet vigorously deny)

The fact that gnosticism was destroyed by violence shows that even plausible seeming religions aren't necessarily true. Of course, religious people have all kinds of excuses for the Problem of Losing (tm), but having your religion wiped out remains a fairly convincing argument that your god isn't real.
Or that it could be true (or truer than others) but still not be useful to the peace and well being of humanity.

As far as I can tell, Socrates' simple questioning method is the only useful ideology. Anything that claims to be the answer is just another story distracting us from looking further.

Socrates was no atheist.
 

Random Person

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I think it's evil but that's my definition. If god does something we don't like then we say it can't be god. Then god does not have dominion over us so is therefore not god.I'm not making a case for god but if you create rules that prevent him from existing according to rules that you have outlined then you haven't proved he doesn't exist. You've only proven taht a gos that isn't acceptable to you or me doesn't exist.

I didn't ask you for your definition. I asked you for a possible definition that God could be using. You can't just randomly assert that someone thinks that a child getting raped is a positive outcome and yet somehow ranks at the "moderately decent guy" level or above without backing it up. Defining omnibenevolence to include that is like saying that someone's omniscient but can't do a Rubik's Cube because what is knowledge anyways?

Why would a possible definition be of any value from a human to determine what a god should consider evil? He/she/it would necessarily be using criteria that would be incomprehensible to us.


Knowledge is easier to define than something like evil which is subjective.
 

Random Person

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I don't have a philosohy or worldview
I think it's evil but that's my definition. If god does something we don't like then we say it can't be god.

Then god does not have dominion over us so is therefore not god.
Where does dominion come into it?
If God does something evil, then he's not omnibenevolent. Anyone claiming a tri-omni god, THAT god can't exist.
Loki, Set and Aphrodite can still exist, though. They can be complete jackasses and the PoE doesn't apply.

If there is a god he wouldn't have dominion and he would be judged by humans? That's cool with me but that would disqualify him as a god.
 

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I think it's evil but that's my definition. If god does something we don't like then we say it can't be god. Then god does not have dominion over us so is therefore not god.I'm not making a case for god but if you create rules that prevent him from existing according to rules that you have outlined then you haven't proved he doesn't exist. You've only proven taht a gos that isn't acceptable to you or me doesn't exist.

I didn't ask you for your definition. I asked you for a possible definition that God could be using. You can't just randomly assert that someone thinks that a child getting raped is a positive outcome and yet somehow ranks at the "moderately decent guy" level or above without backing it up. Defining omnibenevolence to include that is like saying that someone's omniscient but can't do a Rubik's Cube because what is knowledge anyways?

Why would a possible definition be of any value from a human to determine what a god should consider evil? He/she/it would necessarily be using criteria that would be incomprehensible to us.


Knowledge is easier to define than something like evil which is subjective.

 Euthyphro dilemma

The only definition of good and evil that makes any sense are definitions that are independent of external authorities like gods. If you try to use an external authority to define good and evil, then you just end up in a dilemma that can only be resolved by developing a definition of good and evil that is independent of any external authority.

Yes, the definitions are fuzzy, annoying, and potentially problematic, but not as much of a hassle as having to go through the mental gymnastics theists have to indulge in to avoid dealing with the Euthyphro dilemma and still claim an external authority as the source or definition of good and evil.
 

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I think it's evil but that's my definition. If god does something we don't like then we say it can't be god.
Then god does not have dominion over us so is therefore not god.
Where does dominion come into it?
If God does something evil, then he's not omnibenevolent. Anyone claiming a tri-omni god, THAT god can't exist.
Loki, Set and Aphrodite can still exist, though. They can be complete jackasses and the PoE doesn't apply.

If there is a god he wouldn't have dominion
Still wondering what 'dominion' has to do with anything....
and he would be judged by humans?
Well, yeah. If we're going to apply human words to anything, then we have to determine if human definitions of those words apply. If a god does things humans would label as evil, then we can't also apply terms like 'perfectly and completely good' to the same being.
That's cool with me but that would disqualify him as a god.
Are you saying Set cannot be evil because, as a god, he would outrank us, or because, as a god, he defines what 'evil' would be?
Maybe you could offer your definition of 'god,' then?
 

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I think it's evil but that's my definition. If god does something we don't like then we say it can't be god. Then god does not have dominion over us so is therefore not god.I'm not making a case for god but if you create rules that prevent him from existing according to rules that you have outlined then you haven't proved he doesn't exist. You've only proven taht a gos that isn't acceptable to you or me doesn't exist.

I didn't ask you for your definition. I asked you for a possible definition that God could be using. You can't just randomly assert that someone thinks that a child getting raped is a positive outcome and yet somehow ranks at the "moderately decent guy" level or above without backing it up. Defining omnibenevolence to include that is like saying that someone's omniscient but can't do a Rubik's Cube because what is knowledge anyways?

Why would a possible definition be of any value from a human to determine what a god should consider evil? He/she/it would necessarily be using criteria that would be incomprehensible to us.


Knowledge is easier to define than something like evil which is subjective.

Well then, what exactly does omnibenevolent mean to you? If it translates as "someone who doesn't give a rat's ass about humans in any way, shape or form because he has bigger concerns", what's the difference between that and a god who simply doesn't give a rat's ass about humans in any way, shape or form?
 

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Yes. I do not give a name to God as I am a perpetual seeker but when I name God, I am, I mean me.

Well then, why don't you just say "me". If you have a perfectly good word which exactly sums up what you're talking about, why ignore it in favour of a different word that already means something completely different and serves no purpose but to confuse whatever point you're trying to make?

Because I am tying it to Jesus as his is the way I show the most as I live and communicate mostly with Christians.

As I said, any belief will do and even no belief which is what I had when I had my apotheosis.

That also gives me ready access to work that was done ahead of me.

OK, at least you have a bit more of a reason than most people who randomly shoehorn the word God into their philosophy. I still see it as an unnecessary obfuscation, though.

If my goal was conversion, perhaps. It is not. It is for all of us to use a tool that makes us think deeper. It seems to be there waiting.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qMxX-QOV9tI

Regards
DL
 

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Pardon the interruption, but that's not a solution to the problem of evil. That's simply positing a god to whom the problem of evil doesn't apply. There are thousands of such gods in mythology. Any god who lacks the ability to eliminate all evil is not amenable to the POE. Any god who lacks the knowledge of the existence of evil is also excused. Any god who lacks the absolute, unabated desire to eliminate all evil gets a pass.

But a god who is unlimited in power, unlimited in knowledge and unlimited in desire to eliminate evil cannot exist in the same universe where evil exists. There is no scenario whereby such a god would not eliminate evil.


If a god existed that had unlimited power, knowledge and desire then he would also define what evil is and not humans.

True and the absentee Gods we have on the menu just aren't showing up.

Other than the God I am that is and he does not have the ear of the masses. Without that, no God will ever be acknowledged.


Regards
DL

I don't understand the sentences I bolded. Are claiming to be a god? Gods are acknowledged whether they actually exist or exist only in the minds of the acknowledgers don't they?

Could you elaborate more? I think I'm missing your point.


John 10; 33 The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.

34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?

35 If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken;

---------------------------------
Psalm 82 King James Version (KJV)

82 God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the gods.
6 I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.


The way I understand all these passages plus what is in this link, ----

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alRNbesfXXw&feature=player_embedded

Is that the Jews and Jesus lived in a world, sort of, where all are lower case gods. Somewhat like Gnostic Christians and our belief that we all have a spark of God within us.

From this assembly of gods, a God would have been elected. Jews always had men speaking in God's name and their power came from all the other gods.

At present new have many gods but not God.

If you read revelation, only at times of great stress or trouble do the masses elect themselves a God. So to speak.

A poor analogy would be how people thought of the U.S on D day. the God of gods or in political jargon, the King of kings had arrived.

I can mix political philosophy and religious theology metaphors, as above so below, because to me, it is all the same unless one wants to get stuck in semantics. I think it keeps thoughts fluid.

I am not that familiar with your U. S. politics. Can your Senators acclaim a president?

That is somewhat the way I see the old Jewish customs and their thinking about their God.

Thanks, I wasn't sure if it was a typo or sentence structure. Are you a god unto yourself or do you feel as though you have been elected, appointed ordained or whatever the appropriate word would be?

Yes. I do not give a name to God as I am a perpetual seeker but when I name God, I am, I mean me.

I sort of did the following on my own and later saw that I fit well with Gnostic Christian thinking.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aGx4IlppSgU

Regards
DL


Once you have found god in yourself what are you now seeking?

I found the best rules and laws for life at that point in time.

Think of finding God as climbing Jacobs ladder. I found myself on rung 1. I raised my goal to a new level and now try to get to the next rung on that ladder.

Going from god to God is a long haul. I am hindered by my condition lack of respect for people. Jesus would not be pleased but I do what I feel I must. He may be able to fight evil with love in his heart but it seems that I have some respect issues to work on.

Regards
DL
 

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I like the Jungian nutshell explanation of god.

There is an archetype of perfection, which is exclusionary. IOW, to understand something, we separate it from the universe. Perfection is a male archetype.

Then there is wholeness, which is inclusive but imperfect. Wholeness is a female archetype.

God is the attempt to reconcile the two. While we separate things in order to understand them, we experience the world as a whole.

Jung also said that alchemy was Gnosticism in a guise acceptable to the Inquisition. When the Inquisition ended, alchemy died out. Newton was an alchemist, btw.

The future of the Christian church will be Gnostic or something like it. The sci fi extravaganza ain't gonna last.

I agree. The woo has got to go and Gnostic Christianity seems like the only worthy candidate to make that happen.

Once it is properly presented and people stop reading myths literally.

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DL
 

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I think it's evil but that's my definition. If god does something we don't like then we say it can't be god. Then god does not have dominion over us so is therefore not god.I'm not making a case for god but if you create rules that prevent him from existing according to rules that you have outlined then you haven't proved he doesn't exist. You've only proven taht a gos that isn't acceptable to you or me doesn't exist.

I didn't ask you for your definition. I asked you for a possible definition that God could be using. You can't just randomly assert that someone thinks that a child getting raped is a positive outcome and yet somehow ranks at the "moderately decent guy" level or above without backing it up. Defining omnibenevolence to include that is like saying that someone's omniscient but can't do a Rubik's Cube because what is knowledge anyways?

Why would a possible definition be of any value from a human to determine what a god should consider evil? He/she/it would necessarily be using criteria that would be incomprehensible to us.

That is not the tradition. Not even for Christianity if you use scriptures and not what the churches teach.

Adam and Eve did not find anything incomprehensible when they, as God states, became as God in knowing good and evil.

Yes the church teaches that man is too stupid to understand God but God himself calls that a lie.

Seems that the churches want sheep while God prefers goats.

Regards
DL
 

Sarpedon

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Are you putting your own answers in quotes?

And are you just hijacking the name of the historic gnostics?
 

Atheos

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Pardon the interruption, but that's not a solution to the problem of evil. That's simply positing a god to whom the problem of evil doesn't apply. There are thousands of such gods in mythology. Any god who lacks the ability to eliminate all evil is not amenable to the POE. Any god who lacks the knowledge of the existence of evil is also excused. Any god who lacks the absolute, unabated desire to eliminate all evil gets a pass.

But a god who is unlimited in power, unlimited in knowledge and unlimited in desire to eliminate evil cannot exist in the same universe where evil exists. There is no scenario whereby such a god would not eliminate evil.


If a god existed that had unlimited power, knowledge and desire then he would also define what evil is and not humans.

That's not a solution to the problem of evil, that's simply redefining evil. Nonetheless, if any god existed who had unlimited power, unlimited knowledge and unlimited desire to eliminate x, then there would be no x, whatever x is. The existence of x in any amount anywhere would demonstrate that either that god lacked the power to get rid of it, lacked the knowledge that it existed or was not totally committed to the desire to eliminate x.

I understand the argument. The flaw seems to be this sentence, "That's not a solution to the problem of evil, that's simply redefining evil." If I am redefining the definition of evil then whose definition am I redefining?

You aren't referring to gods definition of evil so I assume you are referring to mans. We are back to the original problem. If there is a god why would we hold our definition of evil over his? On what basis would be able to force a god to behave the way that we preferred?

Only because of who is making the claim. Someone claims there is a god who is tri-omni. The issues of omnipotence and omniscience are granted. Then the issue of "omni-benevolence" comes to the foreground. What does it mean? If one asks such an individual if their god wants there to be suffering most will deny it. If one asks if that god would prefer that there be no suffering most will agree to that.

The problem is that there is suffering. There is no scenario whereby a god with unlimited power and unlimited knowledge would not be able to engender a world where there was no suffering if that was said god's intention. Whatever that god created would by definition be exactly what that god wanted to exist. That god would not have to compromise, ever. Which means that this world, with all it's incredible suffering, is exactly the world that god wanted to create. That god cannot be as benevolent as a god who (for example) created a world where ALS was not a component. That is but one example, of course. Babies born with Harlequin Type Ichthyosis would be another. A god who created a world like that could be more benevolent if instead he had created a world with neither of these two dread diseases. A god who could be more benevolent cannot be said to be omni-benevolent.

So the Problem of Evil only applies in the context of the language of the people making the claim. A god could claim that it was tri-omni using language elements that mean different things than what humans understand those things to mean and be perfectly valid in doing so. What cannot be said is that as humans understand the concepts of omnipotence, omniscience and omni-benevolence there is a god who exists having all three of these traits.
 

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Having investigated Gnostic Christianity, I have to say I'm sorry, but it just seems like another denomination of Christianity that is critical of the status quo, and seeks to do better. There are many such cults branches on the tree of Christianity, and although yours seems to be very much on the liberal side, I have to tell ya, I think what we need at this time in the world is less religion, not more.

I think your "use whatever tools works for you" attitude is admirable, as is your denomination's lack of any real formal structure (from what I can see as you represent it), but it seems to me that it makes your Jesus, God, and other trappings just so much window dressing. Why bother with it at all? Tradition? Comfort? Familiarity? Why not just jettison the useless baggage, live your life of introspection and spirituality (whatever the term means to you) and be done with it?
 

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Why bother with it at all? Tradition? Comfort? Familiarity? Why not just jettison the useless baggage, live your life of introspection and spirituality (whatever the term means to you) and be done with it?
Well, that's what i noticed mostly from New Age. For the religion and the music, one person makes up the whole thing.
Build your own tradition. Borrow from Egyptian, Norse, Christain sources, craft 'what works for you,' and then stand there as everyone else says your original, personal, idiomatic interpretation of The Universe is 'Wrong.' 'Wrong' being a term for 'doesn't work for me,' near as i could tell.

So The GCB is just saying his New Age Tradition is older than New Age, but it still works, for him, mostly because it appeals to him. And gives him a place to stand and point fingers to say other religious traditions are wrong.
 

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I think it's evil but that's my definition. If god does something we don't like then we say it can't be god. Then god does not have dominion over us so is therefore not god.I'm not making a case for god but if you create rules that prevent him from existing according to rules that you have outlined then you haven't proved he doesn't exist. You've only proven taht a gos that isn't acceptable to you or me doesn't exist.

I didn't ask you for your definition. I asked you for a possible definition that God could be using. You can't just randomly assert that someone thinks that a child getting raped is a positive outcome and yet somehow ranks at the "moderately decent guy" level or above without backing it up. Defining omnibenevolence to include that is like saying that someone's omniscient but can't do a Rubik's Cube because what is knowledge anyways?

Why would a possible definition be of any value from a human to determine what a god should consider evil? He/she/it would necessarily be using criteria that would be incomprehensible to us.


Knowledge is easier to define than something like evil which is subjective.

 Euthyphro dilemma

The only definition of good and evil that makes any sense are definitions that are independent of external authorities like gods. If you try to use an external authority to define good and evil, then you just end up in a dilemma that can only be resolved by developing a definition of good and evil that is independent of any external authority.

Yes, the definitions are fuzzy, annoying, and potentially problematic, but not as much of a hassle as having to go through the mental gymnastics theists have to indulge in to avoid dealing with the Euthyphro dilemma and still claim an external authority as the source or definition of good and evil.


It seems to me that the external authority that gets to define good and evil is the god in this picture.
 

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That is not the tradition. Not even for Christianity if you use scriptures and not what the churches teach.

Adam and Eve did not find anything incomprehensible when they, as God states, became as God in knowing good and evil.

Yes the church teaches that man is too stupid to understand God but God himself calls that a lie.

Seems that the churches want sheep while God prefers goats.

Regards
DL


Don't they something like, "whatever you can imagine god to be he is greater than that?" It seems to me that being able to understand an infinite being that created the entire universe would be beyond our abilities.
 

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Having investigated Gnostic Christianity, I have to say I'm sorry, but it just seems like another denomination of Christianity that is critical of the status quo, and seeks to do better. There are many such cults branches on the tree of Christianity, and although yours seems to be very much on the liberal side, I have to tell ya, I think what we need at this time in the world is less religion, not more.

I think your "use whatever tools works for you" attitude is admirable, as is your denomination's lack of any real formal structure (from what I can see as you represent it), but it seems to me that it makes your Jesus, God, and other trappings just so much window dressing. Why bother with it at all? Tradition? Comfort? Familiarity? Why not just jettison the useless baggage, live your life of introspection and spirituality (whatever the term means to you) and be done with it?

Introspection has always been seen as appositive. Know thyself. And you would have me not know myself.

Poor advise from a poor thinker.

Regards
DL
 

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Why bother with it at all? Tradition? Comfort? Familiarity? Why not just jettison the useless baggage, live your life of introspection and spirituality (whatever the term means to you) and be done with it?
Well, that's what i noticed mostly from New Age. For the religion and the music, one person makes up the whole thing.
Build your own tradition. Borrow from Egyptian, Norse, Christain sources, craft 'what works for you,' and then stand there as everyone else says your original, personal, idiomatic interpretation of The Universe is 'Wrong.' 'Wrong' being a term for 'doesn't work for me,' near as i could tell.

So The GCB is just saying his New Age Tradition is older than New Age, but it still works, for him, mostly because it appeals to him. And gives him a place to stand and point fingers to say other religious traditions are wrong.

Not so as I preach that any myth or belief can be internalized.

But when I criticize their policies, and they do need criticism, I back it up with reasons.

Regards
DL
 

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That is not the tradition. Not even for Christianity if you use scriptures and not what the churches teach.

Adam and Eve did not find anything incomprehensible when they, as God states, became as God in knowing good and evil.

Yes the church teaches that man is too stupid to understand God but God himself calls that a lie.

Seems that the churches want sheep while God prefers goats.

Regards
DL


Don't they something like, "whatever you can imagine god to be he is greater than that?" It seems to me that being able to understand an infinite being that created the entire universe would be beyond our abilities.

We cannot say that till we have an example of such before us and have attempted to dither him out.

Without a working model as proof of concept, it is all speculation and some would say nonsense.

I call it speculative nonsense.
That is why I prefer to argue morals and not something about God that we can never have an end game on.

Regards
DL
 

Keith&Co.

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Not so as I preach that any myth or belief can be internalized.
How does that make it any less of a textbook New Age, idiosyncratic construction of yours, plagiarizing what you like without feeling a need to accept anything as a whole?
But when I criticize their policies, and they do need criticism, I back it up with reasons.
But the 'reason' tends to be that you don't like their policies.... You just assume that everyone's going to agree with you. Or, if they don't agree with you, tell them to turn on their brains, or say that rational people would agree.

that's compelling, that is. Not terribly rational, but there you go.
 

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That is not the tradition. Not even for Christianity if you use scriptures and not what the churches teach.

Adam and Eve did not find anything incomprehensible when they, as God states, became as God in knowing good and evil.

Yes the church teaches that man is too stupid to understand God but God himself calls that a lie.

Seems that the churches want sheep while God prefers goats.

Regards
DL


Don't they something like, "whatever you can imagine god to be he is greater than that?" It seems to me that being able to understand an infinite being that created the entire universe would be beyond our abilities.

We cannot say that till we have an example of such before us and have attempted to dither him out.

Without a working model as proof of concept, it is all speculation and some would say nonsense.

I call it speculative nonsense.
That is why I prefer to argue morals and not something about God that we can never have an end game on.

Regards
DL

Doesn't truth then become only what you are able to understand? God is only what you can cognize?
 

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How does that make it any less of a textbook New Age, idiosyncratic construction of yours, plagiarizing what you like without feeling a need to accept anything as a whole?
But when I criticize their policies, and they do need criticism, I back it up with reasons.
But the 'reason' tends to be that you don't like their policies.... You just assume that everyone's going to agree with you. Or, if they don't agree with you, tell them to turn on their brains, or say that rational people would agree.

that's compelling, that is. Not terribly rational, but there you go.

I give my best shot but if someone is too stupid to recognise logic and reason or come back with garbage, then I do not feel a need to hold anything back. If love does not work then tough love is what they get when they have compromised their logic and reason.

“Faith must trample under foot all reason, sense, and understanding.”

“Reason is a whore, the greatest enemy that faith has.”
Martin Luther “

I could use ridicule but I am not particularly good at it.

Ridicule is the only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions. -- Thomas Jefferson

Regards
DL
 

Gnostic Christian Bishop

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That is not the tradition. Not even for Christianity if you use scriptures and not what the churches teach.

Adam and Eve did not find anything incomprehensible when they, as God states, became as God in knowing good and evil.

Yes the church teaches that man is too stupid to understand God but God himself calls that a lie.

Seems that the churches want sheep while God prefers goats.

Regards
DL


Don't they something like, "whatever you can imagine god to be he is greater than that?" It seems to me that being able to understand an infinite being that created the entire universe would be beyond our abilities.

We cannot say that till we have an example of such before us and have attempted to dither him out.

Without a working model as proof of concept, it is all speculation and some would say nonsense.

I call it speculative nonsense.
That is why I prefer to argue morals and not something about God that we can never have an end game on.

Regards
DL

Doesn't truth then become only what you are able to understand? God is only what you can cognize?

If I cannot cognize that someone or something is true and real, then best to ignore it.

Regards
DL
 

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I give my best shot but if someone is too stupid to recognise logic and reason or come back with garbage, then I do not feel a need to hold anything back.
Excellent. If they disagree with your logic and reason, they deserve to be called stupid. Because anyone honeslty using logic and reason would agree with you, obviously.
 

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I give my best shot but if someone is too stupid to recognise logic and reason or come back with garbage, then I do not feel a need to hold anything back.
Excellent. If they disagree with your logic and reason, they deserve to be called stupid. Because anyone honeslty using logic and reason would agree with you, obviously.

Exactly.

That, or if they use logic and reason superior to mine, then I actually gain from the dialog by losing the argument.

All posters should know that losing an argument is what they should be looking for.

That is how people learn in a discussion forum. If you win, you gain nothing. The loser gains if he is bright enough to see it.

Regards
DL
 
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Tom Sawyer

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But if one side of the argument is just posting nonsense, then there's nothing to gain from either winning or losing because there's nothing to learn.
 

braces_for_impact

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Having investigated Gnostic Christianity, I have to say I'm sorry, but it just seems like another denomination of Christianity that is critical of the status quo, and seeks to do better. There are many such cults branches on the tree of Christianity, and although yours seems to be very much on the liberal side, I have to tell ya, I think what we need at this time in the world is less religion, not more.

I think your "use whatever tools works for you" attitude is admirable, as is your denomination's lack of any real formal structure (from what I can see as you represent it), but it seems to me that it makes your Jesus, God, and other trappings just so much window dressing. Why bother with it at all? Tradition? Comfort? Familiarity? Why not just jettison the useless baggage, live your life of introspection and spirituality (whatever the term means to you) and be done with it?

Introspection has always been seen as appositive. Know thyself. And you would have me not know myself.

Poor advise from a poor thinker.

Regards
DL

Hardly. Your Gnosticism is neither original, elegant, or historically accurate. You've merely taken your current ethics and used them to reshape your religious tradition, so you can smugly declare other religious traditions in error, for which you obviously have an axe to grind. You say you fall back on facts and evidence, but in reality you jettison them as soon as it's convenient to do so when you feel like following a bit of woo down the rabbit hole, and you're purposely vague so as to avoid criticism of your poor ideas.

All I did was ask you some questions, in an attempt to clarify some of your ideas and you respond with insult, proudly displaying the fact that you have no reading comprehension (if you re-read my post). In addition, you have managed to demonstrate quite clearly that your vaulted introspection is no more effective at giving you peace, harmony and love (with which to treat others with respect) than a "traditional" Christian can achieve with prayer. In short, you show up here with a sanctimonious smugness indicating that your religion is superior to other forms of Christianity while displaying the same bad behavior that many Christians display. Apparently your Jesus is no better at teaching basic people skills to you than the Catholics, Protestants, Mormons, JW's, etc. So if your religion provides you purpose and comfort, good for you. I think your claims that your particular denomination is more logically consistent falls flat however, and should give you no reason to point fingers at other traditions. Personally, I find your Gnosticism superfluous and tainted by left over and unnecessarily confusing baggage from other religious traditions.
 

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If I cannot cognize that someone or something is true and real, then best to ignore it.

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DL

That works sometimes but other times t doesn't. You could walk into a situation where you are in great danger and not be aware of it. It would be detrimental to ignore it. I'm sure you have heard the saying that truth doesn't wait for us to discover it.
 

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If I cannot cognize that someone or something is true and real, then best to ignore it.

Regards
DL

That works sometimes but other times t doesn't. You could walk into a situation where you are in great danger and not be aware of it. It would be detrimental to ignore it. I'm sure you have heard the saying that truth doesn't wait for us to discover it.

Quite the dilemma. I agree that it could be detrimental in some scenarios to ignore what is not cognized but that is all one can do when something is not cognized as real or true. One cannot bat a fly when one does not see there the fly is because it does not exist in ones mind.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sRSMshdQ0Pk&feature=kp

Regards
DL
 

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Have you investigated Gnostic Christianity?
Yeah, as I was deconverting I read some of the Nag Hammadi Library, among other works from people like John Shelby Sponge. I didn’t find any reason to stop there as I headed for the exit door… And unlike Keith&co, I don’t kiss pigs ;)

If you have investigated Gnostic Christianity, do you agree that from a moral POV, they are the superior Christian theology thanks to equality and Universalism?
I find liberal Christian theology to be superior to conservative/fundamentalist Christian theology in general, so yeah I’d lump Gnostic in with the liberal wing. I’d imagine that your morals/ethical views really isn’t that different than a typical ELCA preacher’s view.

Did you used to go under a different username? The DL and pic seem familiar….
 
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