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I have a huge respect for those Christians who wrestle with their faith, be honest about it,and as a result of their wrestling, come to a robust understanding of the faith. And I have come to respect the positions of those persons. That is what I like about the likes of Marcus Borg, Thomas Jay Oord, Brian McLaren etc.
It's worth noting that belief in a doctrine is not necessary in order to have a robust understanding of said doctrine.
Do you only "have a huge respect" for Christians who wrestle with their faith and remain Christian?
I have huge respect for those who become atheists too.
Do you have a huge respect for Hindus who wrestle with their faith and remain Hindus? And for Muslims, too?
How about Scientologists?
I have huge respect for them too. They all are human beings dealing with their faith issues. Why shouldn't I be?
I never said you shouldn't, John. You were the one who, in your original statement, singled out specific people: "Christians who wrestle with their faith, be honest about it,and as a result of their wrestling, come to a robust understanding of the faith."
That's why both Dana and I asked you for more details.
I personally respect "all" human beings, though I certainly do not respect all ideas.
At the end of your OP you said:
And I have come to respect the positions of those [Christians].
Does that extend to the position of atheists too? And Hindus, Muslims and Scientologists?
I do have respect for all who wrestle with their faith. But you misconstrued my original comment. My comment was specifically directed to the situation Randal was mentioning in the video and it was related to a Christian pastor who wrestled with his doubts. So I gave examples of other Christians whom I respected who were honest about their doubts and phase of unbelief. Just because I did not mention about those belonging to other religions doesn't mean that I don't have respect towards them. I can type down at that moment only the thoughts that occurred to me then, It was not a foolproof statement to be dissected like that.
John, I never said it was a foolproof statement. I didn't charge you with disrespecting other people; I asked you for clarification to ascertain your actual view. That's not misconstruing.
Yes, I do. How many times I have to repeat it?
You never answered it; that's why I asked again...
Maybe you are misunderstanding here. There's a difference between respecting a person and respecting a position.
I respect human beings who are Scientologists but I have zero respect for the position of Scientology. According to your last response, you and I differ there. It's a point of interest to me. Sorry that it bothers you.
My higher respect is for those who wrestle with it. Those who ask skeptical questions about their own position and come to a rational resolution about it in their mind either to stay or leave rather than blindly following it without any reflection about it, or claiming that they never doubted their position.
My higher respect is those who wrestle with it....
Yes, that's 100% clear. You said what you really meant is that you respect all who wrestle with their faith: Christians (your OP), atheists (your original response), Hindus, Muslims, Scientologists... all.
How many times do you have to repeat that? Zero. I get it completely.
In your OP what you explicitly said was that you respect Christians who honestly wrestle with their faith. Upon further discussion you made it 100% clear that the word "Christians" was not the full extent. That you respect all people who honestly wrestle.
You also said that you have "come to respect" the positions (aka ideas, beliefs) of those Christians. All I was trying to understand is if that statement too extends to all positions: the atheist position, the Muslim, Hindu, Scientology positions. For me it does not.
For one thing, I have not studied Islam or scientology in detail. So I cannot comment on those. I have studied Hinduism to some extent and I have respect for one philosophical sect of Hinduism called Advaita Vedanta as I find it very much similar to Neoplatonism or Thomism, a concept of God that I can accept.
When I talked about respecting the positions, what I meant was I respect the theology of Marcus Borg over theology of many other Conservative or mainline theologians as I can bring my mind around that compared to others. That is all Imeant.
Ok thanks. That makes complete sense.
I’m going to double down with AG. I wrestled with my faith, was honest about my doubts and studied it to the best of my abilities for over a decade. I slowly and thoughtfully came to the conclusion Christianity was a man made religion without an ounce of involvement from god. Do you have a huge respect for me too?
I have huge respect for you too.
I c say I don't respect you because I don't know you. But I was raised in a Christian home, fundamentalist.. Became an atheist then discovered Jesus was saved. What I don't respect is the idea "without an ounce of involvement from god." It is obvious Christianity has something going for it. when It produces St Paul. Mother Teresa, Tom Douley, Joan of Arc and and Kierkegaard obviously it has something, As an atheist you can't it's God but it is not just bull shit.
I meant no disrespect to anyone of faith and was trying to convey my belief god is not involved in Christianity or anything else. As an atheist this is my only possible default position. You could have included Martin Luther King to your list as well as an unknown number of Christian people who have done difficult, dangerous and selfless acts to improve the lives of their fellow citizens and others around the globe.
The opposite is also noteworthy. There are a plethora of Christian pastors praying over the president in the oval office, only to be rewarded with an ongoing series of fiascos, school boy insults and a smattering of felony convictions.
I recognize and affirm the good works done by a huge number of Christian people. I just don’t believe their faith is true or is the work of god.
I really wish I could trace our reasoning on the issues, bet I could answer all your objections. But That's only because belief in God is highly personal and I don't has anything to do with igloo. Atheists play games with empirical proof which is a meaninglessness concept. God arguments serve a useful purpose but they can;t prove Gd. You should not expect them to.
"God arguments serve a useful purpose but they can't prove God. You should not expect them to."
Great point and a very underappreciated truth.
What is the "useful purpose" of arguments for the existence of God, if it is not to provide "proof" of the existence of God?
God arguments area good way to think about the nature of God, they set up ideas that demonstrate how /God might have to be, Also they warrant belief. While they don't prove it they can offer rational reasons to believe,
Joe’s response is a good answer
bet I could answer all your objections
With all due respect, that’s high personal praise for someone who posts an odd sentence ending in igloo and misspells God.
so you actually think spelling is about intelligence? you need to study some more. Try reading about dyslexia.
My point was not that you are lacing intellectually. But those are not my demons so I am content with my answers,
If you let spelling detour you from considering the logic of an argument, you are not much of a thinker. My original comment was not meant to insult
Joe, My sincere apology for making a snarky remark and I appreciate you calling me out on it. I do apologize, it was unnecessary and void of any meaningful debate. Sincerely, Dana
You say you can answer all my questions, which is not the problem. I’ve heard lots of answers they just are not sufficient in my view.
I’ve found traditional Christian apologist provide a patchwork of assumptions to explain illness, brutality and the devastating indifferent forces of nature. A lion mauling a gazelle to death, childhood leukemia or drowning in a tsunami seems evidence of a brutal god, who enjoys watching creatures kill one another in a variety of horrific methods. Christian apologists wave off the problem of evil as a 9th grade argument which no one takes seriously. They then offer an ancient story of a young woman eating a piece of fruit as a reasonable explanation for the movement of tectonic plates.
Atheists play games with empirical proof which is a meaninglessness concept.
Let’s imagine a prosecutor making the following opening argument to a seated jury. “I’m not going to provide you with any empirical proof of the defendant’s guilt in committing these crimes. Empirical proof is a meaningless concept and I after I don’t provide any proof, I want you to find the defendant guilty”.
"Christian apologists wave off the problem of evil as a 9th grade argument which no one takes seriously. They then offer an ancient story of a young woman eating a piece of fruit as a reasonable explanation for the moment of tectonic plates."
Yes there us a lot of bad apologetics. One thing I hope to accomplish is to help provide alternatives.I take theodicy seriously because it was one of my major points as an atheist.See my website:http://religiousapriori.blo...
"Empirical proof is a meaningless concept and I after I don’t provide any proof, I want you to find the defendant guilty”.
My statements about empirical proof are contextual. they apply to specifically arguments for God, I would not disparage empirical proof of the gilt of a human defendant because it is possible to have empirical evidence. But it is not possible to have empirical evidence of God, we can;t see God, God is too big for us to see or to capture in empirical proofs. I say "too big" figuratively hes beyond the range of our sense data.
A healthy organization allows for members to discuss their feelings without the fear of gossip or ridicule and I see no reason for a church pastor having some doubts to be different. Should doubts turn into consistent non-belief, I do think the pastor would have an ethical responsibility to step away from church leadership. This is a career altering situation with likely significant professional and personal consequences; however, to stay would be false representation in my view.
i agree with the importance of theodicy and POE. I think I have a special take on that a unique approach. I will highlight that approach next Monday on blog. I invite you to take part, This goes for all here