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Old 2017-04-29, 18:10   #1365
MooMoo2
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by only_human View Post
I do not believe that a god exists but I do not know enough about everything to prove that a god does not exist but I refuse to be an agnostic and I think that the membership screening of an atheistic organization that would accept me is insufficiently rigorous for me to join.
I believe that a God(s) existed at one time and may still exist now. That being(s) created the universe, started it off with a low entropy, and has not interfered with his/her creation since the start of the big bang. I do not have enough information to decide on any religious concepts beyond that (what the God(s) want from us humans, if anything, whether there is an afterlife, etc.).

What religion would this would fall under?
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Old 2017-04-29, 18:19   #1366
only_human
 
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Originally Posted by retina View Post
Hmm, is knowing an infinity of things (primes) easier than exhaustively searching a finite space[1]? Where would you store all those primes? Somehow I think infinity beats all other finite things in terms of hardness to know.

[1]Big assumption here about the size of the universe, but AFAICT all evidence so far would suggest it being finite in size.
Assuming that a sieve could be devised to search for gods, would a qbit be sufficient to represent the uncertainty of evaluation at each mesh point? Does a finite quantity of qbits contain less information that an infinite table of prime numbers?
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Old 2017-04-29, 22:21   #1367
ewmayer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MooMoo2 View Post
I believe that a God(s) existed at one time and may still exist now. That being(s) created the universe, started it off with a low entropy, and has not interfered with his/her creation since the start of the big bang. I do not have enough information to decide on any religious concepts beyond that (what the God(s) want from us humans, if anything, whether there is an afterlife, etc.).

What religion would this would fall under?
On the scientific side we have Big Bang Cosmology, so I suggest Big Bang Theology. "God is in the primordial field which gave rise to the BB and hence may remain forever unknowable to us who live in the resulting *verse, if the latter is causally disconnected from the former", something like that.
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Old 2017-04-30, 01:06   #1368
chalsall
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ewmayer View Post
On the scientific side we have Big Bang Cosmology, so I suggest Big Bang Theology. "God is in the primordial field which gave rise to the BB and hence may remain forever unknowable to us who live in the resulting *verse, if the latter is causally disconnected from the former", something like that.
To be perfectly honest, that was part of my decision to becoming agnostic.

My grade 11 and 12 Physics teacher (Mr. Beck) was a very deep man; a Buddhist who had studied in Asia for many years.

A Hindu student in the class asked him one day "How do you know what created the Universe?" "I don't know; no one can answer that question. All I am trying to do is to teach you how to ask good questions."

It was quite an important moment.

Edit: Just to share, I was not Mr. Beck's favourite student... When we were covering electricity I showed my friends how to test batteries and capacitors with one's tongue. He caught us and then yelled at me "what do you do in Biology class, lick frogs?".

Last fiddled with by chalsall on 2017-04-30 at 01:20
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Old 2017-06-07, 14:55   #1369
davar55
 
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Can you have a religion without some kind of cosmology,
or a cosmology without some view of religion or God?
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Old 2017-06-07, 16:13   #1370
kladner
 
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It is easier for me to imagine a cosmos without religion and its accoutrements. One can have views about god(s) and religion(s) without subscribing to the system(s) of belief(s).
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Old 2017-10-28, 23:42   #1371
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Five hundred years ago this week, Martin Luther nailed his propositions to the church door in a move that would change Europe and the world.
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-41742857
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Old 2018-12-19, 15:35   #1372
Dr Sardonicus
 
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Default Christmas carols

Good grief, where has the time gone? It's less than a week until Christmas! Soon, there may be some bargains to be found at day-after-Christmas sales.

Once upon a time, long long ago, I was reading a Q&A, and came upon the question, "How should you punctuate the title of the Christmas carol, "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen?" The answer was, to put a comma after "merry." So, obviously, the phrase "God rest ye merry" meant something. And clearly it was something to the effect, "(May) God make (or keep) you cheerful."

I didn't think much more about it, except to notice that, in Dickens's A Christmas Carol, he completely botched the first line:
Quote:
"God bless you, merry gentleman!
May nothing you dismay!"
Little did I suspect that, in an effort to counter the delusional "war on Christmas" (the claim that atheists, humanists, liberals etc were deliberately and systematically purging Christianity from Christmas), Christian Culture Warriors were deliberately attributing counterfeit Christian significances to things which did not originally posses them. Never mind Benjamin Franklin's admonition that "A lie stands on one leg, truth on two." These folks were obviously operating on Calvin's doctrine (the comics character, not the famed religious figure): "They lie. I lie."

Of course, Christians have been doing this since the time they decided to place Christmas at about the winter solstice, and "Christianize" the previously pagan rites and rituals. In The History Channel's History of Christmas, we find

Quote:
By holding Christmas at the same time as traditional winter solstice festivals, church leaders increased the chances that Christmas would be popularly embraced, but gave up the ability to dictate how it was celebrated. By the Middle Ages, Christianity had, for the most part, replaced pagan religion. On Christmas, believers attended church, then celebrated raucously in a drunken, carnival-like atmosphere similar to today’s Mardi Gras. Each year, a beggar or student would be crowned the “lord of misrule” and eager celebrants played the part of his subjects. The poor would go to the houses of the rich and demand their best food and drink. If owners failed to comply, their visitors would most likely terrorize them with mischief. Christmas became the time of year when the upper classes could repay their real or imagined “debt” to society by entertaining less fortunate citizens.
Halloween "mischief night" pranksters, eat your hearts out! I note that a remnant of this sort of Christmas celebration is to be found in another carol, "We Wish You a Merry Christmas." Verse 2 begins
Quote:
Oh, bring us some figgy pudding,
Oh, bring us some figgy pudding,
Oh, bring us some figgy pudding,
And bring it right here.
and Verse 3 with
Quote:
We won't go till we get some,
We won't go till we get some,
We won't go till we get some,
So bring it right here.
Or else...

The above narrative continues,

Quote:
An Outlaw Christmas

In the early 17th century, a wave of religious reform changed the way Christmas was celebrated in Europe. When Oliver Cromwell and his Puritan forces took over England in 1645, they vowed to rid England of decadence and, as part of their effort, cancelled Christmas. By popular demand, Charles II was restored to the throne and, with him, came the return of the popular holiday.
Actually, the Puritans outlawed customary celebrations of Christmas, not Christmas itself. They meant business, too. When the good people of Canterbury reacted to the order to keep the shops open on Christmas Day by playing football, then rioting, and their impudence sparked a full-scale rebellion, Parliament called out the troops:
Quote:
With Cromwell and the bulk of the New Model Army fighting in Wales, it was left to Thomas Fairfax to cobble together a force to put down the revolt. In the end, the angry farmers and tradesmen that made up the Kent rebels were no match for professional soldiers.

A sharp summer thunderstorm marked the end of the Battle of Maidstone. Rainwater ran down the narrow streets, washing away pools of blood and hopes of a royalist revival.
Now, that's what I call a War on Christmas!

Anyhow, back to current times. I had no clue that our modern Christian Soldiers had concocted a panoply of "alternative facts," including fake history and fake linguistics, regarding God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen.

As remarkable as I find this, I find it equally remarkable that anyone would actually be offended by someone wishing them a Merry Christmas. It is, after all, a clear case well-wishing. Whether the recipient is Christian or not, "Thank you" is an entirely appropriate response.

But if you are determined to respond to "Merry Christmas" with a lecture that it is based on delusional beliefs, I offer guidance from Dickens's A Christmas Carol. In response to his nephew saying "A merry Christmas, uncle! God save you!" Ebenezer Scrooge uttered the memorable retort,
Quote:
"Merry Christmas! Out upon merry Christmas! What’s Christmas time to you but a time for paying bills without money; a time for finding yourself a year older, but not an hour richer; a time for balancing your books and having every item in ’em through a round dozen of months presented dead against you? If I could work my will," said Scrooge indignantly, “every idiot who goes about with ‘Merry Christmas’ on his lips, should be boiled with his own pudding, and buried with a stake of holly through his heart. He should!"
Merry Christmas to all.
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Old 2019-04-04, 13:05   #1373
Dr Sardonicus
 
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Default OK, so it's a sultanate, not a "kingdom"

(my emphasis)

Brunei invokes laws allowing stoning for gay sex, adultery
Quote:
SINGAPORE (AP) — New Islamic criminal laws that took effect Wednesday in Brunei that punish gay sex and adultery by stoning offenders to death have triggered an outcry from countries, rights groups and celebrities far beyond the tiny Southeast Asian nation’s shores.

The penalties were provided for under new sections of Brunei’s Shariah Penal Code. Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah instituted the code in 2014 to bolster the influence of Islam in the oil-rich monarchy of around 430,000 people, two-thirds of whom are Muslim.

Even before 2014, homosexuality was already punishable in Brunei by a jail term of up to 10 years. The first stage of the Shariah Penal Code included fines or jail for offenses such as pregnancy out of wedlock or failing to pray on Fridays.

But under the new laws, those found guilty of gay sex can be stoned to death or whipped. Adulterers risk death by stoning too, while thieves face amputation of a right hand on their first offense and a left foot on their second. The laws also apply to children and foreigners, even if they are not Muslim.
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Old 2021-02-28, 18:04   #1374
MattcAnderson
 
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Thumbs up the candle burns

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Old 2021-03-02, 07:05   #1375
LaurV
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Sardonicus View Post
Quote:
...Hassanal, who is still sultan...
Whattt? Come again? What's his name? Didn't they stone him yet?
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