Response to Dominick, new member here, sent letter to RRS

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Response to Dominick, new member here, sent letter to RRS

Dominick wrote:
"You seem to have an obvious stated dependance on reason..which I think is great..and thus seem to imply that you agree that reason is dependable, realiable, and the that it is to be used for measuring truth about reality, no?"

Agreed. Reason has proven itself over and over again. Also, to refute reason or logic, demands that one use reason or logic to refute it. Ergo, Logic and Reason are invincible. For to its impossible to refute.

Dominick wrote:
"What would you say are the principles of reason you hold to?"

1) Believe only that which the evidence supports. As David Hume once said "the rational man proportions his beliefs to the evidence." Also, people of reason are people who support science.

2) Logic.

3) Are the reasons for accepting a given proposition good? If not, one should reject the given proposition.

these are the three basic ones.

Dominick wrote:
"Are they objective?"

Of course. Thats the definition of reason.

Dominick wrote:
"What grounds reason?"

Reason itself. Reason is justified, in and of itself. Also, to refute reason, one must rely on reason. Hence, reason and logic are invincible.

Dominick wrote:
"Is it necessary and unchanging, thus reliable or not?"

There are some truths which are necessary. For instance P or not P is a tautology...which means, its always true; atleast, in 2 valued logic.

Others, change. As the evidence changes, so should our belief structure. And yes, its reliable.

In Reason,

Chaoslord2004
Rational Response Squad

"In the high school halls, in the shopping malls, conform or be cast out" ~ Rush, from Subdivisions


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Re: Response to Dominick, new member here, sent letter to RR

Dominick, I'd like to see you answer the same questions you proposed to the Rational Response Squad.

You seem to have an obvious stated dependance on reason..which I think is great..and thus seem to imply that you agree that reason is dependable, reliable, and the that it is to be used for measuring truth about reality, no?

What would you say are the principles of reason you hold to?
Are they objective?

What grounds reason?

Is it necessary and unchanging, thus reliable or not?

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dominick_777
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Re: Response to Dominick, new member here, sent letter to RR

Also while reason is used in the PROCESS of thinking about it, expressing, or denying its reality, inorder to show its self evident, its not used as a basis for its own existence. Inother words, if I said "I can speak at least one word in english", Im not using english as the basis for my arguement, Im using english in the PROCESS of stating that I speak it inorder to show how its self evident that I know and can speak some english. If its was its own basis it would be a circular argument thus invalid, unsound, and not fullfilling the criteria you mentioned by David Hume.

The problem with what he said is also in the fact that evidence or proof needs a foundation by which proofs can be made evident or more evident in light of them. If this was only made evident by that and that only made evident or clear by that other thing, unto infinitely, then one cannot know anything, for to see through everything is not the same as seeing someTHING in itself. Since one must know something inorder to say they know they know nothing, it follows there must be somethings that are evident in themselves, that dont need to be made evident by other things. Hence these are the first principles of reason I point to. David Humes suggestion concerning evidence, is self negating because that proposition doesnt have evidence for itself, as self justifying, therefore it must be made evident by another thing..pointing out that it lacks evidence as a criteria for discovering truth about reality. In other words, if we should only believe what has evidence, or proof being made evident by another thing, and that which is true in itself is only evident or clear in itself, needing no proof beyond itself for its own truthfullness, either hes saying his own criteria needs to be proven ffrom something beyond the criteria, showing its an insufficient criteria, or else hes saying that his own criteria is self evident and shouldnt have the reader needing to look for proof FOR it, but rather just understand what the terms are there, and how its evident or clear in itself..but thats not what hes doing there so it would again contradict itself. So which is it? Is the criteria self evident thus contradicting what hes stating what consitutes evidence, or is it needing to be made evident or proven by something beyond itself, thus showing it itself needs to be proven, which leads one to an infinite regress of "how do you know this, and how do you know that and.." or at best it leads to a meaningless and insufficient criteria for discovering truth..Which is it? I look forward to hearing from you.

"It has been stated that an unexamined life is not worth living, but it can also be stated that an unexamined faith is not worth believing". Norman Geisler


dominick_777
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Answering my own questions.

Quote:
You seem to have an obvious stated dependance on reason..which I think is great..and thus seem to imply that you agree that reason is dependable, reliable, and the that it is to be used for measuring truth about reality, no?

Yes self, I do have a dependance on reason and I also think its greatSmiling I thihnk you rock because of that!Smiling Seriously, it should be used for measuring truth about reality.

Quote:
What would you say are the principles of reason you hold to?

The principles of reason I hold to, are just that, the very principles of reason, called First Principles. The 5 main first principles (though we could debate how many there are) are

1) The law of non contradiction- A thing cannot both be and not be at the same time and in the same sense. As applied to ontology, something cannot be nothing, as applied to logic, its stated as A is not non A.

2) The law of Identity- Something must be identical to itself, if not, it wouldnt be itself it would be something else. As applied to ontology or being, something is necessarily identical to itself, as applied to logic, its stated as A=A. It follows from this that we know being is intelligible, or knowable. Its undeniable that being is knowable, for yo must know enough about being to say yo ucant know anything about being.

3) The law of Excluded Middle- Its either something or nothing, theres nothing in between the two. As applied to being/actuality its necessarily either something or nothing. As applied to logic, its either A or non A.

4) The law of causality- Nothing cannot cause something. Since nothing is nothing it cannot produce anything. So only something can cause something. Ontologically its every effect has a cause, whatever comes to be or changes must be caused by another, or only something can cause something. Logically its A>A.

5) The law of Analogy- Being resembles being. Since something cannot bring to be non being, but can only bring to be, being, and the effect being produced is not identical to its cause, but different, then the effect must resemble its cause in so far as they share at very least existence in common. A cause can only give what it has to give, it cant give what it doesnt have. So between a cause and its effect, theyre different, because one is producing, and the other is being produced, yet similar because they share existence and some reflecting properties in common. Ontologcally its every effect resembles its cause, and logically its A is like the B it produces for an effect cannot be totally other than its cause, (as in nothing, you cant bring to be non being), and it cant be identical to its cause (for something prodcuing isnt the same as that which is being produced), therefore they must be similar..IE having things in common yet differences as well.

There are others, but those are the basic principles of reason, theyre self evident, undeniable, and are implied in every denial of them, so theyre actually inescapable. Whatever is self evident and undeniable is immediately verifiable in itself, where all it takes is understanding the terms being used, and then one can see its self evidence. Just because someone doesnt think theyre self evident to them, doesnt mean theyre not evident in themselves. Lack of understanding them doesnt mean they in themselves are invalid. Theyre true independantly of whether anyone understands them or agrees with them. Furthermore I would state that the laws of reason (not all the particular principles apply to every KIND of being but do) apply to all thought and being in general.

I would also point to logic, deductive and inductive to make judgments about particulars that dont give enough info in themselves to make a judgment. While something can be logical, that doesnt mean its true.

1) All lebanese people have pink tail
2) Dominick is lebanese, therefore
3) Dominick has a pink tail

Is a logically valid even though its absurd/not true. Logic only gives yo uvalidity or whether a conclusion follows from its premises, it doesnt render material or actual truth about reality. So one can only go with logic IF reason is already presupposed, if anyone wants to make any informative statments about reality. Reason deals with material truth about reality, where as logic merely deals with validity.

Quote:
Are they objective?

Yes. The very nature of what is self evident, and what is reducible or consistent with what is self evodent and undeniable, shows at the foundation that its true independant of feelings beliefs or thoughts. It shows that its correctly describing whats outside of ones mind, in that one can know a thing in itself accurately. But without a actually and necessarily true or unchanging foundation for knowledge, all conclusions made based on inductive probabillities or judgements regarding particulars, wouldnt necessarily apply and need not be believed.

Quote:
What grounds reason?

One must first exist to be able to know anything, ontologically, where as reason comes first in the order of epistemology, or how one knows. So ontologically unless reason has a ground in what is by nature necessary, unchanging, and absolute, judgments rendered couldnt be relied upon. That is, reason or understanding comes from minds, so as Augustine reasoned, unless there is an unchanging, absolute, and necessary mind from which reason comes from, reason couldnt be relied upon because it couldnt exist. Reason isnt created, but rather is emanated from a necessary nature/existence/mind, and is something humans can and do participate being made in the image of this rational mind.

Theists believe that God doesnt so much HAVE reason, as He IS reason. Whatever this uncomposed uncreated being, who has no potential has, He is. Because God is a necessary being, it is of His essence (what one has) to exist (what one is), for He MUST be and cannot not be..where as our essence (what we have) isnt identical to our existence (what we are)...for we exist BUT COULD not be. He has no possibility to not be, while we do have a potential to not be. Hes a must be, were a mayby, for we scould either exist or not exist. Therefore whatever changes must be caused to be by another beyond itself. If all things that exist have apossibility to not be, then a state of total nothingness would be possible..but nothing cannot cause something, so not everything can have a possibility to not exist..not everything can change..therefore therefore must exist something that has no possibility to not exist that causes the current existence of every being that exists but could change from being into non being.
Is it necessary and unchanging, thus reliable or not?

So the bottom line is this..if one maintains that reason or truth is objective, necessary, and unchanging, and reason can only come from a necessary unchanging mind, then it follows that a theistic God exists. If one rejects reason or its ground by which to make it meaningfull and dependable, he or she has lost their right to think or say anything at all. So one cannot meaningfully be an atheist, or any other type of non theist and have a view, rather one must be mutist or nothing at all. Which are you?

"It has been stated that an unexamined life is not worth living, but it can also be stated that an unexamined faith is not worth believing". Norman Geisler


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Re: Response to Dominick, new member here, sent letter to RR

dominick_777 wrote:
Also while reason is used in the PROCESS of thinking about it, expressing, or denying its reality, inorder to show its self evident, its not used as a basis for its own existence. Inother words, if I said "I can speak at least one word in english", Im not using english as the basis for my arguement, Im using english in the PROCESS of stating that I speak it inorder to show how its self evident that I know and can speak some english. If its was its own basis it would be a circular argument thus invalid, unsound, and not fullfilling the criteria you mentioned by David Hume.

You fallaciously infer that all circularity is bad. This is incorrect. Some things are self-evidently true, like axioms, but cannot be justified in a non-circular manner. However, one wouldn't want to deny that JUST because its circular, its bad.

Now, this isn't to say alot of circularity is good. On the contrary, most circularity is bad. However, at times, its not.

here is a paper my Epistemology professor Mattias Steup wrote concerning Epistemic Circularity: http://web.stcloudstate.edu/msteup/Circ.pdf

dominick_777 wrote:
The problem with what he said is also in the fact that evidence or proof needs a foundation by which proofs can be made evident or more evident in light of them. If this was only made evident by that and that only made evident or clear by that other thing, unto infinitely, then one cannot know anything, for to see through everything is not the same as seeing someTHING in itself. Since one must know something inorder to say they know they know nothing, it follows there must be somethings that are evident in themselves, that dont need to be made evident by other things. Hence these are the first principles of reason I point to. David Humes suggestion concerning evidence, is self negating because that proposition doesnt have evidence for itself, as self justifying, therefore it must be made evident by another thing..pointing out that it lacks evidence as a criteria for discovering truth about reality. In other words, if we should only believe what has evidence, or proof being made evident by another thing, and that which is true in itself is only evident or clear in itself, needing no proof beyond itself for its own truthfullness, either hes saying his own criteria needs to be proven ffrom something beyond the criteria, showing its an insufficient criteria, or else hes saying that his own criteria is self evident and shouldnt have the reader needing to look for proof FOR it, but rather just understand what the terms are there, and how its evident or clear in itself..but thats not what hes doing there so it would again contradict itself. So which is it? Is the criteria self evident thus contradicting what hes stating what consitutes evidence, or is it needing to be made evident or proven by something beyond itself, thus showing it itself needs to be proven, which leads one to an infinite regress of "how do you know this, and how do you know that and.." or at best it leads to a meaningless and insufficient criteria for discovering truth..Which is it? I look forward to hearing from you.

Well, some have embrassed the infinite regress. The Philosopher Peter Klein who works at Rutgers, says the chain of inferential beliefs, is in fact, infinite.

Others, have said that one can stop the regress with foundational beliefs. Descartes had his theory of foundational beliefs, however, it has fallen by the wayside. Others, like myself, are "Modest Foundationalists" Which is the view that sensory information is justified, in and of itself.

Others, have embraced the view called Coherentism. Coherentism says that what justifies beliefs is how well they hang together. Thus, we all have a web of beliefs which justify each other.

I hope this answers your question. If not, feel free to keep asking.

In Reason,

Chaoslord2004
Rational Response Squad

"In the high school halls, in the shopping malls, conform or be cast out" ~ Rush, from Subdivisions


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Response to Dominick, new member here, sent letter to RRS

dominick_777, your last post was very interesting. It is clear to me, that you have studied Philosophy. I applaud you Smiling

I don't have time right now to answer it, but hopefully tomorrow or saturday I can.

In Reason,

Chaoslord2004
Rational Response Squad

"In the high school halls, in the shopping malls, conform or be cast out" ~ Rush, from Subdivisions


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Re: Response to Dominick, new member here, sent letter to RR

Chaoslord2004 wrote:
dominick_777 wrote:
Also while reason is used in the PROCESS of thinking about it, expressing, or denying its reality, inorder to show its self evident, its not used as a basis for its own existence. Inother words, if I said "I can speak at least one word in english", Im not using english as the basis for my arguement, Im using english in the PROCESS of stating that I speak it inorder to show how its self evident that I know and can speak some english. If its was its own basis it would be a circular argument thus invalid, unsound, and not fullfilling the criteria you mentioned by David Hume.

You fallaciously infer that all circularity is bad. This is incorrect. Some things are self-evidently true, like axioms, but cannot be justified in a non-circular manner. However, one wouldn't want to deny that JUST because its circular, its bad.

Self Evidence and undeniability arent circular..if you think so then you are implying that self evidence, the way reason shows its truth nature, is iirational and fallacious. Self Evidence and Undeniability arent circular, theyre correspondant to a refferent, like in the case that someone says All triangles have three sides, the subject or refferent is all triangles, and the predicate is have three sides if I remember the terminology correctly. So the description or the predicate, since it points to the subject being all trinagles, and the predicate or description matches the subject, it is thus self evident. Something is self evident NOT when its circular BUT when the predicate is identical or reducible to its subject or refferent. SO either you hold to (your self negating view of) reason because its circular, irrational, and not able to render any sound judgments, OR ELSE, you hold to reason because it is not circular, but self verifying because a description matches its subject, its correspondant, and allowing one to see the obviously true nature of something while being in the process of thinking or denying it...thus allowing one a real sufficient and necessary basis upon which to make judgments. Which is it?

PS: All tautologies, things that are true by definition work the same way..they dont need to appeal to anything beyond the sentance, but rather the relationship between the predicate and its subject, because it has enough info to show its obviously true in itself...theres nothing else it needs beyond itself to make it any more evident than it is..for its already evident in itself...IE self evident.

Quote:
Now, this isn't to say alot of circularity is good. On the contrary, most circularity is bad. However, at times, its not.

I could just point to what I stated above for it answers that. My point is that NO circularity is good reasonable, or allows one any true judgments..only irrational ones, that arent self evident..but rather are unjustifiable. Circularity at least as I understand it, reffers to something that offers no justification for a claim, but rather begs the question..example.."Are you saying the reason you know the Traditionalist Roan Catholic churchs interpretations are true is because if you look accept its interpretation of the Bible where Jesus speaks to Peter, then youll know its true"?The point here is Im asking for something beyond the claim "ROman Catholicisms interpretation of reality is true" to independantly verify the claim as true..what the person does is asks me to ALREADY accept their interpretation of the Bible when Jesus reffers to Peter as the Rock, INORDER to see if their interpretation is true..thats circular, begs the question, and doesnt answer mine..it offers no verification but wants someone to blindly assent to something that is not justifiably verfiable let alone meaningfull. So all circularity by its very nature is selff negating and unjustified...false.

Quote:
here is a paper my Epistemology professor Mattias Steup wrote concerning Epistemic Circularity: http://web.stcloudstate.edu/msteup/Circ.pdf

Ill sheck it out. Glad you took the time to offer an epistemology.

Quote:
dominick_777 wrote:
The problem with what he said is also in the fact that evidence or proof needs a foundation by which proofs can be made evident or more evident in light of them. If this was only made evident by that and that only made evident or clear by that other thing, unto infinitely, then one cannot know anything, for to see through everything is not the same as seeing someTHING in itself. Since one must know something inorder to say they know they know nothing, it follows there must be somethings that are evident in themselves, that dont need to be made evident by other things. Hence these are the first principles of reason I point to. David Humes suggestion concerning evidence, is self negating because that proposition doesnt have evidence for itself, as self justifying, therefore it must be made evident by another thing..pointing out that it lacks evidence as a criteria for discovering truth about reality. In other words, if we should only believe what has evidence, or proof being made evident by another thing, and that which is true in itself is only evident or clear in itself, needing no proof beyond itself for its own truthfullness, either hes saying his own criteria needs to be proven ffrom something beyond the criteria, showing its an insufficient criteria, or else hes saying that his own criteria is self evident and shouldnt have the reader needing to look for proof FOR it, but rather just understand what the terms are there, and how its evident or clear in itself..but thats not what hes doing there so it would again contradict itself. So which is it? Is the criteria self evident thus contradicting what hes stating what consitutes evidence, or is it needing to be made evident or proven by something beyond itself, thus showing it itself needs to be proven, which leads one to an infinite regress of "how do you know this, and how do you know that and.." or at best it leads to a meaningless and insufficient criteria for discovering truth..Which is it? I look forward to hearing from you.

Well, some have embrassed the infinite regress. The Philosopher Peter Klein who works at Rutgers, says the chain of inferential beliefs, is in fact, infinite.

While there can be an abstract or mathematical infinite regress, there cannot be an ACTUAL or concretely real infinite regress of contingent causes. Theres many reasons why when one wants to go that route inorder to escape real accountabillity for their thoughts and actions, and most times inorder to escape that sort of accountabillity by the source of being and reason, namely being God, that its invalid, meaningless, or contradictory. Some reasons are this..since existence by its very nature and definition is current, continued, and moment by moment. Since that is so, and its self evident it is so, you have a contingent infinite series (in actuality) that is both potential and actual in regards to its here and now existence..both existing and not existing at the same time and in the same sense. For every link in the chain right now NEEDS a continued cause for its existence, so it doesnt exist because it needs a cause foor its existence..so it first doesnt exist. It ALSO DOES currently exist for something in that chain must already be actual inorder to cause the rest of the series existence. But since something cannot both exist and not exist at the same time and in the same sense, it is contradictory, thus impossible and untrue. So thats one way an ACTUAL infinite series of contingent causes is impossible.

Another reason it is impossible is the following..Adding one contingent being with another doesnt equal a necessary being that has existence in itself not needing to depend on another for it. SO if you add two, three, 100, a million, or even an infinite amount of contingent beings youll never get an necessary being that has existence in itself, thus able to give it to others. So in that infinite regress no one has existence in itself, but every one needs it from another..this is readily seen as a problem especially if you need money..if you need money and need to borrow it from your friend sue, and she says "no problem..but I dont have it right now, go ask fred for it"..and you go to fred, and he says the same thing but reffers you to andy, and andy the same thing within a circle of friends who are all broke, who have no money to be able to give it to another..guess what? Youre not getting any money at any time in that circle. The only way you could get money is if you go outside the circle to someone who actually has it who can thus give it to you..likewise, if every link in the series needs existence, but doesnt have it already in itself, then no one has existence, and if all that exists is that kind of being, then no one is being..no one exists..The only way they can have continued existence is if they recieve it from a being that isnt contingent, who is necessary that exists beyond the contingent series and thus can give it to every contingent being that needs it. So this is another reason why an actual infinite regress is impossible. If every part of the series is contingent, and the nature of the parts determines the nature of the whole, then it follows that the whole series is contingent thus in need of a cause beyond itself..this points to a necessary being that causes the continiued existence of every contingent being in the contingent series. IE God.

One last reason I could give is that the question could be asked of this actual infinite regress.."wheres the grounding for the continued existence of the chain come from..from within itself or from outside of itself"? If from within then its a self caused chain which is impossible. The only way one could cause ones own existence is if one FIRST didnt exist, inorder to be brought into existence. But the only way one could cause ones own existence is if one already did exist to be able to cause or produce their existence. But since something cannot both exist and not exist, and one cannot exist BEFORE they start existing, it show why an actual infinite regress is impossible. If its from outside the chain, then you have theism. So no matter which way you go you have theism or nothing at all..meaninglessness or contradiction.

Quote:
Others, have said that one can stop the regress with foundational beliefs. Descartes had his theory of foundational beliefs, however, it has fallen by the wayside. Others, like myself, are "Modest Foundationalists" Which is the view that sensory information is justified, in and of itself.

I dont see how foundationalism has fallen by the waste side. Many people are foundationalists, and even if NO ONE WAS, it shows its truth nature in the very process of asking about it or denying it. One NEEDS a foundation (mayby not EXACTLY as decarte described it) but one needs it neverthless else nothing could be known. Just because his theory of foundationism may not work doesnt mean that NO theory of foundationalism doesnt. I dont see any problem with the idea that unless there are foundational self evident undeniable truths which provide the most general and obvious ground for all inferences, deductions, or reductions, nothing could be known in itself as true. One could only be looking through everything, seeeing nothing in itself at all, knowing no THING, which become self negating, or else they may try the route of a self negating view of foundations as needing to be circular..which is contradictory and or meaningless..allowing no justified knowledge at all.

Quote:
Others, have embraced the view called Coherentism. Coherentism says that what justifies beliefs is how well they hang together. Thus, we all have a web of beliefs which justify each other.

YEs unfortunately some have bought into this...but while coherence may be something that is in true statments, its not the very nature of truth itself. Something can be consistently or coherently wrong. Data doesnt interpret itself, but must rely on a framework by which to be interpreted or understood by..so the question is HOW do we know the framework or thing it coheres TO is true..coherentism doesnt answer that therefore it either justifies all frameworks and their proposed view of foundations that oppose one another, which allows one to know nothing..or else it validates and justifies nothing as true.

All its doing is saying "look how atheisticythe parts hang together..isnt that cool"? or "look how theistically the parts hang together..isnt that cool"? It offers no way to justify what the parts cohere to, and it offers no way to adjudicate between competing worldviews for each "fact" is an interprefact, getting its meaning from within the worldview..so one cannot expect an atheistically interpreted data to be compaired as better than say, a theistically interpretated fact, as an atheist defines..nor can a theistically interpreted view of what better means, be comparied to an atheistically interpreted piece of data as proposed as best as defined by an atheistic framework. All worldviews account for reality in its own way..and if each "fact" is an interprefact, getting its meaning from within the worldviewyou cant use facts from within a worldview inorder to justify the worldview. Thats circular, self negating and meaningless...IE it cannot offer anyone truth..only consistently (misinterpreted) reality..or else offers no justification for WHY the worldview or view of foundations is correct. It may offer consistency but not truth or correspondance to reality/actuality.

Quote:
I hope this answers your question. If not, feel free to keep asking.

In Reason,

Chaoslord2004
Rational Response Squad

Thanks for your reply, kindness, and open willingness to discuss stuff this important. I appreciate it alot. I usually dont find this type of person in these kinds of forums...its not the norm though it does happen. Usually I find its a society of peers who just wanna trash theism. Thanks for being different. I look forward to your reply. Talk to you later. Chao.

"It has been stated that an unexamined life is not worth living, but it can also be stated that an unexamined faith is not worth believing". Norman Geisler


dominick_777
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Response to Dominick, new member here, sent letter to RRS

Chaoslord2004 wrote:
dominick_777, your last post was very interesting. It is clear to me, that you have studied Philosophy. I applaud you Smiling

I don't have time right now to answer it, but hopefully tomorrow or saturday I can.

In Reason,

Chaoslord2004
Rational Response Squad

Thanks for the kind words. Yea, philosophy was my minor, but I'm more so self learned. You may be able to discover what my view is from my posts, but well seeSmiling I do appreciate your candor and tact. Very refreshing to see. I look forward to hearing from you. Have a great day.

PS: I try to check once or twice a week here because Im busy throughout the week so ill keep an eye out for your post whenever you get a chance to do it. I understand about being busy. Dont stress but I do look forward to seeing it. Take care.

"It has been stated that an unexamined life is not worth living, but it can also be stated that an unexamined faith is not worth believing". Norman Geisler