Idea for Catholics

MattShizzle
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Idea for Catholics

Heres an idea for Catholics to try (assuming you believe the cracker and wine actually turn into the body and blood of Jesus.) Have any priest you want bless the cracker and wine and have it sent to any lab in the world that does DNA testing. Do this as often as you want. If the cracker and wine test postive for human DNA (and contamination can be eliminated) you got me listening...

[mod edit for typo in topic title]

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Silly rabbit. Name a lab

Silly rabbit. Name a lab that can detect supernatural DNA and your on!


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wavefreak wrote: Silly

wavefreak wrote:
Silly rabbit. Name a lab that can detect supernatural DNA and your on!

He might even settle for DNA proof of transubstantiation. If the cracker and wine turn into real flesh and blood (without human chicanery)...

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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jcgadfly wrote: wavefreak

jcgadfly wrote:

wavefreak wrote:
Silly rabbit. Name a lab that can detect supernatural DNA and your on!

He might even settle for DNA proof of transubstantiation. If the cracker and wine turn into real flesh and blood (without human chicanery)...

 

I'd be impressed too. Transubstantiation is one of the weirdest ideas in all of Christianity. 


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That's a great idea! And I

That's a great idea! And I think it would actually be possible to carry out the test pretty quickly and easily right there in front of the altar in order to head off any accusations of host desecration.

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Ctholics? Does this have

Ctholics?

Does this have anything to do with Cthulhu? 


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Damn typos.

Laughing out loud

Damn typos.


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I read an article recently

I read an article recently about a girl that is allergic to crackers... When the priest blessed the cracker and turned it into Jesus' body, she still got allergic reactions when she ate it... I don't understand, how is that possible? What are the odds that she's allergic to divine flesh, too?!Surprised


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Part of the reason I'm not

Part of the reason I'm not Catholic. But I would be interested in seeing science prove or disprove that it actually changes.


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I and every other Catholic

I and every other Catholic on the planet would be pretty darned impressed if human DNA was found as well.  No Catholic in his right mind would expect such a result.  As stated in the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

1375 It is by the conversion of the bread and wine into Christ's body and blood that Christ becomes present in this sacrament. The Church Fathers strongly affirmed the faith of the Church in theefficacy of the Word of Christ and of the action of the Holy Spirit to bring about this conversion. Thus St. John Chrysostom declares:

It is not man that causes the things offered to become the Body and Blood of Christ, but he who was crucified for us, Christ himself. The priest, in the role of Christ, pronounces these words, but their power and grace are God's. This is my   body, he says. This word transforms the things offered.

And St. Ambrose says about this conversion:

Be convinced that this is not what nature has formed, but what the blessing has consecrated. The power of the blessing prevails over that of nature, because by the blessing nature itself is changed. . . . Could not Christ's word, which can make from nothing what did not exist, change existing things into what they were not before? It is no less a feat to give things their original nature than to change their nature.

And a bit later states:

1381 "That in this sacrament are the true Body of Christ and his true Blood is something that 'cannot be apprehended by the senses,' says St. Thomas, 'but only by faith, which relies on divine authority.' For this reason, in a commentary on Luke 22:19 ('This is my body which is given for you.&#39Eye-wink, St. Cyril says: 'Do not doubt whether this is true, but rather receive the words of the Savior in faith, for since he is the truth, he cannot lie.'

The St Thomas cited in para 1381 is St Thomas Aquinas.

 It is ridiculous for you to expect to begin to understand transubstantiation without a belief in God, and hindered by a total lack of belief in the Bible (or "buy-bull" as your fond of saying).   If you're willing to be open minded, I'd be happy to explain, from Scripture, the basis of the doctrine.  It's not really all that far-fetched for a believer once it's closely examined. 

"With its enduring appeal to the search for truth, philosophy has the great responsibility of forming thought and culture; and now it must strive resolutely to recover its original vocation." Pope John Paul II


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Ophios

Ophios wrote:

Ctholics?

Does this have anything to do with Cthulhu?

That's what I was wondering. 


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Oh you silly silly nieve

Oh you silly silly nieve atheists, do you really think the bread would stay transformed in the hands of unbelievers?

 

Besides, you have yet to see the true face of Jesus:

 

 


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totus_tuus wrote: I and

totus_tuus wrote:

I and every other Catholic on the planet would be pretty darned impressed if human DNA was found as well. No Catholic in his right mind would expect such a result. As stated in the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

1375 It is by the conversion of the bread and wine into Christ's body and blood that Christ becomes present in this sacrament. The Church Fathers strongly affirmed the faith of the Church in theefficacy of the Word of Christ and of the action of the Holy Spirit to bring about this conversion. Thus St. John Chrysostom declares:

It is not man that causes the things offered to become the Body and Blood of Christ, but he who was crucified for us, Christ himself. The priest, in the role of Christ, pronounces these words, but their power and grace are God's. This is my body, he says. This word transforms the things offered.

And St. Ambrose says about this conversion:

Be convinced that this is not what nature has formed, but what the blessing has consecrated. The power of the blessing prevails over that of nature, because by the blessing nature itself is changed. . . . Could not Christ's word, which can make from nothing what did not exist, change existing things into what they were not before? It is no less a feat to give things their original nature than to change their nature.

And a bit later states:

1381 "That in this sacrament are the true Body of Christ and his true Blood is something that 'cannot be apprehended by the senses,' says St. Thomas, 'but only by faith, which relies on divine authority.' For this reason, in a commentary on Luke 22:19 ('This is my body which is given for you.&#39Eye-wink, St. Cyril says: 'Do not doubt whether this is true, but rather receive the words of the Savior in faith, for since he is the truth, he cannot lie.'

The St Thomas cited in para 1381 is St Thomas Aquinas.

It is ridiculous for you to expect to begin to understand transubstantiation without a belief in God, and hindered by a total lack of belief in the Bible (or "buy-bull" as your fond of saying). If you're willing to be open minded, I'd be happy to explain, from Scripture, the basis of the doctrine. It's not really all that far-fetched for a believer once it's closely examined.

Why are you asking me to trade down?

Why are you asking me to take the brain and its faculties (which you believe God gave me) and exchange it for a faith taught to me by my fellow humans who are only interested in padding their membership rolls and picking my pocket?

Am I asking so much to want a belief system that doesn't hold that reason is a bad thing? 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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Quote: I and every other

Quote:
I and every other Catholic on the planet would be pretty darned impressed if human DNA was found as well.  No Catholic in his right mind would expect such a result.

Complete agreement. Miraclulous as it may be, let's still not go into the domain of complete madness.

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jcgadfly wrote: Why are

jcgadfly wrote:

Why are you asking me to trade down?

Why are you asking me to take the brain and its faculties (which you believe God gave me) and exchange it for a faith taught to me by my fellow humans who are only interested in padding their membership rolls and picking my pocket?

Am I asking so much to want a belief system that doesn't hold that reason is a bad thing? 

Where'd I ask you to believe anything?  I simply observed that someone had a mistaken notion of a belief I happen to hold, and thought to correct their misperception of that belief. 

"With its enduring appeal to the search for truth, philosophy has the great responsibility of forming thought and culture; and now it must strive resolutely to recover its original vocation." Pope John Paul II


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totus_tuus wrote: jcgadfly

totus_tuus wrote:
jcgadfly wrote:

Why are you asking me to trade down?

Why are you asking me to take the brain and its faculties (which you believe God gave me) and exchange it for a faith taught to me by my fellow humans who are only interested in padding their membership rolls and picking my pocket?

Am I asking so much to want a belief system that doesn't hold that reason is a bad thing?

Where'd I ask you to believe anything? I simply observed that someone had a mistaken notion of a belief I happen to hold, and thought to correct their misperception of that belief.

Yes, but to correct that misconception, you're asking people to not use their (according to Christianity) God-given brain and substitute an unquestioning belief in the teachings of men.

One of the statements you posted says that the Host "cannot be apprehended by the senses but only by faith". The senses are (according to Christianity) God-given - faith is learned from men. If faith came from your God we'd have it at birth.

The question stands - why should I use an inferior, man-created process to attempt to understand your God instead of what you supposedly believe he gave me? 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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jcgadfly wrote: Yes, but to

jcgadfly wrote:
Yes, but to correct that misconception, you're asking people to not use their (according to Christianity) God-given brain and substitute an unquestioning belief in the teachings of men.

One of the statements you posted says that the Host "cannot be apprehended by the senses but only by faith". The senses are (according to Christianity) God-given - faith is learned from men. If faith came from your God we'd have it at birth.

The question stands - why should I use an inferior, man-created process to attempt to understand your God instead of what you supposedly believe he gave me? 

Again, I've not asked you, nor do I now ask you to believe anything, but I simply state what I believe.

I believe because it's not an "inferior, man-created process.  Rather, the same God who provided the intellect provides faith.  It is a virtue infused into man as a gift from God.  At the same time, faith is an assent of the human will and intellect to the will of God.  St Thomas Aquinas' definition, perhaps, does more justice than I can, "Believing is an act of the intellect assenting to the divine truth by command of the will moved by God through grace."

And there you have my belief.  You can believe whatever you like.

 

"With its enduring appeal to the search for truth, philosophy has the great responsibility of forming thought and culture; and now it must strive resolutely to recover its original vocation." Pope John Paul II


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I prefer Mark Twain's

I prefer Mark Twain's definition of faith: "Faith is believing in that which I know ain't so."

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totus_tuus wrote: jcgadfly

totus_tuus wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:
Yes, but to correct that misconception, you're asking people to not use their (according to Christianity) God-given brain and substitute an unquestioning belief in the teachings of men.

One of the statements you posted says that the Host "cannot be apprehended by the senses but only by faith". The senses are (according to Christianity) God-given - faith is learned from men. If faith came from your God we'd have it at birth.

The question stands - why should I use an inferior, man-created process to attempt to understand your God instead of what you supposedly believe he gave me?

Again, I've not asked you, nor do I now ask you to believe anything, but I simply state what I believe.

I believe because it's not an "inferior, man-created process. Rather, the same God who provided the intellect provides faith. It is a virtue infused into man as a gift from God. At the same time, faith is an assent of the human will and intellect to the will of God. St Thomas Aquinas' definition, perhaps, does more justice than I can, "Believing is an act of the intellect assenting to the divine truth by command of the will moved by God through grace."

And there you have my belief. You can believe whatever you like.

 

Oh, that Catch-22 again.

God gives you faith when you believe...but you have to have faith in order to believe to get the faith. 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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totus_tuus wrote: It's

totus_tuus wrote:

It's not really all that far-fetched for a believer once it's closely examined.

The spontaneous changing of a cracker and wine to the body and blood of a guy that's been dead (and the body removed to heaven!) for 2000 years by the spellcasting of thousands of priests all over the world who channel that same dead guy every Sunday morning is not far-fetched?

If your faith has taken your thought to a place where this barbaric fantasy can seem even remotely related to reality, you shouldn't be allowed around sharp objects in my opinion. This is a broken belief informed by the worst kind of irrational gibberish. Inasmuch as beliefs inform action, this is a perfect example of why atheists today are up in arms about the mainstream acceptance of the claims of religion. Someone who can bring themselves to believe such a thing is capable of believing anything, and in justifying any action on the most specious of grounds. I don't hesitate for one second to call that kind of cognition dangerous, and a public menace. As, in fact, it has proven to be.

The only saving grace is that most Catholics know in their rational minds that it is all a bunch of nonsense and would never purposely allow any action of consequence to be informed by such a wacked belief. But it would be nice to hear them admit, publically, that their rituals are a silly emotional security blanket and that they have no wordly significance beyond that. Still waiting.  

 

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simple theist wrote: Part

simple theist wrote:
Part of the reason I'm not Catholic. But I would be interested in seeing science prove or disprove that it actually changes.

Really? So you're saying that you can somehow see it as really being possible to the point you would have to invoke science to proof it to you?

"I contend we are both atheists, I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours."--Stephen F. Roberts


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MattShizzle wrote: I prefer

MattShizzle wrote:
I prefer Mark Twain's definition of faith: "Faith is believing in that which I know ain't so."

I'm a bit of a Twain fan myself and appreciate the quote, typical Twain.  But, I'm afraid old Sam Clemens didn't think his positon through all the way here.  

Faith is an integral part of human beings, we use faith on a daily basis, all of us, atheists and theists alike.  Faith in the word and actions of other people is an integral part of humna relationships.  I had complete faith in the word of my wife when we married that she's be faithful to me.  I have faith that the bank will properly record the interest due to me on my bank accounts, people have and lose faith in markets, in governments, and other human institutions.  Society is based on faith that people place in others.

"With its enduring appeal to the search for truth, philosophy has the great responsibility of forming thought and culture; and now it must strive resolutely to recover its original vocation." Pope John Paul II


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jcgadfly wrote: Oh, that

jcgadfly wrote:
Oh, that Catch-22 again.

God gives you faith when you believe...but you have to have faith in order to believe to get the faith.

Not hardly.  When offered a gift, it is the reciever's option to accept or decline the gift.  I've examined religious faith, found the truths contained in it to be consistent with the world, and the question "why", and I've accepted it.  You, likewise have examnined the option for faith, somehow have managed to find it lacking and rejected it.  No worries. 

"With its enduring appeal to the search for truth, philosophy has the great responsibility of forming thought and culture; and now it must strive resolutely to recover its original vocation." Pope John Paul II


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Tilberian wrote: The

Tilberian wrote:
The spontaneous changing of a cracker and wine to the body and blood of a guy that's been dead (and the body removed to heaven!) for 2000 years by the spellcasting of thousands of priests all over the world who channel that same dead guy every Sunday morning is not far-fetched?

First of all, the sacrifce of the Mass is offerred daily.

As far as far-fetched, not at all.  The Eucharist is the fulfillment of the Jewish Passover, a participation of Catholics in the "one sacrifice offered for all".

Tilberian wrote:
If your faith has taken your thought to a place where this barbaric fantasy can seem even remotely related to reality, you shouldn't be allowed around sharp objects in my opinion.

There are worse beliefs.  For example, the ridiculous belief that man is sufficient unto himslef, and that we are not accountable to anyone beyond us for our actions.

By the way, I am limited in my access to sharp objects having to pass through several metal dtectors daily at work, so I hope you rest better tonight knowing that.

Tilberian wrote:
If your faith has taken your thought to a place where this barbaric fantasy can seem even remotely related to reality, you shouldn't be allowed around sharp objects in my opinion. This is a broken belief informed by the worst kind of irrational gibberish. Inasmuch as beliefs inform action, this is a perfect example of why atheists today are up in arms about the mainstream acceptance of the claims of religion. Someone who can bring themselves to believe such a thing is capable of believing anything, and in justifying any action on the most specious of grounds. I don't hesitate for one second to call that kind of cognition dangerous, and a public menace. As, in fact, it has proven to be.

Is my belief in the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist one of those propositions that Sam Harris finds "so dangerous that it may even be ethical to kill people for believing them"?  Is it more dangerous than that belief?  Sounds to me like you think it comes close.

Is it more dangerous than creationism?  Young earthism? 

Tilberian wrote:
The only saving grace is that most Catholics know in their rational minds that it is all a bunch of nonsense and would never purposely allow any action of consequence to be informed by such a wacked belief.

Although some polls among Catholics indicate that you may be right about the number of Catholics who doubt the doctrine of the Real Presence, I fail to understand your fear.  I doubt that another Crusade is likely.

Tilberian wrote:
But it would be nice to hear them admit, publically, that their rituals are a silly emotional security blanket and that they have no wordly significance beyond that.

You'll never hear that admission here, I like, I love my security blanket.  I'ts not the wordly significance i worry about. 

 

 

"With its enduring appeal to the search for truth, philosophy has the great responsibility of forming thought and culture; and now it must strive resolutely to recover its original vocation." Pope John Paul II


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Quote:  Faith is an

Quote:

 Faith is an integral part of human beings, we use faith on a daily basis, all of us, atheists and theists alike.  Faith in the word and actions of other people is an integral part of humna relationships.  I had complete faith in the word of my wife when we married that she's be faithful to me.  I have faith that the bank will properly record the interest due to me on my bank accounts, people have and lose faith in markets, in governments, and other human institutions.  Society is based on faith that people place in others.

 

Faith in others is a different concept to faith in god.

When you have faith in others you have experience of human behaviour to go on. You can expect certain people to act certain ways in certain situations because you have seen them act like that enough times to be confident that they will do so this time. In terms of specific individuals, those are people you know, you have a good idea of their personalities and can therefore make accurate predictions of how they will behave most of the time.

Compare that to faith in god. You have no experience of god on which to base future predictions, infact you have no evidence at all.

 

So we have 2 completely different types of faith.

1) Expectations, based on past experience and familiarity with the individual in question

2) Belief without evidence

 

The first is required to function at all in society. The second is irrational.  

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Exactly - we know for a

Exactly - we know for a fact that other people exist. No evidence God exists. And before you bring it up, no it isn't faith that we know the sun will come up, or a chair will hold us - this is based on experience.

Thanks to mods for fixing my typo.

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totus_tuus wrote: jcgadfly

totus_tuus wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:
Oh, that Catch-22 again.

God gives you faith when you believe...but you have to have faith in order to believe to get the faith.

Not hardly. When offered a gift, it is the reciever's option to accept or decline the gift. I've examined religious faith, found the truths contained in it to be consistent with the world, and the question "why", and I've accepted it. You, likewise have examnined the option for faith, somehow have managed to find it lacking and rejected it. No worries.

You really don't see the problem?

One must have faith in God in order to be convinced that God is who and what he says he is.

Only then can God give you the faith that you need to believe in him. 

 If you can't get faith from God until you believe - how do you get the faith on which to base the original belief (if not from men)?

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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jcgadfly wrote: One must

jcgadfly wrote:

One must have faith in God in order to be convinced that God is who and what he says he is.

Only then can God give you the faith that you need to believe in him. 

 If you can't get faith from God until you believe - how do you get the faith on which to base the original belief (if not from men)?

So, um... let me get this straight.

If and only if I am convinced that God exists will he convince me that he exists.

It's a miracle! God has given faith to those who already had faith.

Hold on a second. It seems to me that god isn't really required in this.

1) Have faith

2) God gives you faith

3) Have faith

I think there's some redundancy here.

 

How do you know that the faith you have now is actually from God and not just the same faith you had before God gave you faith  - you know, that pre-requisite faith needed before you can have faith?

Oh, a lesson in not changing history from Mr. I'm-My-Own-Grandpa!


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ParanoidAgnostic

ParanoidAgnostic wrote:
jcgadfly wrote:

One must have faith in God in order to be convinced that God is who and what he says he is.

Only then can God give you the faith that you need to believe in him.

If you can't get faith from God until you believe - how do you get the faith on which to base the original belief (if not from men)?

So, um... let me get this straight.

If and only if I am convinced that God exists will he convince me that he exists.

It's a miracle! God has given faith to those who already had faith.

Hold on a second. It seems to me that god isn't really required in this.

1) Have faith

2) God gives you faith

3) Have faith

I think there's some redundancy here.

 

How do you know that the faith you have now is actually from God and not just the same faith you had before God gave you faith - you know, that pre-requisite faith needed before you can have faith?

I hope you're not asking me to argue the point. That's the circular reasoning problem that I brought up to totus_tuus. Hence the first line to him - "You really don't see the problem, do you?" 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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jcgadfly

jcgadfly wrote:

I hope you're not asking me to argue the point. That's the circular reasoning problem that I brought up to totus_tuus. Hence the first line to him - "You really don't see the problem, do you?"

Hehehe, sorry - it's early here - no coffee yet.

I thought that was another one of totus-tuus's posts. The problem is that I've actually heard catholics say almost exacly what you posted, but mean it.

{Edit - fixed quote} 

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totus_tuus wrote: First of

totus_tuus wrote:

First of all, the sacrifce of the Mass is offerred daily.

As far as far-fetched, not at all. The Eucharist is the fulfillment of the Jewish Passover, a participation of Catholics in the "one sacrifice offered for all".

Transubstantiation is far-fetched because it violates dozens of natural principles that are observed to be uniform everywhere else, all the time. It is far-fetched because we have a better explaination from logic of what actually happens to the wine and cracker: nothing. It is far-fetched because we can observe that the doctrine and beliefs surrounding it are man-made and not the result of any process of discovery. It is far-fetched because millions of Christians in other sects and billions of people in other religions, all with equal claim to knowledge of God's will, do not believe in it. Finally it is far-fetched because its very truth rests on faith, which makes it non-falsifiable and indistinguishable from fantasy.  

totus_tuus wrote:

There are worse beliefs. For example, the ridiculous belief that man is sufficient unto himslef, and that we are not accountable to anyone beyond us for our actions.

It really doesn't matter whether you like this belief or not, because it is simple observed fact. If you would like to claim that there is someone else to whom we are accountable, the burden in on you to prove his existance.

My recommendation: rather than being distressed at the idea that we are ultimately responsible for our actions and the moral consequences of them, why not take this realization as an opportunity to grow up, embrace our responsibility to ourselves and each other and get to work making the world a better place that actually makes sense? 

totus_tuus wrote:

By the way, I am limited in my access to sharp objects having to pass through several metal dtectors daily at work, so I hope you rest better tonight knowing that.

LOL. I, on the other hand, have a three-foot medieval longsword mounted over my desk. Though many people have noted that I shouldn't be trusted with that for many other reasons. 

totus_tuus wrote:

Is my belief in the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist one of those propositions that Sam Harris finds "so dangerous that it may even be ethical to kill people for believing them"? Is it more dangerous than that belief? Sounds to me like you think it comes close.

Maybe. In the Middle Ages, vast pogroms were carried out to hunt down and kill people suspected of "host desecration." Needless to say, Jews were the main targets of these purges, and all manner of massacres and torture were justified by the need to cleanse society of this crime in which the victim himself was presumed to already be long dead. Thousands died, in unspeakable ways.

You share the same belief as these barbarians. This is the proud tradition of which you are an inheritor and sustainer. If the right-thinking people of the world had any reason to believe that you might act on your belief as your predecessors did, wouldn't they be justified in taking any measures possible to stop you? What if you were in a remote, hidden location with a cadre of fellow anti-host-desecrators and a stockpile of nuclear weaponry broadcasting to the world your belief that host desecrators must be annihilated? What would you say the reasonable response of reasonable people would be? I'll tell you what my response would be: I'd blast you to your reward before you could do the same to me.

 

totus_tuus wrote:

Is it more dangerous than creationism? Young earthism?

The body count for the Eucharist-defenders is much, much higher. But I have little doubt that if that explosive offense of the Young Earthers can get back on the field, they can turn this thing around fast.

totus_tuus wrote:

Although some polls among Catholics indicate that you may be right about the number of Catholics who doubt the doctrine of the Real Presence, I fail to understand your fear. I doubt that another Crusade is likely.

My real fear has more to do with the influence that believers have over politics, acting, as they do, as unified voting blocks. IMO, we are doomed as a society if our policy is based on irrational precepts. And I have concerns about the ability of Catholics to think rationally on many issues given their everyday embrace of irrationality in this matter.

totus_tuus wrote:

You'll never hear that admission here, I like, I love my security blanket. I'ts not the wordly significance i worry about.

If it's not the worldly significance you worry about, then you should be happy to admit that God's existance as a natural entity is moot, and that our worldly deliberations about wordly things should not be informed by God or our beliefs concerning him. Basically what I'm saying is, if God is about the spiritual, keep him in your hearts and homes and churches, but leave the rest of us alone. As long as that is the case (and it was for many decades until the abortion debate broke out) neither I nor most other atheists will consider you a threat at all.

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totus_tuus

totus_tuus wrote:

MattShizzle wrote:
I prefer Mark Twain's definition of faith: "Faith is believing in that which I know ain't so."

I'm a bit of a Twain fan myself and appreciate the quote, typical Twain. But, I'm afraid old Sam Clemens didn't think his positon through all the way here.

Faith is an integral part of human beings, we use faith on a daily basis, all of us, atheists and theists alike. Faith in the word and actions of other people is an integral part of humna relationships. I had complete faith in the word of my wife when we married that she's be faithful to me. I have faith that the bank will properly record the interest due to me on my bank accounts, people have and lose faith in markets, in governments, and other human institutions. Society is based on faith that people place in others.

You have observed your wife and heard her claims that she loves you. On balance, her behaviour would seem to bear out that conclusion. Further, you have made observations about her overall truthfulness, emotional stability and reliability. Based on all of the above, you have arrived at the reasoned conclusion that it is probable that she shares your values of marital fidelity and has the moral character to remain true to those values. There is no faith involved, and none needed. If she were to prove you wrong through her actions, you would swiftly discard your earlier conclusion in light of the new evidence.

You have arrived at an attitude of trust for banks and other institutions through a similar process.  Calculating probabliities and inducing future behaviour based on past behaviour is highly scientific and reasonable and can be modeled mathematically. 

Now we'll compare your faith in God's existence with a simple question: assuming, hypothetically, that there was such a thing as perfect evidence of God's non-existance, would you, having been shown that evidence, cease to believe? Please don't answer with red herrings about the impossibility of such evidence - that isn't the point. The point is, if all your reason told you that God didn't exist, what would win out, your reason or your faith?

Most theists answer that their faith would win, and in this they are allied with Augustine and Aquinas and other theological giants. If your answer is no, then it's time for us to have a scientific discussion.  Wink

 

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jcgadfly wrote: You really

jcgadfly wrote:
You really don't see the problem?

No.  I don't.

jcgadfly wrote:
One must have faith in God in order to be convinced that God is who and what he says he is.

Only then can God give you the faith that you need to believe in him.

I think you have it sideways or backwards or something.  Man is, by his nature, a religious being, as evidenced by the presence of prayer, ritual, meditation and sacrifice found in every culture.  From the earliest animism, to eastern tanscendentalism, Greco-Roman mythology, through Judaism and Christianity man attempts to come to grips with this need to find God. 

Faith is, then, an obedient response to God, even if to an imperfect understanding of Him, acknowledging His divinity, transcendence and supreme freedom.  Then comes the assent of the will to that testimony. 

We are created with the innate ability (I would say need) to believe.  That's God's part.  It's in the assent of the will, our part, where some folks just aren't able to go on. 

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totus_tuus wrote: jcgadfly

totus_tuus wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:
You really don't see the problem?

No. I don't.

jcgadfly wrote:
One must have faith in God in order to be convinced that God is who and what he says he is.

Only then can God give you the faith that you need to believe in him.

I think you have it sideways or backwards or something. Man is, by his nature, a religious being, as evidenced by the presence of prayer, ritual, meditation and sacrifice found in every culture. From the earliest animism, to eastern tanscendentalism, Greco-Roman mythology, through Judaism and Christianity man attempts to come to grips with this need to find God.

Faith is, then, an obedient response to God, even if to an imperfect understanding of Him, acknowledging His divinity, transcendence and supreme freedom. Then comes the assent of the will to that testimony.

We are created with the innate ability (I would say need) to believe. That's God's part. It's in the assent of the will, our part, where some folks just aren't able to go on.

I understand now. You think we're born with a need for God. I look at God as a man-made tool that some used ro explain the unknown.

If man had an innate desire to pray, why does no one know how from the beginning? Why did the disciples ask Jesus, "Teach us to pray" if they already knew how?

If we were all born seeking god, why are kids not bothered by it until parents and churchmen give them threats and fear? 

 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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tilberian wrote: You have

tilberian wrote:
You have observed your wife and heard her claims that she loves you. On balance, her behaviour would seem to bear out that conclusion. Further, you have made observations about her overall truthfulness, emotional stability and reliability. Based on all of the above, you have arrived at the reasoned conclusion that it is probable that she shares your values of marital fidelity and has the moral character to remain true to those values. There is no faith involved, and none needed. If she were to prove you wrong through her actions, you would swiftly discard your earlier conclusion in light of the new evidence.

Absolutely right.  The same with God.  I believe God has revealed to man his overall truthfulness, stability, divinity and reliability and I have arrived at a reasoned conclusion that He shares my values of marital fidelity and has the character to remain true to those values.  There is faith involved in both cases, and it is absolutely required.  The difference is that God could never, ever possibly prove me wrong through his actions, although it has appeared to me to be the case at several points in my life and I have attempted to discard my conclusion of belief in him for scepticism.

Without going into a full scale, fundamentalist type "testimony", let me assure you that my journey to faith has been a long and tortuous one.  My original reason for believing quite rightly would be classified as an argument from emotion, so I wouldn't even presume to share that with you.  But trust me when I say, I have examined, I have experienced, scepticism (at least going so far as agnosticism) and find it wanting.  Pascal's wager, while probably the worst reason for beliving in God, at least demonstrates that agnosticism is not a viable position, demonstrates that in the end, there are only two possibilities, that is, full atheism or full belief.  Logically, there is no room for a middle case.  At this point in the equation, insert a crisis during which I had to choose one and...poof...a theist revert is born. 

tilberian wrote:
You have arrived at an attitude of trust for banks and other institutions through a similar process.  Calculating probabliities and inducing future behaviour based on past behaviour is highly scientific and reasonable and can be modeled mathematically. 

I'll concede this argument to you.  Probably not a very good example.  But I think my analogy of faith in government still holds fairly well.  Witness the current US administration, which, much to my chagrin, I once supported (YIKES).

tilberian wrote:
Now we'll compare your faith in God's existence with a simple question: assuming, hypothetically, that there was such a thing as perfect evidence of God's non-existance, would you, having been shown that evidence, cease to believe? Please don't answer with red herrings about the impossibility of such evidence - that isn't the point. The point is, if all your reason told you that God didn't exist, what would win out, your reason or your faith?

Most theists answer that their faith would win, and in this they are allied with Augustine and Aquinas and other theological giants. If your answer is no, then it's time for us to have a scientific discussion.  Wink

Yeah, I'm quite the Thomist in this respect.  In any event, you'd find no challenge in a scientific discussion with me, it'd be akin to clubbing baby seals.  No challenge whatsoever.  I've spent the better part of my adult life in the profession of arms and have long considered all this book learning unbecoming a soldier.  LOL.

"With its enduring appeal to the search for truth, philosophy has the great responsibility of forming thought and culture; and now it must strive resolutely to recover its original vocation." Pope John Paul II


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tilberian

tilberian wrote:
Transubstantiation is far-fetched because it violates dozens of natural principles that are observed to be uniform everywhere else, all the time. It is far-fetched because we have a better explaination from logic of what actually happens to the wine and cracker: nothing. It is far-fetched because we can observe that the doctrine and beliefs surrounding it are man-made and not the result of any process of discovery. It is far-fetched because millions of Christians in other sects and billions of people in other religions, all with equal claim to knowledge of God's will, do not believe in it. Finally it is far-fetched because its very truth rests on faith, which makes it non-falsifiable and indistinguishable from fantasy.

Indeed, it would appear far-fetched and fantastic.  The doctrines are divinely instituted, however, by none less than Jesus Christ Himself.  Therefore, I have no doubt as to its veracity. 

Tilberian wrote:
My recommendation: rather than being distressed at the idea that we are ultimately responsible for our actions and the moral consequences of them, why not take this realization as an opportunity to grow up, embrace our responsibility to ourselves and each other and get to work making the world a better place that actually makes sense?

My friend, I've been from Maine to Spain, from Boston to Austin, I've seen forty acres of sheep doin it on ten acres of land.  Don't presume to lecture me about growing up, please.  I would never condescend to you in such a manner.

I believe that, despite our differences, we can quite easily put those differences aside and indeed work making the world a better place, otherwise, I wouldn't be in this discussion. 

tilberian wrote:
LOL. I, on the other hand, have a three-foot medieval longsword mounted over my desk. Though many people have noted that I shouldn't be trusted with that for many other reasons. 

Awesome.  I love edged weapons.  Unfortunately, I have three teenaged boys around, and dread the thought of what would happen if a had such a blade hanging on my wall.

tilberian wrote:
If it's not the worldly significance you worry about, then you should be happy to admit that God's existance as a natural entity is moot, and that our worldly deliberations about wordly things should not be informed by God or our beliefs concerning him. Basically what I'm saying is, if God is about the spiritual, keep him in your hearts and homes and churches, but leave the rest of us alone. As long as that is the case (and it was for many decades until the abortion debate broke out) neither I nor most other atheists will consider you a threat at all.

You posted earlier, I think, that belief informs action.  How then can I separate my action in this world from my beliefs when I am to be held accountable for those actions in the next? 

Why is it that the same folks who howl over the supposed blood-thirstiness of the Church berate the Church for its defense of the most helpless of humanity (ie, the unborn)?

Why is it that those who accuse the Church (unjustly) of its silence over the Holocaust, rage when the Church raises her voice against an outrage that puts the Holocaust to shame?

Right now, I gotta run for a bit.  I hope to be able to respond to the rest of your points in this thread this afternoon.  I'm really enjoying the discussion, by the way.      

   

"With its enduring appeal to the search for truth, philosophy has the great responsibility of forming thought and culture; and now it must strive resolutely to recover its original vocation." Pope John Paul II


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jcgadfly wrote: I

jcgadfly wrote:
I understand now. You think we're born with a need for God.

There ya go!

jcgadfly wrote:
If man had an innate desire to pray, why does no one know how from the beginning? Why did the disciples ask Jesus, "Teach us to pray" if they already knew how?

Ultimately, prayer is communion with God.  It is the way by which believers seek to be in the presence of God.  It is exactly this quality the disciples witness in the prayer of Jesus Christ.  They see that quality of perfect contemplation in the prayer of Jesus, his entry into perfect oneness with the Father, something they've never witnessed before, something they want to be able to experience themselves.   These men are all devout Jews, they know the methods of prayer common to their religion, they participate in those prayers, but they want more.  They desire the ultimate in prayer, that level of prayer Jesus attains, oneness with God. 

jcgadfly wrote:
If we were all born seeking god, why are kids not bothered by it until parents and churchmen give them threats and fear?

I probably should have addressed these points in reverse order.  Chronologically, they would have meshed much better.

Adam, into whom God breathed a living soul, became a living being.  Adam lived, physically, spiritually in perfect communion with God.  This continued until Eve, then Adam fell prey to the notion that they could be like gods themselves (sound familiar...hmmm).  By sinning against God, they placed a barrier between God and themselves.  Man's image of God became imperfect and provisional, this continued until the time of Abraham, the father of all the faithful who once again turned to the One God.  But still, religions other than those based upon the One God flourished in the interim as man sought to re-establish his bond with God, however imperfect man's concept of  deity was.

That sinfulness still stands as a barrier today.  We are still prone to the sin of wanting to be like unto gods.         

  

"With its enduring appeal to the search for truth, philosophy has the great responsibility of forming thought and culture; and now it must strive resolutely to recover its original vocation." Pope John Paul II


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MattShizzle wrote: Exactly

MattShizzle wrote:
Exactly - we know for a fact that other people exist. No evidence God exists. And before you bring it up, no it isn't faith that we know the sun will come up, or a chair will hold us - this is based on experience.

Please don't place words into my mouth by assuming what my arguments will be before I post them.  This is presumptuous, rude and borders on (eek) superstition. 

"With its enduring appeal to the search for truth, philosophy has the great responsibility of forming thought and culture; and now it must strive resolutely to recover its original vocation." Pope John Paul II