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Let’s Have a Dialog—ie., a Conversation, not a debate—About the god-hypothesis
Posted: 07 May 2012 11:16 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 136 ]
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No, I believe it’s not true.  That teacher has demonstrated his/her bias (probably theistic).  As I see it, mind is just the word that describes the programming of our brains.  I’m not sure of what your meanings for the terms: soma, psyche and pneuma are.  Could you give your definition for each so I can understand what you see as their functions are and where they fit in the concepts of human thought and structure?

Occam

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Posted: 07 May 2012 11:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 137 ]
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RevLGKing - 07 May 2012 11:00 AM

As a unitheist-panentheist I prefer to think in terms of the holistic integration of soma, psyche and pneuma.

Let me translate this for those of you who are not sophisticated enough to understand ancient Greek: “As a very confused person I believe in stuff I make up.”

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Posted: 07 May 2012 11:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 138 ]
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I’m so happy we have multilingual members on this forum.  Thanks, George.  LOL

[BTW, I agree strongly with your comment.]

Occam

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Posted: 07 May 2012 11:35 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 139 ]
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Occam. - 07 May 2012 11:27 AM

I’m so happy we have multilingual members on this forum.  Thanks, George.  LOL

[BTW, I agree strongly with your comment.]

Occam

Παρακαλώ. (You’re welcome.)  grin

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Posted: 07 May 2012 11:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 140 ]
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RevLGKing - 07 May 2012 11:00 AM
TimB - 07 May 2012 08:53 AM

... The term “mind”, though ubiquitous in our language, I think, is a misleading abstraction, in that it leads to the dualistic inference that something we refer to as “mind” exists independent of our physiological selves and our correlated behavioral patterns and repertoire. The same can be said of the terms “spirit” and “soul”.

Is it true what I once heard a teacher say: ” A behaviourist is one who has made up his voice-box that he has no mind.” ?  smile  Me? As a unitheist-panentheist I prefer to think in terms of the holistic integration of soma, psyche and pneuma. For me, they are not independent objects.

Ooo eee ooo ah ah, ting tang, walla walla bing bang.

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Posted: 07 May 2012 02:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 141 ]
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What bothers me is the assumption that there is something special (godlike) in our ability to communicate with the universe.
But if we look around, we find organisms that have and use these abilities without a second thought.  Are they godlike?
Where we have to build gadgets to measure or aid our 5 senses, animals in nature can be found which put our abilities to shame. In addition to vision, hearing, smelling, taste, touch,  there are many animals which employ sonar, radar, electric fields, short wave, long wave communication, barometric pressures, the list goes on.

It seems to me that to a theist, it is these animals which should be recognized as having godlike qualities. Man is but a poor imitation, who has to build gadgets to make up for his inadequacies.

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Posted: 07 May 2012 04:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 142 ]
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dougsmith - 13 February 2012 04:50 PM

I’m not sure how to have a dialogue about God without it becoming a debate, because many of us here (myself included) do not believe that God exists. We believe that God is simply a human construct or idea.

There are other notions of god (I say a lower case ‘god’), such as Spinoza’s or Einstein’s, where god is not a person, cannot respond to prayer, and is of no religious importance. This god is roughly identical to the laws of nature. That’s fine for purposes of philosophy but it certainly isn’t the god that most religious folk believe they are speaking to at night.

Perhaps I’m not the person you’re looking to chat with. If so, so be it. But your OP has me confused.

I agree.  I tell people that I’m not an atheist because I believe much like Spinoza did but to have a discussion,not a debate on the issue, is virtually impossible.

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Posted: 07 May 2012 06:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 143 ]
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At least improbable.  However, I recall when I was in my twenties (close to 60 years ago) I was open about my atheism, so some lab co-workers decided to have fun and play “let’s watch them fight” and introduced me to a guy about my age who worked in the specification section (non-scientist) who was a fundamentalist.  We felt each other out, and soon realized that although we had opposite beliefs we both based them on faith since we agreed that there was no absolute proof on either side.  The other guys got bored and left, but he and I spent quite a few lunch hours discussing our views and helping each other understand the basis for the other’s ideas.  They were great discussions, not debates, because neither of us had to defend our positions.

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Posted: 07 May 2012 09:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 144 ]
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Occam. - 07 May 2012 11:16 AM

... I’m not sure of what your meanings for the terms: soma, psyche and pneuma are.  Could you give your definition for each so I can understand what you see as their functions are and where they fit in the concepts of human thought and structure? Occam

Occam, thanks for your very important question. I will start by defining how I use the term, pneuma, which like the words, soma and psyche are in World Book Dictionary and also in Wikepedia—and, in my opinion, well defined.

PNEUMA. It is the Greek translation of the Hebrew word, ruach, the Arabic is ruh—meaning air, wind, and breath. The Latin word is spiritus—with the same meaning—from which we get our English word, spirit and words like inspire, expire, conspire. From the Greek, pneuma we also get the words pneumatic—air operated, and pneumonia—disease of the lungs—and, of course, pneumatology—the study of all things spiritual.

Keep in mind that to the minds of our ancient ancestors—and to most of our not so ancient ones—air was not a material thing, it was a thing of great mystery. It was the dwelling place of the gods—the mono-god and devil came later—and the demons, especially in the night time. They had no idea that what we call air was made up of chemicals we now call oxygen, nitrogen and other invisible particles and gasses. I read in a history of medicine that the ancients had no idea of the nature and function of lungs. For example, they, believed that each breath went directly into the heart and from there was distributed, mysteriously, to the psyche, located in the head, and to the rest of the physical body, soma.

This is why the Egyptians, in the process of embalming, threw away the brains, because, like the body fluids, they rotted quickly and were not easy to preserve. Aristotle wrote that brains were used by the soma simply as a lubricant.. However, it was with great care, that they preserved the somatic heart, because they believed that it alone was the seat of the holy spirit, the soul, the mind and the will—the source of willpower.

This is why, last Christmas, I was so happy when my grandchildren—two of them now well on their way in university—gave me a book that they had heard me talk about after I had heard it reviewed in the media.

The book is, WILLPOWER—Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength, by professor Roy F. Baumeister—social psychologist at Florida State University. He was helped to get this important book to a world in dire need of what it has to say by the writer and science columnist, John Tierney, of the New York Times. In my opinion, This book is filled with PNEUMATOLOGICAL significance.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/04/books/review/willpower-by-roy-f-baumeister-and-john-tierney-book-review.html?pagewanted=all

Both make the following quite clear:

If we want to have—And who doesn’t?
1. a close-knit family check out http://www.flfcanada.com  (The Family Life Foundation, a charity I helped start in 1973)
2. a good career
3. good health and
4. the freedom to pursue our passions,
the first thing we have to learn is how to harness self-control—what I call the pneuma (self) factor.

If Baumeister’s thesis, that willpower is science-based, is right—and I feel that it is—here are just a few questions I have been asking all my life:

1. Is self-control a knowledge-based science? Or
2. are we the simply the accidental victims of our DNA and our ecology—heredity and environment?
3. If it is a science, what is the next step?
_________________________
G~0~D—note the Tildes ~ includes all Good/Order/Desire
For more on this also checkout   http://www.lindsayking.ca

[ Edited: 07 May 2012 09:51 PM by RevLGKing ]
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Posted: 07 May 2012 11:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 145 ]
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I was aware of the derivations of those word parts, and also how they are used in common words, however, I cannot accept a discussion in which you use meanings which involve the supernatural since I see that as not existing, therefore, not meaninful.

Occam

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Posted: 08 May 2012 07:07 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 146 ]
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RevLGKing - 07 May 2012 09:42 PM

PNEUMA. It is the Greek translation of the Hebrew word, ruach, the Arabic is ruh—meaning air, wind, and breath. The Latin word is spiritus—with the same meaning—from which we get our English word, spirit and words like inspire, expire, conspire. From the Greek, pneuma we also get the words pneumatic—air operated, and pneumonia—disease of the lungs—and, of course, pneumatology—the study of all things spiritual.

Keep in mind that to the minds of our ancient ancestors—and to most of our not so ancient ones—air was not a material thing, it was a thing of great mystery. It was the dwelling place of the gods—the mono-god and devil came later—and the demons, especially in the night time. They had no idea that what we call air was made up of chemicals we now call oxygen, nitrogen and other invisible particles and gasses. I read in a history of medicine that the ancients had no idea of the nature and function of lungs. For example, they, believed that each breath went directly into the heart and from there was distributed, mysteriously, to the psyche, located in the head, and to the rest of the physical body, soma.

Exactly, so using ideas and semantics from pre-scientific culture is not theology.

It is religious anthropology.

But I do find it curious that you did not bring up reincarnation before I did if you read Stevenson in the 60s.  I didn’t encounter him until the 90s.

psik

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Posted: 08 May 2012 07:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 147 ]
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Write4U - 07 May 2012 02:27 PM

What bothers me is the assumption that there is something special (godlike) in our ability to communicate with the universe.
But if we look around, we find organisms that have and use these abilities without a second thought.  Are they godlike?
Where we have to build gadgets to measure or aid our 5 senses, animals in nature can be found which put our abilities to shame. In addition to vision, hearing, smelling, taste, touch,  there are many animals which employ sonar, radar, electric fields, short wave, long wave communication, barometric pressures, the list goes on.

It seems to me that to a theist, it is these animals which should be recognized as having godlike qualities. Man is but a poor imitation, who has to build gadgets to make up for his inadequacies.

I catch your drift, Write. A lot of poeple, not just thiests, tend to equate an impulse driven life with purity and good livng. What they fail to understand is that human civilization is founded on the artificial notion of prudence, which entails the repression and curtailment of our impulsive nature.

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Posted: 08 May 2012 08:37 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 148 ]
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RevKing:

PNEUMA. It is the Greek translation of the Hebrew word, ruach, the Arabic is ruh—meaning air, wind, and breath. The Latin word is spiritus—with the same meaning—from which we get our English word, spirit and words like inspire, expire, conspire. From the Greek, pneuma we also get the words pneumatic—air operated, and pneumonia—disease of the lungs—and, of course, pneumatology—the study of all things spiritual.

? Do you mean the study of breathing? That could make some sense, I guess.  It’s when you call it “spiritual” which infers some supernatural entity that it seems to me that you lose touch with reality.

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Posted: 08 May 2012 03:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 149 ]
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psikeyhackr - 08 May 2012 07:07 AM

Exactly, so using ideas and semantics from pre-scientific culture is not theology. It is religious anthropology.

If you want to say more about this, I am all ears. Then I will better understand the point of your comment.

But I do find it curious that you did not bring up reincarnation before I did if you read Stevenson in the 60s.  I didn’t encounter him until the 90s.

psikeyhackr,  beginning in 1964, I started giving a series of lectures over a period of six weeks, in Toronto, under the general heading PNEUMATOLOGYthe study of things spiritual, plus. The “plus” included the integration of things spiritual—psychology, religion and healing (pneuma-psychosomatic), mental (psychosomatic) and physical (somatic) pain and suffering. Experts from a variety of the healing arts, including medicine, were often involved.

This series was offered (from 1964 to 1994—when I retired, and beyond) as part of my work as a minister, at no cost to church members in the two churches I served in the Toronto area. Media attention attracted people from near and far. This meant invitations to do it beyond Toronto, including the USA and England. Because of the non-sectarian philosophy of the series, people who were from a variety of religions, and from no religion, came. Meeting so many people was an enjoyable part of the ministry.

Each presentation I gave lasted for about two hours. They were held on a mid-week night and/or on a Sunday evening. For retired people and shift-workers, some of the sessions were given at a mid-week luncheon. Within each two hours, or more, there was a break period. This provided the opportunity for people to get to meet one another and come up with questions to be asked at the sessions. A number of other pneumatological programs—led by interested “graduates” of the course—started up. This was quite a relief to me, as it meant that I did not have to do all the work. It also freed me up so I could attend and listen to the message given by others.

YOU ASKED ABOUT REINCARNATION
Reincarnation? I write about it in other forums. Whenever I speak about it, I, jokingly, use the following comic routine:

“My older-brother and I are identical twins. He was born a few minutes before I was. Does this mean that I am a reincarnation of him? When I ask him,  if he believes in reincarnation, he—being the gullible type—he usually responds: I have believed in reincarnation ever since I was a little frog. Being the skeptical type, I respond: I did not believe in reincarnation when I was here the last time, either. smile

But seriously, I believe in keeping an open mind on anything about which I make no claims to being infallible.

[ Edited: 08 May 2012 03:59 PM by RevLGKing ]
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Posted: 09 May 2012 01:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 150 ]
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Rev, do you believe that any organism that breathes has a “spirit”?

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