Thursday, September 24, 2009
Neil shows me some luv!
As GKS said, Neil did do me a service. I do stand by everything I said over there, and I do assert that Neil is so full of himself I fail to see how there is much room for Christ, which is why I don't there's much, but just enough.
You know, by-the-skin-of-the-teeth type stuff.
1. Over there, I wrote:
Neil, I cannot WAIT to be “there” when we all get in. I will expect you to turn, take your blessed assurance with both hands and march out on principle, When you’re drawn back despite your SELF, then I’ll hug yer neck and let bygones be bygones.
That is, if God lets you “in” with you lugging your false gods behind you — I mean, of course, your Bible and your utterly false comprehension of it.
2. Then Neil wrote:
ER, since this post was dedicated to false teachers like you I figured I’d let you have one comment. But as much as I would relish a hug from you, your comment just piles gibberish on top of gibberish. I love when false teachers tell me I have an utterly false comprehension of a book they delight in attacking the authority of.
I do appreciate your clarity, along with Geoffrey’s, that we have different religions. Mine is Christianity.
3. Then I wrote:
As long as Neil plays the god by displaying only the commnets of mine that he wants, and as long as he can't be trusted to display as he gets them, without editing, well, I don't plan to engage anything here very seriously. Neil has made his site a joke. I'll treat it as such.
One sincere point: The question is not literal versus nonliteral, when it comes to how to view Scripture; the question is, Are we to take it at face value, as if it were all written to us, and for us, right here and right now, or shouldn't we, rather, consider who wrote, and redacted, and rewrote, and recast, each section, who did it, as best as can be determined, to whom were the writings actually addressed, and for what purpose?
Obviously, the worst thing anyone can do with such a varied trove of writings, interpretations and theologies, is take them at face value as they were written to US, NOW, in 2009. Because they weren't, and no amount of hocus-pocus will make it so.
LOL< the funny thing is, I promise: I take the Scriptures more seriously than you do, Neil.
Religious truth is self contained, and probably sits somewhere between the truth of the asthetic and legal paradigms. For you seminary snobs, I limned the latter from John Wisdom's "Other Minds" (I think it's right between my "Complete Adventures of Tintin" and "Best of Penthouse Forum" on my bookshelf)
The orthodoxy tries to apply a definition of truth that has external validity. This is an incorrect approach, and is like arguing that the molecules that make up the pages and ink of the bible are truth. The first example (Self-refuting) sited in the initial statement of obvious contradiction regarding the impersonal God of Islam and the personal God of Christianity is debateable, at best, and probably bogus. Personal God in Christianity? The Old Testament has a body-count that reads like a Robocop sequel. Jehova's hands-on approach in the flood, Sodom and Gomorrah, Jericho, the Red Sea and in the Book of Job makes Allah look like Mr. Rogers. Not the warm and fuzzy "love thy enemies" personal God of the New Testament. While we're on contradictions, would anyone like to explain the external logical validity of a Trinity?
I generally view religion as analagous to language; just used in communication with that which is spiritual. It has internal rules (similar to grammar),a specific vocabulary, and helps to communicate and clarify our thoughts. It is by it's nature internally functional, often contradictory, and constantly changing.
Those who believe in the immutability of their scripture better figure out who is the only one allowed to discuss and write about it, because sharing any such ideas automatically changes the interpretation. These discussions, blogs, forums, sunday schools all go into the vast groupthink, which will invariably shape the interpretation and definition of the religious beliefs. (Sort of a religious observer effect.)
BTW, you used the word hocus-pocus. It is suggested that the term comes from early magicians using fake Latin, this one specifically a derivation of the transubstantiation of the Catholic mass: "hoc est corpus."
Shoot, the two very different Gods mentioned in the first two chapters of Genesis, in the two very different Creation stories, one God transcendant and unapproachable, the other God so personal as to breathe breath into Adam's nostrils -- well, you'd think people would get it right there.
I put a comment on that same thread as well as a blog post inviting him to make his point with reference to what I've actually written. In the process, I realized I write too much.
If he refuses, at least there will be proof he is an intellectual and moral fraud. On the other hand, if he takes up the challenge, it will be an interesting exercise in competing hermeneutics, no?
If he means "the orthodoxy" of conservative white American Christianity, I concede his point.
If he means historic orthodoxy of the kind that flowered in the third and fourth centuries, again in the West in the twelfth and thirteenth, and the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries in the East, in short, the kind theological (not bureaucratic) orthodoxy of historic Christianity, then he has mistaken things entirely.
It is, in fact, the case, that what he so nobly claims as his own view of "religion as analagous to language; just used in communication with that which is spiritual. It has internal rules (similar to grammar" is, in fact, stolen from orthodoxy proper.
For seminary snobs he offers a citation, but for these informed and subtle opinions he does not recognize for us how the elegance of viewing theology as - in traditional and orthodox terms - a grammer, a "Rule of Faith," a guideline toward the religious life, not a law of behavior, comes from deep in the heart of historic, sacramental, pre-Enlightenment tradition of the Christian faith.
Lex orandi, lex credendi. "The way, rule, law of how we pray" (the quality or "grammer" of our spiritual speech) "shapes the way we believe" (content follows intention/heart/love).
This is orthodoxy.
It should come, then, as no surprise that the most orthodox church native to the Anglo cultural tradition of rights-based law is also the one which first pressed full leadership rights for women in the church and has now pressed the fullest for full leadership and sacramental rights for gay and lesbian persons in the church.
This kind of orthodoxy is a scandal to the trustees of the leather bound, paper Truth.
This has become about as fun as pickin' on a special olympics kid.
Well, my dick didn't come with a handbook and it's pretty important to me.
And more holy to God than an iPhone.
You delete more than any blog I've ever seen. You should take a long hard look in the mirror.
As to the snobbish reference-- tongue obviously in cheek-- I do like the point by point approach of Wisdom's style.
As to the handbook (freakin' funny, btw), I beg to differ and offer you Genesis 38:8.
"Shoot, the two very different Gods mentioned in the first two chapters of Genesis, in the two very different Creation stories, one God transcendant and unapproachable, the other God so personal as to breathe breath into Adam's nostrils -- well,..."
What's the semianry explantion that there were two accounts included of the creation?
I think that'
s probably a higher-level class. We're just aknoledging that they exist at this point. I could talk about P and J and sources and such. But that just says what, not why. ...
Now that is really facinating.
"Why" is all I would be interested in. All your other W's would be there just to get me to the why. Indeed, if all I could learn about something excluded the why, then why bother?
Why would one God tell the same story two different ways at the very beginning of His book?
Why would a people write about the beginning of humanity's relationship with God in two distinct, even contradictory, ways? What are they saying about their God, who through the course of time is our God?
Re, "So let me ask it another way.
Why would one God tell the same story two different ways at the very beginning of His book?"
Come on. That's a Neil question.
Based on the written Egyptian records and recent archeology for the Hycos Kingdom that seems to show an intermixing of the Hebrew/Cananite/Phonician people in Lower Egypt for several hundred years, then being force out by war, and yet slaves of Hebrew extraction were still present afterwards, I would tend to favor actual people movements rather just cultural influence for the eventual combination of the two versions.
I have heard one version as being the Cannanite/Phonician version and the other as the Babylonian version as another possibility.
VICTOR H. MATTHEWS and DON C. BENJAMIN, "Old Testament Parallels: Laws and Stories from the Ancient Near East," 3d ed. (Paulist Press, 2006).