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Showing content with the highest reputation on 03/23/2020 in all areas

  1. 6 points
    In a sense, my motorcycle is magic. When I ride it, I feel 50 years younger!
  2. 5 points
    The well dressed man entered the chemist shop. He paused to scan the shelves packed with boxes and bottles. With a sigh, he made his way to the counter. "Good morning sir. How can I help you today?" said the pharmacist, dressed in his customary white lab coat, the white on black name tag proudly announcing his name as John. "Yes, good morning. I've left the doctors office where I was told I have the flu. When I asked the doctor what I should take he said 'there is nothing for it, anything I give you would be no better than a placebo', so hence I'm here to buy a placebo." "Err, you do realise a placebo is simply an ineffective product that you put your faith in?" "Absolutely, what do you have that has no benefit?" "But surely knowing that the product is not helping would invalidate the effect?" "Nonsense, I have complete faith in the placebo effect, so please point me to your most useless item." "Okay, umm... Well, these herbal remedies are unproven junk. A few roots and berries with no reason to believe they do anything at all. Very popular with people wanting a placebo." "Hmm, that's good but it feels like it still leaves the door open for some herb to actually be beneficial. Do you have anything that removes all doubt?" The pharmacist scratched his head, eyes sweeping the stacked shelves. "Ah, I have just the thing. Essential oils! These things smell nice, but people take the air freshener idea to believe it cures all sorts of things." "Any science or suggested method for it to work?" "The science says it doesn't work. The only suggestions I can remember were either reminding you of pleasant smells from the past, or perhaps some endorphin release." "Well, it still sounds like it has an effect and I was really hoping for something that does absolutely nothing." The pharmacist was at his wits end. How could he possibly find something so completely benign that it has zero effects? Any chemical, no matter how inert, would do something... Perhaps something non-chemical? Then inspiration hit him. "Have you tried prayer?" "No, what is it?" "Well, you talk to yourself, imagining some invisible and silent super being is listening and you ask that imaginary character to aid you." "Does it matter what name I use or what my imaginary character looks like?" "No, not at all. Its equally ineffective regardless of what super being you think of." "And absolutely no science or suggestions on how it could work?" "Quite the opposite. All research shows its useless and the only suggestion is pure placebo." "Perfect, I'll be feeling better in no time."
  3. 2 points
    If the god of the KJV were real then would I need the KJV? The god would present itself and I would think it could better than to point at the KJV and disappear but maybe not? Nonetheless, if a god appears, and it can be shown that whatever appears is a capital-G God, then I would probably be an idiot for not obeying it *if* it demanded such a thing. I can't imagine why any sort of god would want this from us though. It's like wanting something on the scale of bacteria, or far smaller than that really, engaging in any sort of meaningful relationship with any of us. The whole concept is stupid on the face of it as far as I'm concerned. mwc
  4. 2 points
    Then I guess it's a matter of seeing how effective it is and whether or not the strategy will work. If it does work, and whether or not that would be coincidence or not, if some cult goes down I'll count it as a win / win for the sake of humanity regardless.
  5. 1 point
    It's intellectually honest to acknowledge the human capacity for spirituality AND the phenomena that cannot be measured with the empirical senses. I find it fascinating that people seem to have these "spiritual experiences" with other people. The brain lights up similarly at church or at a football game.
  6. 1 point
    That's one of the reasons instead of anti-theistic views I started searching for spirituality. I want to find a faith like what Christianity was at the beginning before it was corrupted
  7. 1 point
    I honestly did know this off the top of my head... Because Venus orbits between the Earth and the Sun, we see phases, just like we see phases of the Moon. When Venus is on the same side of the Sun as the Earth, its day side is mostly facing away from us, so we only see a crescent Venus, or maybe a quarter-phase. When Venus is in the furthest part of its orbit from us, it's on the other side of the Sun, so we see its sunlit side, a "full Venus". Venus is very reflective because it is completely covered in clouds. So a distant "full" Venus is brighter than a nearby "crescent" Venus.
  8. 1 point
    "Well off" is a relative term, but off the top of my head I haven't noticed a difference. I was going to argue that abuse and control FAR predate Christianity (and other religions) and the writers simply used the ages old mechanisms to their advantage. They didn't "invent" it. Remember that humans created religion. Another observation about the influences that effect people as they grow up. I have seen hundreds of cases where people attended cult like churches, and I argue that influential family members have the greatest effect on children. Children who attend these churches, but have at least one adult family member who is half way rational, usually come out of the situation okay. It is the children of totally brainwashed and irrational adults, with no rational example to follow, that suffer the most. In other words, the family carries the biggest influence. The church is a tool used to perpetuate the problem. Edit: I feel sorry for children who live in isolation from regular society, and are home schooled. Several decades ago I attended a workshop on the moral development of mankind, and remembered a comment the researcher made. He said that children need at least one positive role model in life, even if it is someone in extended family, or a teacher at school, that has paid attention to them, accepted them for who they were, and encouraged them. They will likely have struggles in life, but are the ones who seem to have the ability to pull through. And that has been my observation. The lesson here. Be kind to children.
  9. 1 point
    Children that behave like girls, when they are boys behave this way because of a genetical trait. A true and good God, regardless of any religion, will not kill old straight people as to blame homosexuals. I don't believe science will seriously look in this (homosexuality). Before birth, the sex part becomes male or female after some time. But viruses are milion years old, so God kill trough viruses in a 7000 year old planet (which is not) doesen't make any sense. And we are not made in a God image, as God should be homosexal too.
  10. 1 point
    Oh cool. I've read that having your own homemade stuff is 'better' in certain ways than store bought, but mine always looks like crap. lol Thanks for the info on the pentacle. I have a stick that 'called out' to me... at least more than the other sticks in the area so I wrapped some suede fringe around it for a handle and then threw it in my box of magic stuff. I really ought to get off the computer and go out and commune with nature a bit. Maybe draw some sigils in the dirt, make rocks into sigil shapes (I'm very sigil oriented). I found a nice metal cup at a 2nd hand store....2nd hand stores seem great for picking up neato stuff. I wouldnt mind having some large runes or some large tiles, or lettered tiles for spellcraft. Hope you get that wand made. Take care.
  11. 1 point
    In my collection I have a lovely dagger that I acquired at a hunting/fishing store, of all places -- no modifications required. Over the years, though, most of my magical stuff has been homemade. A good way to make things like pentacles is to get a craft knife and some masking tape, and stencil a design onto a ready-made disk of wood from a craft store. The layout is geometrical rather than free-hand art (72° between points of the star = 360°), so that's one of the easier things to make. Still procrastinating on a wand that I've wanted to make out of a piece of ebony I bought over 20 years ago...
  12. 1 point
    Religions change from within, if they change at all. A focus that's too narrow sees very little.
  13. 1 point
    Hello Disillusioned and Josh. I've just found something of interest and thought I'd let you guys know, asap. As you know I've been able to show that Roger Penrose has changed his mind about Singularity theory and has embraced the discovery of a positive cosmological constant. Today I was looking through a listing of Stephen Hawking's science papers... http://www.hawking.org.uk/publications.html ...and found this. https://arxiv.org/pdf/hep-th/9803156.pdf Open Inflation, the Four Form and the Cosmological Constant. I haven't had a chance to look through it carefully yet, but a quick once over tells me that it could be very interesting indeed. This paper was first published in April 1998, just before the discovery of a positive cosmological constant was announced, but is shown in its revised, 2008 form. Anyway, if things pan out I might be able to demonstrate that both Penrose and Hawking changed their thinking about the initial singularity. This would mean that they both discarded their 1970 paper, The Singularities of Gravitational Collapse and Cosmology. https://royalsocietypublishing.org/doi/pdf/10.1098/rspa.1970.0021 If this is so, then WLC hasn't a leg to stand on. He'd be relying on a theory that has been refuted by evidence and rejected by its authors. I'll get back to this thread when I've completed a proper read-through. Thank you. Walter.
  14. 1 point
    Ain't that the truth! I mentioned the biblical authors previously. What I see are a lot of narcissist's attracted to the writings of the bronze age era narcissist's who wrote these verses. They paint an image of a supernatural god who's narcissistic, framed in THEIR own likeness. Then modern narcissistic personalities tend to model their own actions after this bronze age concept presented by the narcissistic priests and scribes. Where just like in the stories, where the gods narcissistic behavior is always justified by the writers, these modern people tend to find self justification for their own narcissism in similar ways. The end justifies the means and so on. They feel self righteous and god sanctioned as they beat religion into children....
  15. 1 point
    About Hell. Isuggest a new book by Illaria Ramelli a church historian and a book by orthodox christian scholar david bentley hart on universalism, that all shall be saved. They argue that, actually, a huge chunk of early christians, including ascetics believed in universal salvation but that view staryed to be marginalized later, second half of the 5th century and onward altough can be found even later like issac the syrian 7th century so it never really completely died out but usualy went underground. Both this authors have interviews free online about the subject. I say this so you may know the variety of views of eschatology of the early christian churches, and I say churches because it was way more diverse in theology and practice than we sometimes think.
  16. 1 point
    BINGO! Might I suggest (oh yes I am soooooooooooooooooooo enlightened and wise ) formulating a sort of creed or set of rules for living. Call it a policy if you like. Come up with your own but, for example... Don't screw with people - always be honest. Ignore abusive jerks. Love those who love you back and ignore (cut off) those who don't. Live your own life and live it for you - not for some jackasstical ass-hat telling you how to live. (See what I did there?) Make a consorted effort to help and encouraged those who really appreciate it and are not just holding their hand out because they can. I could go on but you get the idea.
  17. 1 point
    If it be possible, let this cup pass from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but thine, be done.
  18. 1 point
    Taking the Lord’s Supper could be like playing Russian Roulette, especially for those 1 cup groups. Everyone drinking from the same cup. They will definitely need a lot of prayer.
  19. 1 point
    Well, ya see, I have noticed that some of these people who stay in church don't even really believe the dogma anymore. They just don't want to leave their church for purely social reasons. I've talked with a few individuals in that sort of situation. Once the older folk (these people's parents) die off, I think that we will see more of a true mass break/ exodus from established religion.
  20. 1 point
    Very true. People tend to believe what they want to believe, and tune out the rest. And too often in the world critical thinking is not encouraged.
  21. 1 point
    I think that the patriarchy aspect is pretty much built-in to the religion. That being said, there are plenty of people who self-identify as christians who simply do not take the harsh aspects of their faith that seriously, and instead emphasize more egalitarian qualities. My personal preference is just to relinquish Christianity altogether, but, hey! Different strokes fer different folks.
  22. 1 point
    My personal belief is that god is not pleased with the fundagelicals embracing Donald Trump, so he has sent a plague.
  23. 1 point
    There are several large mega churches in my area. I've just scanned their websites, you wouldn't know there is a pandemic. Absolutely nothing on their sites about addressing issues associated with it. No effort to address concerns, they apparently don't have any. I assume they will all be there this Sunday swaying their unwashed hands in the air, breathing on each other while gibbering in strange tongues. If these morons just infect one another I wouldn't care but that's not how this works.
  24. 1 point
    Maybe people become whatever they want to become or practice whatever they want to practice and then others stick a label to it?
  25. 1 point
    As a behavioral and social scientist I have mulled over this concept for years. Here is where I am at this time in my life. The words attributed to Jesus, "love your neighbor as yourself", (a.k.a. the Golden Rule, predating him by centuries) is a valid "truth", or philosophy, recognized by ancient thinkers, that is the "salvation" of humanity. Salvation, meaning the maximizing of human wellbeing, not a home in an afterlife. It is found through a balance of concern for self and others. Loving (taking care of) self, and doing what we can to help others do the same. A concern about WE. Not just ME. When we lose that balance, we have problems. Yes, there are times when it comes down to survival of self, but we are social creatures and need each other. We need that balance. For me, that is a valid "spirituality" for today. Comments?

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