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ficino last won the day on April 18 2015

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About ficino

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  • Birthday February 26

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    New York, NY
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    literature, philosophy
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    ancient texts

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  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?

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  1. ficino

    Feeling sucked back into Christianity

    Hey ExPCA, I haven't read Peterson, but I did get a strong dose of presuppositional apologetics when I was in seminary. As far as I can tell, it's an attempt to take Christianity out of the realm of what can be falsified. But that manoeuvre reduces Christianity's system to a system of pseudo-questions. Like Florduh, I would wonder whether you think that the propositions put forward by Christianity are true. If so, do they have a solid basis? if you incline to think maybe they're not true, or maybe only some of them but not the system, then will church etc. provide something solid?
  2. ficino

    I’m now one of you

    Wow, Jace, what a huge life change. Did you ever think of the words, "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free," as you found yourself heading out of the religion? I respect your resolve to aim toward truth - even if perhaps you wouldn't claim now to know the truth, it's a mark of character that you are not compromising with a system that pretty clearly is false and far too often, outright destructive. I hope to see you more on here. I have no words of wisdom about marriages in which one of two believers no longer is a believer. I know of some such marriages that seemed fraught after the change but regained equilibrium as the two people reaffirmed their love and partnership day to day. Hugs, ficino
  3. I loved a cigar each evening. But when my lover had a mini-stroke and had to stop things like smoking, I did too. Somehow, never looked back. I still like my three glasses of wine an evening, though - and sometimes a bit more.
  4. ficino

    Anyone else hate going to sleep?

    hey. As to your phone, can you just tell yourself - and the world - "I do not accept calls or texts between the hours of x and y"? And, I don't mean this to be flippant - do you have a cat or dog? There is nothing like a feline friend nestling in some crook of your body, purring. In some ways, better than a human as a bed partner for actual sleeping!!
  5. ficino

    How can I answer this Christian?

    SB , Jonathan Pearce has pulled together a lot of information about why non-fundy archaeologists are pretty much agreed that the entire Exodus story is myth. If that's myth, the Covenant of the Torah is myth. And then there is no "old covenant" of which the "new covenant" is the new covenant. All the NT assumptions of a historical Exodus are pretty clearly mistakes of myth/legend for history. Johno has also pulled together a lot of info about problems with the Easter accounts in the gospels: this post is a summary but it has links to earlier posts in his series on Easter:
  6. ficino

    How can I answer this Christian?

    Hello SerenelyBlue, lots of good stuff posted on here by others, so I'll just add a few thoughts. 1. Your interlocutor uses the gospels and Acts as though they are historical sources. But that is precisely one of the questions at hand. From what I've seen, an increasing number of non-evangelical biblical scholars are dating Acts to the earlier second century, and after Josephus (it gets some stuff from Josephus' Antiquities wrong). We do not know as fact anything about the apostles' actions in the 30s A.D. We also don't know as fact about their supposed martyrdoms. Their martyrdoms are themselves less securely attested even than the gospel stories. So we don't know that the apostles ever had the chance to decide whether or not to die for what they knew was a lie. That whole argument rests on later tradition about martyrdoms. 2. Josephus' Antiquities, in which are found the two references to Jesus, are from the 90s, not 75. 3. The argument about the women is very poor because it rests on assumptions that we have no reason to apply to the author of Mark, generally taken to be the first gospel. Mark throughout has women at the center of Jesus' travels and ministry. In part that's consistent with Mark's continual "the last shall be first, and the first, last" theme. It is absolutely consistent with Mark that women should be the ones at the tomb first. The disciples are continually portrayed as lacking understanding in Mark. Then, there is a parallel with the myth of Dionysius, which comes up in Euripides' Bacchae. There are a number of fascinating parallels between the Bacchae and the early Christian stories. I don't make much of this, because it's obviously speculative, but I note that Dionysius in the play is followed by a company of female devotees. Anyway, the Criterion of Embarrassment and the women at the tomb is not a proof of historicity because we have no reason to think the author of Mark thought the point an embarrassment for the gospel tale.
  7. ficino

    Iron Horse-Michael C.

    I am very sorry to hear this, Adam. My sincerest condolences to you and your family.
  8. Hello SeniorCitizen, yours is an interesting suggestion. Off the top of my head, I don't see it as a strong one, though. 1. it requires that the scribe also made an error of copying or of hearing the definite article that introduces the noun in question. τέκνον, child, is neuter, but τέκτων carpenter, is masculine. The article in the ms. tradition is the masculine form of "the." If you start to say or write "ho..." in Greek, the other person expects some masculine form to follow, not a neuter form. THAT would call for the phrase to be introduced by the Greek form "to," which is the neuter article. 2. what independent grounds do we have for thinking that the townspeople had not seen Jesus since he was a boy? Since it relies on two otherwise unsupported assumptions, the suggestion you make does not carry a high probability of being correct, as far as I can see. You doubtless have seen, FWIW, that some early mss. have "is not this the son of the carpenter"...
  9. ficino

    A letter to my parents

    Yes. Jesus in the gospels is represented as saying he will set members of families against each other.
  10. This verse didn't open my eyes at first, but it stands out now: Deuteronomy 22 23"If there is a girl who is a virgin engaged to a man, and another man finds her in the city and lies with her, 24then you shall bring them both out to the gate of that city and you shall stone them to death; the girl, because she did not cry out in the city,and the man, because he has violated his neighbor's wife. Thus you shall purge the evil from among you. Can one be sure that the virgin did not cry out? Or that she was able to cry out? Why is the man's sin defined in relation to the fiance and not his rape of the girl? Why is the notion of purging bloodguilt from the community through execution a notion that an omni-God is declaring? So much wrong with this. It is understandable as a human construction, set down by humans long ago. Taken as truth from an omni-God it is really messed up. Sarah Rocksdale talks about how this verse springboarded her step out of Christianity (a long video but worth it):
  11. I have read that something like 2/3 of all fertilized human ova fail to issue in successful pregnancies. Something like half of zygotes never implant themselves in the womb. Others are spontaneously aborted later. But at least acc to the anti-abortion crowd, each fertilized ovum is already a human being. Lots of little souls. Where do they go? Big problems for theology.
  12. ficino

    A letter to my parents

    Very well spoken. Big hugs, F
  13. ficino

    Believers' testimonies

    Hi Lost, there is a lot of good advice above. People in my family appeal to miracles that they say led them to Christ. On analysis, those supposed miracles boil down to coincidences or things that are "in their head." None of the supposed miracles stands up. Confirmation bias is big with these relatives, sigh.
  14. The Christian gal says she both knows and believes that there is a God. If she knows, it's analytic that she also believes, so the "and believe" part does no work. But then, when asked for proof, she only offers Bible verses and the way she was raised. I wish the questioner had reminded her that she had said that she "knows" that God exists and had connected his request for proof explicitly to her earlier knowledge claim. She doesn't seem to have any idea that we normally suppose that knowledge is justified true belief, or the like. So instead of offering a justification that her cognitive state is knowledge, she merely says she's uncomfortable and then walks away. I hope this starts her thinking. It looks as though the video was filmed on a college campus. What DO they teach anymore?
  15. Ironhorse garners respect solely from his longevity on this board. I cannot think of any time when Ironhorse has posted content of any significance. Ironhorse, BAA posed questions to you, which you never answered. Now he is not here to stand up for truth. The rest of us must do what we can. Do you believe God will submit Mark to an eternity of torment, because Mark went with what in his best judgment he understood to be true? We are all in the same boat. We only have our limited human perspectives, and our human compassion, when we can manage it, for each other. Ideologies like Christianity have done much to submerge that compassion beneath programs.