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walterpthefirst last won the day on September 24

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    armchair cosmologist

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

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  1. Update. A magnitude 5 earthquake has shaken La Palma today. https://www.volcanodiscovery.com/earthquake/news/145176/Significant-magnitude-50-quake-hits-14-km-southeast-of-Los-Llanos-de-Aridane-Spain-in-the-afternoon-.html Thank you. Walter.
  2. Ok, I've extrapolated a bit from the what this new technique can currently do, but if it can be successfully integrated into future planetary probes, then who knows? https://www.unibe.ch/news/media_news/media_relations_e/media_releases/2021/media_releases_2021/scientists_detect_signatures_of_life_remotely/index_eng.html https://www.aanda.org/component/article?access=doi&doi=10.1051/0004-6361/202140845 I can think of several locations where this technique could feasibly be used in our solar system. Venus Last year the gas phosphine was detected in the upper atmosphere of Venus. Currently there is no known non-biological source of this gas, so scientists are scratching their heads, wondering how any airborne living organisms could survive the acidity of the Venusian clouds. Phosphine could be a biomarker or there could be some unknown, exotic chemical reaction happening on Venus that is new to us. So, no life, but a weird series if reactions that seem to be mimicking the appearance of life. An orbiter equipped to scan for the polarized chiral signature of life would be an ideal tool to investigate this mystery. Mars There's another gaseous mystery on this planet too. The gas methane has been detected in small amounts in the Martian atmosphere, with its concentration waxing and waning over time. We currently understand that methane can be generated not just by living organisms but also by inorganic geological sources. So, which is it on Mars? Finding the chiral polarization signal generated by life would settle the issue. Conversely, not finding that signal would also be a useful result. If Mars turns out to be sterile, that's actually a plus for human colonization. No need for stringent decontamination procedures as a part of daily life. Europa, the second Galilean moon of Jupiter We know that there is a large subsurface ocean of liquid water several kilometres under the icy crust of Europa. Our space probes have passed through huge plumes of ice crystals jetting out of cracks in this crust. If there is life in the dark oceans of Europa, traces of it could be found in the plumes. Scanning by a chiral polarimeter could reveal the presence of life-bearing molecules in them. Enceladus, the second moon outside of Saturn's rings Chemical signatures consistent with hydrothermal vents have been discovered in the plumes coming from cracks in the icy surface of Enceladus. Deep under the oceans of Earth there are hydrothermal vents surrounded by rich ecosystems teeming with microbial life, plants, crustaceans and other weird and wonderful living things. So, could there be the same in the Saturnian system? Once again, scanners calibrated to find the chiral signature of living molecules would tell us. Thank you. Walter.
  3. 'Is it real?' and 'Is it true?' are the only questions worth asking in this life. They are both best answered with objective evidence, not subjective faith or personal opinion. Much as the RedNeckProfessor has recommended. In comparison, questions about the choice of hymn, the order of service or how to serve the communion host are just so much irrelevance. They answer nothing about truth and reality, they solve nothing and they lead us nowhere. My studied response to all such irrelevance is the same one that Tommy Lee Jones gave to Harrison Ford in the tunnel, under the dam.
  4. False. The order of service, communion, prayer, hymns and anything you can name that has to do with religion ultimately derives from subjective belief. The act of making a choice about any of the above does not translate any of them into objective facts. They remain the products of subjective beliefs until those beliefs can be supported by evidence. Then and only then does a subjective belief become an objective fact. That is why all of the above are acts of FAITH. When something is not supported by evidence you believe it by faith. When something is supported by evidence you do not need to believe it by faith. The subjective (chalk) is not the objective (cheese).
  5. Because there is nothing objective within the subjective beliefs of different denominations any compromise they come to does not involve objectivity. They are simply compromising over subjective matters of faith. So your assumption is incorrect. The objective and the subjective are categorically different. Chalk and cheese.
  6. Well, it matters to me and it seems to matter to those other members who are trying to puzzle out what you are trying to say. But if you don't want to cite what you claim the 'mandate crowd' are saying, then that's up to you. But why would you assume that objectivity would be involved in any compromise about subjective matters of faith? Objective matters require evidence and matters of faith are evidence free, remember? Chalk and cheese.
  7. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_whispers
  8. Because you seem to saying that the 'mandate crowd' has to prove something about a person's religious beliefs. The Covid vaccine mandate and religious exemption made me think of my conversations here at ExC. What I am understanding is the mandate crowd is basing religious exemption off of an objective standard....i.e. aborted fetal cells? I'm thinking an individual should be able to claim religious exemption with no objective stance necessary. Granted I haven't looked into the arguments at all, but this one hit me broadside and I thought to myself, I have to ask my buddies at ExC. Hope everyone is well. Here's an idea. Instead of us trying to guess what you mean, why don't you give us a link to where the 'mandate crowd' actually spell out what they mean? That way we could just read it and not have to guess what they mean from your understanding of it. (Hint.) Chinese whispers.
  9. Uh, no. Wrong and wrong again. If a person's religious beliefs are entirely subjective then, by definition, your claimed Christianity is also subjective. No other person can gain access to or prove anything about your subjective thoughts, Ed. Furthermore, does the U.S. Constitution require anyone to provide proof or objective evidence for their beliefs? Or does it guarantee them complete freedom of belief without any requirement for proof or objective evidence? https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/first_amendment Amendment I Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances. If the govt required you to prove or provide objective evidence for your beliefs then that would violate the first amendment. Under the constitution you are free to believe whatever you like, without any requirement to support that belief with proof or objective evidence. That's what faith is Ed, belief without proof or evidence.
  10. Aren't all religious beliefs subjective anyway? If so, then there is no objective stance for the religious to take. On anything. Let alone an exemption from vaccination.
  11. Yes, its the easier route to do that, sdelsolray. But quite often the people who come here in the process of deconversion cannot take the easier path of simply dismissing scripture in that way. Too often the bible has played too important a role in their lives for them to just 'switch off' its influence over them. It therefore falls to us to gently show them that this book does not even stand up on its own terms. Doing that means getting into the sandbox and using the very assumptions that they have held to for many years. To demonstrate that the bible contradicts itself, that god contradicts himself and that neither can be trusted. Hence my input into this thread. Thank you. Walter.
  12. Amen. Btw Professor, I don't recall exactly where he said it, but somewhere BAA wrote something like... 'to discover the true meaning of god's warning about death, Adam had to disobey him and find out the hard way.' If that isn't entrapment I don't know what is. Thank you. Walter.
  13. Hello Professor. Yes, I've seen you make this argument before, here in the Den. What should have happened, if god was being completely truthful and straight with Adam, is that on the day he ate the fruit of the forbidden tree, he should have died before sundown. But, as you've pointed out, he lived to be 930 years old and then died. Christian apologists use two different kinds of death as a get-out-of-jail card for god. Adam died spiritually on the day that he disobeyed god and then physically, some nine centuries later. God is therefore excused of lying to Adam's face. Everything ordained by god to happen, happened. But my argument removes any possibility of god being excused. I do that by using scripture itself. By using god's own words and his Word against him. Like this. 1. God gives Adam lordship over Eve. 2. Therefore, whatever curse god inflicted upon Adam was also inflicted upon Eve. 3. Genesis 3 : 20. Adam named his wife Eve, because she would become the mother of ALL the living. 4. Therefore, god's curse of physical death must apply to Enoch and Elijah, who were both descended from Adam and Eve. 5. But Enoch did not physically die and neither did Elijah, both being taken up into heaven ALIVE. 6. The curse of death upon ALL of the living somehow bypassed them. 7. Which means that something has to give. Either the bible is inaccurate and can't be trusted or the bible is accurate and god can't be trusted. My personal preference is for the latter. Let the Christians have their properly accurate holy book. One that accurately records god violating his own decrees. I.e., lying. Thank you. Walter.
  14. Here's a link that might appeal to you, Margee. https://www.youtube.com/c/GeologyHub Not just the disastrous stuff either. It's all fascinating. Enjoy! Thank you. Walter.
  15. Hello Dark Bishop. I think I can provide a decent answer to your question, 'Why has it taken Jesus so long to return?' My answer is simply this. Because God cannot be trusted to keep his word. All that is needed is just one instance of god breaking his own word to demonstrate that nothing he says can be trusted. This is the fatal weakness of anything that is declared to be perfect. Perfection isn't something that is infinitely strong and unbreakable. Perfection is actually incredibly weak. Just one flaw and the whole façade comes crashing down. This is not a slippery slope or a grey zone. It is black and white. All or nothing. Absolute perfection or absolute imperfection. We can see this principle written down in James 2 : 10, "For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it." This principle MUST apply to god too. If it doesn't, then what value are his promises, his decrees and his laws? If he can break any promise he makes or violate any of his own laws, then how can he trusted? My favourite example of god breaking his own word is where he curses Adam and Eve with physical (not spiritual) death and where scripture explicitly declares that this curse applied to every human being who ever lived - even Jesus himself. Genesis 3 : 19 & 20 19 By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.” 20 Adam named his wife Eve, because she would become the mother of all the living. And this curse won't be lifted until some time in the future, after Judgment Day and after the dead are raised from the dust, when the saved enter the New Jerusalem. Revelation 22 : 1 - 3. 1Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb 2 down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. 3 No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. So, according to scripture, there is no way that any of us can bypass, dodge or sidestep god's curse. It applies to everyone, without exception. Hebrews 9 : 24 - 28 confirms this. See how the logic works out? In the same way that Christ died ONCE ONLY and entered heaven ONCE ONLY, so everyone will die once and then face judgment. That is god's curse upon Adam and Eve becoming the destiny of everyone. 24 For Christ did not enter a sanctuary made with human hands that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God’s presence. 25 Nor did he enter heaven to offer himself again and again, the way the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood that is not his own. 26 Otherwise Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But he has appeared once for all at the culmination of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself. 27 Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, 28 so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him. Now we come to the test! According to the Bible, was god good to his word when he cursed Adam and Eve, making physical death the unavoidable destiny of all? The answer is a resounding NO! The patriarch Enoch did not physically die but went up to heaven alive. Check out Genesis 5 : 24 and Hebrews 11 : 5 to see how this happened. The prophet Elijah was taken up to heaven alive, in a fiery chariot. You can read about this in 2 Kings 2 : 11. God broke his own word and spared these two from the curse of death that applied to every other human being. The fallout from this is devastating. God does not keep his own word. He breaks it when he sees fit. This makes him unreliable and untrustworthy. So, if we go back to Hebrews 9 : 27 & 28, we can see why the lord's return has been delayed for so long. 27 Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, 28 so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him. If god could be trusted then he would have kept his word and made his curse of death apply to Enoch and Elijah. But he broke his own word. Therefore, the many promises given about the return of Jesus cannot be trusted either. Once god breaks his own word then he is guilty of breaking all of his promises, his decrees and his own laws. The principle set down and explained in James 2 : 10 convicts god himself as untrustworthy. In simple words, a liar. Hebrews 6 : 18 declares that it is impossible for god to lie. Oops! The examples of Enoch and Elijah clearly show that god did lie. When he pronounced the curse of physical death on Adam and Eve and all their descendants he would have already decided that he was going to spare at least two people from that fate. That was a lie. And there is your biblically sound reason why the lord's return has been delayed for so long, Dark Bishop. God can't be trusted to keep his appointments. He's a liar. Thank you. Walter.
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