06-18-07 1:23Epicurus

Cornelius: You have often said you don't believe in God. Yet you like to claim that you follow Epicurus. Well, I'll have you know that Epicurus was "the most pious of men." He believed in Gods AND the soul. In fact, all the great thinkers of Ancient Greece believed in the Gods! You'd know that if you studied philosophy.

You idolize the bones and ashes of the past and call it philosophy while pretending it justifies your fantasies of god.

Even if you are correct in your assessment of Epicurus' beliefs, it would not make you right.

You are trying to make him into an authority on god and then use that as proof of god, but it isn't.

There is nothing there. There are no more authorities on god in the past than there are in the present.

The only one who I've seen make sense on this issue said to figure out the riddle of yourself and worry about gods only if you are one.


Cornelius: All the great thinkers believed in Gods. Therefore, Gods cannot simply be dismissed as illogical or even delusional.

They can be dismissed as having been based on a dearth of information in a climate of fear and oppression.

Cornelius: Ha!

(1) What information were they missing?

Our knowledge of how reality functions.

Cornelius:(2) What evidence do you have for this "climate of fear and oppression"?

Execution of Socrates and the exile of Aristotle.

06-08-07 12:07Karma

Amberite: I've been reading what some Hare Krishnas have to say about Karma, and I admit, I find it very confusing.

That might be because it is inconsistent and incoherent.

But it does make a good mind control trick since it can be used to justify complacency and it makes for excuses to rationalize the inexcusable.

Amberite: I don't understand their examples, like the small child who experiences atrocities...Is such a child somehow caught in someone elses karma stream? Or is it assumed that they are paying the price due from a previous life; therefore making the atrocity deserved in some way?

To get what they are preaching: First assume that everything in the universe is just about you.

Now accept that anything bad that happens to you is really your fault for being bad in an unconnected and unknown past life.

Also blame anything that doesn't work as you wanted it to on being bad in an unconnected and unknown past life.

If you don't see immediate return on something you do is because you are paying off being bad in an unconnected and unknown past life.

If something nice happens, it's just that you were being good in an unconnected and unknown past life.

Because everything is just about you, but it all happened in a time and place that you can't access, it may seem nonsensical - but luckily the Hare Krishnas are here to explain it all to you because they know more about your past life than you ever could.

06-08-07 12:07Viewpoint

Shadow Walker: What's your viewpoint - what do you believe in?

Figure out what works well and do that.
Figure out what doesn't work well and don't do that.
Don't sweat the stuff in the middle.

To do that pay attention, focus, and consider.

Give more slack than you get and prefer solutions that benefit all involved.

Shadow Walker: I agree totally! Except this needs an addendum: "Figure out what doesn't work well and don't do that. "
Sometimes things seem hard, but are necessary to work through for the valuable lesson learned and the gold pot at the end of the rainbow.

I purposefully left out sometimes, ought and should.
Being hard doesn't mean it doesn't work well any more than being easy means it does work well.
Conversely, being hard doesn't mean it does work well any more than being easy means it doesn't work well.
You have to figure out which is which.

06-01-07 7:07Buddhist Holiday

Aphro: Tonight Is actually Saga Dawa Duchen - the night Sakyamuni was born, Enlightened, and passed into Parinirvana, all 3 of which occured on the same full moon night of the lunar calendar - tonight. It is one of the most important holidays in Buddhism, isn't it exciting? I'm surprised you didn't mention it.

It's no big surprise, I don't practice Buddhism as a religion and I wasn't raised in a place where Buddhist holidays were observed.

It's nice that people have attributed his birth, enlightenment and death to the solstice, but when he is said to have done things really isn't that significant to me.

Given a choice, I'd just as soon celebrate your birthday and enlightenment because you are alive and can thus enjoy the celebration.

Once you are seeking to realize his teachings by leading a good life and finding insight, focus and compassion; any further honor is superfluous and bordering on the worship which he eschewed and asked not to be subjected to.

05-24-07 3:21Anger and Passion

Harriet: I read blogs and there is a lot of anger in the writing. The anger puts me off, but it is very passionate. And it makes me realize, I'm not sure I know how to be passionate without being angry, without my blood pressure going up.

I just wonder if I've lost anything good in trying to give up my anger.

Anger is one way to express passion, but it is not the only way.
Also how you express your anger is what determines if it is addressing an issue, or just being hurtful.

Harriet: I feel I have traded passion for detachment.

That kind of detachment is a lie.

Eric P: No, if you had real understanding, anger would not occur.

This is not true. The most one can claim is that understanding reduces inappropriate anger.

However it intensifies appropriate anger.

Of course that isn't pithy and it isn't what the unemotional lumps want to hear.

Eric P:Give me a scenario of "appropriate anger".

I have yet to find such a scenario.

If you can find nothing which makes you angry then you do not understand the suffering of others.

04-17-07 7:14God and Evil Doers

Steinbrenner: You know, people complain that God seems cruel to send people to eternal misery in hell, but that's not how He works! The "eternal suffering in hell doctrine" was simply a great way of tricking common people into financing the largest mega church in the world.

For the record, the God of the bible does not burn people in eternal pain and misery.

Psalm 9:17
The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.

Isaiah 14:15
Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.

Matthew 5:22
But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.

Matthew 5:29
And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.

Matthew 5:30
And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.

Matthew 10:28
And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Matthew 23:33
Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?

Well you get the idea.

Steinbrenner: Ha! Which of those scriptures that you listed refer to "ETERNAL pain and misery"?

I think you are trying to split hairs here.

The clear implication is that damnation is effected by god, permanent, a torment, involves fire and leads to the destruction of the soul. Eternal is the full measure of all time that you can know and this would clearly seem to qualify.

It is a rare evil that can stomach even throwing its enemies into a fire and destroying them.

What kind of being would do this to its children?

Again the notion is absurd and ludicrous.

Stienbrenner: Yeah, but you referenced Matthew 23:33, and clearly Jesus was talking about religious hypocrites on this one.

Religious hypocrites are no less god's children. Nor are they any less tormented when burned.

Who would you burn to death, Stein? Why would you worship a god who judges and destroys?

Evil doers are not the enemy. They don't need to be destroyed. They are ill and need to be healed.

Yellow: Come on there, Swarm, you can't let those evil doers off so lightly.

I see criminals as the social equivalent of the mentally ill and prisons are as bad an injustice as the "asylums" of bygone eras.

Get them the help they need to live without causing harm and use the money saved to help those who were harmed. With the money saved over the current system you could pay both the criminal and the victim a nice stipend and still save money while benefiting society.

04-14-07 4:14Equitable

Badul: How would you describe your idea of socialism, or at least, equitable distribution of resources?

Everyone gets firsts before anyone gets seconds.

04-12-07 4:12real god

~ yohosame ~: As a muslim, the Qur'an is to me the Living Word from the Creator of all the worlds, seens and unseen.

I am not asking you to agree with me.

Why do religious people always lie in this manner?

You certainly are expecting us to agree and you get pissy when people laugh at your empty claims.

It is very simple.

What kind of worthless god needs or fits in a book? A fictional god invented by people.

When you have a real god you won't need books to convince someone.

04-04-07 4:04Apeshit on Drugs

Jean Luc: Some people claim that they use drugs for religious ritual, but that could never be legal! The drug laws, they protect people from someone going apeshit on some hallucinogenic. I mean, if hallucinogenic drugs were made legal for religious purposes, what do you think would happen?

People already have access to whatever they care to get so the only change would be whether they had to hide or not.

NAC has been doing peyote for decades; the main effect is members have a much reduced level of alcoholism.

Santo Daime and Unite Vegetal have been doing DMT for decades; the main effect is a noticeable decrease in mental illness, particularly depression.

Mushrooms have been legal in Holland for a long time and until recently were legal in Britian; no problems with users "freaking out" and killing people.

I've thrown and participated in a number of parties and there have been occasional "freak outs." Those people hurt no one. Generally they just need some one to keep track of their bodies for them for a bit and then they are just fine. Those parties happen every weekend year in and year out in every city with a dance scene in the world.

Further, most people who kill others, kill themselves or run amok aren't on anything at all because hurting sober people is hard and it is about impossible if you are melting into the 12th dimension.

Look at Bush, he's killed tens, perhaps hundreds of thousands of people without any drugs at all.

Changeling: What would happen? I think fewer people would have their lives, careers and families ruined by an unnecessary detour through the criminal justice system over a peaceful matter of personal choice.

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