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  1. #1
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    Monk--A Question

    ...or two [img]/forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/grin.gif[/img].. I hope you don't mind me asking..I'm just curious [img]/forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif[/img]

    <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">I was just saying to Empress that I know a few buddhist monks who are better christians than many of my old church.</div></div>


    1. What church is your 'old church'?


    2. I'm sorry, I have not read much of your posts for me to deduce if you are athiest/agnostic. I read your comment and wondered if you are a practicing buddhist. Can you enlighten me? I may have a few questions if you are...
    I am thinking...do you smell smoke?

    FKA-DC

  2. #2
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    Re: Monk--A Question

    River- I don't mind at all.

    I love this stuff.

    well my old church is the same as my present church...where my family has celebrated mass since moving from the city. except for a brief period of a few years when I took mass daily in a chapel in Brooklyn which had a priest chaplain, but whose services were often presided over by various ordained catholic monks. that was quite an interesting time because it gave exposure to various schools of thought and spiritual pursuit as exemplified within the catholic tradition- but since it was a chapel that had to address the spiritual needs of a diverse group of people - it was embedded in a school- the chaplain had to be well versed in many faiths. He was a bit of an oddball, was certainly on the fringes of his order, and very eclectic and well versed in the contextual history of Catholicism. He was of Ukrainian descent and so was also familiar with the Eastern Rite.

    I personally do not claim to know if there is a God. If there is, it seems to me like most people who claim he is there can't seem to put into effect what he is teaching. This leaves me wondering what the point of many people's faith is, when they can not follow even the most simplest of teachings. I am left with the feeling that faith and Church provide a needed social and communal component which many people need in their lives, but have less to do with God and spiritual growth, which are not things of comfort.

    I will state unequivocably that science has relegated literal interpretations of the bible to the trash can, and why this has not upended many fundamental traditions is quite fascinating to me. In addition to that it can be shown that when fundamentalism and literalism win out over intuitive and transcendental approaches to spiritual systems then spiritual growth or the ability to touch the ineffable, which at their heart is the purpose of all spiritual systems- is lost or severely retarded. Fundamental approaches to spiritual discernment torpedo their intended purpose and serve to reveal the elaborated additions to the mythic system being followed. Very often these elaborations are clearly traced! But it seems like, surprisingly, many people are unaware of the lines of descent in their belief systems.

    If God does exist, then it is only logical in view of scientific and spiritual advances that any faith in God must be recontextualized in order to take into account these irrefutable advances, say, the facts of genetics for example and all the independent yet converging streams of scientific inquiry which tell us that man descends from a common ancestor with apes, not to mention the fact that many of the systems which we have inherited- especially christianity- represent paradigms which are collapsible when scrutinized and according to their own conceptions.

    I guess you could say I am a Buddhist as I have taken sets of vows and am a member of a lineage within a Shaolin Temple where I am a 35th generation disciple of the Cao Dong Sect of Ch'an Buddhism.

    Please feel free to ask me anything else, and if you don't mind sharing where you are- if you are- currently training and in what.
    a noble stroke he lifted high that hung not but swift with tempest fell On Satan's proud crest- no sight nor swift thought, less could his shield such ruin intercept; 10 paces huge he back recoil'd...

  3. #3
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    Re: Monk--A Question

    monk: Just so you know, though we generally disagree on theological matters, I enjoy reading your posts. Makes for good discussions, even 'combative' sweeping generalizations like "I will state unequivocably that science has relegated literal interpretations of the bible to the trash can..." [img]/forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif[/img]
    aka ChurchDude. I want that moniker back! Until then....

    "Sometimes you have to let go to see if there was anything worth holding on to"
    ~ Anon

  4. #4
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    Re: Monk--A Question

    I appreciate the sentiments CEW, and obviously I too find the engaging discussions enjoyable.

    One thing though- it is not a sweeping generalization to say that science has proven the Bible can not be taken literally. of course I mean to say certain parts of it.

    While some parts of the Bible may very well be true, and meant to be taken quite literally, the focal point of many sect's salvation premise, ie the garden of eden and fall of man, is not literally true, nor can the genetic experiments of OT sheep herders, the order of creation (light before stars or the sun springs to mind), etc.

    This simple fact is proven every day in hospitals, courts of law, paternity cases, etc. And yet, whereas a jury presiding over a murder case would see a bloody pipe with the perpetrators fingerprints and dna evidence as clear cut- for some reason we have religious people today unwilling to accept the lead pipe because of deeply rooted, if wrongly, held convictions at best, brainwashing at worst.

    Recently you had mentioned irreducible complexity and intelligent design "theory."

    As you investigate further into the subject matter you will see that the only people who still hold that idea as a viable theory are those who either willfully and even purposefully suspend rational understanding because they can't release the power they hold due to ego, or those who just have not found out yet that intelligent design is not a theory nor is it an alternative to the ToE.

    The relatively recent Dover case is quite illustrative of the point, and you can see it on Nova. One thing that was rather odd and ironic was that several death threats were made against those high school science teachers who refused to teach the manufactured 'controversy' and also against the judge who was forced to concede that ID was not a theory. Death threats. From 'Christians.' I guess then their faith is theoretical?

    Please understand I am not suggesting that people who hold the bible to be literally true lose their faith, and the fact the Bible is not literal doesn't even cause any problem to the belief in the existence of God- but I am suggesting that believers show a remarkable resiliency towards being proven wrong. Why can't they just adapt? What is so bad about being wrong?
    a noble stroke he lifted high that hung not but swift with tempest fell On Satan's proud crest- no sight nor swift thought, less could his shield such ruin intercept; 10 paces huge he back recoil'd...

  5. #5
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    Re: Monk--A Question

    I really don't want to hijack my partner's thread, but allow me a few thoughts:

    Do you really consider NOVA programs to be without bias? I recall reading a number of articles on the Dover case, and the "politics" sorrounding the program in question, and it reminded me of the maxim that whoever controls the media control public opinion. Why wasn't a single intelligent design scientist / scholar interviewed on the program? But I digress...

    One of the things I noticed in looking at the arguments for and against intelligent design was how some of those against design were hell bent, or so it seemed, in making science and faith enemies. Scientists and scholars for design take the view when they look at all the evidence, there is nothing arbitrary about the world and the universe we live in, and though God cannot be proven via the science laboratory, the ponderance of evidence presents a dilemma. If not design, then what? The question become crucial because science has proven that Darwinism is flawed - the universe and all that's in it could not have come about the way Darwin stated, so evolution as a "theory" is without legs to stand on. Even Steven Hawkins (as well as other atheistic/agnostic scholars) conceded that point. Never in the spotlight of course are those atheist/agnostic scholars who have changed their belief system because of the evidence of their own work, and have fully reconciled science and faith for themselves.

    Yet, some scientists insist there has to be some other explanation other than design. It begs your last two questions, "Why can't they just adapt? What is so bad about being wrong?" I take the view that the scientist should not try to fit a square peg into a round hole. In other words, go where the evidence leads. I see science as a complement to faith, not it's enemy. It is those who try to create this divide that remain at odds with each other.
    aka ChurchDude. I want that moniker back! Until then....

    "Sometimes you have to let go to see if there was anything worth holding on to"
    ~ Anon

  6. #6
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    Re: Monk--A Question

    to put it simply, similar to when you posited the proofs of irreducible complexity- which is basically all ID has to offer when it tries to point out 'flaws' in the ToE, you are misinformed.

    What is NOva's bias? Is it a scientific bias? If that is the case then we are in good hands because science self corrects itself- unlike religion which must claim otherwise. That is something that ID proponents don't quite seem to grasp- it is science which corrects science. If there were other relevant theories to challenge evolution, it would be science that uncovers and attempts to falsify them. And what we have found is that there are no other theories which work, and which work across so many disciplines. It is really quite staggering if you think about it- transitional fossils discovered in the right rocks, genetics, micro biology, the fields of medecine, etc. And very often ID proponents use scientists and their work to support their claims, however, such as the case with the bacterial flagellum, they stop at what supports their view. This is the problem Minnick and Behe- basically the only two serious ID scientists working in the field- seem to have. Funny enough, the very scientist Michael Behe- and by the way the only reason why no ID proponents were interviewed for the NOVA show was because they repeatedly refused- used to support his first example of irreducible complexity continued his study of the flagellum and in fact, found reduced examples functioning in other bacteria cells.

    Once in the courtroom, the politics of Dover were no longer relevant- if anything politics would have seemed to have favored the ID team, since the judge ruling the case was a Bush appointee, and Christian.

    In fact it is not the scientists using and applying the theory of Evolution who are trying to make science and religion enemies, it is the fundamental literalists who see the Theory of Evolution as an enemy to their literally understood faith. And it IS an enemy to literal interpretations of the Bible. That is because there was no literal creation as laid out in the two creation stories contained in Genesis, any moreso than there is any literal truth in the host of other creation myths we can study and look at for archetypal truths.

    I am not sure what you are reading about ID, but what I can unequivocably state is that the preponderance of evidence- converging, independant streams of inquiry- point to the validity of the Theory of Evolution. It is falsifiable, yet it stands the tests. Every discipline points to this simple fact. The fact that we are alive to type into these keyboards may very well be because of the application of the ToE.

    The biggest lead pipe was recently placed right on the jury's desk, the human genome was mapped. This shows beyond a shadow of a doubt that man and ape share a common ancestor. No. 2, I believe.

    So science is not an enemy to faith- in fact one of the major and most lethal critics of ID is a devout Roman Catholic. Many of the school teachers who joined forces to decry the ID encroachments were Christians, two prominently so.

    But Catholics do not necessarily hold to the literal truth of the Garden of Eden, nor do they believe that to be saved one must only believe in Jesus...

    So again science is only the enemy of ignorance, and to claim the Bible is literally true, is to be ignorant of these developments in our knowledge. We no longer believe that thunder is the sound of mjollnir laying the smack down on Frost Giants. Nor should we now believe God pulled a rib from Adam's side to make a woman, after he decided none of the animals were fitting for him as a partner.

    So let's be clear- what science and the theory of evolution has done is to make it crystal clear that the Bible, especially when it comes to the creation stories- is not literally true. And if that is the case, then the whole scheme and driving point of many christian salvation myths is wrong, thus eradicating the basis upon which literal fundamentalist christians and their assorted sects worship- which is I guess why the judge and several of the scientists and teachers were getting death threats....

    It is slightly ironic to hear it said that scientists are making faith and science enemies. I have yet to hear of any scientist sending out a death threat against preachers.

    The only place you see ID having any traction at all- I mean there is nothing inthe scientific community happening at all, this is because ID makes no predictions, is so falsifiable as to be worthless to pursue- is amongst us citizenry. And there is prays on the allure of the argument from ignorance.

    p.s. I think you have misread Hawking...I am not aware of any part of Darwin's Theory of Evolution which makes claims as to how the universe and all that's in it has come to be. Evolution describes why we observe speciation, why there is a change in alleles in any given population over time. It does not discuss or deal with the origin of life or the universe.
    a noble stroke he lifted high that hung not but swift with tempest fell On Satan's proud crest- no sight nor swift thought, less could his shield such ruin intercept; 10 paces huge he back recoil'd...

  7. #7
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    Re: Monk--A Question

    ^^^

    So all we are left with are the findings/conclusions of eminent scientists on both sides of the issue? Misread Hawkins? Nope, I can post his exact words later. Science and faith not made out to be enemies? Like you say, it depends on what one is reading.

    Comes back to what's been said on any number of issues - a number of people looking at the same evidence and walking away with different conclusions. We could easily pull out any number of anecdotal references to Christians decrying ID, or atheists/agnostic scientists decrying the "theory" of evolution, but what does it prove other than these individuals look at the evidence and can't agree on what it means? I respect your right to embrace evolution, but in the same way you find ID unacceptable, I find evolution equally unacceptable and I'm sure we could pull out any number of "scientific references" to support our points of view. I have to admit however, that the proponents of evolution are doing a great job in controlling the media and passing off that "theory" as truth.
    aka ChurchDude. I want that moniker back! Until then....

    "Sometimes you have to let go to see if there was anything worth holding on to"
    ~ Anon

  8. #8
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    Re: Monk--A Question

    Just popping in for a sec..

    Oh my, nice nice dialouge...CEW and monk..Keep it going though..yu right one track. [img]/forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/grin.gif[/img]..Skimmed through some of it....I'll Be bock!

    (((monk)))Thanks for responding to my first two questions...I'll Be bock..

    Oh, and I am a practicing christian [img]/forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/grin.gif[/img]..Just like to hear what others of the non-christian faith gotta to say, yu know.. [img]/forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif[/img]
    I am thinking...do you smell smoke?

    FKA-DC

  9. #9
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    Re: Monk--A Question

    <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: CEW</div><div class="ubbcode-body">^^^

    So all we are left with are the findings/conclusions of eminent scientists on both sides of the issue? Misread Hawkins? Nope, I can post his exact words later. Science and faith not made out to be enemies? Like you say, it depends on what one is reading.
    </div></div>

    CEW please read this very carefully- there are no eminent scientists on both sides of this issue. Scientifically, there is only one side. ID is not a serious challenge to evolution. ID proponents can splutter and puff til kingdom come and this will not change. Evolution is not a belief. It is an observable fact. Even ID proponents must concede at least micro evolution. You simply can not replace the ToE with ID and have everything work the same way. ID makes no predictions, and generates no useful applications. And when it's claims are tested, as I've said, ID is falsified. Genetics falsifies ID. Geology falsifies ID. Biology. Paleontology.

    I'll be very interested to read Hawking, directly. Perhaps he is critiquing something Darwin said or wrote, but Darwin is not the Theory, the Theory of Evolution is uncontested and it has nothing to do with the origin of the universe.

    <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">
    Comes back to what's been said on any number of issues - a number of people looking at the same evidence and walking away with different conclusions.
    </div></div>

    No, this is wrong. People who say that are wrong. You can not look at a strand of human DNA and chimp DNA and see the same genetic inherited scars and reach different conclusions. DNA evidence is rock solid. There is a difference, and there is definitely consensus and conformity amongst scientists about the general shape of Evolution, the fact of Evolution. Evolution can be tested. ID can be tested. For example, ID says that for ID to be true, certain biological devices must be irreducibly complex, therefore inferring they were designed- the flagellum is irreducibly complex. That statement is then put to the test, and in fact, the flagellum is reducible, and if evolution is true, then we would find examples of the flagellum's components being used in other organisms. This holds true for EVERY SINGLE irreducibly complex biological structure. There is not a single one which has withstood falsification. And this is exactly what we see, the very same scientist Behe cites discovered other bacteria with pieces of the flagellum adapted to other purpose. Therefore it could have evolved, in fact we would expect it to evolve, just like we see changes in multiple generations of bacteria and fruit flies and anything else we look at.

    Even ID 'scientists' like Behe are forced to concede- then they go back and recreate a new attack, or simply continue to ignore proofs and repeat their statements to an unsuspecting, or uncaring public where there is no peer review or fact checking or rebuttal.

    Maybe that is why in the Dover case, only 2 ID "scientists" appeared to testify as opposed to the 6 or 7 "experts" the defense originally listed for their cause.

    <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">I have to admit however, that the proponents of evolution are doing a great job in controlling the media and passing off that "theory" as truth.
    </div></div>

    when you put 'theory' in quotes, you show your hand at just how misinformed the public is. We use theories all the time- we apply what theories state to practical working solutions. For example, I do not think you would include the quotation marks if you were to mention the theory of gravity, or rocketry, or cellular biology.

    I would say the exact opposite, and this actually came out in the Dover case, the media and the press do a very poor job of explaining things. All the observers were overwhelmed by the body and weight of evidence on which evolution was built. Even the judge was overwhelmed.

    But the proof is in the pudding is it not CEW? You benefit from the truth of the theory of evolution every day. We know it works, we know it is the best explanation of what we observe. There is always room to adjust- because inherently the theory does not need to be right- it can be replaced and if there are problems then the scientific method is a built in corrective force.

    Can ID say the same? No it can not.

    I do not think for one second you would rely on the predictions of ID to save yourself from cancer, or the bubonic plague...you would not, when struck ill, open your bible to genesis and look for a means to cure typhoid.

    Evolution however, does provide us with the applicable understanding necessary to solve these issues.
    a noble stroke he lifted high that hung not but swift with tempest fell On Satan's proud crest- no sight nor swift thought, less could his shield such ruin intercept; 10 paces huge he back recoil'd...

  10. #10
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    Re: Monk--A Question

    <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">I guess you could say I am a Buddhist as I have taken sets of vows and am a member of a lineage within a Shaolin Temple where I am a 35th generation disciple of the Cao Dong Sect of Ch'an Buddhism.

    Please feel free to ask me anything else, and if you don't mind sharing where you are- if you are- currently training and in what. </div></div>

    Di chread has certainly evolve [img]/forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/grin.gif[/img]

    Tonks for sharing (((monk))) Can you tell me more on what it is to be 'the 35th generation disciple of the Cao Dong Sect of Ch'an Buddhism.' What does this entail? Pretty sure I can find it if I google, but a personal touch is more intriguing... [img]/forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif[/img]
    I am thinking...do you smell smoke?

    FKA-DC

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