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Archive for the ‘Philosophy of Religion’ Category

Whosoever spends his days without a wife, has no joy nor blessing, or good in his life. Talmud – Yevamot 62B

The Orthodox Jewish view of Marriage

rlclrose21Any discussion of Orthodox Christians, Jews, and Muslims must logically begin with the House of Israel. According to the Jewish history, God created the world, and its first parents, Adam and Eve, five thousand, seven hundred, and sixty seven years ago.

Approximately two thousand years later, Abraham, Patriarch of the Jews was born and nearly five hundred years after that, his ancestor Moses led captive Israel out of Egypt. (Aklah)  After the exodus from Egypt, the Orthodox Jews tell us that Moses received on Mount Sinai, personally from the God of Universe, the Ten Commandments, and subsequently the rest of the laws written down in the first five books of Moses. This compilation of books called the Pentateuch and others written by the rest of the prophets that called the Torah. It is from the Torah, from the accompanying explanations and commentary about it called the Talmud, and also from the three thousand years of tradition that bring us to the present, that the understanding and customs of Jewish marriage are derived. A study in 1970 determined that there were approximately six hundred thousand orthodox Jews living in the United States. (Elazar)
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Michael Dummett, perhaps one of the most influential Anglo-American philosophers of the last half of the 20th century, died on December 27th, 2011. I would have posted earlier had I been aware, but Dummett’s death only recently caught my attention. Personally, Dummett’s work on intuitionistic logic and verificationism have greatly influenced my own thoughts on logic and epistemology and, ironically, despite his verificationism, Dummett was also a practicing Roman Catholic.

For those who may be unfamiliar with Dummett’s work, here is an informative discussion given by Graham Priest, who last year permitted the FSPB to interview him, and Alan Saunders, the host of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s programme The Philosopher’s Zone.

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Must an omnipotent and omniscient supernatural agency also be morally perfect?

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Too many people take the so-called theory of intelligent design seriously, which is unfortunate since nobody who takes a scientific view of the world should, and everyone ought to take a scientific view of the world. As many have argued, ID theory is not, properly, a theistic explanatory model. However, I am not convinced that this is the case, and for two primary reasons. (Though, I find that insofar as ID theories are not theistic models, they actually suffer from more problems, so they really ought to welcome theistic interpretations. But this we may skip for now.) First, the correlation between theism and ID theory is too great for it to be an accident of honest inquiry. The overwhelming majority of ID theory proponents are theists, and theistic conceptions of god are, not surprisingly, suitable candidates for the intelligent designer. Second, the Discovery Institute, the main intellectual impetus behind ID theory in the English speaking world, published The Wedge, wherein they explicitly advocate for a theistic interpretation of ID theory. (FYI: One may read the document here: The Wedge.)

In any case, what is to follow is a rough and ready argument against theistic explanatory models.

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and if Christ hath not risen, vain is your faith, ye are yet in your sins;

1 Corinthians 15:17

I want to grant the strongest possible case allowable for the resurrection of Jesus. Therefore, I expect to afford much leeway- indeed, more than is rationally justified- to the claims of the historicity and reliability of the Christian texts. That is to say I will grant, though I do not think it is true, that the eyewitness reports in the gospels and the epistles are from individuals who were neither inappropriately credulous, uneducated, nor emotionally and psychologically unfit to provide generally reliable testimonies. I will further grant, though I do not think it is true, that the gospels and the epistles are independent, generally reliable and unbiased historical documents which track the events under consideration accurately- as accurately as any historical text could, that is. I will also grant, though I do not think it is true, that the testimony of the Church Fathers was generally reliable and has transmitted accurately the succeeding 1,800 years to the current day.

I shall further suppose, though I am not sure how they might accomplish this, that historians can exclude all possible naturalistic explanations, with the exception of so-called swoon hypotheses, to include even future explanations which further scientific investigation might disclose and more elaborate explanations such as extraterrestrial interventions not now seriously entertained. Even then, I shall contend, Christians are not justified in believing that Jesus’ reported postmortem sightings were the result of a Christian miracle. I will argue that even on these favorable grounds the Christian is not justified in believing the Christian god rose Jesus from the dead.

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I can’t believe that I am writing another post on Googlism (to see the first one, click here), but I just had to put this up when I found about this addition to this religion’s (if you could call it such) website.

Yes, they have the “10 Commandments of Google” posted on the site. And now, so does this blog.

Interestingly, while some of them are just plain laughable, other are actually . . . . . . . . . punctually appropriate. Really — just check them out for yourself (or continue reading — they’ll be at the end of this post).

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Hello to All!

I must admit that there are some debates that are not worth getting into, because they’re as solvable as JFK’s assassination. Abortion is one of them. In an attempt to save myself from getting into such a debate with one of my business partners, however, I ended up finding something interesting that I figured would be worth a post here. (It’s also high time I posted something about religion, however big the trouble that I’ll get into will be.)

The title of this post is that very thing I found to be interesting. My business partner tried to get me to pull apart the idea that “God” always meant religion, or something involving religious beliefs, in order to “win me over” onto the pro-life side of the abortion debate. Now, as I said, I don’t think abortion is something worth talking about here because we could do so for hours and hours and get absolutely nowhere. But the notion between God and religion . . . . . . . . . . . . . I think that’s worth thinking about for a bit.

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