Why I Stopped Caring About What the Bible Says, and Why You Should too (Part 2)

Ripped-pages

Enjoy the podcast:

https://anchor.fm/skeptics-and-seekers/episodes/Episode-31-Why-I-Stopped-Caring-About-What-the-Bible-Says–and-Why-You-Should-too-Part-2-e31mkf

I don’t understand it, and neither do you

The last blog was a bit of an experiment as I wanted to see how much ground I could give to the Christian and still make my case. However, you must understand that I really do not give up any of that ground. And I will be taking it back for the remainder of the series.

In this part, I turn from the philosophical to the practical. Even if I wanted to take the bible seriously, I couldn’t get very far with it. That is because I don’t understand it, and neither do you, or anyone else for that matter.

As an academic endeavor, understanding the bible is hopeless. Don’t take my word for it. Just ask all the scholars who have devoted their lives to understanding some part of it. Note how little agreement they have with other scholars who have done the same. If those scholars cannot master their area of expertise, you are even less equipped to do so.

Christians cannot agree on the most basic propositions central to the religion. They are using the same sacred texts, hearing from the same indwelling spirit, and possess the same measure of sincerity and faith. Yet on the following topics, cannot agree on what the bible actually says and means:

Hell

Is hell a real place? Jesus said it was a place prepared for the devil and his angels. But other Christians say it is a state of mind rather than a place. Others say it is a state of being. According to Pew Research, only about 2/3 of religious people believe in hell. That means 1 in 3 people reading the bible find no reason to believe in hell. Many of those people are scholars and clerics. If they can’t figure out what the bible says about hell, what makes you think you can?

Homosexuality – When I was a kid, homosexuality was an abomination to god. As far as I knew, all Christians were in agreement on this straightforward moral claim. According to Pew Research, the majority of Christians now believe there is nothing wrong with homosexuality. It is clearly not as straightforward as I once believed.

YEC – Young earth creationism is the idea that god created humans mostly as we are today all at once, and in the last 6,000 to 10,000 years. Gallup indicates that 39% of Americans believe this to be the case. Eliminate the non-Christians and that number is likely to go up. Many Christians deny that YECs make up a significant percentage of Christianity. They are clearly wrong. At the time of this writing, I am making arrangements for a YEC to be on my podcast, Skeptics and Seekers. He sought me out, not the other way around.

These three issues represent major doctrine, morality, and foundational truth claims about nature. In the denomination I grew up in, these were salvific issues. Dale would likely say these issues are inconsequential. But there is even disagreement about that.

Further, these are not the only doctrinal, ethical, or nature issues over which Christian opinion is hopelessly divided. But there is more to the problem than failure to understand the content. We don’t even agree on what type of content it is.

Word of God

We cannot hope to understand the meaning of the content before we get a grip on its nature. The most basic question one can ask about the bible is one that probes what it is. Some say the bible is the word of god, inspired by god, written by god, preserved by god, transmitted by god, and ultimately, interpreted by god.

Others would say that the bible is the word of men inspired by their understanding of the world, fact-checked and preserved by no one. Still others take a little from column A and a little from column B. I don’t want to jump into hermeneutics (techniques of interpretation0 just yet. But I just want to point out that we have no hope of interpreting the text if we can’t decide who it is from and who it is to.

There is also the matter os determining what the bible is for. Some say it is just to help us make sense of existential and ethical issues we face in life. Some say it is to help us come to a satisfying relationship with god. And others say the only purpose is to save as many souls from hell as possible. That one is a bit awkward since a significant number of Christians don’t even believe in hell.

By inspiration of God

Because my word count has caught up with me, I will cut it off at this point: Inspiration of god has become the get out of jail free card for Christians trying to explain the nature of the Bible. They can’t explain it in sensible terms. So they resort to this very spiritual sounding phrase that, itself, comes from the Bible. Ironically, it is just more Christian speak that means nothing in the real world.

Dale and I will surely talk about this more in the podcast. So listen out for that. In closing, I will just say that the Bible is even more impossible to understand than I have laid out here. If I write a book of fiction clearly marked as fiction, and placed in the fiction section of the library, you have a pretty good chance of understanding and appreciating what you are reading. Easy.

Let’s complicate the issue by taking that same book of fiction and marking it as history. Now, you find it in the history section. You will instantly be confused by what you read. We can make things even worse. Take the same book and confuse the authorship. Let’s further say I am merely chandelling aliens from another planet, or wisdom from beyond the pale veil. Now what?

You will read a passage that narrates an event that is literally impossible. That is not a problem in fiction written by me. But If I were just channeling an omni-dimensional being with knowledge and abilities that defied your understanding of impossible, you wouldn’t know what to make of the passage. The bible is an even worse book than what I just described. Not only don’t you understand any part of it, you can’t. You literally can’t understand it.

And that’s the view from the skeptic.

David Johnson

Why Care About the Bible (Part 2)- Christian View

The argument from biblical confusion, is one of the most persuasive skeptical arguments against Christianity, I think it is one of the most difficult objections to deal with and as such I want to give it the full credence it deserves.  I myself, as a Christian, have experienced instances of confusion or have occasionally found it difficult to understand the truth about a certain doctrine or commandment in the Bible; for crying out loud even the Apostle Peter himself (or at least an inspired writer of Holy Scripture) admitted, “His Paul’s letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction” (2 Peter 3:16).

So, Christians can hardly blame non-Christians (being completely devoid of the guidance of the Holy Spirit) for being confused at times- I can understand why skeptics might feel the task of coming to unanimous understanding of everything in the Bible is a rather hopeless task.

But I want to say, don’t give up hope!  God is not the author of confusion and doesn’t want his flock to be deceived or fall into error, there are some helpful hermeneutical principles which I think can help address this issue.

The Inspired Word of God

The first thing to do is to define what Christians mean by saying that the Bible is “inspired” and to recognize that this is different than the notions of “infallibility” and/or “inerrancy” of the Bible.  Now, an important misunderstanding that comes up is that the Bible doesn’t claim the authors of Scripture themselves were inspired but that the end product of Scripture is inspired; so inspiration is a property of the text not the authors of the text (though this is not to exclude the possibility that the authors themselves could also have been “inspired” in some way as well, just as the OT prophets and Apostles were claimed to be inspired in various ways).

There are various aspects to the doctrine of “inspiration” as well that one should be aware of; Scriptural inspiration is said to be, i) “plenary” (meaning the entirety of Scripture as a whole has this property- it speaks to the breadth of inspiration), ii) “verbal” in that the very words themselves are said to be inspired (the depth of inspiration), and iii) “confluent”- in that it is the product of both human and divine efforts.  Note that these aspects of inspiration extend to more than just the philosophical informational content of the text, but to the actual “sentential” content of Scripture- down to its very words.  This is why the preservation of Scripture is a very important issue as one should aspire to getting as close as possible to the very words used in the original autographs whenever possible.

What might a helpful model of inspiration look like which includes all 3 of these aspects of the doctrine of the inspiration of Scripture?  Well Molonistically speaking, through God’s Middle Knowledge, He would know in advance what every human biblical author would freely choose to write of their own freewill in every given set of circumstances and then He could then set up the desired set of circumstances via His creating a specific logically possible world vs. another one; a world in which the specific books He wanted to be considered Scripture would come to be known as Holy Scripture.  So, God knew in advance what words would be freely written (plenary and verbal inspiration) but at the same time as he didn’t dictate those words to the human authors then this allows for the confluency of Scripture as well- each human author freely choose the words that they wrote down (in general unless quoting something, etc.); this notion is called a “supervisory” model of biblical inspiration.

At this point the issue of the preservation of those original words is an entirely separate yet related issue.  Now, I don’t believe that the inspired words of the original autographs have been preserved perfectly in every Biblical manuscript and/or translation of it; and yet, through the “Textual Tenacity Argument” (see James White debate in the sources), I think we can be fairly confident today that we can reconstruct the vast majority of the original NT and know what words were used.  However, while this type of argument is sufficient to resolve many confusing verses today (as we readily have access to scholarship and Bible versions online), I don’t think that appealing to modern scholarship can get Christians completely “off-the-hook” with regard to all the potentially confusing Bible passages, after all all back in the 1700’s the only thing available was the KJV in English.  A such, God is obligated to provide the means for resolving or handling any areas of “undue confusion” which may be said to exist in the KJV specifically as well as for any other translations in similar circumstances.

God is NOT the Author of “Undue” Confusion

Finally, as to the specific issues, I don’t have room to get into them here, but suffice it to say that I don’t find them to be too problematic to be honest, though that is merely the case with regard to the examples mentioned by the skeptic and I could easily point out a couple of my own areas of confusion in the Bible instead.

My notion here is that God cannot be guilty of allowing for areas of “undue confusion” in the Bible (not this is a qualified form of simple confusion, as that is inevitable for any book, even a divinely inspired one).  I define “undue confusion” as any confusion that obtains within a “reasonable person” (legal definition- average person with average intelligence and knowledge after doing an average amount of due diligence, etc.) which would “unnecessarily/unjustifiably” hinder them from achieving their salvation.  Only in this type of scenario can one blame God.

So, let’s say I want to know whether a woman can be a preacher or not, but I’m confused between two apparently contradictory passages.  Further, for brevity sake, let us suppose that I’ve done everything in my power to resolve the apparent discrepancy by consulting all my available avenues of knowledge (i.e. fulfilled my due diligence aspect), but yet I still come up confused- isn’t God to blame for this?

Well, no I don’t think so.  Think about it for a second, even in this worst case scenario where we can’t find a resolution to our issue, God has provided us an obvious means to know what to do; if it appears to be an unresolvable contradiction then Christian should simply refrain from making any dogmatic judgements one way or another about it until they learn which of the options is in fact correct at a later time; here I would follow my own moral conscience the moral principles of autonomy and justice and not refrain a women from teaching unless and until I gain clarification on the verses in question.

To my mind, Christians often get into a quandary by desperately feeling they need to take a firm position on something unclear in Scripture and then becoming dogmatically entrenched into that position.  In these types of situations I think a little patience goes a long way; if you continue to remain open to learning the truth about the matter in question, then the answers will be forth coming in due time and if not, well then it doesn’t matter either way in terms of your achieving salvation or else God would be responsible for causing “undue confusion” (which is logically impossible for a morally perfect God to do in the first place).  Hence, after exhausting all of one’s epistemic resources to come to a proper understanding of some difficult Bible verse, if no clarity or progress can be achieved, then “sit tight”, God will reveal the answer to you either in this life or the next 😊

And that’s the take of the Seeker/Christian.

Dale

Recommended Sources (for further study):

a) https://www.reasonablefaith.org/podcasts/defenders-podcast-series-3/s3-doctrine-of-revelation/  – see Parts #4-7 of William Lane Craig’s class Biblical Inspiration (also covered is the canonicity, inerrancy, etc. in other parts of the series).

b) Videos of the above source = https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R8QV3vv3ZU  (Part 4), https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-FXDBWILKQ  (Part 5),  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-B0R5kBFE3w  (Part 6) & finally = https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4He2PV53RWo (Part 7).

c) James White debate with Bart Ehrman on the “Textual Tenacity” of the Biblical texts (how God has preserved his perfect original NT autograph into the modern world) = https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=moHInA9fAsI & https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2Mp4v8VQwQ .

 

Advertisements

54 thoughts on “Why I Stopped Caring About What the Bible Says, and Why You Should too (Part 2)

  1. “God is not the author of confusion…..”

    Lol, I always love it when christains proclaim this. It is so obviously false it just makes me laugh when they say it.

    How do I know it is so obviously false? The fact that humans are completely confused by the bible and can’t agree on what it says.

    Like

    1. “My notion here is that God cannot be guilty of allowing for areas of “undue confusion” in the Bible….”

      Lol, not only is it so obviously false, but it is so obviously false that apologists have to start trying to redefine the passage.

      Like

      1. con·fu·sion
        /kənˈfyo͞oZHən/Submit
        noun
        1. lack of understanding; uncertainty.
        synonyms: uncertainty, lack of certainty, unsureness, indecision, hesitation, hesitancy, scepticism, doubt, ignorance; More
        2.the state of being bewildered or unclear in one’s mind about something.
        synonyms: bewilderment, bafflement, perplexity, puzzlement, mystification, stupefaction, disorientation, befuddlement, muddle;

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Thank you for proving my point.

          Like

          1. The fact that you had to add it in order to make the passage make sense, just goes to show that the passage is just factually wrong.

            Like

  2. One of the issues that was brought up was the issue of women in the early church. You all heard David’s reply as to how to interpret Junia because he disputes the meaning of “apostle” in that verse- there is nothing about the term that is different here.

    Here are a couple great sources proving women’s role in the church as leaders and Paul on Women = http://christianthinktank.com/fem08.html & http://christianthinktank.com/fem09.html .

    Enjoy!

    Like

    1. .

      Hi Sweetie,

      Bart Campolo…nah nah nah.
      You know what my long term goal is Dale?
      Justin frik’n Brierley on Still Unbelievable!

      Love and Light
      Tara

      Like

  3. .

    .Woof woof woof. Woof woof wooof wooffff woof wooof woof woof. Woof, woof woof wooooof woof woof, woof woof woof woooog woff woof woof.

    “Oakley…. push Google Translate, sweetie. ” Tara

    Wo-oops… ok, sorry.

    I love the looooong Skeptics and Seekers podasts. It means Mom takes me for really long walks, and she laughs and laughs and laughs hysterically sometimes. As for pee breaks hey, the railroad tracks need watering sometimes.

    Love and Dog biscuits.
    Oakley.

    Like

  4. WooHooo!!!!! Long form! Though to be fair I listen at double speed so that you guys aren’t talking so very slowly.

    I really do prefer the long form. It is a much more satisfying conversation.

    Poll Answer: Non-Christian

    Do you think we would be better off with a perfect or flawed bible?

    I know that I wouldn’t dismiss the bible as less than useless if it was perfect.

    Like

    1. “The skeptic bears the burden of proof here Darren, so good prove it scientifically for me,…”

      Since it is my preference I don’t actually have to set up another universe with a perfect book all I have to do is ask myself if I prefer a perfect book or not?

      Darren, do you prefer a perfect book over one that gets the creation of the universe wrong, the shape of the world wrong, genetics wrong, cosmology wrong, germ theory wrong, doesn’t know what stars are, etc.

      Yes Darren, I prefer one that is perfect over one that is less than useless.

      And would you dismiss the bible as less that useless if it was perfect?

      Absolutely not.

      There you are Dale, scientifically proven that I would not dismiss the bible as less than useless if it was perfect.

      “Can’t do it, I thought so you just making stuff up!”

      I’m making up my own preference? Seriously? That is the tact you want to take that you think is going to be convincing or impressive? Ok….

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I’m embarrassed for you with regard to this challenge. I don’t have to create a different world. I’m a writer. And I can tell you from experience that 10 out of 10 editors prefer perfect content to imperfect content. Most of them won’t pay you until the errors are corrected.

      I see no need to create, or even try to imagine a world where imperfect books are preferred. We can’t even find a Christian on this board to defend your idea. Perhaps you should create a world and see if your people find imperfect books better for them.

      Like

      1. ” No one gives a fig what you or Darren claim to prefer in this world.”

        If this is true, then why did you respond to my post about what I prefer?

        In what world does it make sense to respond to my expression of my preference with a demand that I empirically prove something by creating a new world as evidence?

        Like

        1. “You weren’t just stating your preference for the fun of it, you were making an obvious point that my defeater to David’s claim about God allowing for an errant/confusing Bible vs. a perfect one was ridiculous.”

          You know you would really cut down on the times you embarrass yourself and make yourself angry if you would stop making up things for me to be saying.

          Can you quote where I said anything that you just claimed I said in your post?

          If not then perhaps you should just recognize that you were wrong about your assumptions of what I was saying and why I was saying it. Or you can continue to insist I am saying something I wasn’t and continue embarrassing yourself. My guess it is the latter since you seem to be psychologically incapable of believing that other people have their own internal lives that are different than what you claim them to be.

          The choice is yours.

          Like

        2. “…you were making an obvious point that my defeater to David’s claim about God allowing for an errant/confusing Bible vs. a perfect one was ridiculous.”

          I wonder if it isn’t me that you are really angry at. I wonder if you recognize yourself how truly ridiculous the claim is, so you are projecting on me rather than just admitting to yourself that it doesn’t work.

          Like

          1. “I was correct in my assessment of your comment- you were saying it was a ridiculous defeater, so I simply put you in your place and demanded you prove that for a change.”

            Wow, how very childish of you.

            First off, you were not correct. I was not saying it was a ridiculous defeater. I was answering a question that David put to the audience in the podcast.

            Do I think it was a ridiculous defeater? Of course. Everyone that hears it thinks it is a ridiculous defeater, including you. There is no other reason I can think for you to throw such a big tantrum over a response to a question David threw out to the listening audience, unless on some level you already understand how truly idiotic of a defeater it is.

            “That’s allowed, you don’t get to say stuff about people and then not get a little dose of your own, you demand strict empirical proof for my claims or else you claim I’m making things up, well I do the same thing to you in turn.”

            Sure because opinions about something are the exact same as making claims about how reality works.

            Silly me.

            “If you want to claim I’m assuming things, fine- do you make the claim that a world with a perfect Bible is objectively better than a world with an errant Bible-…”

            No. One piece of fiction is not objectively better than another piece of fiction.

            If you want to ask what my opinion is on the subject, then I would say that my opinion is that it is better for books that are telling us facts of reality to be correct than wrong about that reality.

            But I value honesty. If you don’t value honesty then I can see how that wouldn’t be your opinion on the subject.

            But I suppose this is just another example of you trying to “prove me wrong” when you have no clue what my actual position is. And as such you just got it completely wrong.

            Like

            1. “OK you are the one that is getting things wrong here- who is having a tantrum???? I’m teaching you a lesson, get over it already.”

              No, you are being childish and throwing a tantrum. And I think I will save everyone else from your childish display and bow out here.

              Like

            2. I’m going to try this just one more time before giving it up as a bad job. Dale, you have been challenged before on the nature of what you call defeaters. I have no real interest if they meet the definition of defeater in some academic sense. They do not rise to the level of a defeater, let alone a good point to the average person hearing them.

              In your world, almost anything is possible. Therefore, you are pitting the barely possible against the highly probable, You also depend on what might be possible in some other world. I fail to see how the possibilities of some other world reflect on the probabilities in this one.

              You offer ideas that you say are logically possible because you can conceive of them. But I have also argued that being able to conceive of a thing does not make it logically possible. It is also pretty subjective because you might be able to conceive of things that others cannot.

              I propose that flawed books are worse than perfect ones. Examples have been given to support that in this world. You suggest that flawed books are better. But you have not offered a single example of that in this world to make your case. So instead, you suggest that it might be possible in some other world. How about you produce that world and show us that your proposal is possible.

              That would be for you to take up on your own time. I really don’t care what is barely possible in some other reality because I am stuck in this one. And in this one, every example we can think of demonstrates the improbability of your claim. You are the one making claims without even attempting to meet your burden of proof. We need more that a claim that flawed books are better in some other world. We don’t need to defeat that unfounded claim. If you want to stick with it, you need to prove it.

              Thanks.

              Liked by 3 people

  5. Dale,

    You nearly caused me to run off the road for a second time when you introduced the bible errors=more souls saved Molinist defeater Can you think of a single example of where errors in an important document is a good thing? I’m struggling. Could span length errors in bridge design specifications result in better bridges? Not likely. Could errors in operative manuals for endoscopic abdominal surgery describing incision placement locations result in better patient outcomes? No. Would errors in the constitution of the United States be acceptable? No. Would it be acceptable to have errors in the food guide pyramid released by the USDA? No. What about spelling errors in the Oxford dictionary?

    And yet you think that errors in a book which supposedly has such a crucial role in the eternal fate of humanity could be superior. I’m not convinced.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I might interact with this post a bit more if even one Christian shows up to support your claim that a bible with errors is better than one without. For now, I’ll just wait.

      Like

      1. .

        N.T. Wright and David Bentley Hart won’t likely drop in here to answer your question. They are too busy having ‘fist a cuffs’ over how to interpret of the Bible. Cearly the very fact that they are having ‘fist a cuffs’ directly answers your question dandbj.

        https://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2018/january-web-only/n-t-wright-david-bentley-hart-bible-translation-debate.html

        Love and Light
        Tara

        ps. OH! The next Panpsychist convention is in Switzerland. Should I sign you up? Confirmed In depth Workshop Panpsychism and Dual Aspect Monism. I know you’re having fun bouncing around inside the Atheist/ Materialist bubble, it’s cold in Switzerland and you likely don’t ski. Fine then…ha ha. https://www.tsc2019-interlaken.ch/program

        Liked by 1 person

        1. For all the reasons you gave, it makes Sarah the obvious choice. 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

    2. Dale,

      (In response to: “There is that utter bias again…”)

      Why is it “utter bias” to point out what I see as reasoning flaws? Sure there may be some negligible probability that bible errors are better than no bible errors, just as there is a negligible probability that I might get struck by a meteorite if I drive my car today. But I wouldn’t use the latter possibility as a reason to not drive today, nor should you use the former as a reason to defend bible errors. That is not rational reasoning.

      As I said in my previous post, I can’t think of examples where errored writings lead to better outcomes. Can you? And yet you want to posit this extraordinary exception for your pet book. And this is all the more unbelievable because we are supposedly talking about verbally inspired writings from the creator of the universe. Psalm 119:160 declares: “All your words are true; all your righteous laws are eternal.” Is this one of the places the bible has it wrong? Perhaps it should have read, “Most of your words are true” but then that would introduce one of those nasty logical paradoxes I guess.

      Like

      1. Dale,

        (In response to “I was reacting to your uncritical reaction…”)

        You must remember that I’m a tad older than you and my brain has had more time for developing its filter for picking up reasoning flaws even when I can’t immediately articulate them. Hence my reaction.

        Your response here seems quite defensive and I don’t think you’ve interacted with my argument.

        I don’t know how to interact with your percentages. It’s not clear to me that you have defined your measure functions at any point.

        I had a discussion about your MD with my wife (also a PhD in maths – and a Christian) and her initial response was that it was unfalsifiable and probably unconvincing for most people. She did challenge me insofar as errors in documents never being beneficial. She suggested cases where an error might conceal information so as to protect an individual, e.g. a gene test that reveals you have the APOE-4 gene variant (which increase your risk of Alzheimers). If this is known by an insurance company, you may not be able to get life insurance. So an error here concealing that information might be good for an individual. I’ll ponder this a bit more.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Still listening and enjoying the conversation.

    Since I’m the only one who commented on the Habermas post, I assume you were discussing my comments early in this show? If so, I thought you characterized my comments uncharitably. And you left out my acknowledgment that this was an intro conversation and upper level which properly contextualizes my comments.

    Not a big deal, just wanted to make sure Gary won’t be offput as it’ll be great to get him back on and dive deeper.

    Like

    1. Thx Dale, sorry to hear about the other stuff. I hope he’ll reconsider because I think exploring the overlap between “God’s ok with you doubting” and “Hell awaits those who still doubt upon death” is a topic worth getting into.

      Like

    2. .

      .Don’t blame Tara, or forum comments, or Still Unbelievable for upsetting Gary Habermas Dale. YOU UPSET GARY……by saying you would kill me if your morally perfect God commanded you to do so. There is likely some rambling introspection going on inside the mind of dear dear Habermas. He’s thinking…… “Did I contribute to making Dale a moral monster?” For 8 year you’ve chatted with GH, and for 8 years he’s told you to ignore your emotional reactions to the Biblical God…..so where are you now son? You are a young man devoid of empathy and love for other people. Thank you Gary Habermas for that. : (

      Love and Light
      Tara…. the one you called a Hussy and the one you said you would kill.

      ( Just in case there is another Tara you are talking to who isn’t a hussy, but that you would kill, Unlike the Bible…..I am trying hard to be crystal clear.)

      Like

  7. Thanks again for the show fellas. I too like the longer format. The longer the better.

    Once again, I’m very sorry Dale, but I find it hard to follow some of your rationalising. I’m the first to admit I’ve not done the research like you have but I’m always left scratching my head wondering why it just feels intrinsically backwards at times. Admitting there’s a possible molinistic explanation is, yes, possible, if that’s what you need to hear someone say, but as David highlights, we’re stuck in this reality. And, we have an abundance of evidence that the Bible confusions and downright awful passages HAVE led to untold sufferings. He’s just a few:-
    – the crusades
    – all the wars fought in the name of the Christian religion
    – the witches burning
    – the Magdalene sisters and other Catholic institutions for unmarried mothers
    – LGBT people committing suicide on the basis of rejection from family, friends and churches. A huge part of this is the Christian mindset and beliefs. If it was left to secular folk, the issue would be put to bed by now.
    – the constant infighting on this issue tearing the church apart.
    – all the mentally ill people who chose not to get help because they wanted to ‘lean only on God’
    – snake handlers that took some verses literally.
    – christian parents that use physical punishment. In my day we were whipped with leather belts and the like. Perfectly acceptable apparently because you shouldn’t spare the rod.
    – the terrified kids with neurosis as adults on the doctrine of hell.
    – the guilt, condemnation and self-hatred of many puritans believing they’re sinful and should be grateful of the smallest mercy to save their soul. –> mental health issues.
    – the Canadian indigenous history (ask Tara, I know nothing)
    – Creationism being a thing.
    – Celibacy for priests and the weird way this lonely existence manifests itself (through unhealthy sexual repression)
    – Northern Ireland and Protestant v Catholic
    – the purity culture – more repression and shame
    – unhappy marriages – were people feel they can’t leave when they absolutely should get out.
    – unhappy childhoods from parents that were far too puritanical in thinking and expected too much.
    – Trump’s election. nuff said.
    – the lack of concern for climate change by one of the worst offenders (that’s you, USA,) because evangelicals think there’s a second coming and earth Mark II.
    – Missionaries trashing local cultures.
    – The hundreds of WASTED Sunday mornings I spent in services when I could have been developing more useful skills or reading the philosophers – surely you’d agree on that?!!! I mean what did I learn, clearly nowt?!!!. 😉

    Do I really need to go on? I mean pick a problem and you can nearly always trace it back to some Judaeo-Christian root.

    As for your comments such as- would, Constantine have converted with a perfect Bible? Huh! – well, why wouldn’t he? A clearer book could mean more converts, not fewer. Almost all of us can see this, yet you don’t. It’s a bit weird if I’m honest. And if God couldn’t achieve his will without Judas betraying Jesus, then he’s a bit pathetic. Also, NO NEED TO KILL ANYONE to forgive people. Jesus didn’t need to die at all. In fact, if the Torah had been clearer, there’s probably no need to send him down in the first place. If saving souls is genuinely your take on God’s entire mission, he’s already grossly failed to the point of being hauled up to the Hague to be tried for crimes against humanity. He makes Hitler look decent.

    I mean bless your cotton socks and all that Dale, but it feels like your defence is like spinning the ‘Dale of Fortune’. Roll up, roll up. Ever problem solved with 53% ACCURACY.

    Problem with the bible?- Say you have a police Warrant that Christianity is true.

    Science telling you otherwise? Go with science and claim you’re not dogmatic on this point (eg you lean towards old earth. Hand wave away that the Bible is clearly and demonstrably plain wrong as not being an issue)

    BSC passages and stories? – claim non literal.

    Really BSC passages and stories? – claim literal when it suits agenda.

    Issues that have plagued the church for millennia that no one has ever come to a conclusion about?- come out in support of Licona or Habermas and claim they are correct.

    Issues that have plagued the church for millennia that no one has ever come to a conclusion about but Licona or Habermas say they have a theory on that you don’t like? Claim they are not correct and your take is different with 99% probability of being right.

    People aren’t buying your evangelism? – blame their stupidity, their hard heart or lack of research. React dumbfounded when some say they’re not *that* into this stuff.

    Be faced with the immorality of the hell doctrine? – Redefine hell and prove it using the Bible.

    Genuinely a bit uncomfortable with the notion? Insert new goal post (point of no return) that can be at any time pre/post-death despite millennia of Christian doctrine saying otherwise and saying it’s the point of death. Provide no evidence for this but for god sake, don’t move to universalism. Because *that* does away with all the burning and let’s be honest makes the whole less fun.

    Contradictions? Check if Salvific, or not? Happily dismiss if not. (Firstly, decide what Salvific means to you)

    Errors highlighted? – claim person hasn’t researched enough.

    Seeking and not finding? redefine terms of the game and move goal posts. Insert word ‘True’ when talking about seekers. Dismiss ALL evidence of people saying they did the best they could.

    Scholar tells you one thing that you don’t like? – state they’re plain wrong. Cite that you’ve researched more.

    Confused as hell (ref many denominations and conflicting theology?) Add caveats like ‘undue’ to confusion.

    When all else fails? – claim Molinism.

    Ask for proof of molinism? shift burden.

    Terrible passages impacting the lives of everyday people in everyday ways? claim max amount of souls being saved right now.

    Have pointed out people, such as LGBT, commit suicide over this stuff and there have been wars, family fall outs, denomination splits and consequently bad witness of unity? Repeat max no of souls theory.

    Be given more evidence that the bible lack of clarity is a major problem? Semi admit it, but claim max souls (just with less conviction).

    Be given more evidence? Say you have to study more but either way it only makes a +/-1% on the figures, so it’s still true.

    Things are totally nonsensical? attribute a random probability to it being correct, then times everything by it so it’s ok.

    Everyone fumbling about on an issue that you confess you have no idea about? revert to holy spirit inspiration.

    Holy spirit absent? – revert to internal morality.

    I hope you take this in the intended good-natured joshing it was written in, but honestly, it’s coming across like that to me.

    And I don’t see Jesus doing it. He doesn’t seem to care what people’s theology is, he never really asks them. In fact he’s very critical of the armchair philosophers and religious experts. It’s the one group of people he seems to despise. He’s all about the loving and helping, which I have no problem with.

    Finally, I find it telling that if the numbers no longer add up and your Bayesian probability changes because of some new evidence, then you would move to agnosticism. Doesn’t that strike you as odd? I mean, yet again, here is a Christian who has it all figured out (certainly more than most) and the relationship with God is so nondescript you’d abandon it all for maths?! You’re supposed to be in communion with this deity, being touched by his spirit, Jesus is living IN you, (whatever that means) – shouldn’t that be more than sufficient to convince you?? Plenty of Christians would say you were therefore never a real one as when you’ve met God, you really *know*.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I really should just leave this alone. But I am recovering from a minor bug and sitting around not working.

      You used the example of marriage. Perfect! Both Paul and Jesus suggest that being unmarried is better, though they both allowed marriage for the animals like me who just couldn’t control themselves. It is perfectly reasonable for the Catholic church to require their ministers to obtain the highest state to be a priest. If the bible is wrong about the unmarried state being better, then there is undue confusion. I know you will not see this. But I had to try. Carry on.

      D

      Like

    2. David Richardson February 1, 2019 — 7:40 pm

      Wow! Such an excellent summary sarahinthealps!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Since it looks like Dale is back to deleting large swaths of his comments, I’ll direct my feedback to David.

    I really think you guys need to take a step back and evaluate what you’re trying to accomplish here. You are discussing things at a level far deeper than is productive, so it comes off like a joint press conference. There are large topics (epistemology, evidence, the scientific method, modal logic etc) that you guys are worlds apart on. It’s almost impossible to have a productive debate if you’re in different auditoriums altogether.

    That said, it was good to hear a lot of you and your arguments this week, David. I found myself nodding quite a bit.

    I wish you both the best.

    Bryan

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It has been a very busy week for me. But I wanted to take the time to address your comment because I actually share your sentiment. Dale and I are doing a lot of whistling past one another. There are a couple of factors:

      1. I am making my cases and responses and the lowest possible level I can use to make the case. When it comes to making arguments, simplicity is a virtue. Never use an argument more complicated than is absolutely necessary. I’m not sure if Dale shares that view. He can make his case anyway he likes.

      But I refuse to interact with him at an academic level. I could probably pull it off most of the time. But the fact is, I’m not an academic. That is not what my faith was based on. And it is not what my lack of faith is based on. I think some of the problem you sense is that Dale uses a lot of high-concept philosophy and draws from academic authority. He is having a different conversation than the one I am comfortable having.

      If you read Still Unbelievable, you will notice that none of my chapters were based on authority or philosophy, but simple to follow reason and counter-theology. That is what and who I am. And I will not be something else to debate Dale. I don’t think it is necessary. But we do end up speaking different languages.

      2. I refuse to engage with Dale’s Molinism defeaters. I have addressed them in print and on air as much as I can. And I don’t care to play that game any more. I find them silly and contemptible. The only thing they defeat are rational conversations. And I want no part of them. I have no interest in debating his position once the Molinism comes out. I have mentally checked out of the debate. That is not fair to the listener. But I have reached my limit of having to deal with all of Dale’s imaginary worlds scenarios.

      I will go back to simply stating my case and ignoring his to the extent that such a thing is possible in a format like S&S. Interacting with any part of his case is a waste of time as it is just a matter of time before he trots out his favorite conversational defeaters.

      I think people, even Christians, are seeing through his tactics and finding them wanting. Once he gets to the point of saying that a flawed bible is better than a perfect one, I lose any appetite for the discussion, and future discussions. It doesn’t feel honest anymore. I’m not suggesting that Dale is being dishonest. But his form of argumentation is alienating, even to me. I know he doesn’t intend it that way.

      As a former Christian evangelist, I can tell you that no part of me respects the types of arguments Dale tends to make. I was not that type of Christian. And I would have scorned his points even then. He would be better off, and happier debating someone who cares about the deeply academic, intellectual, and philosophical. They would at least appreciate where he is coming from. Most of the time, I just don’t get it.

      I am never going to take something like the Ontological argument seriously. Yet it is something of a foundational core for Dale. I will work out a system for making the conversations more fruitful to the listener. But it will be a while. I have to take a moment to reset. Don’t bother asking me what that means because I have no idea.

      David

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Thanks, David. I largely share your view and sympathize greatly. The problem at large is, these esoteric philosophical arguments sans evidence get to hang around because few people are willing to pick up the mantle and debate them head on. Make them present a positive case for these phenomena and methods of knowing that are asserted, not demonstrated.

        So, let me make a suggestion that you more frequently try the tactic of playing the “convince-able skeptic” rather than the polemical anti-theist and see if you can’t coax out some argumentation we can sink our teeth into.

        Best regards, Bryan

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Thanks for the advice. Much appreciated. It is hard for me to play that role because for one, it is just not who I am. If I think the argument is bad, I’m not going to pretend to contemplate it. I will point out why I think it is bad.

          Second, we spend time before the show trying to hammer out the issues were are going to run into. I have already tried to reason with him on much of it before the mic comes on. We both back down on some points during that time. But the worst of the way Dale chooses to argue persists onto the recording. At that point, I have already had enough pretending to reason with him on the point.

          I think an even better solution would be to bring on a different skeptic from time to time. I have tried, with no success.

          Liked by 1 person

      2. David Richardson February 1, 2019 — 7:46 pm

        “Interacting with any part of his case is a waste of time as it is just a matter of time before he trots out his favorite conversational defeaters.”

        Well said…the only one that gets on my nerves is the Molinistic defeater. it’s like playing cards with Dale knowing he has all the aces up his sleeve each time. At best, it is a conversation shut down when he plays the above card.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. I’ve specifically called it his “trump card” in the past and he gets mad at that. He says skeptics use trump cards too. But I think he fails to see the analogy. I don’t know of any skeptical precept or argument that isn’t up for debate down to the studs. Dale’s defeaters are never on the table for evaluation or discussion. They don’t have to be real, or true or likely or even possible. Just so long as his subjective personal opinion of them is they are equally probable to their alternative, there ends the debate. And good luck trying to get him to reveal his probability calculation to get there.

          It’s building up protective walls rather than bridges to span divides.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. “And good luck trying to get him to reveal his probability calculation to get there.”

            Its because the probabilities are pretty much just made up based on how they subjectively feel about it. I’ve never been able to figure out why making up probabilities is supposed to be convincing, even to ones self, but it seems to be gaining popularity.

            Like

  9. Where have all your posts gone Dale??

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Looks like he’s deleted a lot of his comments on many posts. Makes for strange revisiting of conversations

      Like

      1. I have done my best to reason with Dale and have pled with him to stop doing this. I have done this in private that his feelings could be saved. But sometimes, the only way to get to Dale is in public.

        Everyone should know that I do not approve of this behavior. The only way I can put a stop to it is if Dale just stops doing it, or I revoke that part of his administrative privileges. That is not something I have ever wanted to have to contemplate.

        Deleting posts from comment boards is bad for a number of reasons. I have tried to explain them to him. But he refuses to accept it from me. There are times when I want to respond to something he wrote. Rather than just riding off a snap reaction, I might give it a beat before crafting a suitable response. The only problem is that I have waisted my time because the post has been deleted. It is even more defeating after you have posted your comment.

        Most people just admit that they were wrong about a previous post and move on. That is the honest thing to do. It feels dishonest to just delete any post that makes you look bad upon reflection. So you leave others having a one-sided conversation that puts them in a bad light at no fault of their own. It is like jumping off a see-saw and letting the other person just drop to the ground rather painfully. (I’ve had that happen more than once in my life.) Eventually, you learn not to get on with that person in the first place.

        Perhaps Dale will come around and stop deleting posts all on his own. It would be better for Dale not to comment at all than to repeatedly delete unfavorable posts. This is something we will continue to patiently work on. Thanks for your patience, everyone.

        David

        Liked by 2 people

        1. I’m fairly certain that shortly after you posted this, Dale made a post and then quickly deleted it. I didn’t realize this was supposed to be a comedy podcast 🙂 Slapsticks and Shriekers maybe…

          Like

          1. You are a prophet twice over.

            Liked by 1 person

      2. David Richardson February 1, 2019 — 7:48 pm

        The last time Dale did this he abandoned the Unbelievable? message board and took all his comments with him. If this is happening again, then I must wonder what is going on inside his head at this point. Perhaps the % have dropped in his equations.

        Like

    2. Ok …. I’m on Grama duty but kids are zzzzzing.

      So there seems to be a grrrrr going on below (or somewhere) about ‘dirty deleting.’ I’m certainly willing to be argued out of my position… but imo …. I can do what I F’n want with my own F’n forum posts!!!

      Ohh not very granny like eh?

      I rewrite my posts often because after the fact when I read them, because tone is difficult to translate I writing, I sound far more harsh than I intend. So I’m usually trying to correct the tone. However I can m, and have done, and may in the future wipe out ALL of my public posts. Because they are MY public posts. I’m fully aware that someone may have made a copy … so be it. There’s rarely anything I say that I am ashamed off, but when I feel I owe someone an apology I’ll gladly give them one .

      If deleting posts makes the conversation disjointed then the person who I’m chatting with can likewise delete their posts .

      This is the nature of the www. Get over it folks .

      As for Dale leaving SS? I wish him only the best . His brain is mush because he was raised to believe in an immoral God. Dandbj13 tried extremely hard to break through Dales childhood indoctrination.. with little success. Regrettably now Dale can go onward on his own ….warping more young minds via Jesus Toast because he now has the ‘know how’to create his own podcasts. Yippee… thank you David. 😬 Maybe he’ll follow after Habermas and mangle more young minds who are ‘doubting.’

      As to philosophical questions they are extremely important, but until Ex’s purge themselves completely of Christianity… they haven’t time to purge themselves of Scientific Materialism.

      Should I post this? Is it harsh? Does it make sense? Hard to tell on an iPhone . Ahhh who cares. I’ll push the send button!
      Lol
      Love and Light
      Tara

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Dale,

    The so called dirty deleting is frowned upon because it is considered poor manners, and disrespectful towards people who you were conversing with. It says you don’t value people’s time and efforts. It also comes across as selfish and immature (not taking responsibilities for what you have written etc.).

    That is how I see it at least, therefore this will be my last comment towards you. Nothing personal, but I am not going to waste my time leaving comments, only to see them abandoned without contexts.

    Like

  11. My friend, I have no more stomach to talk Molinistic defeaters with you. But you are missing a crucial point even now. You think we don’t understand it. That’s where you are wrong. We just don’t accept it as a legitimate argument. It is full of holes for all the reasons I have publicly given, and more.

    Your problem is you think if a person disagrees with you, they are deficient in some way. They just haven’t studied the material hard enough. That is how GH seems to feel about his minimum facts thesis. Everyone would agree with him if they only studied what he has to say. You are both wrong! We get it. We’ve picked it up, examined it, put it back down, and washed our hands.

    There is a reason why most Christian apologists don’t use your style of argumentation to bolster Christianity. The logic is faulty and it doesn’t work to convince anyone of anything. You can petulantly blame the audience for not agreeing with you. But don’t suggest we are too stupid to understand your great and mighty philosophical concept. You think you are frustrated when we don’t cave to your defeaters. Just imagine how much worse it is for us when you resurrect that dead thing once again.

    I, for one, am tired of trying to take it seriously. It is not a serious argument. It is logically flawed. Even if perfect, it is not persuasive. And it is you that need to try to find another way to make your point. I have already stopped engaging with it starting with the next podcast. The moment you bring up that type of argument, I will ignore it and move on. You will have to find your own way to deal with it. But lambasting the audience is probably a bad one.

    Liked by 4 people

  12. Dale,

    “Is any of this appreciated by you guys or is David right in the way he characterizes me in response to Bryan?”

    I know I appreciate the effort you put into it. But I’ve also said it before, if you aren’t going into detail, you aren’t being clear in your argument.

    Like

    1. Thanks Darren,

      Hmm- well you have to see my dilemma then b/c people like Bryan and David are saying its too much whereas others like you want more- I was trying so hard to find a happy compromise- so with my soul series for example, I was trying to put everything into 4 parts plus the debate with Andrew b/c putting in the 10+ episodes I did on the Shroud was way too detailed. I feel caught in the middle as I try to accommodate both sides of giving more detail than is usually in a one episode debate but not so much that people grow tired of the topic.

      Its also why I feel so strongly about including the sources for people to branch out and get that depth from people who aren’t monotone as Limey pointed out about me or whatever. I also feel strongly about keeping technical terms in here to help them contextualize the issue and I hate that I’m accused of trying to “trick” people with my fancy philosophy talk, that’s not what I’m doing to my mind at all.

      Now, on the deleting thing- as I said to you before, I was surprised to hear this and I think it is ridiculous personally as Disqus allows everyone and anyone to with their comments as they see fit so I don’t understand why its different here- everyone should have the freedom to delete or edit their own comments as they see fit in my opinion. Honestly, I even said back in early Jan when I reactivated my account I told everyone up front that after listening to David and Ken, etc.- I still reserve the right to delete my comments, so I never agreed to keep them on here no matter what. Anthony and Ken both saw it and responded to that comment, so I’m baffled as to why they pretend I wasn’t upfront on this.

      Let me ask this then, as perhaps this may be why people take such strong issue with dirty deleting on here- when you signed up for your WordPress account did it say in the terms and conditions that you don’t have the right to edit/delete your comments, I’m wondering if this is some weird feature of WordPress itself or if David has set up the system to prevent you guys from doing so- if its the latter than I will stick up for your guys rights to him as I think it should be the same rules for everyone just as it is with Discqus.

      If it is the former, then this reason and this reason alone could force me to make a promise never to delete my comments again, but understand in that event I will be very hesitant to make comments in the first place as I’ve realized that one’s comments can potentially be taken and used out of context and this can have consequences. Its why I feel strongly that people should be able to control their own comments and take measures to prevent them from being taken out of context. Obviously, I’m not trying to hide my opinions, they remain the same in the blogs and Podcasts and regardless of any consequences I will always be proud to stand up for those, but the comments are another story, this is something extra that I do of my own initiative to have real convos with you guys in the moment (I’m not thinking about using them in a blog or someone 5 years from now reading them) and it doesn’t always represent the best of ourselves, so this is why I feel its right that each person has the final vote on what happens to their comments.

      As to Ken, I respect his decision and think that is entirely fine, when I told everyone I reserve the right to delete my comments, I told the people that means they have the right to decide to converse with me or not- so I fully understand Ken’s position and am fine with it.

      But yeah, if there is any comments that you or anyone else on here wish to delete for whatever reason, I will certainly honour that request as you guys aren’t able to do it yourselves. I think people are smarter than we give them credit, if I see a string of 2-3 comments by the same person in a row and they seem to be speaking to someone not there, I think people can put 2 and 2 together and realize someone must have deleted their comments- its not a big deal.

      That’s my take, but I will concede that its not fair if the terms and conditions of WordPress prevent regular commenters from deleting their own comments- if that is the case then I will need to decide whether I should ever comment again or agree never to delete a comment again- but I refuse to be bound by a made up rule called “dirty deleting”- I’ve yet to see a biblical command, law and/or clause in the terms and conditions of WordPress telling me its not allowed, so if I am wrong on any one of those fronts then I will be happy to announce my decision to be fair for you regular posters.

      Like

      1. I’m going to copy and paste your post so you can’t get rid of it. I would not comment again on the matter but you had to drag me into it. Here’s the deal:

        1. I have nothing to do with WordPress comment deletions. If there is some setting that allows it, I don’t know about it. So this has nothing to do with me.

        2. You are so far up your own ass on this point, you have crossed over into ridiculousness. This is not about a biblical law, or a moral law, or even a contractual law. It is a social law. You know, that glue that binds us social creatures together?

        I didn’t invent the mores about dirty deleting. None of us did. We learned it as we learned to navigate social networks and discussion forums. You are just so arrogant that you can’t listen to instruction from anyone about anything. Your properly basic belief that you are right on this is misleading you. You could be technically right and absolutely wrong. This is in fact the case.

        So I will take the matter out of your hands and revoke your ability to delete comments for a season. I know this might cause you to want to discontinue your efforts on this site. And I have been as fair to you as I can be. But you are going to have to learn how to relate to people. And that means adhering to social rules as wells as contractural ones. I’m sorry if this harms our friendship. But this is what’s going to happen. This matter is closed!

        David

        From Dale:

        Thanks Darren,

        Hmm- well you have to see my dilemma then b/c people like Bryan and David are saying its too much whereas others like you want more- I was trying so hard to find a happy compromise- so with my soul series for example, I was trying to put everything into 4 parts plus the debate with Andrew b/c putting in the 10+ episodes I did on the Shroud was way too detailed. I feel caught in the middle as I try to accommodate both sides of giving more detail than is usually in a one episode debate but not so much that people grow tired of the topic.

        Its also why I feel so strongly about including the sources for people to branch out and get that depth from people who aren’t monotone as Limey pointed out about me or whatever. I also feel strongly about keeping technical terms in here to help them contextualize the issue and I hate that I’m accused of trying to “trick” people with my fancy philosophy talk, that’s not what I’m doing to my mind at all.

        Now, on the deleting thing- as I said to you before, I was surprised to hear this and I think it is ridiculous personally as Disqus allows everyone and anyone to with their comments as they see fit so I don’t understand why its different here- everyone should have the freedom to delete or edit their own comments as they see fit in my opinion. Honestly, I even said back in early Jan when I reactivated my account I told everyone up front that after listening to David and Ken, etc.- I still reserve the right to delete my comments, so I never agreed to keep them on here no matter what. Anthony and Ken both saw it and responded to that comment, so I’m baffled as to why they pretend I wasn’t upfront on this.

        Let me ask this then, as perhaps this may be why people take such strong issue with dirty deleting on here- when you signed up for your WordPress account did it say in the terms and conditions that you don’t have the right to edit/delete your comments, I’m wondering if this is some weird feature of WordPress itself or if David has set up the system to prevent you guys from doing so- if its the latter than I will stick up for your guys rights to him as I think it should be the same rules for everyone just as it is with Discqus.

        If it is the former, then this reason and this reason alone could force me to make a promise never to delete my comments again, but understand in that event I will be very hesitant to make comments in the first place as I’ve realized that one’s comments can potentially be taken and used out of context and this can have consequences. Its why I feel strongly that people should be able to control their own comments and take measures to prevent them from being taken out of context. Obviously, I’m not trying to hide my opinions, they remain the same in the blogs and Podcasts and regardless of any consequences I will always be proud to stand up for those, but the comments are another story, this is something extra that I do of my own initiative to have real convos with you guys in the moment (I’m not thinking about using them in a blog or someone 5 years from now reading them) and it doesn’t always represent the best of ourselves, so this is why I feel its right that each person has the final vote on what happens to their comments.

        As to Ken, I respect his decision and think that is entirely fine, when I told everyone I reserve the right to delete my comments, I told the people that means they have the right to decide to converse with me or not- so I fully understand Ken’s position and am fine with it.

        But yeah, if there is any comments that you or anyone else on here wish to delete for whatever reason, I will certainly honour that request as you guys aren’t able to do it yourselves. I think people are smarter than we give them credit, if I see a string of 2-3 comments by the same person in a row and they seem to be speaking to someone not there, I think people can put 2 and 2 together and realize someone must have deleted their comments- its not a big deal.

        That’s my take, but I will concede that its not fair if the terms and conditions of WordPress prevent regular commenters from deleting their own comments- if that is the case then I will need to decide whether I should ever comment again or agree never to delete a comment again- but I refuse to be bound by a made up rule called “dirty deleting”- I’ve yet to see a biblical command, law and/or clause in the terms and conditions of WordPress telling me its not allowed, so if I am wrong on any one of those fronts then I will be happy to announce my decision to be fair for you regular posters.

        Like

      2. “Hmm- well you have to see my dilemma then b/c people like Bryan and David are saying its too much whereas others like you want more- I was trying so hard to find a happy compromise-”

        When you are dealing with thousands of different people, I think a happy compromise is nice if you can find it, but probably not practical. Another way to look at it, if you have the same number of people on each side saying you should go farther their way, maybe that is the indication that you have found the compromise.

        “……I hate that I’m accused of trying to “trick” people with my fancy philosophy talk, that’s not what I’m doing to my mind at all.”

        I don’t think you are trying to trick people, but I also understand why people would be accusing you of trying to trick people. Just like every other field of study, Philosophy has its own lexicon. And you are talking to people that don’t know that language.

        Perhaps you can translate that lexicon into every day language rather than using the philosophical jargon?

        “Now, on the deleting thing- as I said to you before, I was surprised to hear this and I think it is ridiculous personally as Disqus allows everyone and anyone to with their comments as they see fit so I don’t understand why its different here…..”

        Probably because wordpress doesn’t want to deal with complex issues on their site. WordPress also has a open source platform that you can host yourself that allows for a lot more customization. But it requires a lot of third party plugins to make it happen.

        “Let me ask this then, as perhaps this may be why people take such strong issue with dirty deleting on here- when you signed up for your WordPress account did it say in the terms and conditions that you don’t have the right to edit/delete your comments,”

        Not that I am aware of, but I also tend not to read the terms and conditions. It is a social understanding, not a contractual one. Its one of those things where culture and custom hold sway.

        “I’m wondering if this is some weird feature of WordPress itself or if David has set up the system to prevent you guys from doing so-…..”

        No, I don’t think it was David. I’m guessing it is the default setting for WordPress. I have no clue if it is a setting that can be changed or not. I always build my own sites, so I very rarely have the opportunity to interact with easy build sites like WordPress or WIX.

        Like

        1. Cool, thanks Darren I wasn’t sure if WordPress itself was quirky or if David himself had set it up this way. Anyways, this will be my last comment as David feels he has the right to take away my ability to control my own comments and decide what is best for me or not. I see I’m only free to make decisions pertaining to my own affairs so long as my decision corresponds to what David deems proper- that is not a partnership, that’s a dictatorship!

          I wish all of the listeners the best but as David has crossed the line here- S&S is over at least for me it is, you can remove me as an admin on this thing now.

          Like

          1. Wow chaps. I go out for 3 days of sofa ridden head cold, worse than any man flu imaginable, and come back to a scene of Lord of the flies.
            Dale, I’m sorry you feel hounded, but given the inbalance of skeptics: seekers, I’d say there was a high chance it might happen. (I’m not one for ascribing probabilities tho) 😉 It wasn’t a fair fight given the skew in numbers, but you’ve been a gentleman and thank you for all your time and effort.

            To delete or not to delete, that seems to be the question. Social convention v bucking social convention.
            We’re not writing gospels, in the scheme of the universe, it matters little. The only thing you should concern yourself with is, is this serving me? Does it enrich/ help me flourish /bring me joy? That’s your decision alone to make.

            Sorry your molinistic defeater didn’t land. I think it helps those within the fold. Not so much those outside. Maybe you can be content with having discovered that.

            I doubt this is adieu since you’ve priors of ‘doing a Jesus’ and disappearing then coming back 3 days later 😉 so time will tell.

            Laters

            Ps the dog did go to doggy heaven on Friday where every sniff he was refused in life will be explained. I guess that’s 1:0 to Consciousness v Yahweh 😉 😉

            Like

      3. David Richardson February 1, 2019 — 7:58 pm

        “Its why I feel strongly that people should be able to control their own comments and take measures to prevent them from being taken out of context. Obviously, I’m not trying to hide my opinions,”

        Dale: This is not rational at all. Deleting comments IS trying to hide your opinion on issues. Otherwise, it’s rude to delete and makes people suspicious that you are changing the game rules half way through the game.

        Like

  13. Dale,

    ” it is why we have a delete option on discussion boards- ”

    On this board you and David are the only ones that have a delete button.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. .

    That’s the kicker ….deleting is ONLY acceptable if it’s equally available, and only available in regards to your own posts, not those of others.

    YES… I’m speaking to you Dale.

    Love and Light
    Tara.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create your website at WordPress.com
Get started
%d bloggers like this:
search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close