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Leverager of our synergies
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It's not only this thread. XML-DEV forum has similar dynamics:
"For those who wish to keep track of the xml-dev topic agenda:
(1) last week: debating namespaces/URIs
(2) current week: debating types/syntax
(3) next week: debating WXS/Relax NG
(4) week 4: debating W3C/open rebellion
(5) week 5: debating XML/non-XML
(6) week 6: debating REST/SOAP
(7) week 7: bashing/defending Working Draft of choice
(8) week 8: back to (1)
(9) insert every 26th week: bad haiku or limericks
Please be sure to keep all new threads pertinent to the scheduled topic. We got a rhythm going."
http://lists.xml.org/archives/xml-dev/200208/msg00554.html
 
"The Hood"
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Please pardon my confusion Shura - but why does the belief that "making moral choices is just part of our nature" negate the possibility that "making moral choices might be the stepping stone on which eternal souls are nutured"?
Note that I prefer not to use the word "divine" when refering to human souls :roll: - they may be eternal - they may be a huge step up from living beings without eternal souls - but that hardly makes them "divine".
Also note that being eternal is not really that big a stretch. All you have to do is figure out how to escape from this 4 dimensional prison of a universe that we are currently trapped in . It is just very DIFFICULT to think of a place where time is not in effect.
Step 1 - get rid of that 3 dimensional body that you tote around. Dying will help out with this part of it.
Step 2 - I figure that it takes some sort of skill / talent / "state of spirit" in order to manage to break through whatever boundries hold us in here. Thats where the religion part comes in. Left to our own devices we WON'T get the job done (or worse: manage to get out - but not to any place that you would WANT to go).
Christianity teaches that Jesus has already figured out how to do this - and if we align our spirit with his, that we will follow in the path that he has already created.
Other religions teach that you can train your spirit to reach a state where you can get the job done by yourself.
None of which contradicts the fact that it is all a very natural thing that we are talking about. Mother Nature in all her glory does not necessarily stop at 3 dimensional things. Nothing supernatural about it. Just things that we do not understand very well - yet.
 
mister krabs
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Originally posted by Shura Balaganov:
Aha, as well as why do we think that our civilization is linearly growing, whe everythig else seems to have cycles? Why do we think that whatever level we are at right now wasn't achieved before?

This isn't going to turn into one of those threads explaining how the ancient Egyptians had atomic clocks and radios, is it? Because if it is, I would rather just take a pass and go play in "Word Association"!
 
Sheriff
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Shura: Since humans needed wisdom to survive, it was unlikely that they would dump their most wise men. That was no different from survival tactics; what does it have to do with compassion?

C'mon Shura, since when is wisdom necessary for survival?

wis�dom
n.
1. The ability to discern or judge what is true, right, or lasting; insight.
2. Common sense; good judgment: �It is a characteristic of wisdom not to do desperate things� (Henry David Thoreau).


Keeping the old guy around is not a survival trait. In fact, it's far more in the interest of survival to let the old guy die as it saves food and other vital resources, and helps prevent the spread of disease and illness which he is more likely to contract due to the reduced capacity of his immune system.
Intelligence has always been Man's primary survival trait. While intelligence + experience can lead to wisdom, which certainly can't hurt the chance for one's survival, these traits are independant. My cats can learn based on their level of intelligence, along with experience, which actions are most or least beneficial to them, but I think that is quite a leap from saying they show any level of "wisdom".
 
Ranch Hand
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Cindy, why did we get born with 3D body then? What caused our free-spirited, n-dimentional selves to reincarnate into humans? Also, about Jesus...I can almost see him trying to teach his high values, trying...trying...and people keep misunderstanding him...misunderstanding...to a point where a guy should just get pissed off...and then we get Bible with its gazillion of possible explanations... of course, I am simplifying thing here....

Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
This isn't going to turn into one of those threads explaining how the ancient Egyptians had atomic clocks and radios, is it?



Well, they did a heck of a job building Pyramids...which we could do now, no question... Here's a question. If our civilization goes into decline, and most of us die (god forbid ,for whatever reason)..later humans regroup and come back, re-discover ironworking, construction, whatever.... If archeologists then go to some remote african village and discover ancient tribe that used stone tools, would they conclude that all people during our age were at that level?
Ok, I am jusdt pushing my imagination here a little....
Jason, I think you have a point there in formula:
intelligence + experience <= wisdom
Lemma 1. intelligence + experience has a finite limit.
Lemma 2. wisdom includes all insights, or revelations ("discoveries") as a subset
Lemma 3. intelligence + experience might not reach a revelation
Lemma 4. if intelligence + experience led to revelation, it will require more intelligence + experience to reach next revelation
if you read this far, you might not have much on your hands to do....oh maybe you are a moderator, and required to read all the junk people post
Jason, Keeping very old guys is not survival trait. Keeping moderately old guys is. In ancient times people couldn't live too old anyway; being 30-40 probably was considered "very old". But according to our current society that's a primary working age...on second thought maybe you are right, these guys are too old...
Shura
 
Cindy Glass
"The Hood"
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Originally posted by Shura Balaganov:
Cindy, why did we get born with 3D body then? What caused our free-spirited, n-dimentional selves to reincarnate into humans?



Who said anything about reincarnation - n-dimentional or not?
The way I figure it is that God is trying to grow souls or spiritual energy or whatever from scratch. I guess that he figures our little finite-dimensional universe makes a nice playpen for nuturing souls until they are strong enough to come out and play .
 
High Plains Drifter
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Originally posted by Jason Menard:

Since when is wisdom necessary for survival?
In fact, it's far more in the interest of survival to let the old guy die as it saves food and other vital resources, and helps prevent the spread of disease and illness...
Intelligence has always been Man's primary survival trait. While intelligence + experience can lead to wisdom, which certainly can't hurt the chance for one's survival, these traits are independant...


I would guess that far more people survival on following received wisdom than they do on their own smarts.
Adaptability to new or changing environments is our primary survival trait, not intellect.
 
Ranch Hand
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You're all having a fascinating discussion here. Out of curiousity, how do all these differing viewpoints define answers to the following?
Question:
What is a sociopath? Jason lists several things a divine soul has, and Thomas lists two, one of which is the ability to make moral choices. Cindy puts a finer point on it with the fish story. You could say that a sociopath makes the wrong moral choices, or you could say that they are "not equipped" to make moral choices. Because a sociopath's perception of their own actions is not informed by guilt, they consequently perceive no moral "wrong" in their own actions and are unable to evaluate them. It seems they don't have much choice in the matter of morality. Does this mean that they lack a divine soul and are not human? Better, is morality possible when a person is aware only of themselves doing right and not of themselves doing wrong?
Question:
Regarding Stu's story about the old primitve man, don't we see the same thing in other pack animals? Better, isn't that the point of a pack - that it acts for the good of all its members? Would you call it compassion or instinct, and what about when wolves do similar? Shura mentions wisdom, but take that a step further.. Primitive or no, we're dealing with humans. My wager is that the old man had specific knowledge - not wisdom - that was highly beneficial to his tribe (a source of food or water no one else knew about, etc.). Being knowledgable but otherwise a burden, maybe he figured that as long as he could keep "paying off" his tribe with the benefits of his knowledge, they would continue to protect him. After all, bartering has existed among humans almost as long as humans have existed.
One more question:
Why all this talk about souls vs. divine souls? Is Descartes' most famous argument irrelevant here? Is it any more possible that animals have a soul than that they are self-aware? There are a comparatively small number of people in the world who do not follow the doctrine of any religion, but how many are there who deny their own existance? I bet less than there are atheists and agnostics, anyway. If the Bible introduces confusion, why not talk about a soul in terms of existentialism? One's no more scientific than the other..
Thanks for the good reading material!
g.
 
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
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A sociopath still knows the difference between right and wrong but they choose to do wrong because it makes them feel good. I have never heard of a sociopath who didn't know that they were committing moral wrongs. They just didn't care.
 
Jason Menard
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Originally posted by Michael Ernest:
Adaptability to new or changing environments is our primary survival trait, not intellect.


Well, since intellect is the ability to learn and reason, it would seem that adaptability is a funtion of intellect.
This should not be confused with the term adaptation ("an alteration or adjustment in structure or habits, often hereditary, by which a species or individual improves its condition in relationship to its environment"), which is an evolutionary mechanism of all creatures.
 
Jason Menard
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Is it any more possible that animals have a soul than that they are self-aware?
If I'm not mistaken, the only animals that have demonstrated any concept of self have been some of the high order apes, orangutans in particular. Of course I'm using "concept of self" in the psychological sense. Human babies don't even show the basics of a concept of self until somewhere between 8-12 months. Thus I'm not sure of I would use self-awareness as evidence of any "divine spark" as it were.
I think we are getting too hung up on Thomas' original use of the term "divine soul" (or maybe we aren't). I think the cruxt of the issue is what is it that separates us from other animals (if anything). If we refer to the Bible, which I guess is as good a place as any other to look, it states that we are created in God's image. By "created in God's image", that does not mean that we physically look like Him, rather that we share some attribute. It is commonly thought that the part of us "in His image" is our soul's. This is distinct from the soul's of animals which are not created in His image.
 
Cindy Glass
"The Hood"
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Well, I have to admit to occasionally secretly wondering about porpoises. They not only show (according to some) the same level of intellect as humans, they show compassion, self awareness and arguably a sense of right and wrong.
 
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