Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Ed Miliband – another atheist takes the helm


He is not, of course, Labour’s first: they have had quite a few, including Michael Foot and Neil Kinnock. Nor is he the only political leader who doesn’t ‘do God’: Nick Clegg has been open about his atheism since he became leader of the Liberal Democrats.

Ed Miliband told BBC Radio Five Live this morning: “I don't believe in God personally but I have great respect for those people who do. Different people have different religious views in this country.”

You don’t say.

But it is not clear (yet) why Mr Miliband is an atheist.

He has disclosed that he is not yet married to his partner of five years and the mother of his children because he has been ‘too busy’.

He has also admitted that the reason he did not sign the birth certificate of his son Daniel was because he was ‘too busy’.

It is curious indeed that a man can be ‘too busy’ to be declared the father of his firstborn.

So, perhaps, rather than it being any considered theo-philosophical worldview, Mr Miliband has hitherto just been ‘too busy’ to do God.

Of course, God knows the truth of this.

Whether Mr Miliband believes in him or not.

There is a certain inescapable ontology. God does not need Mr Miliband to believe in him, but Mr Miliband may come to understand the ‘usefulness’ of doing God in a nation of believers.

For if the foundations of the nation’s moral code cease to be Christian, what will fill the vacuum?

Islam or Marx?

Environmentalism or Nihilism?

No doubt Mr Miliband will be persuaded that the atheist politician will be ‘neutral’ between the different competing religious pressure groups in society, and that he will have no temptation not to be even-handed because he has no allegiance to the outlook of any of those groups.

In this postmodern relativist age, perched precariously between religionists and ‘aggressive secularists’, there are many who repudiate those politicians who cloak themselves in supernaturalistic justifications for their actions.

But why is a higher moral worldview inferior to that of Marx?

Why is atheistic ‘neutrality’ superior the Anglican Settlement which has served the nation well for centuries?

There is an evident dilemma in seeking neutrality of political effect because intrinsic to the pursuit of any policy is the likelihood that it will have a detrimental effect on at least one conception of the good to the manifest benefit of another. There is no neutrality to be had because neutrality needs as much justification as any other position.

Being a materialist, Mr Miliband will attempt to persuade us that he can be more concerned with the needs, interests and the plight of people in the here and now, and will not be influenced by the belief that present sufferings and inequalities will be compensated in some posthumous dispensation.

He is the agent of his own conviction.

And should he become prime minister (in future coalition with fellow atheist Nick Clegg), the prospect of disestablishment of the Church of England will come closer.

Religious organisations will be no more than trades unions. And the moderate and benign incarnation of the English psyche will be subject to the atheist tyranny.

It is ironic that Labour’s first Jewish leader does not ‘do YHWH’.

Perhaps this is because Marx featured more in his upbringing than the Torah.

Ed Miliband might have rejected the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, but he cannot run from his DNA.

The Jewish atheist is extremely unlikely ever to become prime minister of this Protestant country.

The God he doesn’t believe in has not ordained it.

Perhaps he is too busy.

129 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

well said

29 September 2010 at 12:34  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Cranmer your comments betray an extraordinary ignorance of the origin of human morality.

For if the foundations of the nation’s moral code cease to be Christian, what will fill the vacuum? Islam or Marx? Environmentalism or Nihilism?

And what conceit you have that somehow your particular brand of religion is unique in defining a universal moral code.

Confucianism predated the birth of Christ by more than 500 years and was probably the basis of much of what you claim to be Christian ethical thought. Confucius and probably countless thinkers before him knew that humankind had an inbuilt moral compass. What he wouldn’t have appreciated is how that had evolved or how it is transferred from one generation to the next, something that is not difficult for us to understand now.

You don’t need God to be good. Get used to it!

29 September 2010 at 13:00  
Blogger Rachel said...

I'm with you but you'll need to work a bit harder to convince those 'particularly interested in confronting the widely held view that morality derives from religious belief.' This area really needs our attention. Also - disestablishment of the church of England will be no great shakes to those outside of it. Church has always been more authentic and potent outside of a state banner. Perhaps I'm missing something.

29 September 2010 at 13:17  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If it is so universal, how come everyone's conscience tells them a different thing? One person's conscience tells them something is right and another person's tells the it is wrong. Everyone has an 'opinion' of the truth and therefore obviously cannot all be right.

That is because the conscience (although originally perfect) has been corrupted by sin, including yours Graham! The only opinion which matters is God's opinion and His opinion is called 'The Truth.'

How arrogant to think that we sinful humans are the ones who determine right and wrong.

29 September 2010 at 13:19  
Anonymous Theo said...

Graham

Perhaps it is that if we are all made in God's image we have that moral compass; and like Adam we fell, but also like Adam did not lose the knowledge of the difference between good and evil. The moral compass comes with man's unique creation in the image of God.

I became a Christian, like many others, when I recognised my own failure to live up to the standards set by my moral compass (we call it "sin" by the way).

Your observations are indeed encouraging to Christians as they neatly fit into the Judeo-Christian framework of theology.

29 September 2010 at 13:21  
Anonymous Fat Jacques said...

Like Ed, I don't believe in god. Unlike Ed, I don't respect the religious beliefs of others.

1) religious folk show precious little respect to atheists.

2) religious belief makes you stupid, as the idea that morality can only be sourced from a religious book illustrates.

29 September 2010 at 13:43  
Blogger Theo said...

I find atheists with political power rather frightening:

they are likely to have chosen a political philosophy which broadly fits their atheistic persuasion, and

they feel they are answerable to no one but themselves for what they do - there is no final reckoning so far as they are concerned.

29 September 2010 at 13:52  
Anonymous Fruitbat said...

Fat Jacques -

Thank you for your thoughtful contribution. It's always refreshing to see how people who share your mentality use such reasoned ways of spreading their ignorance and their a priori prejudices. God bless you!

29 September 2010 at 13:54  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Theo said

they (atheists) feel they are answerable to no one but themselves for what they do - there is no final reckoning so far as they are concerned.

That makes us think about the consequences of our actions. The “do unto others..” dictum serves us well.

If your morality is only based on the prospect of being “judged” then it is of inferior value.

29 September 2010 at 14:13  
Anonymous len said...

Graham Davis
'Man`s inbuilt moral compass.'
By that of course you mean the conscience that God put within man to guide him,that little spark that can be so easily extinguished by constant denial and by secularist dogma.

29 September 2010 at 14:38  
Anonymous Voyager said...

His grandfather was a Polish-Jewish Communist fighting for The Red Army in 1920 as part of Stalin's March on Berlin - stopped by Pilsudski at the gates of Warsaw.

His father was a Marxist who like his grandfather entered Britain on forged papers in wartime !

His mother was a Polish student at LSE.

Where does one see any links to religious belief ?

The Labour Party has fulfilled its destiny and made Marxism mainstream - Entryism is complete. There is no room in a Marxist Party for any genuflection to a Deity when its core values are Humanist Utilitarianism

29 September 2010 at 14:49  
Anonymous IanCad said...

To Busy?? Hmmm;
Being
Under
Satan's
Yoke.

29 September 2010 at 15:02  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Len

But why “your” god, of all the thousands of gods that humankind has worshipped over millennia, why should yours be the only real one? Throughout most of human history man has attributed everything that he didn’t understand to one god or another. One by one they have dropped away as our knowledge increased. We no longer attribute a thunder storm to the anger of Thor or require the slaughter animals in order ensure a good harvest.

As I have said before biology and genetics explain the reason why human morality exists. There is no need for god but even if there was, why on earth should it be the one that you believe in? What’s wrong with Thor?

I have no problem with people believing in god or fairies but I do take issue with those who claim that the fairies (or god) are responsible for my conscience.

29 September 2010 at 15:06  
Anonymous len said...

Mr Davis,
On what is your morality based?

29 September 2010 at 15:16  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Len forgive the repetition of a previous post

There is a universal understanding of morality but that does not mean that is external any more than laughing is. Both are universally recognised because they have evolved as a characteristic of our species and they only continue because they have proved successful.

Morality is part hard wired and part passed on through families. All of us who have raised children have seen it in action and have been active participants. The new born is an entirely selfish creature, it has to be but as it grows into a toddler it begins to understand that others too have competing demands (rights) and so when a child snatches a toy from a sibling the parent intervenes and boundaries are quickly established.

This is reinforced by our innate response to others pain. Empathy is certainly hard wired and as the child grows it understands that it must sometimes share or even give up what it wants. These are universal human characteristics and are found as much in primitive as in advanced societies.

It seems to me that the assertion that morality is God given derives from a need that some people have for the continuance of an external authority that was initially established by their parents. It continues to amaze me that some people think that without the “restraining” influence of faith in God people would simply run amok.

29 September 2010 at 15:28  
Anonymous len said...

If Evolutionary Theory is correct we humans should be getting better and better as the ages pass but the reverse seems to be happening.
The Earth is plagued by wars all over the place, sickness is running at high levels despite all the 'wonder drugs' so what went wrong with the Evolutionary Theory (give it a bit more time I suppose.)

Back to the conscience, if it is merely composed of chemicals perhaps we could grow one in a test tube and inoculate criminals with it?

29 September 2010 at 15:34  
Anonymous len said...

Mr Davis

The 'moral' conscience of mankind is based almost entirely on fear of retribution.

Try an experiment. Put a £10 not in a conspicuous place, but remain unobserved and watch the reaction.Observe the moral conscience of man in action.

29 September 2010 at 15:39  
Anonymous len said...

Mr Davis ,
How do you explain man`s inhumanity to man.
Where is his'moral compass' then .

29 September 2010 at 15:42  
Anonymous len said...

I think a good proportion of 'Atheists' do not so much disbelieve in God but the fact is that they don`t like God and don`t want to accountable to a Superior Authority, a Higher being.
Pride I suppose.
So they come out with all these theories(like Darwin, or Marx, or even Dawkin`s)to explain to the public why they mustn`t believe in God. What is surprising is the amount of venom and hate against this 'person' they don`t believe in!( Methinks they protest too much!)
Atheists seem to be more pre occupied with God then most Christians.

29 September 2010 at 16:08  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Len

Human nature is our OS and the human genome is the source code. It may indeed be possible in the future to be able to identify genes that are responsible for facets of human behaviour like conscience. Evolution explains the mechanism by which species evolve but it does not confer any moral value so what we are now is solely because those characteristics proved successful in the past. It is neither “good” nor “bad”.

If the particular requirements of human child rearing has resulted in qualities that loosely fall under the heading of morality, in the rest of the animal kingdom there are myriad ways rearing young We don’t apply a moral virtue to a bird that spends every waking moment collecting food for it’s nestlings at the expense of it’s own hunger and security any more than we would reproach a frog for abandoning its spawn as soon as it is laid.

As for you £10 test perhaps you could tell why so many catholic priests, presumably well versed in the Christian moral code went on to rape young children, a rather more serious offence than picking up a tenner.

29 September 2010 at 16:18  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

Oh for goodness sake everyone.

Does every single post have to descend into this repetitive 'debate' with Mr Davis.

If God is real then we are right and he is wrong. If God is nothing more than a figment of our imagination then he is right and we are wrong. We will never agree with with one another whilst we have a different set of axioms.

How much longer will we have to have these "if you want to get to where I'm going you shouldn't start from there" type 'debates'.

It is God who gives life - it is him who will one day say "let there be light" to Mr Davis. No argument you present is going to get him to change the axioms he has chosen to adopt and build his life upon. Similarly, nothing he says will change mine. End of.

There really is no point 'discussing' things further. Can I suggest that rather than have the same tiresome debates on Cranmer's comments page that people respond to them on Mr Davis' own blog.

Back on topic ... I agree with your analysis YG. However, what are we to make of the fact that the 2 latest leaders of our nation & the Liebour party both professed some sort of faith and yet were the biggest shysters to have ever disgraced the post? They have left the nation with Ichabod as it's banner. Surely an honest atheist is better than a wolf in sheep's clothing?

29 September 2010 at 16:24  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Surely an honest atheist

Interesting concept.....

29 September 2010 at 16:31  
Blogger Oswin said...

Deeeeeelicious Your Grace!

29 September 2010 at 16:32  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Rebel Saint

For once I agree with you, an honest atheist is better than a wolf in sheep's clothing? And repeating the origins of morality again is a bit tedious. However how do you know that both Blair and Brown were not entirely sincere (if misguided) and perhaps like the idiot Bush, even guided by their faith? Have the faith police been on the case?

29 September 2010 at 16:37  
Blogger steve said...

Your Grace,

More people "go God" both in the Roman and Anglican congregations on a typical Sunday than are active card carrying members of any of three main political parties. I think this is in a ratio of 2 to 1. Of course the Socialist tell us the Christian religion is a minority interest group. A patent lie.

29 September 2010 at 18:08  
Anonymous Jonathan Stuart-Brown said...

Your Grace,
There is seldom a semon on Genesis 48. Is the Miliband jnr versus Miliband senior outcome a mirror image, a straight replay of what went before ?
Manasseh and Ephraim. The younger was blessed more than the elder, but even the elder became a great nation.
http://www.savethebritishfilmindustry.com/2010/09/ed-miliband-can-get-a-25-billion-a-year-and-250-000-jobs-in-the-british-film-industry/
Maybe Ed Miliband will come into faith like John Newton or CS Lewis.

29 September 2010 at 18:11  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Universal conscience what a load of rubbish, as i said earlier but noone has addressed the questions:
Why does one person think something is perfectly ok when another sees it as evil?

Some cultures still outlaw homosexuality for example and i am not necessarily talking about Muslim countries only! How on earth can we talk about being united in conscience? Some cultures think it is ok to abuse kids. I can't believe that people would say that people determine right from wrong it also scares me where such arrogance could lead. Even if humans did determine what was right and wrong they clearly have no ability to live by it as the state of the world shows plainly.

The book of judges written hundreds of years ago sums it up so well that: 'there was no king in Israel and eveyone did what was right in his own eyes.'!!! Summary of today, everyone only cares about their own interests and without God, why should they care about anything else!

Stevie G

29 September 2010 at 18:18  
Anonymous Byrnsweord said...

Your Grace, I should posit that the leaders of the moral zeitgeist who sit in the House of Commons or the trade unions assert that the State must fill the void left by religion... whether that is through the medium of the claustrophobic and impractical 'Big Society' or through endless community centres, diversity initiatives and legislation.

What they fail to realise is that whether or not society is secular, a religion is always usurped by another religion. History tells this story in extensive detail, and in particular, European history is one dominated by the stories of different religions, rather than different political systems.

So what next? We have already seen how some groups have mastered minority influence...

29 September 2010 at 18:25  
Anonymous not a machine said...

I cannot really disagree with your graces post , and Graham Davies seems to all too sure that his programming is perect .

Graham Davies : "There is a universal understanding of morality" is sufficient to discredit your advance . for being an athiest you can only believe what is within the mind and not what is without it .The universe according to your own credo does everything on mathmatical laws that we happen to understand , and as you say morality may well have some mathmatical understanding .However the growing pains of comming to this understanding are due to the struggle of the realisation wether there is a god or not .
You have not escaped cause and effect yet , which perhaps can blindly go offinto infinity , but may not .
The point I am trying to make that even by your own logic , you are unable to explain why some people have experiences which they determine as from god and it gets worse for you when you begin to understand that some very clever people detect somthing that is god .

However more worrying is your hints that religion must be eradicated , which will surely boil down to the absolute perfection of your logic and then you will really begin to meet doubts .

I have a question for you : What would act as proof to you for the existence of god ?" and then we can all help you find it

29 September 2010 at 18:33  
Anonymous John Hayward said...

I was this afternoon at a council meeting where a policy document was described as "rather vague - even Milibandesque" - which makes you wonder, again, whether he's had time to formulate a vision for the country yet. Then again, the same question could equally well be asked of each of us in our respective spheres of influence.

29 September 2010 at 18:58  
Anonymous CRUX SANCTI PATRIS BENEDICTI said...

Rebel Saint said: "There really is no point 'discussing' things further. Can I suggest that rather than have the same tiresome debates on Cranmer's comments page that people respond to them on Mr ___'s own blog."


I do not entirely concur. Unrefuted nonsense can be dangerous. Unfounded fears of AGW, based on junk science would have done far less damage had they been more strongly challenged. People with ideological obsessions (like marxism), who beaver away promoting their ideas can lead many astray. Hence posts not in conformity with truth should be disputed or, if obviously repetitive, relaced by a link to a prior discussion instance.


Mr Davis claims that:

"It may indeed be possible in the future to be able to identify genes that are responsible for facets of human behavior like conscience"

Mr Davis refers to an event of probability zero. There is no way to encode "conscience" into the laws of physics. At the quantum level molecules act holistically and the concept of individual molecules is a convenient fiction. A reductionist theory based on gene structure can hardly, therefore, explain something like "free will". The universe is not deterministic and humans are are not computers. Mr Davis' theory is, therefore, not science but a statement of faith (rather like his Darwinism).

29 September 2010 at 19:16  
Anonymous Voyager said...

The universe according to your own credo does everything on mathmatical laws that we happen to understand.

Interesting concept again! To have such experience of the "Universe" and posit that man-made Mathematics holds universally.

That is a paper that should be presented to The Royal Society - even Einstein could not conceive of "universality"

This assertion is unprovable

29 September 2010 at 19:28  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Some cultures still outlaw homosexuality for example

You confuse judicial Law with Morality. Passing a law does not make it "moral". Many laws are "amoral" and a breach of "Natural Law" and designed to impose an unacceptable regulation unacceptable to Free Will.

It is a criminal offence not to buy a TV Licence but only a civil offence not to pay Sky subscription.

Is one morally superior to the other ?

Law is about sidelining morality in favour of coercion. The Race Relations Acts and Equalities Acts impose punishments but do not have any Moral basis.

You cannot compel people to be moral because it denies Free Will.

29 September 2010 at 19:35  
Blogger Laurence Boyce said...

"If Evolutionary Theory is correct we humans should be getting better and better as the ages pass but the reverse seems to be happening."

Basic misunderstanding. The driving force of evolution is genetic replication. It is not about getting "better" or "worse," at least not in any moral sense. It is only about getting better at replicating.

29 September 2010 at 19:38  
Blogger Laurence Boyce said...

"Being a materialist, Mr Miliband will attempt to persuade us that he can be more concerned with the needs, interests and the plight of people in the here and now, and will not be influenced by the belief that present sufferings and inequalities will be compensated in some posthumous dispensation."

I think you will find, Your Grace, that politics has been ordered according to people's present material needs for some time now. Politicians know that they must govern for the benefit of all the electorate who are of many religions and of none. The afterlife just doesn't enter into the calculation, which is why you hardly ever hear it mentioned.

Modern politics is in its nature both secular and humanist. Ed Miliband does not represent any great change in this regard.

29 September 2010 at 19:51  
Anonymous len said...

Graham Davis,(16 ;18)

The answer to your question re Catholic Priests.


"Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. He who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil's work. No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God's seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been born of God. This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother.( I John 3:7)

29 September 2010 at 20:27  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Modern politics is in its nature both secular and humanist.

and completely amoral

29 September 2010 at 21:34  
Anonymous bluedog said...

The problem with Mr Graham Davis argument is that different religious have manifestly different moral codes, thus proving that religion is the source of morality.

Consider the mysogonistic death cult called Islam, under which it is both permitted to kill (jihad) and lie (taqqiya). The Mosaic law from which the Christian ethos descends explicitly commands that thou shalt not kill nor bear false witness. So if two different moral codes 'Evolved', which is right and why? Which will prevail and why? Using Darwinian principles it should be possible for Mr Davis to predict.

It is also a revisionist fantasy to suggest any link between Confucianism and Christianity. There is no reference to China in either the Old or New Testament. To illustrate the extent to which Jewish society existed in a bubble during antiquity, the New Testament refers to Greek and Jew but not to democracy. So if the Jews were ignorant of, or chose to ignore, the Greek development of democracy which occurred during the life-time of Confucius, what chance of Christianity absorbing Confucianism? Nil.

29 September 2010 at 21:57  
Anonymous CRUX SANCTI PATRIS BENEDICTI said...

Rebel Saint said: "There really is no point 'discussing' things further. Can I suggest that rather than have the same tiresome debates on Cranmer's comments page that people respond to them on Mr ___'s own blog."


I do not entirely concur. Unrefuted nonsense can be dangerous. Unfounded fears of AGW, based on junk science would have done far less damage had they been more strongly challenged. People with ideological obsessions (like marxism), who beaver away promoting their ideas can lead many astray. Hence, posts not in conformity with truth should be disputed or, if obviously repetitive, replaced with a link to a prior discussion instance.


Mr Davis claims that:

"It may indeed be possible in the future to be able to identify genes that are responsible for facets of human behavior like conscience"

Mr Davis refers to an event of probability zero. There is no way to encode "conscience" into the laws of physics. At the quantum level molecules act holistically and the concept of individual molecules is a convenient fiction. A reductionist theory based on gene structure can hardly, therefore, explain something like "free will". The universe is not deterministic and humans are are not computers. Mr Davis' theory is, therefore, not science but a statement of faith (rather like Darwinism).

30 September 2010 at 00:22  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"If Evolutionary Theory is correct we humans should be getting better and better as the ages pass but the reverse seems to be happening.
The Earth is plagued by wars all over the place, sickness is running at high levels despite all the 'wonder drugs' so what went wrong with the Evolutionary Theory (give it a bit more time I suppose.)"

len, you don't understand Evolution.

30 September 2010 at 00:52  
Anonymous non mouse said...

Brilliant, Your Grace. Thank you.

Didn't expect it to surface quite so quickly, of course!

30 September 2010 at 04:37  
Blogger Danny Law said...

oh gosh

is there any more tedious an argument than believers trying to convince non believers and vice versa.

as a non believer unless god pops down and says hi then for me it just a bunch of fairy tales to explain away the unexplainable - but hey if you beliueve, well good for you.

but debating it back and forth is just so pointless

30 September 2010 at 05:36  
OpenID gurdur said...

A long comment on all of this. Cheers, carry on.

30 September 2010 at 07:55  
Blogger Unsworth said...

Your Grace

There has been interminable discussion and coverage of Miliband E for what seems like a lifetime. I have now reached the point where I wonder whether his anointment as Labour 'Leader' (whatever that may actually entail, apart from taking instruction from Trades Unions) is some sort of portent of the Second Coming. Indeed, the BBC seems to be acting as a Workers Collective of John the Baptists. Sky, perhaps appropriately, is not much better.

One niggling question remains at the back of what I like to call my 'mind' - Does God believe in Ed Miliband?

30 September 2010 at 07:56  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Your Grace

An outstanding post: penetrating analysis elegantly stated.

It is unequivocally clear: voting ‘Lib-Lab-Dem’ is a vote for the destruction of our faith: Judaeo-Christianity.

Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and give to God what belongs to God:

GOD FIRST, CAESAR SECOND!

30 September 2010 at 08:19  
Anonymous Anfauglir said...

"...the English psyche will be subject to the atheist tyranny..."

says Cranmer, implying that someone forcing their view on others is a terrible bad thing.

And then he says:
"The God he doesn’t believe in has not ordained it."

Tyranny is tyranny, whether it comes from gods or man. Cranmer smply wants a theistic tyranny rather than an atheist tyranny.

30 September 2010 at 09:00  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

not a machine said
being an atheist you can only believe what is within the mind and not what is without it
I am afraid that you faith exists only in your mind too.

I have a question for you : What would act as proof to you for the existence of god ?" and then we can all help you find it
A personal meeting, firm handshake along with an explanation of creation and some form of apology for the mess he has made of it.

bluedog said
It is also a revisionist fantasy to suggest any link between Confucianism and Christianity.
The point as you well no is that what you claim as uniquely Christian morality predates Christianity.

Rebel Saint....
As this thread is about another atheist at the helm it seems reasonable that an atheist should refute Cranmer’s allegation that atheists are without values, or perhaps you simply want to reinforce your own prejudice by being deaf to an alternative view?

30 September 2010 at 09:17  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Damn no edit!
you = your
no = know
Dyslexia rules KO!

30 September 2010 at 09:22  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Anfauglir

Tyranny?

Clause 1 Magna carta

FIRST, THAT WE HAVE GRANTED TO GOD, and by this present charter have confirmed for us and our heirs in perpetuity, that the English Church shall be free, and shall have its rights undiminished, and its liberties unimpaired. That we wish this so to be observed, appears from the fact that of our own free will, before the outbreak of the present dispute between us and our barons, we granted and confirmed by charter the freedom of the Church's elections - a right reckoned to be of the greatest necessity and importance to it - and caused this to be confirmed by Pope Innocent III. This freedom we shall observe ourselves, and desire to be observed in good faith by our heirs in perpetuity.

Tyranny?

Clause 38

In future no official shall place a man on trial upon his own unsupported statement, without producing credible witnesses to the truth of it.

Tyranny?

Clause 39

No free man shall be seized or imprisoned, or stripped of his rights or possessions, or outlawed or exiled, or deprived of his standing in any other way, nor will we proceed with force against him, or send others to do so, except by the lawful judgement of his equals or by the law of the land.

Tyranny?

Clause 40

To no one will we sell, to no one deny or delay right or justice.

30 September 2010 at 09:23  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Cranmer said
No doubt Mr Miliband will be persuaded that the atheist politician will be ‘neutral’ between the different competing religious pressure groups in society, and that he will have no temptation not to be even-handed because he has no allegiance to the outlook of any of those groups.

That is secularism!

It protects your rights as much as mine. What you really mean is that I don’t want to have to compete with all these other faiths I simply want my own to prevail. Look at Iran or Saudi Arabia to see what a dominating theocracy is like. You also choose to ignore the conflict between Catholic and Protestant faiths that has afflicted much of our own history.

30 September 2010 at 09:36  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The tide of atheism is turning.
Since the nineteenth century when logical positivism was all the rage, science has produced Einstein and the black hole. We have tested atheist socialism to the limit in Russia and Germany and Italy and even far away Japan. Socialism does not work even in Marx's UK and it can turn very nasty when the Communist Society refuses to happen quickly enough.
Then, in the last hundred years, there is the rise of Islam and the "Multicultural Society".
Jews remember the holocaust with a shudder.
And this very month we have had the atheist demonstrations in London dwarfed by the turn-out for the Pope.
More and more Mr "modern" Miliband is beginning to look like yesterday's man.

30 September 2010 at 09:46  
Anonymous Skimmer said...

"In this postmodern relativist age, perched precariously between religionists and ‘aggressive secularists'"

Wow, what a perverse perspective.

The blindingly obvious reality is that the vast majority are completely apathetic to the entire question. When was the last time you overheard strangers talking about religion on the bus, in work, or at the pub? Few give it a second thought except as an excuse for some fun at Christmas.

Religious conviction means less to the nation at large than the latest season of X Factor. There isn’t a tug of war going on, people are just getting on with their lives, the entire subject has lost all relevance until it has become a minority interest.

How did this happen? Well frankly sex sells. Sex is a part of all our lives, and a huge media gambit. We enjoy it, and we’re just not buying fear of sex anymore. If X Factor started stridently judging people for having sex out of wedlock the public would have turned off that too.

30 September 2010 at 09:57  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Your Grace

You reported:

'He has disclosed that he is not yet married to his partner of five years and the mother of his children because he has been ‘too busy’.

And...

'It is curious indeed that a man can be ‘too busy’ to be declared the father of his firstborn.'

Is he not concerned that his son might be referred to as a 'bastard'?

30 September 2010 at 10:01  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Annon

Your overview is somewhat idiosyncratic and your conclusions flawed. I will however concede that strident atheists like me are a tiny minority. The threat to your belief system comes not from us but from the millions who think religion is irrelevant to their lives and are quite content to ignore the issues that I and most here think are important to discuss, albeit from opposite perspectives.

Those who turned out for the Pope were still small in number and have close to zero influence on opinion forming or policy making in this country. However the tiny number of strident atheists are rattling your cage and have an influence out of proportion to their numbers.

The tide is with us but it will take generations to rid this country (let alone the world) of the superstition that is religion.

30 September 2010 at 10:06  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Skimmer I hadn’t seen your post when I made the previous comments, we seem to be saying the same thing.

30 September 2010 at 10:08  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

“I don't believe in God personally but I have great respect for those people who do. Different people have different religious views in this country.”

And we all know it’s only the ‘religion of peace’ that he, and all our current treacherous, fawning, political elite, have “great respect for”.

30 September 2010 at 10:10  
Anonymous len said...

Should Theists refute Atheists or vice- versa.

Can Theists 'prove'God? Well Jesus Christ claimed to be God was crucified,buried and rose again from the dead( despite being entombed and guarded by Roman soldiers who were on pain of death if anyone stole the body)The stone covering the entrance to the tomb was fixed by huge iron spikes..Jesus was seen by 500 witnesses and rose again to Heaven ( If the Authorities could have produced the body of Jesus after death why didn`t they?This surely would have quashed the rumours that He had risen from the dead?
What were the chances of Jesus NOT being God?
Historians verify Jesus Christ.
JOSEPHUS-Jewish Historian
TACITUS-Gentile Historian
Suetonius-Gentile Historian
Phlegon-Gentile Historian
(Incidentally most records were burned at the sacking of Jerusalem by the Romans under Tiberius )
Here is a quote from the Encyclopedia Britannica concerning the testimony of the many independent secular accounts of Jesus of Nazareth:
These independent accounts prove that in ancient times even the opponents of Christianity never doubted the historicity of Jesus, which was disputed for the first time and on inadequate grounds by several authors at the end of the 18th, during the 19th, and at the beginning of the 20th centuries.
..........

What is Atheism based On? Fact or fiction?.Aggressive Atheism is a denial of the truth and also an attempt to subvert Gods plan for the redemption of man and to lead lost souls astray and to deny them an chance of salvation.

30 September 2010 at 10:10  
Anonymous len said...

"An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale, so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth".
Matthew 12.39-40.

30 September 2010 at 10:19  
Blogger D. Singh said...

‘Religious conviction means less to the nation at large than the latest season of X Factor. There isn’t a tug of war going on, people are just getting on with their lives, the entire subject has lost all relevance until it has become a minority interest.’

Then will people please stop cursing themselves by writing or saying: ‘OMG!’

Why not say: ‘Oh Karl Marx!’

Or, ‘Oh for Hitler’s sake!’

Or try, ‘Bertrand Russell!’

Or, ‘Simon Cowell!’

30 September 2010 at 10:29  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Ok Len you win. Of course there is a god!

He created the universe, the earth and eventually man (in 6 days) but for some reason planted all manner of evidence that suggested otherwise. At least he has a sense of humour.

But like Baldric he had a cunning plan. The short miserable life that he had created for us on earth could be supplemented by an eternity in a special place he called heaven. The problem was that as no-one had ever seen heaven so we had to take it on trust.

So he offered us a contract. If we submitted to his rules and took on faith that he exists he would supply each of us a ticket to his paradise. Of course we couldn’t know that he was telling the truth, perhaps he was just another con-man? But the life that he had provided was so brutal, miserable and short that most thought they might as well sign up. As an added “incentive” he guaranteed an eternity of hellfire and damnation if we didn’t.

God liked to think of those who had signed up to his plan as his flock, presumably because their behaviour was similar to sheep. But god grew bored of those who desribed themselves as the “chosen ones” and being the consummate marketing man he decided he needed an event to drum up more business.

Although he had invented sex he was a bit iffy about it so he decided on a bit of magic that allowed him to impregnate a young virgin without actually... well you know. Her husband was very understanding because after all this was the son of god.

The rest of the story is well known, particularly its tragic consequences. However god was well pleased, he now had another group of followers eager to sign up.

To keep us on message he decided on an update to the old terms and conditions and called this one the New Testament. Though much of it was written many years after the events that it described, it contained such rattling good yarns that he knew it would stand the test of time. And so it has as Len and others here will testify.

30 September 2010 at 11:11  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

30 September 2010 at 11:12  
Anonymous len said...

So your grapes Mr D ?

30 September 2010 at 11:15  
Anonymous len said...

Sour grapes Mr D ?
Typos

30 September 2010 at 11:16  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

apologies for double post I had an error saying it was too large and so began to trim it not knowing that it had gone through

30 September 2010 at 11:17  
Anonymous len said...

Think I might be a bit diclescik too.

But my perception of reality and God is unaffected!

30 September 2010 at 11:18  
Anonymous I think therefore I thwam said...

It's lexdisic actually.

30 September 2010 at 11:53  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

“But it is not clear (yet) why Mr Miliband is an atheist.”

I would have thought that this is pretty obvious – just look up the definition in a dictionary. And why should anyone have to justify their non belief in any God, negatives cannot be proved. You are free to try and convince people to believe in any God but that doesn’t mean that you have the right to make others explain why they don’t believe. Such behaviour really is just an update on that of the Inquisition.

“The Jewish atheist” - a complete misnomer I’m afraid. He may have had grandparents who believed in the Jewish religion, but that is not sufficient to make him Jewish, however that religion may want to define itself. Similarly I am not a Christian agnostic – I’m afraid it is my decision as to whether I should believe in any God – If I come across convincing evidence then I will change my mind, but until then my non belief is my own business and not something that I need to justify or something that can be got around by you telling me what I should believe. You either believe in freedom of conscience or you don’t.

You then of course try to equate atheism with rejecting the Christian or other religious moral codes – yet again this does not follow. I am more than happy to draw upon religious moral codes, just as I am prepared to reject parts of them (e.g. the Christian inquisition of those with different or no religious beliefs, the complicity of large parts (but by no means all) of the Catholic Church with Hitler’s and Mussolini’s treatment of the Jews) and to accept their role in setting moral standards within the UK. Just because Christians may/may not be wrong about the existence of God it doesn’t mean that they don’t have something useful to say about other matters. What this doesn’t mean is that morals should be set in stone and don’t need to develop to reflect changing times and circumstances. Only an idiot would try and defend the position that the Christian moral code hasn’t changed over time in response to events and circumstances – yet for some reason you fail to acknowledge that those without religion are able to develop their own moral codes in a similar fashion. I suspect the reality is that all you are saying is that your own moral code is superior and doesn’t need to justify itself because you believe that it is supported by your perception of Christianity – and that this is really just a mechanism to dismiss any criticism of what you say, and to allow you to rubbish those who disagree with you. Perhaps a little doubt on your part might not be a bad thing sometimes?

30 September 2010 at 12:42  
Blogger D. Singh said...

'What this doesn’t mean is that morals should be set in stone and don’t need to develop to reflect changing times and circumstances.'

Will you please stop plagiarising Nazi doctrine.

30 September 2010 at 13:02  
Anonymous Michal said...

"For if the foundations of the nation’s moral code cease to be Christian, what will fill the vacuum?"

There's ancient Greeks on the phone, and they'd like to have a chat with you.

30 September 2010 at 13:27  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Poor Mr Singh he is under the misapprehension that we are still fighting WWII. He assumes that all opinions other than his own and HG (his glories leader) emanate from the national socialists or the Bolsheviks!

30 September 2010 at 13:44  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

D Singh

I did say only an idiot - so you would support the inquisition and persecution of Jews since they killed Jesus Christ. So the Church did not change its position on these moral matters or many other things??

30 September 2010 at 13:48  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

Tell me, the execution of Jesus was it by stoning or crucifixion?

30 September 2010 at 13:58  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

The combined and allied cry of the Socialist and the Inquisitor:

‘Jews… killed Jesus Christ.’

30 September 2010 at 14:10  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

D Singh

I'm well aware of the New Testament story - having had had it pushed down my throat from an early age. You know very well what I 'm getting at.

If you really believe Christian morality has not developed in the last c 1980 years, then could you explain why we have to have so many theologians wasting their time on such matters?

Graham Davis

Of course National Socialists and the Bolsheviks (or anyone slighly left of centre) are the same thing in D Singh's imagination. I suspect he just sees them as convenient labels for the devil.

30 September 2010 at 14:19  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

Tell me which imperial power sealed the tomb of Jesus: Rome or the EU?

30 September 2010 at 14:20  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

‘I'm well aware of the New Testament story - having had had it pushed down my throat from an early age.’

It is written:

‘What goes into a man's mouth does not make him 'unclean,' but what comes out of his mouth, that is what makes him 'unclean.'"’

30 September 2010 at 14:23  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

"If you really believe Christian morality has not developed in the last c 1980 years, then could you explain why we have to have so many theologians wasting their time on such matters?"

And while you are at perhaps you could tell me which Christian sect has the definitive view? There does appear rather a lot to chose from, they cannot all be right. I can presume that it is not the Roman Catholic church from your recent utterences.

30 September 2010 at 14:28  
Blogger D. Singh said...

"If you really believe Marxist morality has not developed in the last 100 years, then could you explain why we have to have so many Marxist ideologues wasting their time on such matters?"

That is how one applies the Marxian technique of reducing one's opponents to contradiction.

Is that not so?

30 September 2010 at 14:37  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

D Singh

Tell me why Vatican 2 didn't change anything?

Yes I am responsible for everything I say. Just like everyone else.

30 September 2010 at 14:39  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

'Yes I am responsible for everything I say. Just like everyone else.'

Your confession is good.

Now apologise for attributing the execution of Jesus to the Jewish people.

'God will provide...' the sacrifice.

30 September 2010 at 14:41  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

"If you really believe Marxist morality has not developed in the last 100 years, then could you explain why we have to have so many Marxist ideologues wasting their time on such matters?"

But your supposition is incorrect - all moralities develop with time, not that I subscribe to Marxism. Answer the question please.

30 September 2010 at 14:43  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

'all moralities develop with time'.

Nonsense.

I subscribe to a 'morality' that repairs clocks; a 'morality' that teaches the schoolboy that when he has got a sum wrong - to go back retracing his steps... to a 'morality' that teaches that when one has taken the wrong turning to go back to the junction.

30 September 2010 at 14:51  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

"I subscribe to a 'morality' that repairs clocks"

The clock of course is a fairly recent invention.

30 September 2010 at 15:23  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

You should know:

'And immediately a rooster crowed. And Peter remembered the word of Jesus who had said to him, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times” (Matthew 26:74b-75).

30 September 2010 at 15:31  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

Now apologise for attributing the execution of Jesus to the Jewish people.


I never did, and it certainly wasn't my intention to do. All I was pointing out that certain sections of the Church did so in the past as a justification for anti-semitism and then they revised their position. This was done to show that "Christians", as well as others, are suceptible to changes in their moral position.

I'll take responsibility for my own views not those of the Catholic Church throughout history.

30 September 2010 at 15:39  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

D Singh

As an agnostic I neither confirm or deny when it comes to Jesus as the son of God. I can cofirm that a person called Jesus probably existed - the historical records for that are pretty well established.

30 September 2010 at 15:46  
Anonymous Alex Bryan said...

Archbishop, I feel your comments here are misleading and are based upon flawed premises.

To start with a particulraly odd comment, why do you assume that Miliband is a committed Marxist, when he says he is not? Is it purely do to his fathers beliefs? If so, that is no way in which to make an assumption about a man.

Furthermore, you actually seem to be saying that Miliband's atheism makes him "materialist". One could argue that Miliband is actually going to be driven more by the problems he faces in political and social reality rather than trying to apply religious dogma and irrational belief to situations.

"Religious organisations will be no more than trades unions"-Behave. Just because Miliband doesn't have faith does not mean that he would sideline religious institutions. Also, in a pluralist society surely a degree of separation between state and religion is a good thing, regardless of belief?

Ed Miliband may not be religious, but he has morals and ethics and beliefs like everyone else. To judge him on his atheism is wrong.

30 September 2010 at 17:11  
Blogger I am Stan said...

Ello Your Grace,

I pity the Athiest,to look no further than the physical,seek only what they can touch,taste ,see,smell,hear or have explained to them in science.

Like an empty human shell,a husk!

30 September 2010 at 17:56  
Anonymous len said...

Can an Atheist have a moral code apart from God.? Can anyone?

There was even a'code of honour 'amongst thieves which went along the lines of" You don`t inform the authorities of your accomplices identity when you are caught".
To a thief this is a moral code,so'moral codes' are only relative to whoever establishes the moral code.For example if everyone agrees abortion is good then abortion becomes good.If everyone can be made to agree on ANYTHING in the eyes of the Public it becomes'good'.The lessons are there in History!.

To have a moral code from the Creator who knows the frailties of fallen man is of far greater value than the fallen creation making up his own 'moral code' to align with his fallen nature.

30 September 2010 at 19:30  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Len

Some of us are quite happy to have moral codes determined by society as a whole, especially when there are democratic processes in place.

One question you fail to address is how the Creator is able to update the moral code that he last set down over c1980 years ago - since he doesn't generally get involved in unambiguous direct communication, and of course those with faith don't belive that such communication is necessary. I hope you are not saying that certain people are appointed by the Creator to provide such interpretations and we should just have faith that what they are saying is true - as you must see the potential for self interest to step in. Personally, I prefer the model where society as a whole joins in - including all those who have religous views who often have a valuable contribution to make as they do think about moral values on a regular basis.

30 September 2010 at 20:10  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

‘One question you fail to address is how the Creator is able to update the moral code that he last set down over c1980 years ago - since he doesn't generally get involved in unambiguous direct communication, and of course those with faith don't belive that such communication is necessary.’

Are you daft as well as unapologetic to Jewish people?

Why would He want to ‘update’ the following?

2 I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
7 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.
8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:
10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:
11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.
12 Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.
13 Thou shalt not kill.
14 Thou shalt not commit adultery.
15 Thou shalt not steal.
16 Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.
17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's.

1 October 2010 at 09:08  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

D Singh

I think you will find that even Jesus Christ tried a little updating/expansion on the above.

And for your information I never accused the Jews of killing Jesus - I only made the point that others did and then changed their view. I know you like playing the guilt by association game but this is just taking it too far. As for what I think happen - we only have the Bible's account which I'm afraid does not meet the usual tests for valid historical evidence. That is what I think - and if God does exist I'm more than happy for him to be my witness and/or strike me down with the proverbial thunderbolt.

I can only presume that you are happy to bear false witness against me because you do not consider me to be your neighbour - which demonstrates perfectly my point that any moral code is subject to interpretation and requires modifying to reflect changing circumstances.

1 October 2010 at 09:39  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

You wrote:

'I did say only an idiot - so you would support the inquisition and persecution of Jews since they killed Jesus Christ. So the Church did not change its position on these moral matters or many other things??

30 September 2010 13:48

Now will you issue an apology to the Jewish people?

1 October 2010 at 10:07  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Boyce Above, you say that Modern Politics is both Secular and Humanist, but the basis of this is the same flawed thinking I’ve warned people about or a while now. Why is it assumed that, if you are an Atheist you are not Religious? Why does being Religious now mean you believe in God?

Meanwhile, being a Humanist, it seems, means that you do not believe in God or the Afterlife. So apparently anyone who doesn’t believe in God or the Afterlife is a Secular Humanist.

Do you not see how rather foolish this is?

Humanists follow a Religion, even Secular Humanists, which has a very clearly defined Philosophical outlook on life. It can be found in the Various Humanist Manifesto’s.

Being an Atheist and concerning yourself with present material needs rather than an Afterlife is not the same thing as rendering yourself a Humanist. Objectivists are largely Atheists concerned with the world we live in, yet neither Ayn Rand not her followings in Objectivism can truly be described as Humanists.

Likewise, one can be a Christian and still focus Policy on the Hear and now and not really be Humanist in that regard.

Humanism tends to favour Liberalism and Socialism, base don its own presumptions about prejudices, and the exact Tenets of Humanism deny any absolute moral good, and advocate for a communal collectivism. Humanism places the good of the Society above the Individual and seeks to gain full intercommoned cooperation to create a Universal Equality of all men and women, which is their Ideal. Humanists thus tend to avoid Capitalism and favour wealth redistribution as a means to create Equality, and desire to erase distinctions between classes and also want to ensure everyone has the same measure of Success.



Meanwhile, an Objectivist would see morals as absolute, and would push heavily for a Capitalist Society dedicated to the Freedom the Individual with a minimum of Government interaction, and would present the Free Market as the Highest Social Ideal.


Also, a Christian who is a Politician would presumably follow Christian Moral teaching, so would oppose various thing like Abortion or Same Sex marriage, which a Humanist would favour, yet those items aren’t really about the Afterlife are they?


Saying that Religion is about God and an Afterlife and not considering those means you are by definition both Secular and Humanist is simply wrong, and shows that people think if you reject one thing, such as the afterlife, or at least don’t consider it, you somehow embrace the whole barrel of Humanist beliefs.


-ZAR, my accoutn seems nto to work at the moment.

1 October 2010 at 10:16  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

D Singh

It was a rhetorical question and I have explained ad infinitum what I was getting at although you appear to lack the mental skills to understand. It isn't a statement of what I believe and it never was intended as such. Individuals kill not peoples. Kapisch!

1 October 2010 at 10:22  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Graham, one thing. I dislike the whole Atheist “Why your god’ bit… the idea is that each Religion has a different god all together. But is this True? The Three Great Monotheistic Religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam all worship the same God. (Yes I know some disagree on Islam but realistically). They disagree on the teachings from and about God, but not on the God they worship.


Meanwhile, other Religions exist, but most have an overall God. It is my beliefs that, while they do not have the fullness of Truth, they do know God. Even Paul the Apostle said the Greeks knew God, and preached to them of “The Unknown God” who they already had an altar to.

While I don’t think all Religions are equally valid, and think they have an imperfect understanding of God that may have errors, I think that the whole world knows of God, and that most Religions of those which feature gods simply express their understanding via their culture regarding him. So its not really “Why is your god the only real one’ so much as “Why are your specific teachings about God the ones that are right?” But one can always ask the Atheists why his own beliefs are right, which always seems to upset them and always leads to the same old “Mine is base don logic and reason” disclaimer that’s gotten stale. Most just repeat what they read form other Atheists, and its not all independent. Not really.

-Zar

1 October 2010 at 10:29  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Also, Graham, how cold Confucius have influenced Christianity? Do you even now how far removed China is from the Roman Empire? Or that Jesus was from Palestine?

Do you think Jesus read Confusions on the Internet?

Really, can’t people learn History? Even the most ardent of Secularists say Jesus got his start out of Jewish beliefs, and everything he taught was just a reformed version of one of the more mystical sects in Judaism. You need look no further than Judaism form Jesus’ teachings and were they originated. Looking to Ancient China will find you void. The average Palestinian in the Roman Empire, even the educated, would know nothing of Chinese Culture.

-ZAR

1 October 2010 at 10:31  
Blogger William said...

TBNGU said:

"I think you will find that even Jesus Christ tried a little updating/expansion on the above"

Jesus said:

"Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfil them." Mat 5:17

So nothing about updating or expanding, then.

You seem to be confusing God's morality which is unchanging with your own morality which depends on how society "feels" at the time!

1 October 2010 at 10:35  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

A rhetorical question?

'I did say only an idiot - so you would support the inquisition and persecution of Jews since they killed Jesus Christ. So the Church did not change its position on these moral matters or many other things??

30 September 2010 13:48

You subdivided your paragraph. The question mark appears at the end of the second sentence.

Therefore, it was not a question; nor was it a rhetorical question. You stated as fact:

‘…so you would support the inquisition and persecution of Jews since they killed Jesus Christ.’

Clearly, no question mark there.

1 October 2010 at 10:40  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

William

I was very careful to say that he didn't refute the previous moral code. But he certainly did expand and interpret it e.g. love your brother as yourself? And it would be silly to say that various Churches have not continued the same process ever since. I would have thought it better that society as a whole does such updating and intepretation than some self appointed church members who only see themselves accountable after they have died.

1 October 2010 at 10:44  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh and, Mr. Graham, neither Iran nor Saudi Arabia are actually good arguments for how bad Theocracy is. For one thing, neither of them are actually Theocracies. Iran is an Ecclesiocacy, ruled by Clerics, and Saudi Arabia is an Absolute Monarchy.

I know that people like to think “Theocracy” means “Ruled by Religion” and Atheists love to point out that these are bad forms of Government so point to these as example s of why, but a Theocracy is literally a government ruled by God. Or at least a god. At present only one actual Theocracy exists, and that is the Vatican City-State.

Which brings us to our other point. Lets pretend that Iran and Saudi Arabia are Theocracies, and are all bad. Does that mean that Theocracy as a form of Government is bad? Actually, no, it doesn’t. it’s a Logical Fallacy called “Genetic”. By this logic I can disprove Democracy.

The Soviet Union was a Democratic State. You may contest this but, read its Constitution and other founding Documents. All power was vested in the People, who formed the ultimate Authority over the Soviet State. As the Soviet Union was a Democracy we can safely conclude that Democratic States are horrible Tyrannies. It had a Republican Form of Government, therefore Republics are horrible, just awful. China is guilty of the worst Human Rights Violations you can think of, and is also a Republic. Come to think of it, so is Cuba.

Well that settles it, Republics are Tyrannical and evil and Democracy is a vile type of Government that just simply produces evil.

No need to look at any other factor that may lead to this, the mere fact that they are Republics and are bad proves Republicanism is bad.

If you can see through my argument, and understand why its deeply flawed, you’ll see why yours is not convincing.

-ZAR,quiet annoyed I cant log in.

1 October 2010 at 10:47  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

'But he certainly did expand and interpret it e.g. love your brother as yourself?'

Where did He say that? Citation of reference?

And whilst you're at it: tell us who did execute Jesus.

1 October 2010 at 10:48  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

Clearly, no question mark there.

There should have been and any sensible person would interpret that one was needed given the "so you would support....." and everything I said subsequently.

1 October 2010 at 10:49  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.

1 October 2010 at 10:50  
Blogger William said...

TBNGU

Your argument, like your morality, appears to be shifting with the sand. You have moved from "updating/expansion" to "expand and interpret" ("God's moral code"). Both are wrong.

Jesus Christ gave us a way (should we so choose) in which we can be reconciled with God.

God's morality was/is unchanged!

1 October 2010 at 11:13  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

In Romans 13:8-10, Paul says:

Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. For the commandments, "You shall not commit adultery," "You shall not murder," "You shall not steal," "You shall not bear false witness," "You shall not covet," and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself." Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.

Clearly I am not the only one who believes that Jesus (or subsequent Christians for that matter) didn't do some expanding/intrepretation/updating from the "law".

1 October 2010 at 11:43  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Where is the '...expanding/intrepretation/updating from the "law"' in that?

1 October 2010 at 11:56  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

"if there is any other commandment"

"You shall love your neighbor as yourself."

"love is the fulfillment of the law"

And while you're thinking about that perhaps you could explain why so Christians (especially in the US) appear to have forgotten the commandents about not killing and coveting. I didn't note much conditionality in the originals so someone must have been doing a little bit of subsequent expanding/intrepretation/updating?

1 October 2010 at 12:26  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

What is the matter with you? On the one hand you tell us that'it was shoved down your throat' leading us to expect a good dgree of knowledge and then on the other you want to persuade St Paul was adding something new.

Do you not understand? St Paul is summing up the law - he is not adding to it.

1 October 2010 at 12:38  
Anonymous tory boys never grow up said...

D Singh you call it summing up the law - I call it expanding/intrepretation/updating. I think St Paul was referring to what Jesus said.

I suspect that your view regarding the immutability of God's moral code is not something that many Christian theologists would even try to defend.

1 October 2010 at 12:54  
Blogger Laurence Boyce said...

Mr Anonymous,

Thank you for such a considered response. It is true that I was using the terms "secular" and "humanist" in a loose sense. The state must be secular in terms of not favouring one faith over another or over no faith at all. The state must also be humanist in terms of focusing upon the here and now, and not upon a hypothetical afterlife which lies outside the scope of earthbound politics. The state should not however be "aggressively secular" (if you accept the term), or humanist in the sense of accepting a humanist creed (something I am not aware has ever been agreed upon in any case).

You say that, "Humanism tends to favour Liberalism and Socialism." I think you are right. Myself, I feel that humanism is entirely correct to favour liberalism, and completely misguided to favour socialism. So it's true that we don't all agree.

1 October 2010 at 12:54  
Blogger D. Singh said...

TBNGU

‘I think St Paul was referring to what Jesus said.’

Then what did Jesus say:

"Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfil them." Mat 5:17

As Mr William quoted at 1 October 2010 10:35

1 October 2010 at 13:00  
Anonymous bluedog said...

Thank you, Mr Anonymous at 10.31, for your comments on Mr Davis' belief that there is a link between Christianity and Confucianism. If Mr Davis knew something about the structure of early Chinese societies he would not begin to suggest such a link. Confucianism is hierarchical and paternal, the antithesis of the teachings of Christ.

What is particularly interesting at present is the rapid spread of Christianity among the Chinese intellectual elite. I have read that they are capitivated by the Christian concept of original sin. It suits the West to define China as a hostile power, which seems to be the case under the CCP. But what if China were to fully Christianise and democratise like South Korea? A China that had become a Christian democracy (with Chinese characteristics) would potentially pose a bigger problem than the China we know today. The West would lose its presumption of moral superiority.

1 October 2010 at 13:12  
Anonymous len said...

(Anon 10:29)

"The Three Great Monotheistic Religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam all worship the same God. "
(end of quote)

Is the god of Islam the God of the Jews?.Can you not see a slight problem here?
If Allah( as Muslims claim )is the God of Bible and the' prophet 'Mohammed his last revelation then we should all become Muslims.
But a slight problem here,neither Allah or Mohammed are mentioned in the Bible surely they would have deserved a mention?
The God of the Bible( Yahweh) is called the God of the Jews, an impossibility with Allah,Clearly Allah is not the same God of the Bible.

1 October 2010 at 13:20  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"But a slight problem here,neither Allah or Mohammed are mentioned in the Bible surely they would have deserved a mention?"

Not really given the timescales.
The religions may worship the same Gods it does not mean that they all accept the views of each's prophets.

1 October 2010 at 13:52  
Blogger srizals said...

And who told you about it Len?

Could I have some links or verses to back up your statement?

1 October 2010 at 14:08  
Anonymous len said...

Srizals,

Yada Yahweh,(Prophet of Doom.)
Might be a good place to start.

1 October 2010 at 14:42  
Anonymous ZAROVE said...

Please, call me Zar or Zarove. I just had some trouble logging in. I dislike posting as anonymous.


That said, to the above, I would rather China become a Christian Monarchy and restore the Emperor with a Proper Mandate from Heaven. Despite how we think of China now as being not a Democracy, the Truth is that Communisms entire Philosophical basis is Democratic. Its the Peoples republic of China. Democracy is not all about Freedom, and doesn’t automatically ensure it. While a Republic may not be as bad as Chinas happens to be by necessity, if you want to erase modern Chinese culture, you have to break with the current system completely, and I’d recommend a restoration of the last Legitimate form of Government. I’d erect a Constitutional Monarchy in China.


As to the other, who asks why the Muslim god Allah is not mentioned in the Bible, I hope you realise how absurd the Question is. Allah is not the name of the Muslim god, its Arabic for “The God”. And the word Allah does appear often in he Bible if it happens to be written in Arabic. Christians and Jews pray to Allah all the time in Arabic speaking Lands. Christians in Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon all pray to Allah.

You’re making a rather common mistake in treeing Allah s if its meant as a name. Saying things like “The Islamic god Allah’ though are grammatically incorrect. Your basically saying “The Islamic god The God”. That’s what Allah Literally means.

Just because we in English call God God and not Allah doesn’t mean that its fundamentally different or that Allah is not mentioned in the Bible anywhere. And to reiterate, the reason Gods name is never given as Allah is because Allah is not a proper name.

As stated above, just because they worship the same God doesn’t mean they all agree. By this Logic then accepting that Mormons worship the same God as do Christians means we should all be Mormon! Even the Muslims, after all Smith lived after Muhammad.

1 October 2010 at 22:39  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Muhammad shouldn't be expected to b Mentioned in the Bible. <Muhammad lived 600 years laer. Jesus isn't mentioend in Tanahk either, and neither is Paul the Apostle, or Peter...


That said, Allah is mentioend in the Bible, if you happen to speak Arabic. Christians and Jews who use Arabic Translations of the Bible se Allah anyway.

Your makign a common mistake if you assume Allah is the name of the god in Islam, since Allah is not really a Proper Name, but simply means "The God" in Arabic. It snot li Muslism worhsip a god named Allah as opposed to a god named Yahweh.

-ZAR

2 October 2010 at 09:36  
Blogger srizals said...

Wow, that's settle it then anon-ZAR. Now I'm confused. But Len, if you watch current events and previous history, the doom seems inseparable from those who were supposed to turn the other cheek since war or bloody conflict is supposedly not in their basic nature.

Correct me Len if I'm wrong, I've forgotten the phrase or the verse in the bible which states somewhat, and you’ll know them by their fruits. If we look at the death tolls and sufferings in the world, whooping incidents would involved those who claimed that they followed Jesus a.s., the man born without a father, as Adam a.s. and Eve a.s. Don't you find it strange?

It seems the only thing that they are good at is causing massive destruction wherever they roamed. So, who is really the prophet of doom and who is really his followers? I mean, judging from their fruits of actions and consequences, of course. And I’m not referring to Jesus a.s., please note.

2 October 2010 at 14:07  
Anonymous ZAR said...

DOESN'T this assume that Christian History has yeiled more bad than good? I know thats a populr beleif these days but, Christianity has not really been as bloody and vilent as its pretended to be. Even the Crusades werent that bad, as they weere actually a defensive war.

That said, why ought we attakc modern Christians for events of 500 years ago? Do most Modern Vhurches teach thst we need ot go about lillign nayoen who disagrees? if so why is Ricjard Dawkins still alive? You'd think he woudl have been assasinated a long time ago.

2 October 2010 at 20:01  
Blogger Sauti Ndogo said...

The much-reported tale about Ed Miliband being "too busy" to sign his son's birth certificate makes no sense to me. Unless the law has changed since my children were born, the father is not required to sign, unless he happens to be the person registering the birth.

It must be assumed that Mr Miliband's partner registered their son's birth. It was therefore her decision not to name the child's father. She had the right not to do so, though her decision raises an eyebrow.

2 October 2010 at 21:42  
Anonymous ZAROVE said...

Personally I think we need to goback to Moral Leadership and regardless of the Legality of this, Miliband shouldn't have sired two illigitimate Children with a Lover, er, "Partner", to begin with.

2 October 2010 at 23:04  
Blogger srizals said...

Zar said, Christianity has not really been as bloody and vilent as its pretended to be..

Previous and current slaughter in Iraq, hunting human trophies in Afghanistan, trapping the Palestinians and killing them in mass from time to time and menacing terminator machines in Pakistan for selective small mass killing is quite current don’t you think?

Unless we can differentiate between the non-practicing Christians and identify the atheists involved, professed Christians would be spared from the burden of being the terminators of mankind, regardless of race and faith. (Pending history 101)

3 October 2010 at 01:25  
Anonymous len said...

Srizals,

Study the teachings of Jesus Christ,

Then Mohammed,

Jesus was crucified for us on the Cross.He died for us.

Mohammed sends out Muslims to die for him.

3 October 2010 at 08:57  
Blogger Sauti Ndogo said...

Having checked the legal position, I must correct my comment above. The law for unmarried parents is different. In such cases, the father must sign the birth register or, if not able to attend the signing, must complete a statutory declaration form. If neither of those things are done, the entry for "father" will remain blank.

I wonder what he was doing that meant he was "too busy" to complete such a form.

3 October 2010 at 12:07  
Blogger srizals said...

In what war has Muhammad sent out Muslims to die for him? Where did Muhammad hide when Muslims fought the overwhelming enemies that were about to annihilate each one of them?

Please justify your statement Len.

3 October 2010 at 14:20  
Anonymous len said...

From the Hadith:

Srizels.
From the Hadith:

Muslim (20:4678) - It has been
reported on the authority of Jabir that a man said: "Messenger of Allah, where shall I be if I am killed?" He replied: "In Paradise." The man threw away the dates he had in his hand and fought until he was killed (i. e. he did not wait until he could finish the dates).

Muslim (20:4649) - The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: 'All the sins of a Shahid (martyr) are forgiven except debt.'

Bukhari (52:46) - I heard Allah's Apostle saying, "The example of a Mujahid in Allah's Cause-- and Allah knows better who really strives in His Cause----is like a person who fasts and prays continuously. Allah guarantees that He will admit the Mujahid in His Cause into Paradise if he is killed, otherwise He will return him to his home safely with rewards and war booty."

Abu Dawud (14:2515) - I asked the Prophet (peace_be_upon_him): Who are in Paradise? He replied: "Prophets are in Paradise, martyrs are in Paradise."

3 October 2010 at 19:03  
Anonymous ZAROVE said...

srizals said...

Zar said, Christianity has not really been as bloody and vilent as its pretended to be..

Previous and current slaughter in Iraq, hunting human trophies in Afghanistan, trapping the Palestinians and killing them in mass from time to time and menacing terminator machines in Pakistan for selective small mass killing is quite current don't you think?


Correct me if I’m mistaken but, those actions were actually ordered by Secular Governmental Officials acting as agents of their respective Nations, and were motivated by Political aspirations and National Security concerns, not initiated by Churches. While the men who started those wars may be Christian (Well, Jewish in terms of the Palestinians, but they got lumped in somehow) their motivation was not Christianity, so it really seems a stretch to claim this as Christianity having a bloody recent Track record. Unless you want to show how Christianity is the direct cause of such things.



Unless we can differentiate between the non-practicing Christians and identify the atheists involved, professed Christians would be spared from the burden of being the terminators of mankind, regardless of race and faith. (Pending history 101)

3 October 2010 01:25



How about we just divide Politically motivated actions performed by Governments from Christianity?

Bush was clear in the Iraq war, for instance, that we were not at war with Islam, and his actions were still carried out in the name of the United States of America, not Jesus Christ.

5 October 2010 at 19:12  

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