Literalism vs. postmodernism

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Jobar
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Post by Jobar » Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:37 pm

Living in the South as I've done all my life, I've met a lot of self-proclaimed literalists, though most of them aren't, really. (Certainly not for the Old Testament.) I've also met plenty who would say that the NT is inerrant as the authors wrote them. But most of such people are very far from Biblical scholars; many would be shocked to learn that the writers of the four gospels weren't actually the disciples of Jesus they are called by. IOW their opinions on this are supported by emotion, not intellect.

Which, I think, has always been the basis of literalist and inerrantist beliefs, pretty much.

Koyaanisqatsi
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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:37 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]So you say something is stated in the Bible, I point out that it actually isn't, and I'm "stuffing straw".[/quote]

No, what you did right there is stuffing straw. You know what a strawman fallacy is, right? Because, if you don’t I would direct you to just about any post you make as a perfect example for you to study. I don’t believe I’m alone in that assessment.
You try to reinforce your viewpoint with a creed, I point out that the creed doesn't mention it either, and I'm "getting into minutiae".
Wrong again. The minutiae—as you well know—is that there are differing versions of what people generally refer to as the Nicene Creed (i.e., the Nicene-Constantinapolitan Creed); one that does not explicitly note sacrificial atonement while the other does.

All of which misses the point, of course, that your “some” is actually the overwhelming majority of Christians.
Who is inconsistent in their literalism again?
More straw. You are inconsistently applying the rules of your own literary criticism for no supportable reason.
I get what you are trying to say.
I know. Only someone who gets it could so desperately avoid addressing it with all of these fallacies, cherry picking and pointless redirection attempts.
You are utterly baffled by the thought that something in Genesis might be entirely allegorical while something in Mark is only partially allegorical.
Wrong again. I am “utterly baffled” by the fact that you STILL can provide no logical, coherent, consistent criteria for your dismissal of every character and event in Genesis (except for the “real” existence of the God character) as allegorical, while at the same time continue to assert that “something in Mark is only partially allegorical.”

Genesis? Pure allegory through and through no question (except for God and the understanding that it’s “true&#8221 ;) . Mark? Well, sort of something kind of real in spite of the same fantastical claims throughout but also not because I, but you, and they and beliefs.
I just think this is a really stupid thing to be baffled by.
:needcoffee: It’s your smoke.
They aren't even in the same book...
So, Star Wars is fictional, but the Return of the Jedi is only partially fictional. Because they’re not the same movie. It’s the same story line, but now, somehow, in the third movie the Death Star is real as is Vader and he actually does die, but those are the only “real” parts central to that movie.

Got it. :thumbup:
Last edited by Koyaanisqatsi on Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Politesse
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Post by Politesse » Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:42 pm

More strawman twaddle, blah blah. Funny how everything I post is a "straw man", but you are not embarrassed to utterly misrepresent my position over and over.
For the last time, I don't have a strong position on what is or isn't literally true in either Genesis or Mark, nor do I think the question is important as anything other than an intellectual curiosity. The Truth of the gospels is not found in the minutiae.

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]Wrong again. The minutiae—as you well know—is that there are differing versions of what people generally refer to as the Nicene Creed (i.e., the Nicene-Constantinapolitan Creed); one that does not explicitly note sacrificial atonement while the other does.
[/quote]Uh, no... no, it doesn't. :wtf: I guess you're getting confused between the Creed of Nicea (325) and the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed (381) not so much different versions as different drafts, but neither mentions sacrificial atonement. And if there were competing "versions", that would suggest that the Christian world is not in fact unified on the point. An ecumenical creed with multiple versions is not much of an ecumenical creed. Luckily, that is not the case.
So, Star Wars is fictional, but the Return of the Jedi is only partially fictional. Because they’re not the same movie. It’s the same story line, but now, somehow, in the third movie the Death Star is real as is Vader and he actually does die, but those are the only “real” parts central to that movie.
Okay, so, first of all, those are different movies, with different directors and noticeably different visions for the franchise. Second, both were intended as fictional. Third, ROTJ wasn't written 500 years later, by different authors for different reasons in a different language and obviously different genres. Finally, you're the one obsessing over literalism. I honest to shit would not care if Star Wars were, on some level, based on real events. Hell, it probably is on some level, given the universality of the mythic archetypes Lucas employed in writing it. But the "literal" careers of Luke and Artoo don't have be be historical to be meaningful. It's not that relevant to the story that the film-makers are telling, and the story is what we watch those films for. I note that there is a Jediist religion in real life, and its adherents do not believe in the "literal truth" of the films; they just find meaning in the philosophy espoused by them.
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Fri Feb 16, 2018 7:16 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]More strawman twaddle[/quote]

From you.
Funny how everything I post is a "straw man"
No, only the specific straw men that are glaring and pointed out to you in detail using your own words.
but you are not embarrassed to utterly misrepresent my position over and over.
BASED ON WHAT YOU HAVE WRITTEN. How the fuck can I “misrepresent” you by quoting you directly?
For the last time, I don't have a strong position on what is or isn't literally true in either Genesis or Mark
I don’t give a flying fuck how “strong” or soft or fluffy your position is on literalism. STOP STUFFING STRAW.

For the billionth time this thread, the question has only and always been your inconsistent application of literary criticism from Act I to Act II of the same goddamned story line.
The Truth of the gospels is not found in the minutiae.
Irony. Big fan...
[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]Wrong again. The minutiae—as you well know—is that there are differing versions of what people generally refer to as the Nicene Creed (i.e., the Nicene-Constantinapolitan Creed); one that does not explicitly note sacrificial atonement while the other does.
Uh, no... no, it doesn't. I guess you're getting confused between the Creed of Nicea (325) and the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed (381) [/quote]

:facepalm: One that does not explicitly note sacrificial atonement while the other does. 325 does not; 381 does, which you would have noted had you actually clicked on the link I provided in support of it. Under 381 we find (emphasis in original to indicate what was added in 381):
he was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate...
REGARDLESS, and once again, not the point. The point was and always will be that you are WRONG in regard to sacrificial atonement being held by only “some” Christians when in fact it is held by well over 80% of Christians.
And if there were competing "versions", that would suggest that the Christian world is not in fact unified on the point.
Having nothing to do with the fact that the overwhelming majority are “unified on the point” thus countering YOUR assertion that only “some” believe in it.
So, Star Wars is fictional, but the Return of the Jedi is only partially fictional. Because they’re not the same movie. It’s the same story line, but now, somehow, in the third movie the Death Star is real as is Vader and he actually does die, but those are the only “real” parts central to that movie.
Okay, so, first of all, those are different movies
Very astute of you.
Second, both were intended as fictional.
Ahhhhh, so Genesis was “intended” as fictional according to your magic eight ball, but GMark was not and that matters how in regard to properly applying your literary criticism consistently? Fantastical claims in one render it fictional, but the same fantastical claims (with the same characters being referenced, no less), hinges on “intent”?
Third, ROTJ wasn't written 500 years later, by different authors for different reasons in a different language and obviously different genres.
and yet it is still the same story line, so what does any of that matter? The Death Star is now somehow real 500 years later?
Finally, you're the one obsessing over literalism.
Fucking hell. :bang:
Last edited by Koyaanisqatsi on Fri Feb 16, 2018 7:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Politesse
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Post by Politesse » Fri Feb 16, 2018 7:38 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""] :facepalm: One that does not explicitly note sacrificial atonement while the other does. 325 does not; 381 does, which you would have noted had you actually clicked on the link I provided in support of it. Under 381 we find (emphasis in original to indicate what was added in 381):[/quote]

I don't need to read the link, I've known that creed by heart since I was a child. And the bit you have bolded says nothing about substitutionary atonement. Like most literalists, you are having trouble understanding where the words stop and your interpretation begins. There are many different intrepretations of the crucifixion, all of which are on some level figurative (yes, substitutionary atonement as well). Literally, the only thing that happened is that a guy got stuck to a tree. Seeing this as a symbol of God's divine satisfaction for the sins of humanity is a symbolic interpretation of what happened. And no, it isn't the only way of seeing it.
Ahhhhh, so Genesis was “intended” as fictional according to you magic eight ball, but GMark was not and that matters how in regard to properly applying your literary criticism consistently?
I haven't said either of those things, and would not see either conclusion as a matter of "literary criticism". Anyone with even the vaguest education in literary criticism would know better than to apply a modern genre to the interpretation of an ancient work.
Last edited by Politesse on Fri Feb 16, 2018 7:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Sat Feb 17, 2018 8:21 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]
Koyaanisqatsi;683743 wrote: :facepalm: One that does not explicitly note sacrificial atonement while the other does. 325 does not; 381 does, which you would have noted had you actually clicked on the link I provided in support of it. Under 381 we find (emphasis in original to indicate what was added in 381):
... the bit you have bolded says nothing about substitutionary atonement. [/quote]

You mean the “bit” that you curiously left out when you quoted me? This bit that very clearly speaks to sacrificial atonement (emphasis from the original):
he was crucified for us
That bit that states that Jesus was killed for us? That bit?

But please continue to evade the point; which was that you were wrong about how only “some” Christians believe in sacrificial atonement when in fact the overwhelming majority do.
Like most literalists
Not a literalist.
you are having trouble understanding where the words stop and your interpretation begins.
No, it’s where your words stop and your spin begins. And I am clearly having no trouble at all seeing exactly that, but this is now your merry-go-round so have fun with it. I’m done chasing your fog.
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Politesse
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Post by Politesse » Sat Feb 17, 2018 9:51 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]
he was crucified for us
That bit that states that Jesus was killed for us? That bit?

But please continue to evade the point; which was that you were wrong about how only “some” Christians believe in sacrificial atonement when in fact the overwhelming majority do.
[/quote]

Well, yeah. That really doesn't say a lot. Where are you finding "sacrificed as an act of substitutionary penal atonement" in those five words? I'm sure you think it is "implied"... but it is not there. A most curious omission in a document that you claim is proof of the primacy of this view.
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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Post by Politesse » Sat Feb 17, 2018 9:58 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]Not a literalist. [/quote]
And that claim, in a thread where you have been railing loudly about the illegitimacy and immorality of any non-literal reading of Scripture, is pretty rich! I get that you don't think any of this happened, but your hermeneutic is nevertheless entirely literal, eschewing anything more complex as hypocritical and inconsistent. Either everything is literally true, or it is all "fiction". You decided it was fiction, but that makes you a non-Christian, not a non-literalist.
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Sat Feb 17, 2018 11:24 pm

My posts have beeen entirely in response to what YOU posted, Poli; quicksilver sophistry constantly displacing the second it is touched. Per usual.
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Post by Politesse » Sun Feb 18, 2018 12:07 am

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]My posts have beeen entirely in response to what YOU posted, Poli; quicksilver sophistry constantly displacing the second it is touched. Per usual.[/quote]

Then I am baffled as to why we are talking about Mark 14:32 and Genesis 3 and of all things the Nicene Creed. Not the verses/documents I would have chosen for a conversation about the essential foundations of Christianity!
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Sun Feb 18, 2018 3:11 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]
Koyaanisqatsi;683756 wrote:
he was crucified for us
That bit that states that Jesus was killed for us? That bit?

But please continue to evade the point; which was that you were wrong about how only “some” Christians believe in sacrificial atonement when in fact the overwhelming majority do.
Well, yeah. That really doesn't say a lot. Where are you finding "sacrificed as an act of substitutionary penal atonement" in those five words?[/quote]

:facepalm:

It’s a new low, even for you, Poli.

And you’re still avoiding the point, which is that you were wrong in your attempt to lowball the number of Christians that believe it.
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Politesse
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Post by Politesse » Sun Feb 18, 2018 3:34 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]
Politesse;683757 wrote:
Koyaanisqatsi;683756 wrote:
he was crucified for us
That bit that states that Jesus was killed for us? That bit?

But please continue to evade the point; which was that you were wrong about how only “some” Christians believe in sacrificial atonement when in fact the overwhelming majority do.
Well, yeah. That really doesn't say a lot. Where are you finding "sacrificed as an act of substitutionary penal atonement" in those five words?
:facepalm:

It’s a new low, even for you, Poli.

And you’re still avoiding the point, which is that you were wrong in your attempt to lowball the number of Christians that believe it.[/QUOTE]

I've provided several sources explaining the Eastern perspective on the crucifixion, among others. You've just provided a creed that doesn't say what you say it says. Asking for direct evidence of your point is "a new low, even for me"? I'll take that hit, with gratitude.

I fail to see how this is "the point", anyway. Why on earth would it matter what percentage of Christianity accepted what soteriological model, even if those numbers were somehow known? Numbers do not make a perspective more or less sensible.
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Sun Feb 18, 2018 3:39 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]
Koyaanisqatsi;683761 wrote:My posts have beeen entirely in response to what YOU posted, Poli; quicksilver sophistry constantly displacing the second it is touched. Per usual.
Then I am baffled as to why we are talking about Mark 14:32 and Genesis 3 and of all things the Nicene Creed. Not the verses/documents I would have chosen for a conversation about the essential foundations of Christianity![/QUOTE]

:noid:

I was, of course, referring to the comments you made starting on the first page of this thread and then spun around and around and around throughout the thread. Here’s a refresher of some such, since you evidently have lost the ability to use the hyperlink function:

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]
Politesse;683429 wrote:
Poli raised Origen’s and Augustine’s figurative interpretation of Genesis, for examples, but if that’s the case, then what the hell was Jesus talking about in Matthew 20:28 (“the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many&#8221 ;) or in regard to marriage (linked to Adam and Eve) in Matthew 19 or Abel in 23 or Noah in 24? He’s clearly not referring to any of these people as mythical or the events around them as figurative.'
Figurative = non-literal . Figurative =/= fictional.
Incoherent.
If I tried to explain general relativity using Einstein's example of the train and platform, would you conclude that general relativity is a lie because the metaphor describing it involved a train and and passenger that in all likelihood never literally existed? Communicating the details of the train station is not the purpose of the story. Even if the person telling it to you happens to actually believe that it was.
Inapplicable. General relativity was his theory and he used the analogy of a train station to help explain how the theory worked.

Were Adam and Eve theoretical humans? Did they theoretically disobey a god’s instructions and therefore figuratively instantiated death? Is sacrificial atonement—Jesus’ entire purpose—and our subsequent eternal soul’s salvation after death non-literal and what exactly would that mean?
As for geneaologies, etc, this only presents a problem if you assume literalism in the first place.
No, it’s a problem in that either someone was actually descendent from a real person or they were not. If Adam wasn’t real and/or wasn’t the first human, then there is no special claim related to Jesus’ descendancy.[/QUOTE]

And so on. These questions go directly to the heart of Jobar’s OP, as do your comments, because they represent a perfect example of how believers inconsistently, selectively apply literary criticism according to their beliefs or say contradictory things like listing all of the fictional/figurative characters/events in Genesis but then asserting that the story is, nevertheless, still considered to be “true.”

When pressed on such a contradiction and what exactly that could mean, the answer (not just from you; from any cult member) invariable is the same quicksilver evasion of, “Well, meaning can be derived from any allegory.” Of course that’s true, but that isn’t the question being asked, so that isn’t a proper answer because now that person—just like you—has to go back and qualify what they meant by “true.”

And round and round it goes until we have the evasive, circular mess itt and still no closer to establishing any kind of objective, consistently applicable rules of literary analysis. Genesis is just “of course that’s all allegory and not real” and GMark is “well, it’s based on something real and there is symbolism involved, but it’s also all real; Jesus was real, he was killed for our sins and that’s just that.”

Always. You did the exact same thing, you just tried to obfuscate it as best you could by hedging your declaratives with fallacies of equivocation and strawmen. You kept insisting that you aren’t a literalist when it comes to either Genesis or GMark, but—when pressed—hedged that only with GMark, leaving it open by saying things like you believe there was a real guy/crucifixion at the center of the beliefs, but not everyone believes the same thing, etc., etc., etc.

Again, when it came to Genesis; sharp and swift came the allegorical axe. GMark? Well, I mean, yeah, it’s not “literal” literal, but then there is some stuff that some believe was real and at the heart of it was probably a crucifixion and a guy named Jesus and of course I believe God is real and he created everything...etc., etc., etc.

Quicksilver.
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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Sun Feb 18, 2018 3:43 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]
Koyaanisqatsi;683765 wrote:
Politesse;683757 wrote:
Koyaanisqatsi;683756 wrote:
That bit that states that Jesus was killed for us? That bit?

But please continue to evade the point; which was that you were wrong about how only “some” Christians believe in sacrificial atonement when in fact the overwhelming majority do.
Well, yeah. That really doesn't say a lot. Where are you finding "sacrificed as an act of substitutionary penal atonement" in those five words?
:facepalm:

It’s a new low, even for you, Poli.

And you’re still avoiding the point, which is that you were wrong in your attempt to lowball the number of Christians that believe it.
I've provided several sources explaining the Eastern perspective [/quote]

Who cares!? That has absolutely NOTHING to do with the point, which was that you were WRONG when you said that only “some” Christians believe in sacrificial atonement.

:d unno:

YOU. WERE. WRONG. Got it?
I fail to see how this is "the point", anyway.
No shit.
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Politesse
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Post by Politesse » Sun Feb 18, 2018 5:04 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]
Politesse;683766 wrote:
Koyaanisqatsi;683765 wrote:
Politesse;683757 wrote:
Well, yeah. That really doesn't say a lot. Where are you finding "sacrificed as an act of substitutionary penal atonement" in those five words?
:facepalm:

It’s a new low, even for you, Poli.

And you’re still avoiding the point, which is that you were wrong in your attempt to lowball the number of Christians that believe it.
I've provided several sources explaining the Eastern perspective
Who cares!? That has absolutely NOTHING to do with the point, which was that you were WRONG when you said that only “some” Christians believe in sacrificial atonement.

:d unno:

YOU. WERE. WRONG. Got it?
I fail to see how this is "the point", anyway.
No shit.[/QUOTE]
I am having trouble piercing through your layers of illogic. I demonstrated my point, you did not demonstrate yours, and you're now just resorting to Caps Lock to try and get me to agree anyway?
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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Post by Politesse » Sun Feb 18, 2018 5:33 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]When pressed on such a contradiction and what exactly that could mean, the answer (not just from you; from any cult member) invariable is the same quicksilver evasion of, “Well, meaning can be derived from any allegory.” Of course that’s true, but that isn’t the question being asked, so that isn’t a proper answer because now that person—just like you—has to go back and qualify what they meant by “true.” [/quote]I'm not "going back" on anything. I just disagree with you. I haven't evaded criticism by inventing a new standard as I go along, I was never a literalist to begin with, nor do I think such a reading of Scripture can be consistently sustained. At the end of the day, all factions of Christianity apply figurative and symbolic reasoning to the Scriptures, whether or not they admit it. I do admit it, and moreover argue that a consistent and well-informed interpretive framework is better than one which needlessly clings to the conclusions of medieval scholatics, however popular their views might be at the moment. I am aware that the church of Peter is wildly well-advantaged when it comes to global population, though I suspect the average layperson may not spend as much time seriously contemplating their faith as one might hope.
And round and round it goes until we have the evasive, circular mess itt and still no closer to establishing any kind of objective, consistently applicable rules of literary analysis. Genesis is just “of course that’s all allegory and not real” and GMark is “well, it’s based on something real and there is symbolism involved, but it’s also all real; Jesus was real, he was killed for our sins and that’s just that.”
No one said either of those things, though... I certainly would never be caught assuming all allegory to be "not real". You have been claiming this, and I have been trying to correct you on this, since the very start of the thread.

I'm not sure what you mean by "objective" here, in any case, though I imagine this goal might be feeding your confusion. Do you believe that there is a singular, "objective" explanation for every written passage? That some expert, perhaps in a lab coat with goggles, could pick up any given paragraph of, say, the Bhagavad Gita or Othello or A Brief History of Time, and tell you exactly what each sentence "means" in an objective and factually correct fashion? I'm not stuffing a strawman, I'm just trying to understand. What do you mean by "objective", in the context of literary interpretation? Given that all books are written for at least partially subjective reasons, this seems to me an extremely flawed goal. From a psychological standpoint, I see where such a feeling of absolute certainty would be attractive to some, but desire does not trump reality.
Always. You did the exact same thing, you just tried to obfuscate it as best you could by hedging your declaratives with fallacies of equivocation and strawmen. You kept insisting that you aren’t a literalist when it comes to either Genesis or GMark, but—when pressed—hedged that only with GMark, leaving it open by saying things like you believe there was a real guy/crucifixion at the center of the beliefs, but not everyone believes the same thing, etc., etc., etc.
My stance on the historicity of Jesus' life has nothing to do with a crypto-literalist read of Mark. A book can easily be about something real without being factually accurate in every detail. And in fact, I would go so far as to describe every book that has ever been written, on any subject or for any purpose, as being based on something real without being factually accurate in every detail. That's just how books go. There is nothing inconsistent about acknowledging this obvious fact.

I've been feeling all along that you are talking about literary criticism without much of a clear picture of what that actually is. It certainly isn't an "axe" to attack books with, as you have implied in your final paragraph. On the contrary, I find a "strict, literal" interpretation of Genesis next to meaningless and entirely self-contradictory (there are, after all, three creation stories nested in the first five chapters), whereas an allegorical reading is deeply meaningful, and true in ways that matter a good deal more than whether birds were magically created on the third day or the fourth. It's a poem, not a manual.
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Mon Feb 19, 2018 1:08 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]
Koyaanisqatsi;683768 wrote:
Politesse;683766 wrote:
Koyaanisqatsi;683765 wrote:
:facepalm:

It’s a new low, even for you, Poli.

And you’re still avoiding the point, which is that you were wrong in your attempt to lowball the number of Christians that believe it.
I've provided several sources explaining the Eastern perspective
Who cares!? That has absolutely NOTHING to do with the point, which was that you were WRONG when you said that only “some” Christians believe in sacrificial atonement.

:d unno:

YOU. WERE. WRONG. Got it?
I fail to see how this is "the point", anyway.
No shit.
I am having trouble piercing through your layers of illogic.[/quote]

:noid:
I demonstrated my point
Poli, try to follow this simple step-by-step chronology. YOU asserted that only “some” Christians believe in sacrificial atonement. I proved that you were wrong; it isn’t just a small amount of “some” Christians; it is well over 80% of ALL Christians across the entire globe.

I did that by quoting the PEW research percentages that broke down the different sects, which included Eastern Orthodox.

YOU ignored the point—which, again, was that you were wrong in your attempt to lowball the number of Christians that believe in sacrificial atonement—and instead focused on just this sect.

Got it? You attempted to lowball; I proved overwhelming majority; you then cherry-picked one segment from the minority; I pointed out that even among that segment, some also affirmed belief in sacrificial atonement; you then further moved off the point by trying to argue that “for us” did not mean “for us.” Quicksilver.

Conclusion to all of that pointless sidetrack: You were wrong. The overwhelming majority of Christians believe in sacrificial atonement.

End of point. No other ancillary shit you want to point out about any section of the minority of Christians having different beliefs is at all relevant to the fact that “most” Christians should have been what you wrote instead of “some” Christians.

Crystal clear now?
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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Mon Feb 19, 2018 1:58 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]
Koyaanisqatsi;683767 wrote:When pressed on such a contradiction and what exactly that could mean, the answer (not just from you; from any cult member) invariable is the same quicksilver evasion of, “Well, meaning can be derived from any allegory.” Of course that’s true, but that isn’t the question being asked, so that isn’t a proper answer because now that person—just like you—has to go back and qualify what they meant by “true.”
I'm not "going back" on anything. I just disagree with you. [/quote]

FFS.
I haven't evaded criticism by inventing a new standard as I go along, I was never a literalist to begin with
Will you please stop with these goddamned strawmen!
A book can easily be about something real without being factually accurate in every detail.
We all know this. This has never—not one single time—been in question or under contention.
I've been feeling all along that you are talking about literary criticism without much of a clear picture of what that actually is.
Irony.
It's a poem, not a manual.
Ok, with that in mind, tell us exactly what is poetic about a random guy being killed by the Romans. If it’s not a “manual” then what is the poetry? APPLY your standard to the characters and events in GMark (i.e, the “passion narrative&#8221 ;) and tell us how it is you derive your poem. Show your work. Show us in excruciating detail—since I evidently don’t know what literary criticism is—exactly how it is done. Don’t generalize; don’t make vague statements; provide the details.

We can easily see how you derived your poetry out of the first part of the story in Genesis, so apply the exact same process to the rest of the story in GMark exactly as if you were going from Star Wars: A New Hope to Return of the Jedi.

Here is the manual version: some guy is killed by the Romans. Now derive your poem step by step.

You won’t, of course and the real reason is, you can’t. NOT that you can’t just make up any shit you want; you can’t (no one can) in the sense that there is nothing in the story of a guy being killed by the Romans that allows for any poetry to be derived.

The poetry must—MUST—be entirely manufactured and imposed onto the “manual” UNLIKE the poetry in Genesis. There is no “manual” to Genesis. It is straight up poetry through and through, starting with the notion of some magical being just blinking the universe into existence (hell, it even starts with a direct acknowledgement, “in the beginning there was the Word&#8221 ;) to the idea that the first man was created out of dirt and the first woman out of his rib, etc., etc., etc.

Iow, Genesis is already a poem. That is clear from the fact that there are all these fantastical things and characters in the story and as you pointed out no literal trees of knowledge, etc.

Now, at no point in the story does the author state, “This is, of course, a poem” (or “figurative” if you prefer), but anyone reading it can instantly recognize that talking snakes and trees with magical fruits and beings that create the universe, etc., aren’t real and that this not a “manual” etc. Maybe some children and some congenital idiots would think it’s real, but not anyone engaging in any kind of critical thinking/literary criticism.

But that is not the case with the passion narrative even though it is likewise filled with the same kinds of fantastical characters—indeed the same central fantastical character—and events and has its primary character constantly quoting and referring to the poetry of Genesis (and other parts of the story, like “prophecy” and floods and lineage to Adam and the like) only as if it were not poetry.

And just like with Genesis, the author of the passion narrative does not state outright, “This is, of course, a poem” (or, again, “figurative” if you prefer).

So, once again, since you keep trying to insult me with my lack of knowledge about literary criticism, take us step by step through YOUR literary criticism—from “manual” of “a guy was killed by the Romans” to the poetry of whatever the hell you believe the poetry to be.

We’ll wait. You’ll evade. Overall questions raised by Jobar andthe OP will be ironically demonstrated yet again by your (continued) evasion and vapid assertions of having already done this, etc., etc., etc. and what you’re not getting is that you—and all of this circular drivel and ancillary sidetracks—are the perfect case study for the OP’s questions.
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Post by Politesse » Mon Feb 19, 2018 3:02 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]
Politesse;683769 wrote:
Koyaanisqatsi;683768 wrote:
Politesse;683766 wrote:
I've provided several sources explaining the Eastern perspective
Who cares!? That has absolutely NOTHING to do with the point, which was that you were WRONG when you said that only “some” Christians believe in sacrificial atonement.

:d unno:

YOU. WERE. WRONG. Got it?



No shit.
I am having trouble piercing through your layers of illogic.
:noid:
I demonstrated my point
Poli, try to follow this simple step-by-step chronology. YOU asserted that only “some” Christians believe in sacrificial atonement. I proved that you were wrong; it isn’t just a small amount of “some” Christians; it is well over 80% of ALL Christians across the entire globe.

I did that by quoting the PEW research percentages that broke down the different sects, which included Eastern Orthodox.

YOU ignored the point—which, again, was that you were wrong in your attempt to lowball the number of Christians that believe in sacrificial atonement—and instead focused on just this sect.

Got it? You attempted to lowball; I proved overwhelming majority; you then cherry-picked one segment from the minority; I pointed out that even among that segment, some also affirmed belief in sacrificial atonement; you then further moved off the point by trying to argue that “for us” did not mean “for us.” Quicksilver.

Conclusion to all of that pointless sidetrack: You were wrong. The overwhelming majority of Christians believe in sacrificial atonement.

End of point. No other ancillary shit you want to point out about any section of the minority of Christians having different beliefs is at all relevant to the fact that “most” Christians should have been what you wrote instead of “some” Christians.

Crystal clear now?[/QUOTE]
Even if your numbers meant something - and they don't, in fact - I don't see how they make "some" an inaccurate descriptor... I didn't say, "a tiny minority", I just said "some". If 80% of Christians believe in things one way, that leaves somewhere between 200 -450 million people in this world who do not (we don't actually know how many Christians there are in the world, let alone how many belong to what sect and what they all believe on specific doctrinal issues, the Pew estimate is just that). The argument that a minority viewpoint is somehow illegitimate or unimportant simply because there a large number of people who believe something else is absurd to me. Wouldn't that apply to atheism too? Or hey, Pew itself has predicted a demographic replacement of Christians by Muslims by the end of the century. Will everything but the One faith be irrelevant at that time?
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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Mon Feb 19, 2018 3:37 pm

Even if your numbers meant something - and they don't, in fact - I don't see how they make "some" an inaccurate descriptor... I didn't say, "a tiny minority", I just said "some".
:angry:

Here is exactly what you said:

[quote=""Politesse""]This thread is, in general, making a hash of soteriology, and generalizing as "normative" for all Christians a theory which is actually held only by some of them. [/quote]

That is simply false. It is in fact “normative” precisely because it is held by the overwhelming majority of Christians:

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]From PEW:
About half [of global Christians] are Catholic. Protestants, broadly defined, make up 37%. Orthodox Christians comprise 12% of Christians worldwide. Other Christians, such as Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses, make up the remaining 1% of the global Christian population.
Of all of those sects, only among the Protestants "broadly defined" might one find less "normative" theories about soteriology (and that only among about a third):
The third group broadly defined as Protestants in this report is independent Christians. Independent Christians have developed ecclesial structures, beliefs and practices that are claimed to be independent of historic, organized Christianity. Independent Christians include denominations in sub-Saharan Africa that identify as independent from historically Protestant denominations, churches in China that are not affiliated with official religious associations and nondenominational churches in the United States.
Catholics, Orthodox Christians, Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses and at least two-thirds of Protestants teach the exact same central message of Jesus as a sacrificial atonement to God for our "sins" that we've all been referring to itt. Only around 12% might--MIGHT--fall under your camp, so, no it's not "some" unless you mean "some 88% or more."[/quote]

You were very clearly trying to lowball the number and counter-argue the notion that what we were talking about in regard to Christians was not “normative.”
If 80% of Christians believe in things one way, that leaves somewhere between 200 -450 million people in this world who do not
More like 88% (or higher), but hey, you can do math!
The argument that a minority viewpoint is somehow illegitimate or unimportant
Image
simply because there a large number of people who believe something else is absurd to me.
Strawmen always are.
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Post by Politesse » Mon Feb 19, 2018 4:11 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]
Politesse;683697 wrote:This thread is, in general, making a hash of soteriology, and generalizing as "normative" for all Christians a theory which is actually held only by some of them.
That is simply false. It is in fact “normative” precisely because it is held by the overwhelming majority of Christians:[/QUOTE]I said, as you have quoted, that these beliefs are not normative for all Christians. Why should I accept a soteriology which is not and never has been my own as "normative" simply because a whole bunch of people in another church believe it? Their perspective is normative for them, it does not apply to me. I belong to a UCC church, free interpretation of Scripture is one of our foundational norms. This isn't a global democracy, where all the Roman Catholics get to just vote and declare all the rest of us illegals. Or they would, I'm sure! Even through centuries of open warfare, they were unable to achieve this end.

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]More like 88% (or higher), but hey, you can do math!
[/quote]Well, there is something very odd about yours. The Eastern churches alone constitute somewhere around 12-15% of the Christian population. That's not a controversial figure as far as I know.
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Post by Politesse » Mon Feb 19, 2018 5:04 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]

A book can easily be about something real without being factually accurate in every detail.
We all know this. This has never—not one single time—been in question or under contention. [/quote]Then why are you so confused about my position? I'm not elevating either book to special, unquestionable status. This doesn't mean that I consider either to be wholly "fictional" as you keep saying.
It's a poem, not a manual.
Ok, with that in mind, tell us exactly what is poetic about a random guy being killed by the Romans. If it’s not a “manual” then what is the poetry? APPLY your standard to the characters and events in GMark (i.e, the “passion narrative&#8221 ;) and tell us how it is you derive your poem. Show your work. Show us in excruciating detail—since I evidently don’t know what literary criticism is—exactly how it is done. Don’t generalize; don’t make vague statements; provide the details.
Both Genesis and Mark show many poetic features. We could, and people have, written whole dissertations on this subject. Genesis is complicated to analyze, as it is a composite work with at least four different sets of authors, but we can see many poetic elements in various portions- phonological and morphological rhyming, allegorical figures and events, the use of an "elevated" or formal discourse, the use of highly illustrative language, the use of color and other "visual" symbolic elements to communicate affective information, repetition of major themes and life events in similar terms, borrowing of prosodic features from musical and religious contexts, we could go on and on.

Mark has a famously dyadic structure, and is divided into four thematic sections of roughly equal length. It uses almost unnaturally simple, trimmed down Greek, and often employs clauses of similar length for chapters at a time, broken only by the start of a new chiasm. Thus giving it a very attractive, rhythmic quality when read aloud in the original. It is especially well known for using an oral poetic tradition called chiasm extensively, almost throughout the entire Gospel and much more consistently. Its consistency of language, tone, and style is one reason why most scholars believe it to have a single (albeit unknown) author. It also has many of the features discussed above, and not accidentally I'm certain. Its author was probably not a Jew by birth (sayeth the experts), but they are clearly familiar with the Hebrew scriptures and borrow both information and styling from them freely. Not as obviously or overwhelmingly as, say, Matthew, but it is definitely there. We could go on and on. Mark is actually a pretty interesting book, from a literary persepctive. Unique.

None of this results in, as you suggest, anyone concluding that either book is somehow necessarily false or necessarily true. I mean, surely you aren't claiming that one cannot write a poem about a true event? Literalists and non-literalists alike are happy to acknowledge the poetic features of the Bible, and they don't necessarily have any bearing on its factual content. My point was only that I do not think the original authors of any of these works meant them to contain all and only factual information. They are expressive, not just descriptive works. No one could mistake them for a history, even as defined in the Roman world, let alone by modern standards.
We can easily see how you derived your poetry out of the first part of the story in Genesis, so apply the exact same process to the rest of the story in GMark exactly as if you were going from Star Wars: A New Hope to Return of the Jedi.
You know, I did have some comments on this analogy. Which you clipped out of your subsequent reply, so I just assumed you'd given up on your own metaphor in frustration. No?
Here is the manual version: some guy is killed by the Romans. Now derive your poem step by step.
Well, that is kind of my point re: literalism. There's no poetry at all when you reduce it to bare facts. It's just, there isn't any soteriology either. It's just a dead guy on a scaffolding. No "redemption", no "atonement". It's only once you start describing that man as "the son of god and son of man", and the "new Adam", and the "paschal lamb, who blood set us free", whose cup of evening wine is also "blood", that you start getting theology out of the story. Christianity is constitutionally, unrelentingly figurative in its approach to literal history. Your own viewpoint on soteriology cannot be literally derived from the text, there has to be some kind of symbolism and allegory involved, or the whole thing makes no sense. Which does not make it "fake" or "fictional"; reading symbolic meaning into historical events is perfectly legitimate, and indeed I know of no historian who does not do this, let alone how everyday people use and relate to their cultural histories.
You won’t, of course and the real reason is, you can’t. NOT that you can’t just make up any shit you want; you can’t (no one can) in the sense that there is nothing in the story of a guy being killed by the Romans that allows for any poetry to be derived.
That is so transparently, obviously untrue that I don't even know where to begin. Do you have any idea just how much poetry has been composed on that very topic? For centuries of European history, the life of Christ and his saints were nearly the only legal topics of poetry...
There is no “manual” to Genesis.
Dunno about that either; your weakness for hyperbole and absolutism leads you to some weird positions. It does seem a lot more figurative, but there are some elements, surely, that its authors considered simply factual? Especially toward the end, where the origins of the twelve tribes are being explained. Regardless of whether the stories themselves are accurate, people in Judea and Israel clearly believed them to be, and turned them into political and social realities through that belief alone if nothing else.
Now, at no point in the story does the author state, “This is, of course, a poem” (or “figurative” if you prefer), but anyone reading it can instantly recognize that talking snakes and trees with magical fruits and beings that create the universe, etc., aren’t real and that this not a “manual” etc. Maybe some children and some congenital idiots would think it’s real, but not anyone engaging in any kind of critical thinking/literary criticism.
Again, no literary critic would be so stupid as to conflate "figurative" with "not real" in a simplistic fashion. Generally metaphors have a target in the real world, even if they are in an explicitly fictional work. Why craft them, otherwise?
But that is not the case with the passion narrative even though it is likewise filled with the same kinds of fantastical characters—indeed the same central fantastical character—and events and has its primary character constantly quoting and referring to the poetry of Genesis (and other parts of the story, like “prophecy” and floods and lineage to Adam and the like) only as if it were not poetry.
Who does anything of the sort? :confused: Even strict literalists acknowledge the poetic structures of the Bible, they just ascribe them to God's will instead of human authors'...
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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Thu Mar 01, 2018 3:14 pm

Here’s the problem:
there has to be some kind of symbolism and allegory involved, or the whole thing makes no sense. Which does not make it "fake" or "fictional"
Yes, it does, but not in the equivocal sense you keep trying to slip in. The fictional part is the “symbolism and allegory” part, but that, of course is the whole shooting match. Without it, all we have—at best—is some guy got killed by the Romans. That’s the “real world target.” The fictional elements are everything else the author of GMark (and the subsequent cult leaders) heap on top of that.

And that’s assuming—for the sake of argument—that what you had said about there having been a real world guy and his death at the center of the story is at all true. But in the Adam&Eve story in Genesis, the entire thing is fictional. Yes, fictional. There was no garden; no snake; no Adam or Eve; no trees; and of course no God (your personal beliefs notwithstanding).

In the passion narrative, however, there is this assertion of it being based on a real person/real event. The question is, once again, why? Exactly what is it about a fantastical tale about a magical being having a son who is killed makes you (or anyone) think that any part of it is based on a real event as opposed to a fantastical tale about the same magical being creating that “son’s” lineage...etc., etc.,etc.?

What is the standard being applied that allows for one story to be purely made up while the other—involving/referencing the same characters, no less—is claimed to be based on real world events?
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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Fri Mar 02, 2018 1:17 am

Let’s simplify further. You are saying, in effect, that Star Wars is all obviously made up, but then when it comes to the sequel to Star Wars, now, suddenly, the same characters that were in/referenced in Star Wars are NOW based on real people and real events.

The story and characters in Star Wars were all made up. The CONTINUTION of that same story and those same characters in Empire Strikes Back, however, are now based on real people (at least one) and real events (at least one).

Iow, Luke was fictional in Star Wars but now—somehow, only when it comes to Empire—Luke is based on a real person and the experience at the end with Darth Vader being his father and his hand getting cut off were real events.

See the problem? It’s the same storyline with the same characters, but for no justifiable reason, suddenly the sequel (and only in the sequel), (some of) the characters and events are real.
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Post by Politesse » Fri Mar 02, 2018 5:46 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]Let’s simplify further. You are saying, in effect, that Star Wars is all obviously made up, but then when it comes to the sequel to Star Wars, now, suddenly, the same characters that were in/referenced in Star Wars are NOW based on real people and real events.

The story and characters in Star Wars were all made up. The CONTINUTION of that same story and those same characters in Empire Strikes Back, however, are now based on real people (at least one) and real events (at least one).

Iow, Luke was fictional in Star Wars but now—somehow, only when it comes to Empire—Luke is based on a real person and the experience at the end with Darth Vader being his father and his hand getting cut off were real events.

See the problem? It’s the same storyline with the same characters, but for no justifiable reason, suddenly the sequel (and only in the sequel), (some of) the characters and events are real.[/quote]
I have, of course, never said any of that.
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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