Literalism vs. postmodernism

Discuss atheism, religious apologetics, separation of church & state, theology, comparative religion and scripture.
Koyaanisqatsi
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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Mon Feb 12, 2018 9:49 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]
Koyaanisqatsi;683630 wrote:
Politesse;683629 wrote:I see no reason why the status of one book should be our guide to whether another one, written five hundred years later in a different culture and language, has the same status....I don't "pick and choose" when to be a literalist. I'm just not a literalist. Not about Genesis. Not about Mark.


:hitcomputer:
Well, dude, my position hasn't changed.[/quote]

True. It’s consistently been internally contradictory and arbitrarily applied.
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Post by Politesse » Tue Feb 13, 2018 1:58 am

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]
Politesse;683633 wrote:
Koyaanisqatsi;683630 wrote:
Politesse;683629 wrote:I see no reason why the status of one book should be our guide to whether another one, written five hundred years later in a different culture and language, has the same status....I don't "pick and choose" when to be a literalist. I'm just not a literalist. Not about Genesis. Not about Mark.


:hitcomputer:
Well, dude, my position hasn't changed.
True. It’s consistently been internally contradictory and arbitrarily applied.[/QUOTE]

What contradiction? I think all texts should be considered with the same level of rigor and reflection.
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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Tue Feb 13, 2018 3:25 pm

You insist that the same rules apply from book to book (at the same time stating they should not) while steadfastly refusing to apply the same rules from book to book (at the same time stating that you’re not a literalist and that neither Genesis nor GMark should be taken literally, but without clarifying exactly what events/characters in GMark should be taken literally/figuratively in the same effortless manner you did for Genesis and/or exactly how a guy being killed by the Romans can possibly be taken figuratively/metaphorically).

The reason is, of course, simple. We easily recognize the characters and events in Genesis as figurative because the story actually does describe something real; i.e., we all die. The reason GMark is incoherent as a metaphor, however is because the characters and events do not describe something real, they are asserted to have been real. It’s flipped.

In short, in Genesis, characters and events aren’t real in order to describe a real condition; we all die. In GMark, characters and events are real in order to describe (sell is a better word) a false condition; there is life after death.

Genesis is a metaphor; GMark is a con job. That’s why you can’t (won’t) simply apply the same analysis. When it comes to GM it’s all a gaslit smokescreen, whether you’re aware of it or not.
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Post by Politesse » Tue Feb 13, 2018 4:55 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]You insist that the same rules apply from book to book (at the same time stating they should not) while steadfastly refusing to apply the same rules from book to book (at the same time stating that you’re not a literalist and that neither Genesis nor GMark should be taken literally, but without clarifying exactly what events/characters in GMark should be taken literally/figuratively in the same effortless manner you did for Genesis and/or exactly how a guy being killed by the Romans can possibly be taken figuratively/metaphorically). [/quote]There's no mystery about it, I think literalism is dumb regardless of book. That doesn't discount the possibility that either book might reflect real events. Figures and metaphors don't appear sui generis, nor are they meant to be "fiction" as you repeatedly state. Even when in a fictional novel, allegory is meant to represent the real in some way. But not necessarily literally.
The reason is, of course, simple. We easily recognize the characters and events in Genesis as figurative because the story actually does describe something real; i.e., we all die. The reason GMark is incoherent as a metaphor, however is because the characters and events do not describe something real, they are asserted to have been real. It’s flipped.
I still don't see how the crucifixion could have non-figurative meaning to the modern Christian. Without the symbolism inherent in Christ being a figure of the "New Adam", etc, it's just an ancient legal case with a weird ending?
In short, in Genesis, characters and events aren’t real in order to describe a real condition; we all die. In GMark, characters and events are real in order to describe (sell is a better word) a false condition; there is life after death.
An odd claim, considering Mark doesn't actually mention that little tidbit in connection with the crucifixion. You could read it into Mark very easily, but it isn't literally stated. Which is a problem, if you preference literal readings and despise metaphor/allusion.
Genesis is a metaphor; GMark is a con job. That’s why you can’t (won’t) simply apply the same analysis. When it comes to GM it’s all a gaslit smokescreen, whether you’re aware of it or not.
A "con job"? Is this about your little conspiracy theory again?
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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Tue Feb 13, 2018 4:59 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]There's no mystery about it, I think literalism is dumb regardless of book. That doesn't discount the possibility that either book might reflect real events.[/quote]

Such as...?
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Post by Politesse » Tue Feb 13, 2018 5:32 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]
Politesse;683657 wrote:There's no mystery about it, I think literalism is dumb regardless of book. That doesn't discount the possibility that either book might reflect real events.
Such as...?[/QUOTE]

What do you mean, such as? You want me to go through Genesis and Mark providing my personal opinion on whether or how each individual event happened? You are the one obsessed with the literal, not me.

I mean, I do think it is quite likely that there was a real crucifixion of a real person at the heart of Christian experience. I also believe, in general terms, that humans were created by God, and struggle with the implications of conscious moral decision-making in a way that other animals do not seem to. I don't think either book was meant to be a textbook on literal truths (nor "fiction" as that term is normally used). I strongly disagree that there has to be a literal crucifixion in order for humanity to be redeemed. Indeed, if you take that position seriously rather than just a rhetorical posture, life must be quite depressing as an atheist!
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:12 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]
Koyaanisqatsi;683658 wrote:
Politesse;683657 wrote:There's no mystery about it, I think literalism is dumb regardless of book. That doesn't discount the possibility that either book might reflect real events.
Such as...?
What do you mean, such as?[/quote]

JTFC :noid:
I do think it is quite likely that there was a real crucifixion of a real person at the heart of Christian experience.
Just like there was a real garden with real humans that disobeyed God’s instructions and were thus made mortal? And their offspring lived to be 900 years old? No? So the event and the people depicted in GMark are real; you agree that you’ve flipped it from Genesis (where the events and the people are not real).

And exactly why do you think that (instead of the guy and the crucifixion being fictional; i.e. purely figurative just as is the case in Genesis)? Think of the events that lead up to that crucifixion, after all. A magical wizard that heals the sick; walks on water; turns water into wine; fulfills divine prophecy; knows the future; and, perhaps most importantly of all, speaks in terms of a literal interpretation of Genesis; etc; is crucified by the Romans for no other reason than to please his fickle worshippers.

Iow, and again, why are you not applying the same pedantic literary criticism to the rest of the story you so easily recognize as allegorical in one book, but not the other?
I also believe, in general terms, that humans were created by God
So you arbitrarily apply the literary criticism rules according to your beliefs. The character of “God” for example in Genesis is “real” but nothing else.
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Post by plebian » Wed Feb 14, 2018 2:26 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]
Politesse;683660 wrote:
Koyaanisqatsi;683658 wrote:
Politesse;683657 wrote:There's no mystery about it, I think literalism is dumb regardless of book. That doesn't discount the possibility that either book might reflect real events.
Such as...?
What do you mean, such as?
JTFC :noid:
I do think it is quite likely that there was a real crucifixion of a real person at the heart of Christian experience.
Just like there was a real garden with real humans that disobeyed God’s instructions and were thus made mortal? And their offspring lived to be 900 years old? No? So the event and the people depicted in GMark are real; you agree that you’ve flipped it from Genesis (where the events and the people are not real).

And exactly why do you think that (instead of the guy and the crucifixion being fictional; i.e. purely figurative just as is the case in Genesis)? Think of the events that lead up to that crucifixion, after all. A magical wizard that heals the sick; walks on water; turns water into wine; fulfills divine prophecy; knows the future; and, perhaps most importantly of all, speaks in terms of a literal interpretation of Genesis; etc; is crucified by the Romans for no other reason than to please his fickle worshippers.

Iow, and again, why are you not applying the same pedantic literary criticism to the rest of the story you so easily recognize as allegorical in one book, but not the other?
I also believe, in general terms, that humans were created by God
So you arbitrarily apply the literary criticism rules according to your beliefs. The character of “God” for example in Genesis is “real” but nothing else.[/QUOTE]
this seems strangely myopic. I am not religious at all and I can understand politesse' point. The 'character' of god is a 'character'. It is how we tell stories. Surely you can see allegorical wisdom in the story of the fall.

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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Wed Feb 14, 2018 2:56 pm

[quote=""plebian""]this seems strangely myopic. [/quote]

Which? That post, or the entire exchange between us, as the attempt has been to corral Poli’s mercury
I am not religious at all and I can understand politesse' point.
It’s not about a point, necessarily; it’s about applying the same rules consistently. Or, rather, that is the point. Poli is not applying the same literary rules consistently.
The 'character' of god is a 'character'.
That is also real, while Adam and Eve are not real and the central, defining events in Genesis that all of the characters are party to did not actually happen. So why, necessarily, would Jesus be real and all of the central, defining events the characters in GMark are party to actually did happen?

And exactly how does one discern the difference? For Poli (and all cult members, for that matter), the only guide seems to be pre-programmed beliefs, thus rendering the “rules” of literary criticism being applied haphazard at best.
Surely you can see allegorical wisdom in the story of the fall.
Which part? Act I or Act II? And why is Act II suddenly a documentary while Act I is just allegory?
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Post by plebian » Wed Feb 14, 2018 7:00 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]
plebian;683675 wrote:this seems strangely myopic.
Which? That post, or the entire exchange between us, as the attempt has been to corral Poli’s mercury
I am not religious at all and I can understand politesse' point.
It’s not about a point, necessarily; it’s about applying the same rules consistently. Or, rather, that is the point. Poli is not applying the same literary rules consistently.
The 'character' of god is a 'character'.
That is also real, while Adam and Eve are not real and the central, defining events in Genesis that all of the characters are party to did not actually happen. So why, necessarily, would Jesus be real and all of the central, defining events the characters in GMark are party to actually did happen?

And exactly how does one discern the difference? For Poli (and all cult members, for that matter), the only guide seems to be pre-programmed beliefs, thus rendering the “rules” of literary criticism being applied haphazard at best.
Surely you can see allegorical wisdom in the story of the fall.
Which part? Act I or Act II? And why is Act II suddenly a documentary while Act I is just allegory?[/QUOTE]
Jesus spoke in parables, buddy. God being a character in an allegory and being somehow real are not in conflict even if the god in the narrative has no direct line correspondence with the god that is somehow real. In terms of pragmatic definitions, "real" is a doozie of a word.

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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Wed Feb 14, 2018 7:26 pm

Jesus spoke in parables, buddy.
No shit.
God being a character in an allegory and being somehow real are not in conflict
In a general sense, but then I wasn’t speaking in a general sense, so what is your point?
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Post by Politesse » Wed Feb 14, 2018 7:26 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]
plebian;683675 wrote:this seems strangely myopic.
Which? That post, or the entire exchange between us, as the attempt has been to corral Poli’s mercury
I am not religious at all and I can understand politesse' point.
It’s not about a point, necessarily; it’s about applying the same rules consistently. Or, rather, that is the point. Poli is not applying the same literary rules consistently.
The 'character' of god is a 'character'.
That is also real, while Adam and Eve are not real and the central, defining events in Genesis that all of the characters are party to did not actually happen. So why, necessarily, would Jesus be real and all of the central, defining events the characters in GMark are party to actually did happen?

And exactly how does one discern the difference? For Poli (and all cult members, for that matter), the only guide seems to be pre-programmed beliefs, thus rendering the “rules” of literary criticism being applied haphazard at best.
Surely you can see allegorical wisdom in the story of the fall.
Which part? Act I or Act II? And why is Act II suddenly a documentary while Act I is just allegory?[/QUOTE]

You are the only person claiming that any part of the Bible is meant to be a "documentary". I did not. And again, I don't think it is "necessary" that the events of Mark be true, there's just a preponderance of evidence that they are, historically speaking. I don't think they have to be true for Christianity to be justifiable. Many Jesus mythicists argue for an entirely allegorical reading of the Passion, meant from the start to be a midrash on Isaiah rather than a literal event. I do not agree on their factual analysis, but I think this would be a perfectly valid variant of the faith, with essentially the same messages at its core: it is God who redeems, through faith and sacrifice. One can use a literal event to illustrate this message, but you do not have to do so.

I doubt very much that the historical Jesus would recognize all of the stories that are told about his life in the Gospels. They do, after all, contradict in detail at several points. But I also think he would find the general theme of Christian teachings to be more or less in line with his philosophy.
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Wed Feb 14, 2018 7:52 pm

Politesse (emphasis mine) wrote:You are the only person claiming that any part of the Bible is meant...
STOP STUFFING FUCKING STRAW. It is utterly pointless and a waste of everyone’s time for you to constantly pull this shit, Poli. Stop it.
I don't think it is "necessary" that the events of Mark be true
Straw.
there's just a preponderance of evidence that they are, historically speaking.
By “preponderance” do you mean the books of the NT as that is the only evidence? Unless you are now referring to the notion that just some arbitrary guy was killed by the Romans as the only real event.
I don't think they have to be true for Christianity to be justifiable.
You don’t think what has to be true? That a guy was crucified by the Romans? Please stop using generalities along with your straw.
Many Jesus mythicists argue for an entirely allegorical reading of the Passion, meant from the start to be a midrash on Isaiah rather than a literal event.
So there was no guy crucified by the Romans that they based their allegory upon?

To once again apply your Einstein example, what are the actual physics? In Genesis, there is no actual garden; no actual snake, talking or otherwise; no actual Adam or Eve; no actual trees. According to your analysis, the only “actual” thing is that a god exists. The entire storyline—all of the details—are made up/fictional/don’t actually exist (except for the character “God” being based on a real being).

Since that same character is in the NT (but it ain’t Jesus), does this also mean the entire storyline—all of the details—are made up/fictional/don’t actually exist (except for the character “God” being based on a real being)? Why not? What—exactly—is the difference between Act I and Act II? You just have a hunch? One allegory was written later than the other?

There’s no talking snake, but there are demons and walking on water and resurrection from the dead, etc and the same God character only now with a magically born son. Iow, there are fantastical characters populating both, but Genesis? All fiction. GMark? Well, hey, just magically not all fiction.
I doubt very much that the historical Jesus would recognize all of the stories that are told about his life in the Gospels. They do, after all, contradict in detail at several points. But I also think he would find the general theme of Christian teachings to be more or less in line with his philosophy.
What “general theme” is that? That God required his own son to be killed as atonement for Adam’s sin in order to grant us eternal salvation? Oh, right, that’s the other guys. Yours is mercury, but only when it comes to GMark because of all that extrabiblical “preponderance” of evidence that doesn’t actually exist (and if it did could still only give us confirmation that some guy was killed by the Romans).
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Post by Hermit » Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:03 pm

[quote=""plebian""]I am not religious at all and I can understand politesse' point. The 'character' of god is a 'character'. It is how we tell stories. Surely you can see allegorical wisdom in the story of the fall.[/quote]To start with, I regard almost everything written in the Bible as human invention, but that is neither here nor there. What politesse makes of it is also only relevant to Politesse. What matters is that for the vast majority of the 2.4 billion individuals who (at least nominally) subscribe to Christianity the central point of the Gospels is that a real god sent his real son to earth to be really sacrificed in order to make atonement possible.

It's about as primitive as monotheism can get, but billions still adhere to this belief even while story after biblical story is relegated to the realm of metaphor, analogy, parable, myth, pious tale, symbolism or figurative in this enlightened age. Of the same necessity as the god of the gaps the literal Bible seems to be disappearing like Lewis Carroll's Cheshire cat, but - unlike the cat - leaving a big, friendly smile behind.

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Post by Hermit » Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:17 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]JTFC :noid: [/quote]
Ah. The good ole Joint Task Force Commander rejoinder. Wish I had thought of it.

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Post by Politesse » Wed Feb 14, 2018 11:25 pm

[quote=""Hermit""]What matters is that for the vast majority of the 2.4 billion individuals who (at least nominally) subscribe to Christianity the central point of the Gospels is that a real god sent his real son to earth to be really sacrificed in order to make atonement possible.[/quote]
Said without a scrap of supporting evidence, of course.
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Post by Hermit » Wed Feb 14, 2018 11:47 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]
Hermit;683685 wrote:What matters is that for the vast majority of the 2.4 billion individuals who (at least nominally) subscribe to Christianity the central point of the Gospels is that a real god sent his real son to earth to be really sacrificed in order to make atonement possible.
Said without a scrap of supporting evidence, of course.[/QUOTE]
Admittedly, I have not found any surveys that would test my assertion, but tell me; What is the most important event in history as far as Christianity is concerned, the feast of all feasts?

Also, do the catholic, anglican or protestant churches tell their followers that Jesus did not die in order to atone for our sins? I put it to you that the contrary is the case, that in fact this is the hook Christianity hangs its coat on.

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Post by Politesse » Thu Feb 15, 2018 1:43 am

[quote=""Hermit""]
Politesse;683695 wrote:
Hermit;683685 wrote:What matters is that for the vast majority of the 2.4 billion individuals who (at least nominally) subscribe to Christianity the central point of the Gospels is that a real god sent his real son to earth to be really sacrificed in order to make atonement possible.
Said without a scrap of supporting evidence, of course.
Admittedly, I have not found any surveys that would test my assertion, but tell me; What is the most important event in history as far as Christianity is concerned, the feast of all feasts?[/QUOTE]Surely the creation of the world itself, followed by the incarnation. But yes, the death of Christ on the cross is important. However, you didn't just mention the event, you interpreted it, and in an especially Latin fashion.

You are also, in a very curious fashion, citing the phenomenon of "nominal" Christians without apparently realizing that many nominal Christians don't necessarily believe everything conservative Catholics think they "ought" to.

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. There have in fact been hundreds of formulations of what Christ's sacrifice and atonement actually meant, some very important in Christian history. The Eastern Church has never accepted the substitutionary view of atonement, and in the West it has been severely questioned by a great many groups. Start here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christus_Victor

And finally.... for the millionth time in this thread, Poli is not questioning whether God or Jesus are "real". Not being a literalist does not mean that you think everything in the Bible is a lie. And shall we recall, my statement to which this entire thread has been an incompetent rebuttal was not about whether any particular passage was literally true, but about whether non-literal readings predate post-modernism, as they evidently do.
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Post by plebian » Thu Feb 15, 2018 1:46 am

[quote=""Hermit""]
plebian;683675 wrote:I am not religious at all and I can understand politesse' point. The 'character' of god is a 'character'. It is how we tell stories. Surely you can see allegorical wisdom in the story of the fall.
To start with, I regard almost everything written in the Bible as human invention, but that is neither here nor there. What politesse makes of it is also only relevant to Politesse. What matters is that for the vast majority of the 2.4 billion individuals who (at least nominally) subscribe to Christianity the central point of the Gospels is that a real god sent his real son to earth to be really sacrificed in order to make atonement possible.

It's about as primitive as monotheism can get, but billions still adhere to this belief even while story after biblical story is relegated to the realm of metaphor, analogy, parable, myth, pious tale, symbolism or figurative in this enlightened age. Of the same necessity as the god of the gaps the literal Bible seems to be disappearing like Lewis Carroll's Cheshire cat, but - unlike the cat - leaving a big, friendly smile behind.[/QUOTE]

Yeah, well, people are pretty ignorant overall. We've only been harnessing electricity in a meaningful way for 150 years.

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Post by Hermit » Thu Feb 15, 2018 2:23 am

[quote=""Politesse""]You are also, in a very curious fashion, citing the phenomenon of "nominal" Christians without apparently realizing that many nominal Christians don't necessarily believe everything conservative Catholics think they "ought" to.[/quote]
Oh, I realise that well enough. Since I was around ten or thereabout when our chaplain explained to my mother why she need not worry about what the Vatican had to say about contraception. Roughly six years later Pope Paul VI published his encyclical, Humanae vitae, dedicated to the reiteration of the Church's prohibition of contraception in any other form than the rhythm method. Despite this neither my mother nor any of her friends thought they'd be condemned to hell because they took the pill.

Still, I have yet to hear from any catholic, protestant or CoE follower of Christianity, be they lay persons or clergy, that Christ did not die to atone for our sins, that he did not need to die or that he only died figuratively. Nothing in your link says otherwise either.
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Post by Hermit » Thu Feb 15, 2018 2:43 am

[quote=""plebian""]
Hermit;683685 wrote:
plebian;683675 wrote:I am not religious at all and I can understand politesse' point. The 'character' of god is a 'character'. It is how we tell stories. Surely you can see allegorical wisdom in the story of the fall.
To start with, I regard almost everything written in the Bible as human invention, but that is neither here nor there. What politesse makes of it is also only relevant to Politesse. What matters is that for the vast majority of the 2.4 billion individuals who (at least nominally) subscribe to Christianity the central point of the Gospels is that a real god sent his real son to earth to be really sacrificed in order to make atonement possible.

It's about as primitive as monotheism can get, but billions still adhere to this belief even while story after biblical story is relegated to the realm of metaphor, analogy, parable, myth, pious tale, symbolism or figurative in this enlightened age. Of the same necessity as the god of the gaps the literal Bible seems to be disappearing like Lewis Carroll's Cheshire cat, but - unlike the cat - leaving a big, friendly smile behind.
Yeah, well, people are pretty ignorant overall. We've only been harnessing electricity in a meaningful way for 150 years.[/QUOTE]
Nevertheless we have made the sort of progress that keeps diminishing literalism in relation to our understanding of the Bible. The theory of evolution, for example, would have greatly encouraged the abandonment of taking the creation of Adam and Eve as literally true. Before then various astronomers have stopped people believing the Bible's conception of the cosmos. Geocentrism has long gone, as has the notion that the stars are holes in the firmament.

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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Thu Feb 15, 2018 2:38 pm

[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]

"Some." Great. Now add in a No True Christian fallacy into the mix. Let's see, shall we? 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."
There have in fact been hundreds of formulations of what Christ's sacrifice and atonement actually meant
Few of which consider it purely figurative in the same manner as the events/characters in Genesis, or that Jesus was not real or did not actually get killed as a sacrifice to God for "our" sins. Once again, the issue is how YOU have invoked certain literary rules that you are not consistently applying.
The Eastern Church has never accepted the substitutionary view of atonement
Turning to PEW again:
Oriental Orthodox churches are those Eastern Orthodox churches that recognize only the first three ecumenical councils convened by the church’s bishops to discuss and determine matters of church doctrine and discipline — the First Council of Nicaea, the First Council of Constantinople and the First Council of Ephesus.13 Unlike the Eastern Orthodox Church, which embraces the Council of Chalcedon’s teaching that Christ has two natures, divine and human, Oriental Orthodox churches hold that Christ has one indivisible nature.
As you well know, the Council of Chalcedon also reaffirmed the pre-eminence of the Creed of Nicea.

The point being that only a very small percentage of cult members believe as you assert.
And finally.... for the millionth time in this thread, Poli is not questioning whether God or Jesus are "real".
Straw.
Not being a literalist does not mean that you think everything in the Bible is a lie.
BIG straw. Fictional is the word you're looking for, not "lie."
And shall we recall, my statement to which this entire thread has been an incompetent rebuttal was not about whether any particular passage was literally true, but about whether non-literal readings predate post-modernism, as they evidently do.
More straw. Jobar was asking "whence literalism" NOT whether or not there have ever been non-literalists or whether or not inerrancy (which was what he was really talking about) pre-dated post-modernism.

Regardless it was YOUR comments regarding the rules of figurative language--and their incoherent, inconsistent applications--that led us here. Don't go blaming waterfalls...
Last edited by Koyaanisqatsi on Thu Feb 15, 2018 3:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Post by Politesse » Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:09 pm

[quote=""Koyaanisqatsi""]"Some." Great. Now add in a No True Christian fallacy into the mix[/quote]Wait, what? You're questioning my credentials, not the other way around. I'm quite happy to consider all those people Christians, and I doubt that God particularly cares where one stands on medieval scholastic disputes at the end of the day.
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."
You're not right about that, even if you hadn't invented some of those numbers. From the blog of an Eastern Orthodox priest: http://antiochian.org/saint-athanasius- ... t-doctrine. And within Roman Catholicism, from which the idea originated, it is nevertheless not binding on Catholics, as there has always been debate on the point.
Few of which consider it purely figurative in the same manner as the events/characters in Genesis, or that Jesus was not real or did not actually get killed as a sacrifice to God for "our" sins. Once again, the issue is how YOU have invoked certain literary rules that you are not consistently applying.
Once again, I've made no argument for what one must or should believe about the factuality of this event or that; only that literalism is a dumb idea. You pressed me for pages to confess my personal opinion of those matters, and I eventually commented on them, but they are irrelevant to my point. Deciding "which" passages to take literally is only relevant if you accept literalism as a valid hermeneutic in the first place, which I do not. And the central point of Christianity is not dependent on the literal truth of a given text fragment. You could burn every Bible in existence tomorrow, and Christianity would, in time, re-emerge, unless God himself willed that it should not. Ink dries, paper decays, the insights of one generation get frozen in time, unable to adapt to the reality of the next. But the words of the pen are not more powerful than the persistence of faith.
As you well know, the Council of Chalcedon also reaffirmed the pre-eminence of the Creed of Nicea.
Which, oddly enough, does not once mention the doctrine of substitutionary atonement, which you claim is central to the faith. A curious thing to leave out of a central unifying creed, one's supposed single most important idea.
The point being that only a very small percentage of cult members believe as you assert.
Alright. Even supposing it is 98%, is this a good way to decide what it true, rational, or justifiable? I know, STRAWWWWW! But if not, why bring it up?
Last edited by Politesse on Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:23 pm, edited 5 times in total.
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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Post by Koyaanisqatsi » Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:39 pm

[quote=""Politesse""]
Koyaanisqatsi;683713 wrote:"Some." Great. Now add in a No True Christian fallacy into the mix
Wait, what? You're questioning my credentials[/quote]

Your "credentials"? What are you talking about?
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."
You're not right about that, even if you hadn't invented some of those numbers.
They are taken directly from the PEW study I quoted and you evidently did not even click on.
Few of which consider it purely figurative in the same manner as the events/characters in Genesis, or that Jesus was not real or did not actually get killed as a sacrifice to God for "our" sins. Once again, the issue is how YOU have invoked certain literary rules that you are not consistently applying.
Once again, I've made no argument for what one must or should believe about the factuality of this event
NOBODY SAID YOU DID
You pressed me for pages to confess my personal opinion of those matters
I "pressed" you to apply the same literary rules/analysis you did to Genesis to GMark in the same consistent, detailed fashion. You kept avoiding that with vague declarations like, "I'm not a literalist" while at the same time affirming that you thought there was an actual Jesus and an actual crucifixion "at the heart of" and such, which is similar to saying that there was an actual Adam and an actual garden that he was banished from for disobeying God, etc.

IOW, because you kept refusing to go into any like details, your comments regarding figurative language were incoherent and contradictory when applied to Act II of the story in GMark, but simple and direct when applied to Act I in Genesis.

Deciding "which" passages to take literally
Ok, just stop using the word "literally." You are constantly (ironically) using it literally, instead of addressing the point which is better addressed with fictional/non-fictional or actual, historical event as described in GMark or purely made up (figurative) allegory the way it is in Genesis.

Again, for Genesis none of the events and none of the characters (except "God") are real/actual/non-fictional while in GMark...well, it could be this or that and some believe one thing and others another and "at the heart" was a guy who got crucified...etc.

In short, Genesis? Pure allegory. GMark? Well...mercury. So what--exactly--are the literary rules you are applying to Genesis that so readily pronounce it all allegorical that when applied to GMark suddenly become fungible?
As you well know, the Council of Chalcedon also reaffirmed the pre-eminence of the Creed of Nicea.
Which, oddly enough, does not once mention the doctrine of substitutionary atonement, which you claim is central to the faith. A curious thing to leave out of a central unifying creed, one's supposed single most important idea.
Do we really need to get into the minutia of the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed? The point was and still remains that the overwhelming majority of Christians do affirm sacrificial atonement of Jesus for Adam's/humanity's sin, but more importantly, Jesus evidently affirms it as well, as Hermit pointed out. If not, then what in the world is Jesus referring to when he thrice begs God to prevent his imminent and known fate, "not what I will, but what you will"?

As we both certainly agree, it was not a literal cup Jesus was referring to when he begged God to take it from him, yes? So even Jesus is aware that his death is somehow meant as a necessary requirement by God for something beyond just being killed by the Romans.
The point being that only a very small percentage of cult members believe as you assert.
Alright. Even supposing it is 98%, is this a good way to decide what it true, rational, or justifiable?
No, to do that one should apply the same rules of literary analysis consistently to Act II as you do to Act I of any such stories.
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Post by Politesse » Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:28 pm

So you say something is stated in the Bible, I point out that it actually isn't, and I'm "stuffing straw". 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". Who is inconsistent in their literalism again?

I get what you are trying to say. You are utterly baffled by the thought that something in Genesis might be entirely allegorical while something in Mark is only partially allegorical. I just think this is a really stupid thing to be baffled by. They aren't even in the same book...
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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