2009.02.04 13:00 - The conversation we never had...and finally managed to have :)

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    The Guardian for this session was Genesis Zhangsun.The comments below are hers.


    Fael Illyar: Hi Gen, Samuel :)
    genesis Zhangsun: Hey Fael!
    genesis Zhangsun: Hey Samuel!
    Samuel Okelly: hello every1 :)
    genesis Zhangsun: Haven't see you here at this time in awhile Fael :)
    Fael Illyar: Yes, for the first 2 weeks, I was mostly sleeping by this time.
    Fael Illyar: after that, busy elsewhere usually :)
    genesis Zhangsun: Hows it going?
    Fael Illyar: this year
    Fael Illyar: Quite good :)
    genesis Zhangsun: glad to hear it :)
    Fael Illyar: You?
    genesis Zhangsun: great!

    I decide to share a feeling that had been growing.

    genesis Zhangsun: lately I have been having a feeling of coming back to myself in a way that I haven't experienced in a long time
    Fael Illyar: Hi Fefonz :)
    genesis Zhangsun: Hey Fefonz ;)
    Samuel Okelly: hi fef
    Fael Illyar: coming back to yourself?
    genesis Zhangsun: yes like a returning home to myself
    genesis Zhangsun: like waking up from sleep
    genesis Zhangsun: and being really here
    Fefonz Quan: hey Gen, Fael, sam :)
    genesis Zhangsun: don't really know how to explain it
    Fael Illyar: awakening?
    genesis Zhangsun: kind of but not in any dramatic way
    genesis Zhangsun: just like I can see through the fog that has been surrounding my sight or something
    Samuel Okelly: a "realisation of the self " as it were?
    genesis Zhangsun: something like that samuel :)
    Fael Illyar: ah, how long time did you mean not having come back to yourself?
    genesis Zhangsun: honestly I haven't felt like this since I was a kid :)

    Becoming a teenager again...

    genesis Zhangsun: like when I was 17 and felt invincible
    Fael Illyar: Sounds very good then :)
    genesis Zhangsun: I don't feel invincible now but just the same sort of confidence
    genesis Zhangsun: a lot more doing without thinking or obsessing just being
    Fael Illyar: Yes :)
    Fael Illyar: that's been a major theme in my own journey. Less thinking, more just being and doing.
    Fefonz Quan: yes, i know how it feels too :)
    Fael Illyar: of course, thinking works for some things but ... :)
    Fefonz Quan: (or remember at least :))
    Fael Illyar: yes, when you were a kid, you weren't yet so bogged down with beliefs about your own inadequacy... would this work for describing it?
    Fefonz Quan: the other way around for me, just my 2 cents...
    Fael Illyar: Ah, it can go that way too :)
    genesis Zhangsun: yes Fael for me I think that is what I mean
    genesis Zhangsun: about feeling 17 again
    genesis Zhangsun: seeing my potential inadequacies and being able hold them without judging them...just seeing things as differences in ability and capacity without seeing them as inadequate
    genesis Zhangsun: finding myself much more able to admit what I don't know and being comfortable with that
    genesis Zhangsun: asking questions and learning meanwhile :)
    Fael Illyar: perhaps the word you're looking for is believing, not judging?
    Fefonz Quan floats also to the wonderful 17-18 years...
    genesis Zhangsun: yes that is a good word not believeing or buying in and getting obsessed and lost :)
    Fael Illyar: to believe is to try to make it so.
    Fefonz Quan: when used wisely.
    Samuel Okelly: to believe can be a rational response reason
    Fefonz Quan: some use believe as an excuse not to change
    Fael Illyar: well, yes, it's part of attempting to make the world be like the belief.
    Fael Illyar: Samuel, I'm not quite sure I get what you mean.
    genesis Zhangsun: yes Samuel what do you mean?
    Samuel Okelly: belief can be a reasoned response to logic processes that do not, as you seem to be implying, actively necessitate the building of a belief
    genesis Zhangsun: so you are saying that belief is sometimes not an action but a natural result?
    Samuel Okelly: belief can be responsive and not necassarily constructive
    genesis Zhangsun: that something can lead to belief without constructing it?
    Fael Illyar: belief and logic processes are separate. It's up to you to decide when to take what you have from logic and believe it.
    genesis Zhangsun: Hey Wol!!!
    Fael Illyar: Hi Wol :)
    Fefonz Quan: Heya Wol :)
    Fael Illyar: Hi Solo :)
    Wol Euler: hello gen, fael, sam, fefonz, fael
    genesis Zhangsun: Hey Solobill!!!
    Fefonz Quan: Wolcome
    Wol Euler: and solo
    Samuel Okelly: this should not be confused with how the mind/brain/inner-self constructs or moulds to understanding ...
    Samuel Okelly: hey sol
    Samuel Okelly: hey wol
    genesis Zhangsun: could you give me an example Samuel that would really help :)
    Fefonz Quan: Hey SOlo :)
    Wol Euler: (I should have figured it out when you left on the hour, Gen :)
    genesis Zhangsun: :)
    Solobill Laville: Hi, all :)
    Samuel Okelly: my theistic faith is based on the reality of objective truth
    genesis Zhangsun: yes...could you explain a bit more how that ties in with belief as construct v. belief as response?
    Fefonz Quan: is it an inevitable output of the objective truth?
    Samuel Okelly: the logic behind theistic faith is qualitatively different from belief in santa clause for example
    genesis Zhangsun: :) ok how so?
    Fefonz Quan: i'm glad to hear that :)
    genesis Zhangsun: me too ;)
    Solobill Laville: What are you saying about Santa Clause.... ;)
    Wol Euler waits withinterest.
    Samuel Okelly: :)

     Belief as construct v. belief as response

    Samuel Okelly: one is "reasoned" and follows a logical path and the other is a social contruct
    Fefonz Quan is reminded of the reason for Santa's red and white outfit ;-)
    genesis Zhangsun: ok what is the logical path....
    Wol Euler: oh please.
    Wol Euler: what externally verifiable logic leads you to the existence of God?
    Wol Euler slaps her own hand. I'm sorry, Samuel, that came out far too harsh.
    genesis Zhangsun: this is exciting!!!
    Wol Euler: I was arguing with Gilles and am still worked up.
    Samuel Okelly: anyone interested in learning more about christian apologetics should consider googling peter kreeft and visiting his website for example
    Fael Illyar: how you end up with a belief is really beside what I was trying to point out :)
    genesis Zhangsun: but seriously I am interested Samuel what is the logical path :)
    genesis Zhangsun: I am open to hear it really :)
    Fael Illyar was trying to talk about what belief is, not how you get there.
    Wol Euler: yes, that is waht I meant :)
    Samuel Okelly: "[13:28] Wol Euler: what externally verifiable logic leads you to the existence of God?", "[13:29] genesis Zhangsun: but seriously I am interested Samuel what is the logical path :)"
    Samuel Okelly: i would simply say GOOGLE christian apologetics
    genesis Zhangsun: but I'd rather discuss with you :)
    genesis Zhangsun: unless you think google would be better company ;)
    Wol Euler: yes, gen, please explain sam
    genesis Zhangsun: its a great topic :)
    Samuel Okelly: and id like to master the rubiks cube but somethings you have to do for yourself ;-)
    Fefonz Quan: well, some, you kind of mute this interesting discussion :(
    Solobill Laville: True, and I've never got more than 2 sides...
    Fefonz Quan: Sam*
    genesis Zhangsun: but what we could discuss your experience tackling the rubics cube I have my own experiences too :)
    Samuel Okelly: peterkreeft.com
    genesis Zhangsun: this is what PaB is here for to discuss approaches to the rubics cube you could say :)
    Fefonz Quan: i would teach you the rubik solution after you go with the first issue :)
    Solobill Laville: hehe
    Fefonz Quan was once doing the cube at average of 60 seconds
    Wol Euler: wow
    genesis Zhangsun: :)
    Samuel Okelly: :)
    Wol Euler: I think it only took me 75 seconds to put mine down forever :)
    genesis Zhangsun: hehe
    genesis Zhangsun: just hypothetically to have a little discussion Sam what does PeterKreeft believe in a couple of sentences :)
    Solobill Laville: I do not see how any construct, regardless of qualitative level, leads to objective reality
    Fael Illyar: one thing that might be interesting to point out is that I used to count myself agnostic. And never quite got what people mean when they speak about talking with God. The funny thing is, I'd always thought it talking with myself.
    Samuel Okelly: he is a catholic apoliist and provides, amongst other things, many logical arguments for the existence of God
    Fefonz Quan: and do you talk to him now, Fael?
    genesis Zhangsun: one of which is....
    Fael Illyar: I've always talked. I just didn't call what I talk with God.
    Samuel Okelly: ...found by visiting www.peterkreeft.com
    Wol Euler: sam, tell us. talk to us.
    Wol Euler: don't kill the conversation.
    Samuel Okelly: "God is dead" said the mad man lol
    Fefonz Quan: Which God is he getting at? trancendental? pantheist?
    Fefonz Quan: (both?)
    Samuel Okelly: as i said fef, he is a cathgolic apologist
    Fael Illyar: but I've come to the conclusion that that must be what people who claim to talk with God mean.
    Fefonz Quan: that's not explaining, at least not for me, Sam, he could be jewish and still they have many kinds of GOd-descriptions
    Samuel Okelly: visit the website then fef???
    Samuel Okelly: http://www.peterkreeft.com/audio/08_...ts-for-god.htm
    genesis Zhangsun: Ok guys Sam's forced my hand...get ready for a big cut and paste
    Fael Illyar: Samuel, why so aggressive?
    genesis Zhangsun: There are many arguments for God's existence, but most of them have the same logical structure, which is the basic structure of any deductive argument. First, there is a major premise, or general principle. Then, a minor premise states some particular data in our experience that come under that principle. Finally, the conclusion follows from applying the general principle to the particular case
    Wol Euler: dammit sam, this is not good enough.
    Samuel Okelly: that isnt meant to be agressive
    Samuel Okelly: if it does i apologise
    genesis Zhangsun: this is from peterkreeft.com
    genesis Zhangsun: more coming....

    I was determined to have some sort of discussion that didn't involve everyone going to a website.

    genesis Zhangsun: There are many arguments for God's existence, but most of them have the same logical structure, which is the basic structure of any deductive argument. First, there is a major premise, or general principle. Then, a minor premise states some particular data in our experience that come under that principle. Finally, the conclusion follows from applying the general principle to the particular case
    genesis Zhangsun: oops
    Solobill Laville: The website's core is a 79 minute video it seems
    genesis Zhangsun: In each case the conclusion is that God exists, but the premises of the different arguments are different. The arguments are like roads, from different starting points, all aiming at the same goal of God. In subsequent essays we will explore the arguments from cause and effect, from conscience, from history, and from Pascal's Wager.
    Wol Euler: not going to watch that, sorry.
    genesis Zhangsun: its a lot
    Solobill Laville: Is the point of accepting God's existence salvation?
    genesis Zhangsun: can't cut and past the various essays
    Samuel Okelly: i can paste all of it here but that would hardly be of benefit would it?
    Wol Euler: sam, when you tell us that we are wrong, and then "answer" us by telling us to go away and read, you kill this conversation.
    Wol Euler: you are telling us that our gathering here is of no value.
    Samuel Okelly: "[13:42] Wol Euler: sam, when you tell us that we are wrong, " where was this wol??
    Wol Euler: that our discussion amongst ourselves, and with you, is insignificant in the search for truth
    Wol Euler: saying "go look at the web" kills _this_ convesation in _this_ group.
    Wol Euler: that is why I and Gen want you to tell us what the reply is.
    Wol Euler: to keep this group conversing
    Samuel Okelly: and how is suggesting a website "saying you are wrong"?
    Wol Euler: no, that came first :)
    Wol Euler: the website is your proof that we are wrong, as I understand you.
    genesis Zhangsun: because we all have to go to and spend 79 minutes to get it :)
    genesis Zhangsun: when we only have 17 left here :)
    Samuel Okelly: did i say you were wroing?
    Wol Euler: right.
    Wol Euler: me sighs.
    genesis Zhangsun: Sam I think your statements are interesting it would be even more interesting to discuss them :)
    Wol Euler: thanks, gen.
    Fefonz Quan: Sam, i started listening to it, and it starts with the proof of design - the universe is "obviously" designed - hence there is a designer.

    Oh boy....the "Designer"

    genesis Zhangsun: yes I saw that too Fefonz
    genesis Zhangsun: its a good point in a way right?
    Fefonz Quan: there are so many arguments against it, i don't even know where to start
    genesis Zhangsun: :)
    genesis Zhangsun: there is some logic to it though :)
    Samuel Okelly: 1. The Argument from Change 2. The Argument from Efficient Causality 3. The Argument from Time and Contingency 4. The Argument from Degrees of Perfection 5. The Design Argument 6. The Kalam Argument 7. The Argument from Contingency 8. The Argument from the World as an Interacting Whole 9. The Argument from Miracles 10. The Argument from Consciousness 11. The Argument from Truth 12. The Argument from the Origin of the Idea of God 13. The Ontological Argument 14. The Moral Argument 15. The Argument from Conscience 16. The Argument from Desire 17. The Argument from Aesthetic Experience 18. The Argument from Religious Experience 19. The Common Consent Argument 20. Pascal's Wager
    Wol Euler: tell us one of them, sam-
    genesis Zhangsun: yeah your opinion about one of them :)
    Fefonz Quan: ok, i picked one
    genesis Zhangsun: ok so when we see something like an SOS in the sand we ask ourselves #1 who wrote it?
    Fefonz Quan: i'm not saying they are all correct, just saying that taking such a controversial issue as proof
    genesis Zhangsun: who put it there?
    Fefonz Quan: is a little far for me
    genesis Zhangsun: thats what I see in the essay
    genesis Zhangsun: so it applies that to the universe
    genesis Zhangsun: its here...the premise is that there is a design so the issue is who designed it
    genesis Zhangsun: but this of course assumes that there is a design...what do we think is there one?
    Fefonz Quan: this is because you know one procedure to create SOS -
    Fefonz Quan: so you apply to that reason
    Fefonz Quan: but when you see the remanents of start explotion - you don't ask that
    Fefonz Quan: star*
    Samuel Okelly: whether or not this is believed, what is not in doubt is that such arguments are "logical"
    Fefonz Quan: i would argue that. in hard logic, one input caannot lead to two outputs
    genesis Zhangsun: ....well no I think that is what Fefonz is pointing out that it is not logical because it assumes the creation of the universe is like figuring out how writing in the sand got there and it isn't
    Fefonz Quan: if it does, one path was not "logical" per ce
    Wol Euler: and a logical argument from a false start will produce a false result
    Wol Euler: my problem with this "logic" is that it works backwards from a desired goal.
    Fefonz Quan wants to say that God can exist outside of logic reasoning, just to make a note
    Wol Euler: god does exist, how do I prove it?
    genesis Zhangsun: because we don't understand the activity of universe creation entirely in the same way we know something about writing in the sand
    genesis Zhangsun: yes Fefonz I agree :)
    Wol Euler: you will admit, Samuel, that many philosophers have offered logical proofs of other means of creating the universe, etc
    Wol Euler: the big bang theory is logically sound too.
    genesis Zhangsun: perhaps what this design argument is saying is that it is not about competing logical theories of creation but rather the question of Who?
    Samuel Okelly: i think demanding empirical evidence belies a certain arrogance I think.. i.e. I want you to prove X and this is how I want you to do it… It would be no different than the theist telling the atheist to pray for proof
    Fefonz Quan: Sam, i wouldn't want to say that we are attacking you specifically, we would argue with anyone claiming enlightenment too i hope :)
    genesis Zhangsun: but again this is putting the issue of creation into the realm of what we ordinarily understand
    Wol Euler: absolutely, fefonz. The point is the absolutism, not its target.
    genesis Zhangsun: oh yes me too :) we all have different ways of expressing our commitment to the highest :)
    Samuel Okelly: unsurprsingly i hold that we are both spiritual and biological
    Wol Euler: let me quote from the Intertubes too:
    Wol Euler: And atheists are free to be spiritual, to do good things in the world, to care. The point is to simply admit that there’s no bearded dude on a cloud listening to your prayers. There’s just you and your world. The point is to make it better because it’s there - not because some teacher in the sky is keeping score.
    Samuel Okelly: thats subjectivism
    Wol Euler: and?
    Samuel Okelly sighs
    Wol Euler smiles. We do make each other do that.
    Samuel Okelly: why so agressive
    Wol Euler: we have all asked you that question too, samuel.
    genesis Zhangsun: but to be fair perhaps this dude in the sky is just a representation of our compassion for a world much larger than one
    genesis Zhangsun: :)
    Wol Euler: maybe we need to find a different way to have this kind of conversattion

    I agree...

    Samuel Okelly: i have said honestly that nothing i have typed should be inferred as an agressive response...
    Samuel Okelly: if it it has been taken that way i have apologised despite that not being my intent
    Solobill Laville hasn't found anything at all here aggressive :)
    Fefonz Quan: hope our's weren't too
    Wol Euler: likewise. I wish that I could be calmer about this, too.
    Fael Illyar: nothing directly aggressive there but ... I can feel some of that as an undercurrent here.
    Wol Euler: I have a suggestoin, group. Samuel always sits opposite us, as he sat away from the group at Kira just now.
    Samuel Okelly: i do not respond to anything which i suspect is said with disdain for my belief and i expect others to do liekwise
    Wol Euler: Next time, let us intentionally surround him.
    Wol Euler: maybe the mood will be less courtroom-like if we are not opposite each other
    Solobill Laville: I think...the challenge in an open group discussion such as this
    Wol Euler: because room dynamics do have a role in conversation.
    genesis Zhangsun: exactly Solobill... we are all going to disagree sometimes and that is the fun of it :)
    Fefonz Quan: amsingly so, although its virtua
    Samuel Okelly: i am happy to give a clear and consise account of catholic apologetics however this was not my primary reason for coming here... yet the conversation always seems to revert to me and my belief
    genesis Zhangsun: I find your perspective refreshing Samuel :)
    Wol Euler: mmhmm, it works even here, fefonz
    Fefonz Quan: yes, sometimes i find myself truely inconvenient standing at wrong corners of room :)
    Fefonz Quan: (and then i laugh at myself)
    genesis Zhangsun: no but really it is nice to have a lively debate about this things....gets the blood moving
    genesis Zhangsun: *these
    genesis Zhangsun: Gilles's seminar is starting
    Solobill Laville: I must be off friends, got hockey for the boy tonight :)
    Samuel Okelly: btw, ion my screen the chatbox is maximised and so i do not in anyway feel affected by the representation of the physicality of the group
    Fael Illyar: See you later Solo :)
    genesis Zhangsun: bye Solobill!
    Wol Euler: bye solo, take care.
    Wol Euler: dress warm
    Wol Euler: it's cold in them rinks.
    Solobill Laville: hehe, will do, and yes it is.
    Samuel Okelly: tc sol :)
    Solobill Laville: Bye!
    Fael Illyar: Samuel, by doing that, you're blocking off some communication that is going on.
    Fefonz Quan: Going to seminar too, see you all Fael, Sam, Wol and Gen
    Wol Euler: bye fefonz, enjoy.
    Fael Illyar: See you later Fefonz :)
    Samuel Okelly: by oing what fael?
    Samuel Okelly: bye fef
    genesis Zhangsun: thanks everyone for the contribution
    Fael Illyar: by maximizing the chat window
    Wol Euler: :-PPPP
    Wol Euler: gen, are you going too?
    genesis Zhangsun: hey guys no need to get touchy :)
    Fael Illyar: the beauty of SL is all the other kind of communication it allows, besides text
    genesis Zhangsun: I have to go and do some work :)
    Samuel Okelly: bye gen
    Fael Illyar: See you later Gen :)
    Samuel Okelly: is it obligatory to have the graphics in a viewable position here or is that a presumption on your part fael?
    genesis Zhangsun: no I agree Sam there certainly is no obligatory way to view your graphics :)
    Fael Illyar: of course not. I just want you to know that there is something else in SL besides just text.
    Fael Illyar: and that, it is communication. All of it.
    Samuel Okelly: this is not a value judgment btw (i would be happy to conform if such a requirement were to be made)
    genesis Zhangsun: Fael, Sam is pretty new to the group unlike the others here and it makes sense in a way just like RL that someone new to something would sit slightly away from the group :)
    genesis Zhangsun: think about Sam's comfort :)
    Wol Euler raises her hand. I was the one who suggested surrounding him, actually,
    genesis Zhangsun: surrounding in a loving accepting way :)
    Samuel Okelly: whilst i feel comfortable talking about my beliefs i am also aware that ppl who only talk about themselves can appear boring and unaccomodating ;-)
    Wol Euler: That is my hobbyhorse, perhaps I am too sensitive to what I imagine the room to feel
    genesis Zhangsun: could you accept that Sam?
    Samuel Okelly: sure gen :)
    Fael Illyar smiles.
    Wol Euler: sam, "boring" is the last thing you are!
    genesis Zhangsun: sure but we wanted to ou to share :)
    Samuel Okelly: thank you ( i think ;-)
    genesis Zhangsun: yeah that is not something I would say about you either :)
    genesis Zhangsun: so no need to worry about that :)
    genesis Zhangsun: we all love talking about ourselves :)
    Wol Euler grins. It was meant kindly
    Fael Illyar: Yes, definitely not boring :)
    Samuel Okelly: well i initially came here to hear others and not risk being accused of "evangalsing ppl" lol
    genesis Zhangsun: I'm just here for the free therapy (official disclaimer this is not a therapy group and this is a joke)
    Wol Euler: fheheheh
    Samuel Okelly: lol
    Samuel Okelly: i think we learn more about ourselves when we explain our beliefs to others
    Wol Euler: right!
    Samuel Okelly: i.e thinking through and talking through our ideas
    Fael Illyar: Yes, exactly, which is why conversation is useful :)
    Wol Euler: that is exactly why telling us about Peter Kreef's website is so bad.
    genesis Zhangsun: definitely next time please explain more honestly we want to hear what you have to say!
    Wol Euler: I wnt to hear _you_ thinking and talking
    Wol Euler: not him.
    genesis Zhangsun: well guys got to go!
    Fael Illyar: See you later Gen :)
    genesis Zhangsun: but I do hope you come back Sam and share more with us :)
    Wol Euler: yep, bye gen. Take care, be happy
    genesis Zhangsun: bye Fael :)
    genesis Zhangsun: bye Wol :)
    Samuel Okelly: i merely suggested his site not to be dismissive but merely out of recognition that it is a big field of study and much good info can be obtained from that site if anybody truly wishes to ursue the matter further
    genesis Zhangsun: you too!
    Samuel Okelly: tc gen :)
    Fael Illyar waves to Gen.

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