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1  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: Absolute Truth on: August 30, 2014, 02:55:34 pm
Although I'm sure the good Lord is aware of what the absolute truth is, and will reveal it to us when we shuffle of this mortal coil, none of us, being but imperfect humans, can ever hope to define for ourselves any sort of absolute truth. Indeed, to each and every one of us, 'the truth' is different, and this inevitably shapes how we look at the world. To my mind, it seems true that deterrence is more important than rehabilitation when it comes to criminal justice, whereas to another they might see the 'truth' as being exactly the opposite. In the end, what is true or not is, and can only, be decided by those who have the power to enforce 'truth'; the state, the Church (in times past at least), people of importance. What you or I say is true matters little unless we have the power to ensure that other people accept it as so. That might be because we are greatly respected by people generally, but often, its simply a question of whether you have the authority to, I wouldn't say compel, that in some cases is too strong a word, but encourage ordinary people (such as myself at least), to believe in something. Often the key to this authority is money or position (in a government for example).

Truth cannot be defined by individuals, because, as I have said before, individuals always percieve things differently. However, a society where everybody is simply allowed to find their own way does not and will not work, thus some kind of powerful body is required to step in, knock a few heads together, and propose a version of the truth that we can all agree upon, or acquiesce to at the very least. Not that this is a bad thing mind, as human society would be very bizarre and unstable thing were it not so. Note that I do not deny the possibility of an 'absolute truth' that God has, in his infinite wisdom, laid out, just that we cannot discern it. In my view, the Church and Christianity as a whole, offer the nearest substitute for some kind of 'absolute truth'.

I remember posting a thread a few months ago regarding that wonderful conversation in the Hogfather between Death and Susan. Death talks about having to believe in things that aren't true, otherwise they can't become true. To a certain extent, I agree with this, not neccessarily because I don't think that things are true, but because I cannot know them to be true, but, hell, I've got to believe in something, otherwise life wouldn't be worth living. The same goes, of course, for the things we are told by the Church, by people of great importance, for these are the things that give our society form, that keep it ticking over. Were we to declare an equality of all ideas, of all truths, then society would rapidly collapse into an orgy of murder, rape and pillage, as the people who believed these things to be right and proper would quickly cause chaos. Not that such an equality of ideas could ever last, as some people would inevitably band together to bring back some stability and to crush those causing trouble to them. Thus such a scenario is hypothetical, as it could not last for long.

So, to some up, I think there is some sort of 'absolute truth', out there, somewhere, but for now we'll just have to make do with what we have.
Good summary of key ideas in the pursuit of truth. thanks
2  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: Absolute Truth on: August 30, 2014, 02:49:56 pm
What is love?
3  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Favorite planet is our solar system? on: August 30, 2014, 12:55:16 pm
Pluto, of course!

edit: I voted for Mars, for right now. That's because I think we should be going there.
I would vote for any planet where any kind of life is found or which has a moon with life.
Since no life has been found I am going for Mars.
4  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: Absolute Truth on: August 30, 2014, 12:46:30 pm
I have no idea what the absolute truth is, but to say that there is no absolute truth, seems a little closed minded. In other words I have no idea what that truth is, only that it could exist, and probably does.

I also know that there are things that are true. The most obvious being that there is what we call "life". (why is there something rather than nothing)
5  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Absolute Truth on: August 30, 2014, 12:43:08 pm
We could all agree that there is only one truth, but not on what that truth is.

We could, but that doesn't mean we will.

It could be:
That there is no absolute truth.
That the truth is always changing.
That all you need is love.
That there is more than one truth.
etc etc
You can change your vote and therefore you can try to convince others' to change theirs. For now I am voting absolutely true.
6  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Ask Buddha on: August 30, 2014, 08:30:31 am
Who do you want to run for PA-Sen in 2016? In a Democratic primary, who would you vote for: Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders?

Joe Sestak could probably win. If the race hasn't been decided by the time it gets to PA, I might vote for Sanders, certainly not Clinton.
7  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: A simple true of false question. on: August 29, 2014, 09:45:28 am
Although February(28or29),
March(31) and November (30)
are very similar all
beginning on the same day
in non leap
years they aren't quite
identical because they
each have a different number
of days
same for April and July,
and for September and December

January is always identical
to another month so the
answer is true

however in leaps years it
is identical to July,
while in most years it
is identical to October

for example, 2016 and 2015:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leap_year_starting_on_Friday

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_year_starting_on_Thursday
8  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: What are/is your favorite 2014 Senate election(s)? on: August 28, 2014, 02:06:32 pm
You ought to have included WV.

My favorites: AR, GA, HI, KS, KY, LA, MT, NC*, SD, VA*, WV

*) due to Libertarian vote

Well, I mostly wanted to include the close ones. I could have included all of them but there are a lot.
9  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: Opinion of this statement on: August 28, 2014, 02:04:08 pm
I don't know how I would vote in this poll, but I do support the idea of government support for some television (like PBS) and companies are supporting PBS by paying taxes. Perhaps this post is a little bit off topic however.
10  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: Cool chart about religion and politics in the US on: August 28, 2014, 01:50:20 pm
War and peace are not part of that paradigm and that is the most important political issue to me. I would be in the lower left region, perhaps in the center of it where I am all alone. Notice how big the blank area in the center of the LL square is.
11  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: What would you spend $42 000 from your piggy-bank on? on: August 28, 2014, 01:38:37 pm
Easy. New car and pay off most of my CC debt.
12  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: What are/is your favorite 2014 Senate election(s)? on: August 28, 2014, 01:36:55 pm
AK AR CO
GA IA KY
LA MN NC NH
13  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / What are/is your favorite 2014 Senate election(s)? on: August 28, 2014, 01:34:38 pm
For me, the close ones, because they will determine who controls the Senate.
KY and MN are interesting. The former because MConnell could be majority leader
and the latter because I like Al Franken regardless of his political views.
14  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Your three favorite avatars on: August 28, 2014, 10:24:44 am




15  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Is this post racially insensitive? on: August 28, 2014, 09:40:02 am
No way. Not in the least.
16  Forum Community / Forum Community / Ask Buddha on: August 28, 2014, 09:27:24 am
Of course, I am not the Buddha, so my user id is not important.
Nevertheless ask me what you want and comments rather than questions
are acceptable to me as well.
Although I have been reticent in some ways to always be brutally honest about what I
believe.. the time has come for me to be a little more active on this board.
I am older than most of the 'forumites', yet in some ways I am called to this board
as a sort of ersatz community. Much of what goes on here does not appeal to me, but
much does.
As we 'grow' our opinions will change, so I can't promise that mine won't, thus causing
some confusion and perhaps cognitive dissonance.
17  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: How can anyone say the GOP isn't favored to win the Senate? on: August 27, 2014, 01:38:31 pm
I would say that the GOP is more likely to win based on a narrow lead in the polls.
However, many races are close and we could have a situation where control depends
on one seat that isn't finally called for days or even weeks.
18  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: Can you vote in the 2014 Senate elections? on: August 27, 2014, 11:00:59 am

Oh, I didn't think this one out. Although I did give you the option to change your vote, which doesn't really solve the problem.
19  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: Can you vote in the 2014 Senate elections? on: August 27, 2014, 08:01:40 am
Of course, I am talking about the general, not the primaries.
20  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Can you vote in the 2014 Senate elections? on: August 27, 2014, 08:00:44 am
I am curious how many of you can or will vote for a Senator this year.

I live in PA, so I can't.
21  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Yet another "Who's your favorite atheist?" poll on: August 26, 2014, 01:07:52 pm
I haven't read books by either of them, but I have seen Hitchens on internet videos (youtube) and television. I voted for Vonnegut, although I don't know a lot about him, I think that I agree with his views on politics more than Hitchens. (Vonnegut considered himself a Unitarian Universalist not surprisingly)
22  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: A simple true of false question. on: August 26, 2014, 01:00:35 pm
If you use old style dates in which January is not the first month, then it always is a common month with the May that occurred previously that year.

Interesting, but I am talking about the current calendar system where January is the first month, so, for example in 2015 January and October are identical.
Actually, this "test" is pretty easy if you think about it.
23  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: How would you like to be buried? on: August 26, 2014, 12:29:50 pm
Oh, actually "indefinate" is more accurate than "immortal":

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indefinite_lifespan

Life expectancy at birth was only 31 in the early twentieth century.
By 2050 it should be much higher than it is now.
24  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: How would you like to be buried? on: August 26, 2014, 12:22:36 pm
Yeah, I'd like to be frozen in case they find a way to bring me back.

Well, traditionally, the idea is to freeze someone after she or he dies;
it would make more sense to do that before death.
I think once you're dead you're dead, after a certain amount of time.
I know it's possible to die for a short amount of time and be resusitated, but
I don't know if it's possible to be resusitated if you are frozen for a number of years.
25  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: How would you like to be buried? on: August 26, 2014, 12:19:14 pm
I voted other.... because.....
I would like to be uploading into a computer or find some other way of living forever.
Or at least until 2100 when I will be 145:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Immortality#Prospects_for_human_biological_immortality

If I am still alive when I am 80 in 2035, life expectancy could be going up a rate faster than
we age and virtual immortality could be a possibility:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Longevity_escape_velocity
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