Monday, February 17, 2014

... AronRa claims Human Morality is Evolution's Making

First video of five:
AronRa : The Evolution of Morality (1-5)
I, 6:40 or little before
[Q from video:] "then why are these images real?"

Heard of Adam eating the forbidden fruit?
II, 8:14
positive claims require positive evidence.

Our eyes and inner ears (forgot what you call those curved tubes in three dimensions of curving) give us positive evidence, as far as not proven wrong, that earth is still and sun, moon, stars go around us each day, east to west, and that sun lags behind the stars a little each day, adding up to full circle west to east once a year, moon gets full circle west to east compared to stars once a month (lunar month and solar year, obviously).

Lucretius, who was an atheist did not deny this. But he was very inattentive as to mechanism behind these phenomena. When Ptolemy inquired further into the regularities, it was very obvious to everyone that although Aristotle was wrong on particulars, his proof there was a God pushing the universe around us east to west (or commanding stars to go east to west in a very perfect formation, if you go by Abraham's observation as given in Josephus) was right and Lucretius wrong.

Have you since then any positive evidence for positive claims like:
  • Heliocentrism
  • Big Bang
  • getting from just after BB to formation of galaxies and solar system and planets around stars, especially around Sun
  • abiogenesis
  • microbes to man (or to dog or to cat) evolution?
[on chart defining magic in various ways]

mag·ic \maj-ik\ noun
1 a : the use and means (as charms or spells) believed to have supernatural power over natural forces
b : magic rites or incantations [speaking into being]
[Abra cadabera = "I create as I speak"]
2 a: an extraordinary power or influence seemingly from a supernatural source
b : something that seems to cast a spell : enchantment
[enchantment = blessing]

mir·a·cle \mir-i-k@l\ noun
1. an effect or extraordinary event in the physical world that surpasses all known human or natural powers and is ascribed to a supernatural cause.

1a and 1b are definitions of magic in forbidden sense and not synonymous with miracle.

The formula "abra kadabra" is, if translation is correct, something never said by God, but by some mage trying to usurp the power of God.

As to sense 2a, calling that magic is like calling a grocer charging a higher price than you expected "robber" (or worse, since God by making miracles is not charging us a higher price but giving things for free). If you call the grocer "robber" that does not mean he can be put in prison for charging 8 cents more than last year (example taken from Euro-cents, on a pack of four yoghurts, from 0:49 to 0:57) and if you call God a magician, that does not mean he could get stoned during Old Testament law or burned at at stake in Salem.
Second video of five:
AronRa : The Evolution of Morality (2-5)
I, 00:51
Two observations:

  • Are you claiming divine guidance for your interpretation of - say fossils, genomes, phenomes ...?
  • A Catholic does claim divine guidance (whether Kenneth Miller knows so or not, I have contacted him to verify if he is a Traditional Catholic as you said or a Modernist one) for one specific collective: the Church Fathers.

They are all of them Young Earth Creationist, though some few are not Six Day Creationists (St Augustine notably came to conclude that the six days referred to a single moment, or atemporal creation, "in the beginning" before there was any succession in time).

[Added today:] Btw, I contacted Ken Miller, he is a nice guy socially, but he is a nightmare theologically and very certainly not a traditional Catholic but a very untraditional one, judging by his response to my question. In all fairness, he was friendly and all that, but that does not make him more Catholic than the Father Murphy whose theology in the end he admits disagreeing with.
II, 02:51
is my direct answer thread to your phylogeny challenge still up, or did you withdraw from discussion like that Muslim?

"if he can adequately support ... I will concede that he is wrong, even if I do not want to ..."

Oh, you will concede that HE is wrong, how generous!

And a bit later "I will concede it, even if I do not want to ..."

Trouble pronouncing the words "I will concede that I am wrong" in a string?

[Added today:] I checked, the comments are there, did not see them last time I had checked. Sorry!
III, 04:32
in a Christian perspective, God is not just involved in Genesis chapter 1 as Creator, but also as revealer of truth, behind the text.

A God who existed but not [had] done it that way, would not be the God who revealed Genesis, or, if He were, would be a liar in doing so (like the Nine Muses who told Hesiod another story, or the Jibreel who revealed to Mohammed a story about Jesus quite incompatible with the Gospel, see Sourate V). And either way He would not have been the God Christians believe in. I am a Christian, I say He is, and challenge you to prove me wrong, IF YOU CAN ... (wrong about this, mind you, not about my personal behaviour, which it may be easier to do sth about, like relying on calumny or concentrating on me stumbling).

[Added today:] 04:08 Would not be involved in "natural processes culminating in our species" ... indeed, death before Adam and death and lust as prime "editors" of the "blind monkey" typing our genome are not compatible with the Christian view of God's goodness and wisdom. What atheists like Democritus, Lucrece and ... what's his name ... first and foremost ... Epicurus apply to all existance we are involved in, we do apply to the existance before Adam sinned. If God had allowed evil before Adam sinned because he would not have wanted to prevent it, or because he would have needed it to make Adam, he would not be God.

[first wrote "editors or the blind monkey" but meant either "for" or "of" the same]
From here
added today.
IIII, 5:27
AronRa's words: "There are profound conflicts within the religious documents, even those dedicated to the same Gods." [As far as it goes: true.]

[Corrected quote:] "There are profound conflicts within religious documents, even those books dedicated to the same Gods." [As far as it goes excepting "books" : true.]

This does not mean one's black is consistently another's white in every area. At least, if it did, that would argue they were both wrong, since both and all else besides them need some connexion with truth, but in such a hypothetic case neither of them has so complete a grasp of truth that the other cannot totally contradict it.

What we see is rather a partial very large area of agreement - and some few areas of disagreement. Or rather every area is an area of disagreement on some point, but there is either for what is right one common vast majority position or for what is right one middle position between two large minority positions that are both wrong. There is one religion which holds all these right positions in ethics, it is the Catholic one. Not meaning Ken Miller's modernist brand of it. There is one exception to this rule or was till recently, it is Christianity took a more antislavery stand than any tradition outside it until Liberalism and Communism arose and were not totally Christian. And in this sense Christianity might be argued to have taken an extreme minority position - until certain ideologies took an extremer one.

05:51 "even if you look back in time, and look at the things that were once said to be endorsed by God himself in the old books and which are now considered repugnant by many, even most if not all established citizens of modern society"

Well, certain things considered non-repugnant by élites of modern society - like making the life of beggars more difficult - was considered repugnant to the authors - and untimately the Divine Author - of the old books, if you refer to those of Old and New Testament of Holy Scripture of Christianity.

05:58 "we don't have a rigid definition of what good or evil really means"

In that case why bother of what is "considered repugnant" by someone lacking such definitions?

06:03 "so it does not seem there is any one moral guide we can all agree on ..."

Well, there is one moral guide all just can all agree on. Some may seem just without having yet agreed to it, but they might not have had the opportunity, others might seem just without agreeing to it, but we do not know them all that well. And so on.

06:08 "and what is usually promoted as such" [supposing he means Holy Writ] "comes from many different authors with often violently opposed opinions."

Opposed? No. Different as to what shall be tolerated in what might be called "acceptable levels of bad behaviour" but not differring on what is just.

V, 06:21
"But Without an authority which is both singular and absolute - they say - we should be animals and we should be apelike animals"

Sorry, but you confuse the position of natural law, known within each uncorrupted heart, with Holy Bible, which is a corrective to corruptions.

Natural law is indeed singular as far as it is God-given and absolute in the same way, but it is also fragile and hence something which we can corrupt (but different people corrupt it in different ways, that is how we know it is one, because of the agreements where they are not corrupting it).

Holy Bible is not as a text identical to the Natural Law, it has the same author, but has not been given the same position. It is a corrective for corruptions. It is therefore explicitly dealing with things it explicitly considers as corrupt (such as child sacrifice to certain idols) and also to some very local and timebound cures for very extreme evils, like what Israelites on behalf of God meted out to such child sacrificing idolaters. It therefore must include what most people relying on Natural Law only (and pretty correctly) should be innocent of.

The part about "apelike animals" may very well come from some old earth compromisers. I have come across some theologians who considered Cro Magnon men to be pre-Adamite apelike animals, despite anatomical identity with modern man. I cannot even consider this as apt description of Neanderthals. They buried dead and kept toothless old aged people alive before doing so. That is very human behaviour. I care nothing zilch and nada for the dates arrived at for that find, except as an illustration of how modern palaeontologists and archaeologists test ages by an ideology which lands them in false dates - and as an illustration that the dating reason for calling Cro-Magnon men "apelike animals" is faked. These men who were not real apes but real men, pretty certainly lived before the Bible was written. We cannot tell how much of original revealed truth (what God had spoken to Adam and Noah previous to their lives) they kept faithfully and how much they corrupted, but we can tell at least some of them were not totally corrupt. Keeping the weak alive and burying the dead is not the work of an apelike animal.

06:24 "we should run around killing and raping each other"

Without the Natural Law or at least some remains of it, yes. And once it is no longer intact, we cannot know that precisely the parts which make killing and rapes repugnant will be left in their integrity.

I suppose you oppose abortion, as the killing of innocents that it is?

06:39 "animals typically don't act like that, usually only people do"

Oh, you have seen nothing about anything approaching rape among dogs? You have seen nothing approaching killing of even close kin among sharks and crocs? Not forgetting spiders?

But the point is, without the Natural Law we are not animals but worse than them. They are less easy to get off their natural laws, the laws God wrote for the behaviour of each species, though we think it changed for the worse by Adam's fall.
VI, 07:02
"some of the worst offenders" and "claim that fear of their God's inevitable vengeance is the only reason they are not committing random acts of evil right now"

Two different issues. The one about living up to what you believe (and about which offenses are worst, some which don't land you in prison may be worse), which involves a big corps of persons. Atheists are a minority.

The other issue is that a Calvinist is a heretic - I am collecting the chapters where Haydock comment mentions Calvin, Beza, Luther, Cranmer, Tindal, Zuinglius ... sure enough, Calvin is - if I can trust he is always or nearly so mentioned with disapproval in this Catholic Bible comment - the worst offender. He is mentioned in the comment to the most Bible chapters of all of these. Tindal is the least one and Beza comes just under Calvin. Now, a Calvinist may indeed believe he is personally capable of all evil, not just very select ones, different from person to person and adding up to "all" only between all persons. He may also believe there can be no grace preserving anyone from what evil he or she is capable of, except by being enlightened about what Hellfire is. A Catholic must needs disagree, Hitler could never have run a concentration camp, from day to day and personally attending to it and Eichmann could hardly have decided politically on them even in a bout of anger, they were capable of pretty different evils, and so neither of all such. And some Pagans are well preserved even before becoming Christians, as was the case with St Eustache.

Note that most Calvinists willing to use that argument are being unfair to themselves - exactly as you are to yourself when claiming evolution made your human morality. Most ... but Oliver Cromwell did not fear Hell enough for his own good (or for that of Irish Catholics he killed for being better than he and for being right where he was wrong).
VIII, 07:28
"those of us whose morality is neither influenced nor enforced by any threat of damnation"

Well St Eustace was not influenced or afraid of any threat of damnation even before he became a Christian. But Calvinists of course do not honour St Eustace. He might have on the occasion when he was being martyred have considered damnation as his due if he would have sacrificed to the idols, he might also very well have stood firm simply because of military honour such as he practised before becoming a Christian and of course, added to that, the promise of glory to those refusing idolatry and dying for it.

It is however curious that Marcus Aurelius, on the whole a pretty decent Emperor, if he hadn't persecuted Christians, like Hitler would have been decent if he hadn't persecuted Christians, Jews and Gipsies, was nevertheless annoyed enough by Christians to persecute them because he regarded them as asocial. Right the other day I dated my signature with the name of a saint killed by the persecution of Marcus Aurelius. Not forgetting to add day-month numbers to clarify, of course. He was not as bad as Decius and Diocletian ... and even Diocletian was deent up to a point, but then Christians annoyed him too much ... I have heard a similar case for even Nero and Domitian, though there we have horror stories of aristocrats murdered on imperial order by simple jealousy. By the way, the only contemporary historians of Roman Empire alive and writing about the times of mid-Tiberius to Domitian that are preserved to our times are those of the 8 NT writers who wrote history. Christianity seems to have preserved their writings as Roman Pride could not preserve the three lost histories of Nero's contemporaries - a bit like Shi Huang Ti did not manage to destroy Confucius. Or Lao Tseu.

Now, if Nero had feared damnation ... or even Marcus Aurelius ... !
VIIII, 07:39
"where did morality come from"

Wow! At Last! 17 minutes of exordium!
X, 08:13
"usually it is the most flexible species that win the day"

Well, that is supposing a great many species have already died out, isn't it, but ok, let us stick to the point and see where this leads about morality ...

9:19 or a bit before ... spreading your genes throughout the community. Odin and Mohammed did that by founding false religions, one of which adored the one of them as a Marduk style creator god and the other of which honours the other of them as an Apostle who finally got it right where the Twelve of Jesus didn't manage to preserve his true message. Joseph Smith has a certain similarity to their tactic ... shall we fear you plan something like that for the atheist community of the future?

Last items, I think I see where you might be heading ... scorpions have been favoured by evolution, by parents being eaten by their children, man has not been favoured in that precise circumstance, so it is not for man to do so ... now, this is of course a pretty good argument for someone who holds that men and scorpions are totally distinct ... evolutionists however hold they have a common ancestor.

Or you might be arguing the common ancestor is too far off for the example of scorpions to apply to us ... but then why stick with the common ancestor of all men rather than with that of some tribe? Now, before Hitler became actively involved in certain evils, he did make that conclusion. Wait, post hoc, non propter hoc ... ok, what would make precisely evolution a source and authority for condemning those evils?

[Hoping for an attempted answer in following videos ...]
Third video out of five:
AronRa : The Evolution of Morality (3-5)
I, 03:41
... I started wondering whether the first minutes about avian supposed evolution from supposedly non-avians were like another footage altogether substituted ... ah, warmblooded, hence not born independent.

OK, but no person at all is compassionate in equal measure to each and everyone, indeed, when a person is at all cruel, it is usually out of compassion to someone else to whom the victim of his own incompassion is deemed either to have been previously cruel or to be cruel right now or to risk becoming cruel in the future.

That very obviously involves keeping someone in a faked dependence (a bit like a hostage taking) in the intention of by dependence teaching him compassion, such a step is indeed very cruel and a cruelty which has been on the increase since evolutionists have concluded that compassion is the evolutionary origin of morality.
II, 05:35
ants, bees, termites

Well, applying ant morality, bee morality or termite morality to man is as bad - but less obviously so - as applying croc and shark morality to man.

Any swarm of men having adopted ant morality would be an easy victim of a person with a shark morality, if he could find a way to exploit them and be accepted as "ant queen".

One way would of course be to be the initiator into ant morality in the first place. To people not previously as selfless and therefore not previously allergic to the shark.

So, here is one more way in which evolutionary moral philosophy goes astray. The lazy man was told to look at the ants and be wise, but not to look at the ants and accept them as gurus, by King Solomon!

OK, you have not spelled out that "ants are a model" but that is at least one direction in which evolutionist moral philosophy has been erring. Now, this is of course another question than whether our morality in fact evolved by similar, processes as those assumed for ants.

I have a feeling concentration camps were at first modelled on anthives. Dachau did not start taking Jewish prisoners as such until the war, but it did take asocial prisoners right away from its start and in November 1933 they were authorised to kill anyone refusing to work.
Fourth video out of five:
AronRa : The Evolution of Morality (4-5)
I, 05:55
... the priest was an actor in a priest role in a film, or?
The scene with bulls and lions ... now, one question I wonder is whether after that thse bulls have taken a tougher attitude against lions or resumed their usual behaviour in the next meeting.

Another one is of course that, yes, beasts sometimes do set a moral example for men. In the view of a Creationist that happens because due to the fall we sometimes fall below the behaviour of beasts, despite knowing better - which they do not. (A Calvinist might not have agreed with the "despite knowing better" part, but give them Romans 1:20 and "without excuse" ...)
Cnemidophorus neomexicanus is very probably ...
  • ... triploid (as being all female and parthenogenetic);
  • ... and hence evolved from a diploid that is more normal;
  • ... plus as all female it is much more hopeful for lesbians than for catamites.

Even if one can suppose no diabolic act was involved in distancing it from a normal, diploid, and hence heterosexually reproducing ancestor and even if this being the Creator's choice a lizard was not chosen as image of lesbians because it is common for women to hate lizards.

[Why did I write not in that word order? I meant "one can wonder if a lizard was not chosen etc." Did AronRa fiddle with editing? Anyway, I edited back(?) or back to what I had in mind:]

Even if one can suppose no diabolic act was involved in distancing it from a normal, diploid, and hence heterosexually reproducing ancestor and even if this being the Creator's choice one can wonder if a lizard was not chosen as image of lesbians because it is common for women to hate lizards.

Now, this is the only way they can reproduce, not any way we can do so at all.

Even if we can reproduce between brother and sister, it does not mean we are free to do so since after Adam's and Eve's children's generation there are more appropriate human mates than siblings and niece and uncle (obviously the close relation rather than the age difference is what makes it wrong).
Questions of morality should be reserved for questions of abuse or compassion?

Oh, my ... well, for one thing in that case Hitler was very moral. He reduced morality to a question of Germans being abused, of Germans being compassionate to each other and of Germans standing up to those abusing them.

Wait, you said something about Germans being abused by Jews was a lie?

Oh, you mean veracity is involved as well!

Now, there chimps are no models. No models at all.

It is of course a bit of a question whether certain someones have not since reduced morality to Jews being abused (by Germans, by Nazis, by Fascists, by Catholics, by Christians, depending on which Jew you ask), Jews being compassionate to each other and Jews standing up against those abusing them. Sometimes with as little regard for veracity.

But regardless of that, chimps are no models of veracity and human morality did not as far as veracity is concerned evolve from chimps.

Neither are chimps of the two types (supposing you spoke the truth about it) really examples of the only two states mankind can be in. And it might be mentioned that the sexual liberalism among chimps is not limited to the Bonobos, it is there among the other group as well ... did you call them troglodytes? The word by itself means cave dweller and mankind has included cavedwellers, thus troglodytes, very superior to chimps in behaviour.

But the score stands badly for you. By now you are not explaining at all how sexual taboos in mankind evolved, you are only stating as a postulate that it should be excluded from the question. Hardly a scientific approach, more the Humpty Dumpty approach. "When I use a word it means exactly what I want it to mean, neither more nor less".
Fifth video of the five:
AronRa : The Evolution of Morality (5-5)
That is where our language comes from!

01:35 flabberghasted

A signal meant to evoke a response without prior investigation is very obviously something very different from signals meant to evoke both reflection and investigation - such as one may presume very charitably that even this talk by AronRa had some kind of intention to do.
II, 02:55
"if we built intelligent robots or encountered extraterrestrials, that they would think like we do, or if they didn't have our emotions they wouldn't have any emotions at all"

Now, an intelligent robot (assuming you mean the English meaning of cybernetic implications rather than the Slavonik meaning of robotnik as "worker" or as employed in manufacturing in factories, since those are intelligent enough, but if you mean it as in English) that is quite an oxymoron.

There is no sign computers will ever have intelligence, however much technological advance we put into producing them.

A computer can "deal with" a recurrent formula, if you like. But only by cutting off after a certain number of digits is reached. If you add 0.1 and 0.2 the immediate result will be 0.30000 ... 001 and if in fact you do get 0.3 it is because one has added a rounding off function. At least according to what I heard on computerphile.

And if you take a google translate, it has no method of even guessing what a non-programmed word might mean from the context it only leaves that untranslated so the human user can do so, but even worse, if a word in lang A has two translation in lang B it has no guarantee of hitting the right one. Try to take a text and google translate it from English to Russian, then copypaste, then translate that back from Russian to English.

It has no real way of knowing whether a text is complex or not. I tried out an online programme for evaluating complexity level of a text.

I wrote a text in very simple English and it evaluated the text as "genius" level. Believe me, it was not, the one thing that triggered this was a single word with a few syllables more than the rest. You guess if I pointed this out and the programme was taken off line?

No, do not believe in such materialistic myths as intelligent computers, do your own intelligence some honour!
III, 03:32
St Thomas Aquinas would not have agreed that love was uniquely supernatural or uniquely human. He would have argued the supernatural virtue of charity is uniquely reserved for God, angels and men, but he would very clearly have admitted parallels between charity and non meritorious human loves (whether sinful or merely not supernatural) and between human and animal natural emotions, including love. Cfr Summa Theologiae I-II where he discusses the principle of human behaviour, one of which is "law" (thus morality) and another of which is passions.

Now, another thing, he was no sentimentalist. He would not have agreed that the emotions you find finer than others in general are a guarantee of moral correctitude if cultivated. Cultivating courage and solidarity is very fine, and even necessary for a sound moral development (and trying to add on such cultivation after someone is already an adult is usually pretty lousy), but they are no guarantees for moral rightness. And he would also insist that the popular judgement behind diverse moralities is a significant sign for a moral judgement being right in case of agreement.

And denying that exists is not the same thing as explaining how it arose by evolution.

I would add, there being an advantage to empathy in the struggle for survival to certain species (warmblooded and with very frontal in depth sight) does not imply that a purely material origin of life could ever develop genes for it - since it is not very obvious, for one thing, how an arrangement of atoms can be unempathetic and a slightly different one empathetic, unless the two arrangements are a kind of material support of at least some hint of souul, if not an immaterial and immortal one.
IIII, 05:24
two mistakes, I set about to correct:

  • 1) Empathy is not the same thing as morality. Even a great empathy can be deflected from mercy, which is anyway not the only duty, and which has anyway time after time been an inspiration for cruelty also, if misapplied. So, showing an evolutionary origin for empathy, whether rightly or wrongly, does not imply there is one for what St Thomas calls "synderesis" or being aware of what the moral law requires. Nor have you shown that what he referred to as being aware of an objective moral law is a kind of illusion, where there is no explanation of morality (evolutionary or other) involved to be done.

  • 2) Obviously this testing of pre-frontal lobes can be horribly abused for "scientific" or supposedly such precautions.

And, as obviously, being empathetic is no panacea against violent crimes, either unpunished ones or such as will land you in prison.
IIII, 05:24 bis ...
... the hint about each of audience having personal experience of ... bullies, for lack of a better word ... might just possibly mean that pretty many in the atheist community are in fact the kind of former bully victims who do compensate by cultivating (including by mutual admiration clubs and including by giving each other perks in employees ranks, privileges, wages over the category they would identify with former bullies) a kind of collective superiority complex, if you will excuse this little hint of Freudian explanations.

This would explain why they rarely get into prison and much more often into school boards (perhaps not the Texan one or perhaps even that one, in case its members have experience of evolutionist bullying in school, as I have) or Congress. That does not mean the guys who express their superiority complexes or inferiority complexes or whatever be the real name of their baser and more evil desires in ways that land them in prison are necessarily worse people.

In some countries however atheism is very much a cliché (Sweden, Soviet Union), so if non-immigrants land in prison they are often atheist there.

I mean, after the period in which the very fact of being a Christian or expressing Christianity too openly (including by disdain of Communism, Atheism or Evolution) could land you in prison. That is after Gorby (not the meat pie, the man).
Oh, prefrontal lobes underdeveloped or damaged by drugs is the reason we must have laws and means to enforce them? No. The reason is Original Sin in a first degree of precision, and Personal Sins following from it in the next degree of precision. In your opinion a man who has great prefrontal lobes and uses them to figure out what password someone has used and then to hack their account and get for instance their personal secrets from the mail or their money from the bank account or ... I could go on ... is not fit for prison, since he has no trouble with the prefrontal lobes! But that is preposterous.

And the Communist Government of Pensacola FL which has outlawed several private initiatives (non violent and non fraudulent) of the homeless when it comes to getting a meal or a kind of bed, or keeping warm when outside, so as to herd them all in shelters outside the city limits - do you think they could have even got elected without having pretty bright pre-frontal lobes? Do you think - not in a joking way, but seriously - they are too stupid to understand what they are doing to the homeless rather than being mean and abusing their intelligent capacity of empathy very much on purpose?

And at that even for having either been too bothered with their empathy when they were younger or having too much empathy with young people who show their empathy with the homeless in more sympathetic and more moral ways?

And speaking of "pathological behaviours" instead of evil is of course the kind of abusive rhetoric which is being used to excuse persecution of, for instance, the homeless.

If one spoke of "evil" one would be obliged to ask what evil this or that or sundry homeless man had done. If one speaks of "pathological behaviour" one can instead lean back and depend on prejudice and statistics "proving" that as homeless are pathological, so also typical behaviours of homeless (like using a blanket or sheet in public) are pathological behaviours and can be dealt with so. Exactly what the Communists in Pensacola Florida want to!

To show what I mean by Communist Government of Pensacola Florida:

New blog on the kid : The Communist Government of Pensacola

(probably the GOP-type of Communist, possibly the Rand type).
VI, 06:27
Am I being too sensitive or am I overhearing some kind of plaidoyer for sterilising people who hate Albigensian heresy?

I recommend the reading of The Night's Dark Shade by one Elena Maria Vidal (her own pen name, her grandmother's own real name).

Now, Nazis were sometimes keen on sterilising people and they were sometimes very fascinated with Unorthodox Medieval Mysticism - such as Templars and such as Albigensians perhaps also, I should not wonder. They cared at least very little for Medieval Orthodoxy, as they showed by their contempt for admonitions by Pope Pius XI in an Encyclical and by both him and the next in several diplomatic notes. And, let us not forget, their admiration for Frederick II the Stauffer.
VII, 6:56
Iconoclasm is rationality?

Have you ever read how Leo III Isauros behaved? Sure, he did not "praise gullibility" if that is how you want to put it, it is during his reign that the original manuscripts of the Gospels were lost. They were venerated too much for his taste.

But burning a monk's hands because he paints an icon of the Holy Virgin, is that your taste in rationality?

Seriously, this is a mistake commonly made by ... Calvinists ... among the Protestants, as well as those loosely inspired by them (read Baptists). And you, an Atheist, citing this very typically Protestant prejudice is pretty clear proof I am right that Atheism of the Western type is simply a radical sect of Protestantism. A Therevada Buddhist is technically also atheist, but he would hardly praise iconoclasm!

Correction. Leo III Isauros was indeed one iconoclast emperor of Byzantium, but 23 of February we celebrated the monk:

Constantinopoli sancti Lazari Monachi, qui, cum sacras Imagines pingeret, idcirco, Imperatoris Iconoclastae Theophili jussu, diris suppliciis excruciatur, et ei manus candenti ferro comburitur; sed, Dei virtute sanatus, abrasas Imagines sanctas pingendo restituit, ac demum in pace quievit.

So his Iconoclast imperial bully was not Leo but Theophilus.
VIII, 7:10
"I have tried to get my religious friends to read Chick Tracts, but they just won't do it."

I can add that it seems Creationists felt very misrepresented by Kenneth Miller, the supposed "Traditional" Catholic. He wrote about Fundies without bothering to check what they said. And in the context where they are reasonable.

In the Chick Tract context, I recommend my blog:

Great Bishop of Geneva!

My Father might lately be combining Ken Miller's Evolutionism (he was 7 Day when he made me) with a Chick Tract type prejudice about the Middle Ages.

I have to read up on the stuff for my family's sake.
VIIII, 07:35
You said that societies based on prohibition rather than opportunity cannot remain dominant, since they have nothing to offer?

Let us say one society with Sharia (not every such on earth, but one type of it, I am taking an example I think realistic) is really very much based on prohibition in one sense (no alcohol except the small percentage in curdled milk, no women showing their faces in public, no free speech in when it comes to say comparing Mohammed to Odin and Joseph Smith, as I do ... it is of course based very much on opportunity in another sense. It can for instance be pretty opportunistic about when and how to raid negro villages not altogether far off either on the excuse that they are openly kaffir (wonder why the French rather than such Muslims finished off human sacrifice in Benin and Dahomey ... could it be they enjoyed the slave markets there? I have that fact about W Africa from a Swedish Geography textbook from the time when Texas was neither Mexican nor Estadunidense - thus not as back then ancient history but as contemporary exotic society), or that other negro village which was nominally Muslim but in their eyes really kaffir, since too permissive on alcohol, or also give opportunity to negro slaves to become free ... by becoming Muslims. And to women to arouse their men, simply because a female face becomes so much more exciting when never seen in the street.

Every society is in some sense built on prohibition and in some sense on opportunity. At the same time France would be an opportunity for some (like people enjoying a good wine, beer or cider or a pretty face not showing too much beneath, but a bit more than her Muslim sister would) and a prohibitive society for others (like usurers, readers of Talmud, Albigensians who dreamed of saving themselves from rebirth by undergoing endura ...).

Morality is not and cannot be a simple question of "more prohibition than opportunity" or "more opportunity than prohibition", it is a question of what opportunities are worthwhile and what prohibitions are worthwhile.

Again, you are not explaining how morality (even with a rather aberrant variety with Sharia and an even more aberrant variety in Benin and Dahomey not practising Sharia) arose among men from evolutionary causes. You are just presuming compassionate emotions is the ground and on that basing a rally speech about how morality ought to evolve in the future. Now it is less than two minutes you have left on that old occasion to make a case for an evolutionary origin of morality ...
X, 08:23
"emerged from the bottom up"

You are giving a parallel I presume from the pattern of birds not colliding while flying in their bisannual treks (as shown on image).

[Swarming before flying, rather, actually]

Thing is, I happen to know a bit about poetry.

In one sense it is made "from the bottom up" as in deciding that a word that ends with a strong plus a weak syllable should be followed by one beginning in (or consisting of) a strong syllable, while one ending in a strong plus two weak syllables should be followed by one beginning in a weak followed by a strong (or by two words, first consisting of a weak, second consisting of or beginning with a strong) up to when you reach a unit of eight syllables starting with a weak and ending with a strong, and this one followed (unless already preceded) by another such unit rhyming with it. But in another sense it is made from top down, like deciding whether you want to keep that pattern for all of the poem or have another one in part of it, and also deciding on the story or picture that the actual words communicate.

I therefore do not at all believe the bird swarm behaviour is as simple as a bottom to top emergence, I think either God or an angel attributed to the birds is also controlling that exact behaviour from top down at the very same time, and therefore I do not believe your suggestion of morality being a parallel.

But supposing it were, and one in your sense if your explanation of bird behaviour were correct, that would not show us a believable rule applicable to all. Or show a believable reason for everyone to follow that rule.

It would give an excuse for shrinks and educators to try to micromanage human behaviour in Suzuki like bottom to top emergence of behaviour, and of course to gaol or maim even more people, not for doing anything wrong in particular, but for being slightly off the common standard of behaviour.

In some places it is doing this more and more. Already. No "would" about it. Not because this evolutionist view of morality is true, but because it is believed.

No offense meant to Suzuki method when it comes to making skills, or even when parents and priests are trying to raise children in their morals. I am against imposing one planner's Suzuki method of education on families not believing in his values.
XI, 08:29
"... created society, and society determines it laws and norms accordingly"

Uhuh ...?

Now we are talking about, not indeed any better clarity in how morality is supposed to have evolved, but rather a better clarity in how this theory makes "Society" (whichever society it is that takes itself for such in the singular) an omnipotent dictator over conscience.

Salem and Calvin's Geneva cannot really be blamed on your view ... nor can Soviet Union and Nazi Germany. They examplify the view of morality that you preach.

From 8:29 "it is obviously to the benefit of all"

Your evolutionary view leaves precisely in a void what the word "benefit" means.

"to promote yadayadayada and we must trust in them as they must trust in us"

But evolution is spreading mistrust!

Mistrust obviously of fathers as in tradition. And mistrust of children as in calling them immature up to way past physical childhood.
XII, 08:52 - 09:03
"it is inherent in our nature that we value one another and to various degrees we instinctually feel for one another. That is why we" ... Did I hear correctly "can't"? ... "be liars and murderers and thieves and why most people don't even want to be."

OK, such and such a thing is inherent in our nature, but on evolutionary views we share a common ancestor with scorpions and have not ceased to evolve.

The "can't" is really not a question of ability and possibility. Of course we "can" if that means "being able to."

The only "can't" about it is about "not being authorised to". Here it is one's human nature which authorises, so far so good, we Catholics believe God is its author.

Or perhaps not totally, since experience shows how very easy it is without grace to slip from a natural to a clearly subnatural state. On a societal as well as on an individual plane.

Especially this appeal to human nature - which is of its own "backbone" so to speak good but does after the fall very clearly slip towards the worse than natural, in various different ways, each as obviously inacceptable as the other to those who get corrupted any other way. Especially, as said, this appeal to human nature, while correct so far, is suspect in someone involved in breaking and remaking it, as atheism is.

It is part of human nature to adore God - and atheism denies us that. It is - as you said yourself - part of human nature to trust our fathers as well as our children.

Denial of traditional stories being real (such as Flood and Arc of Noah and such as Crucifixion and Resurrection of Christ) undermines our trust in the fathers. A certain responsabilism, which considers children as immature for longer and longer (even way past physical childhood) is undermining in this untraditional world the trust in the children.

"This is how morality evolves in higher animals" ...

Well, no. Morality presupposes freewill. Even higher animals have none such.

Denying freewill in a criminal by stamping his behaviour as "pathological" instead of as "unjust" makes hysterical shrinks the newest substitute for a judge who determines for how long someone has proportionally to his crime deserved to be in prison. You have just emptied the metaphysical category of desert by reducing it to the displeasure of surroundings in community. And therefore you have also emptied a criminals reasonable hope to get back in society as normally once he has done his time. Which is in its turn bound to backfire through bitterness reaching high levels of hatred, believe me, I know what I am talking about.

09:16 "and we can't function without it"

[Society which cannot function without morals in its turn, not morality itself, that would have been another thing.]

Well, St Anthony of Alexandria could, as well as St Paul the First Hermit who fled into the Egyptian desert while Decius persecuted Christians.

Christian society has its exceptional level of freedom from not wanting to function without the men who could function without society or with only God for society.

Your conclusion is a recipe for slavery, for each man being a slave of his society.

(not clapping hands)

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