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Religion & Theology (& should we respect beliefs)


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I think it is community pay back you mean, totally different.

WTF is community pay back time? Anybody?
As we know, the GOV makes payments to many of these charities to do this Unless you know different,
Is this in relation to the non deluded giving to charity? If so.

Bill Gates (Atheist)?

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whilst Jesus may well want me for a sunbeam,


Well Moses had a Triumph, he came down from the mountain in it :wink:


Shouldn't that be "on it", the two wheeled versions were of a different class to some of the fours. 'Herald' anyone?!?


Blow it, the great Gods of rock can answer that one in the music thread! :wink: :lol:

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Do you know who has donated more money to charity than anyone else..........Ever?


Watson is in a positive sulk, while I am delighted! The poor fellow was certain that it was that rather scruffy Irish chappie, and was foolish enough to wager his Sherbet Dip-Dab on the outcome with me. The poor foolish fellow... yumm yumm yumm! :P :wink:


Your (yumm) humble (yumm) servant.

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WTF is community pay back time? Anybody?


It's when the community get to go round to rioters and looters houses after they've been sentenced and pan in their windows, take stuff and generally be a pain in the ass.


I digress this a religion string/thread/rope/noose


People can believe what the want as far as I am concerned, I went to sunday school til I was 13 and there wasn't a damn thing they told me I believed over the more sensible scientific evidence relating to the origin of the human form, the planet and the wider universe. If a punter does rock up one day shows us his infinite power and how he did that stuff that the religious scripts claim then I'll be one of the first to offer to buy him a pint but until then God is as real as Superman.

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If I may ask, while I'm wading through your replies, what are your beliefs? Do you follow the teachings of the New Testament, acknowlege the "legitimacy" of Paul as founder of Christianity, and can you direct me to any accredited, documented sources to corroborate his account of events, or for the Bible being an untainted direct source of information for events during the life of the (alleged) man called Jesus, and the (alleged) message he had to pass on?



I have a strong belief in not answering questions where the propositions are placed in inverted commas.

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If I may ask, while I'm wading through your replies, what are your beliefs? Do you follow the teachings of the New Testament, acknowlege the legitimacy of Paul as founder of Christianity, and can you direct me to any accredited, documented sources to corroborate his account of events, or for the Bible being an untainted direct source of information for events during the life of the (alleged) man called Jesus, and the (alleged) message he had to pass on?

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I see.


(Should that not be "a proposition"? What of all those not bracketed so?)


I was giving a general statement. If I don't answer questions where the propositions (that is, general propositions of general questions) are placed in inverted commas, then your question, with a proposition in inverted commas, falls within that category.


I'll go on to your next post...

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@Scoots - now I'll try to explain the difficulties I'm having in finding sources for what you say about the early Irish and Coptic churches (this being something that I don't know anything about at all.)





The original Irish Christian church derived much of their practices and beliefs from a group of Egyptian Coptic monks, who came to Gaul, establishing a monastery on the isle of Lerins. The Coptic Christianity derived from the Church of Jerusalem, and had no connection to the Roman or Byzantine churches. When the first Council met at Nicea, there were representatives there from the Irish Christian church.


Patrick, like his successor, Augustine, was given a mission by the Church of Rome, in which both were ordained. This was to convert Ireland to the true Christianity. The pre-Nicene Christianity extant there had much in common with other "heresies" of the day, including the Arians. They denied that Jesus was born a God, as part of the Holy Trinity, and insisted he had been raised to a higher state only after baptism. This was a standard teaching of the Coptic Christian church at this time."



There are three (sorry, four) things I don't get (ie, can't Google!) here.


1. The traditions I can find seem to say that Coptic Christianity was taken by St Patrick to Ireland, who is said to have spent some time at Lerins, whereas you seem to be saying that it was there before him and that he opposed it. I'll quote one website, but several say much the same thing:


"Monasticism came down to the Celtic Church from the Coptic Orthodox Church. The connection was through Gaul, France, where many Egyptian monks were living in a Monastery at Lerins. St. Patrick, the saint of the Celtic Church, was born in Britain as a Roman citizen. When he was sixteen, the army of the Irish King Niall, attacked the Britons and Patrick was captured. Patrick was taken then to Ireland and was enslaved. Years later, he was able to escape and sailed to Gaul, in France. From there he went to the Island of Lerins where the Egyptian Coptic monks lived. St. Patrick then lived with those monks and learned the "Coptic Christianity of Egypt". Patrick later returned to Ireland, where he once was a captive. Amator Bishop Auxerre ordained him a priest and the church flourished during his life. After St. Patrick's death, Rome turned against the Celtic Church, because it followed the Coptic teachings and practiced what its founder had learned in Gaul."


2. You say that there were Irish representatives at Nicea, but the I can only find references to representatives from the British Isles. The Wikipedia article, on the other hand, says that 'Delegates came from every region of the Roman Empire except Britain.'This could, I suppose, mean Ireland (of the British Isles) and not mainland Britain - but I'm guessing at the far point of my tongue here, and it doesn't seem likely. Are you aware of the original sources?


3. I can't find anything that suggests that the theology of the Coptic church was as you describe it. When was this, and when did it change - if it did? (The Coptic church is still independent of both the Roman and Eastern Orthodox churches.)





Paganism was still present in Ireland, however the Church of Rome viewed Irish Christianity as being just as dangerous. They therefore dealt with it the same way they had the Arian "heresy". Eighty Benedictine monks were sent as missionaries to convert the lay folk and turn them against the "godless" ways of paganism, and of the Irish Christians.



When was this?

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If I may ask, while I'm wading through your replies, what are your beliefs? Do you follow the teachings of the New Testament, acknowlege the legitimacy of Paul as founder of Christianity, and can you direct me to any accredited, documented sources to corroborate his account of events, or for the Bible being an untainted direct source of information for events during the life of the (alleged) man called Jesus, and the (alleged) message he had to pass on?


The inverted commas I referred to in the first version of your question were an example of the more general reason why I don't see any point in trying to answer this sort of question (Note: 'question' in the singular, expressing a generality, even though you have asked several questions.) You begin by asking a number of questions which are presented in language which already expresses your attitude towards them (is that what's meant by a 'loaded' question?) and of which your original use of inverted commas is only one aspect. If I were to try to answer them, it would first involve picking apart what you mean by the various phrases you use, which would in effect be talking about what you believe on your terms, because you would have defined the area that you would like to discuss and, by the terminology you use, the starting point for discussing it.


For example, I'd have to begin by trying to find out what you mean by the 'legitimacy of Paul as founder of Christianity', and an accredited source for his 'account of events' (and, just in case there is any misunderstanding, the inverted commas are because I am quoting you directly) when I was under the impression that Paul wrote letters which gave hardly any accounts of events; and even more so why you are asking me for "accredited, documented sources" for "the Bible being an untainted direct source of information for events ..." when that is first of all impossible almost by definition - there's no such thing as an untainted direct source in any sort of history anywhere - and secondly, when I wasn't under the impression that I'd made any such claim or given the impression that that was the sort of thing that I would be likely to believe. In other words, you are producing propositions which are unanswerable by definition in any field anywhere - which seems to me to be an example of the Straw Man approach which someone else was accusing me of earlier.


You see? I've already spent too much fingertip skin even typing out why I can't be bothered to answer the questions! Anyway, didn't you write "I'll respect your faith, if you shut up and stop going on about yours"? If I don't have a faith then there's nothing to discuss, and if I do, I'm obviously not going to go on about it!

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On the Benedictine mission, read the section "The Irish Church"...




It's self-explanatory.


I never said Crossan and Bagatti said Nazareth didn't exist at the time of Jesus. You seem to be misreading my posts. Probably easily done amidst all my polemic. :wink:


I said they talk of there being evidence of a good deal earlier habitation, then a founding as a modern settlement (a refounding) during the Hasmonean era, in the 2nd Century A.D.. None that they found, or has been found, from the time of Jesus.


On Patrick. He arrived in Ireland around 420 A.D. According to my Jesuit chum - it's his area of specialty, not mine - Christianity was first established, or centred, in Britain, in Ireland. He maintained that he had seen or read copies of the records from the first Council of Nicea, along with several other Councils of the time. This was his particular area of interest (the Heresies, with the Arian Heresy top of the list). For Athanasius (a secretary or scribe at

the meeting) to record that there were reps there from Britain (my priestly friend assured me the records said so, I remember this quite clearly, although again, I have never seen these), meant almost certainly these were of the

Celtic Church, pre-dating Patrick by 50 odd years. Arius was not the first to preach his stance in Jesus, he merely brought it all to a head, leading Constantine to call the Council in the first place, in the hope if healing the

significant schism between Roman and Eastern Christianity. Arius and many of his fellows (there were a lot of names recorded on the opposing side to the Romans) were of the Alexandrian Church. They (the Alexandrians) were what later became the Coptics.


The Coptics heavily influenced the early Celtic Christian Church, by way of the settlement on Lerins, among others. My memories here are, on examination, I must admit, faulty. Lerins was established after Nicea. However my friend was quite adamant (again, this I do remember clearly) that the early Celtic Church was of Coptic descent.


Does all that make sense? The Coptic theology, like that of their Roman

Catholic cousins, evolved steadily throughout the first centuries of the respective branches of the church, as is evidenced by the number of councils called to establish points and refute others. It is from Athanasius, primarily, that the Nicene creed and Trinitarian (drat that spell-checker! It had "Trinidadian"!) Christianity originated. My friend had it (I confess that I don't know from where) that Athanasius was a convert to the Roman theology from the Eastern, and was particularly rabid in his hatred of the Eastern traditions, and of Arianism in particular.


Strangely, in his later years, Constantine changed his mind on Athanasius & co, allowing Arius and his fellows to return from the exile imposed after Nicea. Constantine ordered the Christian authorities to receive Arius, against their wishes. Athanasius had been kicked into touch, exiled himself at this point, for disagreeing with the emperor. Constantine the Great...?


On Paul, I would just like to point out one thing. There are writings detailing Paul coming to verbal blows with Peter in Antioch, regarding the latter's treatment of Gentiles. I find it strange that the follower of Jesus, the "rock upon whom this church is built" should feel so markedly different from Paul on this point, basically refusing to even acknowledge the gentile in question, much to Paul's ire. Yet, when Paul took him to task for this, Peter effectively "bitch-slapped" Paul, and Paul's own disciple sided with Peter. As a consequence of this, Paul left Antioch and never returned. So, we have the follower of Jesus, the man who lived with him, ate and drank with him, listened to him speak and was taught by him. Then we have the man who never saw him, never heard him, never had any contact, at least until after Jesus' death, when Paul claims that (while en route to pick up a consignment of imprisoned followers of Jesus for his Roman masters - he once held the coats, while another follower was stoned to death, such was his way) Jesus appeared to him, blinded him and called him to preach of him and his works. Who to believe, and why so radically different? Paul used his Roman citizenship to stave off the "death sentence" imposed on him in Rome. He used this to preach to many high ranking Romans. When converting any populace, it is often beneficial to catch the leadership first... If he did jot establish the ties between the Christian church and the Romans - and I believe he did - certainly his immediate followers and successors had no qualms about tying their church to the empire. Surely you don't dispute that?


I will try and keep answering your posts. However there are very significant events taking place in my immediate family at present - hence the lateness of this post. They must come first, so if I do not reply for some time, it's not that I'm hiding, or flummoxed, merely that I don't have much time to spend here, nor m likely to for several weeks, at least, or until the problem facing us is fully identified and - hopefully - resolved or dealt with.


Thanks fir the discussion, I am enjoying it immensely. I hope I'm not wasting the skin on your fingertips too much.


As to not stating your own beliefs, based on something I said earlier, that is quite a weak argument, I believe, and at odds with your strong rebuttals and dissections of my own. If you just don't want to say, then say that.

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