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Lightning Strikes Down Giant Jesus in Ohio
Was this the work of Zeus, Shiva, Thor? Who do I thank?
Rumor has it Baron Samedi was seen fleeing the scene. Dude is one bad mofo.That would be cool -- all the world's gods, acting like gangsters doing drive-bys on each other's turf.
Nah....it was Jesus taking on the sin...errr the lighetening of the world. Without this statue, the lightening would have struck a bunch of puppy, or a nursery school, or a church.
Speaking of religion, I wanted to comment on Shanna's and Scribbs discussion of spirituality earlier (I was on vacation w/out computer). The issue interests me because I find all positions absurd. Scribbs' radical materialism implies that individuality - the self - is an illusion. But no one really believes that, or at least, no one acts like they believe it. But - sorry Shanna - I agree with him that there is no evidence of a caring universal intelligence. What I see is a universe that seems to come into existence as science and math make discoveries about it - like electrons only have a location when we observe them. The whole universe is in an indeterminate state until we observe it. The spiritual thing for me is that our individual observations drive a process that creates reality out of the infinite possibility of the void - nothingness is constantly becoming the next moment of existence. If you see time unfolding in this way, you can get a profound feeling of something awesome, like God, happening. It is not something we have control over, but it is something we are part of, and observing it is wonderful.... Yes, I did take a lot of drugs in college, why do you ask?
Well, God does have notoriously poor aim -- remember how famed theologian Ray Nagin told us that Katrina was his punishment for the Iraq war? Obviously, he meant to smite all those rich, white warmongers in DC and its suburbs, but he blinked or sneezed or something and whoops, there went a southern city and a bunch of poor blacks. So who knows what he was aiming at this time...Noel, I'll probably have more to say about the topic when I'm not spending all my time watching the World Cup, but for now, I'll just say that I don't really see a contradiction between materialism and what you describe. We do exist as individual selves...but only for a little while.
I'll stop baiting you away from The Beautiful Game after this: the self is not a material thing; I would not know what it feels like to be you even if I had access to every fact about the state of your nervous system. That would still be looking at you from the outside. But it is obvious that each of us has an inner life that makes us subjects instead of mere objects. I'm not saying that there is something to us that can exist separately from our bodies. I'm saying that the self is a nonmaterial thing that is only observable through our own experiences.
Sure, that makes sense. The self is an abstract concept, you might say, a product of our memory and ability to reflect upon a collection of experiences.
I was thinking more along the lines of a flame, which is not exactly abstract, but is defined by the way we interpret our observations of the underlying phenomenon. It appears much more static than the incandescent gases moving through it, and likewise, we observe something that persists in us as matter and energy move through our brains.
A flame, eh? You ever read this book by Colin McGinn?
No, but I resent it when people have my ideas before I have them. David Chalmers seems to be another pre-temporal plagiarist I should look at.
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