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Do the doctrines of God change?

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It may not be tied in but makes me think of the early years with Joseph and the apostles being constantly in trouble with the law, and put in jail. As a child I use to think that it was religious persecution, but now that I'm an adult and have seen the church whitewash or soften the church's history it puts the doubt in my mind that the church's doctrine is from above and maybe just through mortal beings that are constructing a religion according to what they think is guidance from above. Doctrine should just be the word of God in red in the Bible, if those are truly His words. Doctrine has definitely changed in the church, through the will of mortals, not from God IMO.

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3 hours ago, let’s roll said:

I invite you to reread my posts, they set out what I believe, including my belief that God has promised to share His wisdom with each one of His children if they have a sincere desire to receive it.

I suggest to you that your time and effort would be much better spent preparing yourself to seek Divine wisdom and then seeking it, rather than seeking advice from mortals.

Armed with certainty of the existence of God you’ll recognize how presumptuous it would be to question the power of the Omnipotent and how futile it would be to question the logic of the Omniscient.  And, freed from doubt and uncertainty, knowing God is in charge and relying on His promise that in the end each and every one of His children will acknowledge that ALL of His judgments are just, you will feel confident in focusing all of your efforts on loving Him and your brothers and sisters.

Personal belief, Pascal's wager, threats of the unknown are always there as a safe space when conjecture and mere speculation run into requests for actual proof.

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2 hours ago, Tacenda said:

IDoctrine should just be the word of God in red in the Bible, if those are truly His words. 

What gives the Bible a free pass over any other scripture or revelation?  Isn't it held to the same standard?

The words of God recorded by Moses or Paul carry no more weight than the words of God recorded by Joseph or Brigham.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Exiled said:

Personal belief, Pascal's wager, threats of the unknown are always there as a safe space when conjecture and mere speculation run into requests for actual proof.

When you swim in a sea of believers (e.g. this board) I would think your logical mind would anticipate that you would often be perceived as drowning by those believers and also anticipate that you would be offered what those believers deem a life preserver, so I trust you take no offense.

On my part, I take no offense when you, with no evidence, characterize my certainty as speculation.

Edited by let’s roll
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1 hour ago, let’s roll said:

When you swim in a sea of believers (e.g. this board) I would think your logical mind would anticipate that you would often be perceived as drowning by those believers and also anticipate that you would be offered what those believers deem a life preserver, so I trust you take no offense.

On my part, I take no offense when you, with no evidence, characterize my certainty as speculation.

Shifting the burden?  Why don't you just admit that your "certainty" is based on feelings and guessing as to what lies beyond?  I think you make the common mistake that a lot of members make in confusing "believe" with "know."  However, "know" sounds a lot more forceful, of course, and gives the one in the "know" a lot more authority.  But saying "know" means that you need to give a little more than just empty words and debate tactics.  Is it too "sacred" to tell?  Is that it?

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Tacenda said:

if those are truly His words. 

How do you know those are his words he spoke when he was on earth?  The ones reported are not always the same.  I am not trying to create doubt, but merely pointing out in the end there is only one possible way to find out and that is through the Spirit.  No other ways such as video or audio recordings are available, so we have to figure out whether or not we trust what is written.

How else besides asking God is that possible?  And if that is possible, why can't we ask him about other teachings and not just the red letter words?

Edited by Calm

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5 minutes ago, Exiled said:

Shifting the burden?  Why don't you just admit that your "certainty" is based on feelings and guessing as to what lies beyond?  I think you make the common mistake that a lot of members make in confusing "believe" with "know."  However, "know" sounds a lot more forceful, of course, and gives the one in the "know" a lot more authority.  But saying "know" means that you need to give a little more than just empty words and debate tactics.  Is it too "sacred" to tell?  Is that it?

I’m not shifting the burden.  Instead, I’m answering your question in the only way that can give you the answers you say you seek. 

You purport to desire to know what I know and how I know it.  The method you propose to achieve that has been declared insufficient by the very God the proof of whose existence you say you seek.

My responses to you set out for you the only way for you to get what you’re asking for.

You’re free to ignore it if you like, but there’s no other answer I can give you.  I trust I could use logic and evidence to nudge you toward greater belief, but that would be a disservice to you and an inadequate manifestation of my love and concern for you as my brother.

I point you to the Divine as God, His Son, and the Holy Ghost are the givers of certainty, not me or any other mortal.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Exiled said:

Why don't you just admit that your "certainty" is based on feelings and guessing as to what lies beyond?

I'm not certain about anything I haven't personally experienced, and for most things, I need to experience it more than once. That's why I'm not certain about the afterlife, for example. I've never been there. But I certainly know what I have experienced.

Quote

But saying "know" means that you need to give a little more than just empty words and debate tactics.  Is it too "sacred" to tell?  Is that it?

Do you know what the first word your eldest child said was? How about what the response was the first time you proposed marriage?

Now prove it. Or is your proof 'too "sacred" to tell'?

Edited by Hamba Tuhan
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On 4/11/2019 at 5:09 PM, let’s roll said:

I’m not shifting the burden.  Instead, I’m answering your question in the only way that can give you the answers you say you seek. 

You purport to desire to know what I know and how I know it.  The method you propose to achieve that has been declared insufficient by the very God the proof of whose existence you say you seek.

My responses to you set out for you the only way for you to get what you’re asking for.

You’re free to ignore it if you like, but there’s no other answer I can give you.  I trust I could use logic and evidence to nudge you toward greater belief, but that would be a disservice to you and an inadequate manifestation of my love and concern for you as my brother.

I point you to the Divine as God, His Son, and the Holy Ghost are the givers of certainty, not me or any other mortal.

You might have a dragon in your garage ....

https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/The_Dragon_in_My_Garage

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28 minutes ago, Kevin Christensen said:

In Sophic Box and Mantic Vista, I quoted Madan Sarup:

You might have a dominant metaphor parked in your head, rather than a pure, self authenticating truth or method. 

https://www.mormoninterpreter.com/sophic-box-and-mantic-vista-a-review-of-deconstructing-mormonism/

FWIW,

Kevin Christensen

Canonsburg, PA

Kevin:

By all means, believe what you want.  Of course bias can be used to explain anyone who disagrees with your paradigm.  However, it is a false equivalence.  There is bias and there is BIAS.  The outsider test of faith seems to be a way to resolve this question of bias.  It is the heart of peer review in that it gets "outsiders" to consider one's belief system critically.  One uses the same critical thinking skills one uses to determine scientology or flat-earthers are going down the wrong path.  Also, how do you rationalize missionary work?  Isn't the church using positivism to make it's claim of being the one and only?  In other words, your use of post-modernism is great for defense.  Who am I to say what is best for you?  However, who are the missionaries to say what is best for the world?  Who is the church to make these claims?

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Let me try another way to explain this.

What I will find forever odd is that most atheists are very interested in Human Rights, and are often quite ethical people.

But what is their positivistic proof that humans even should HAVE rights?

Where is the empirical evidence that they should?    Why should we care about endangered species?  Why save whales?  Other than health reasons- why be a vegan?  What's wrong with wearing shoes made of leather or fur coats?

Why worry about being politically correct or being cruel to people or using racist epithets?  How can it be proven scientifically that we should not?

What evidence do we have that people should share wealth or not share it?  Why do we NOT want to stomp the little guy like he is all over the world?  What is wrong with slavery?  Where is the empirical - and therefore positivistic evidence that any of these ideas are not "nonsense" which is what positivism actually says??

Why not murder babies for fun if you like that kind of thing?  (Sorry but if that does not trigger a "gut reaction" I don't know what will)

There is no objective evidence that we should not.

The fact is that humans are driven by what they find "important" and what is "important" is not important to the universe which IS totally impartial and unbiased.

If tomorrow we get obliterated by a comet the universe of "objective evidence" will not care.

But we have human values and those are based on emotions and feelings which are just as much part of being a "rational human" as positivism is.

These are the insights that @Kevin Christensen has been trying to get across to @Exiled and essentially are the same errors that Riskas made about the church.

There are scientific facts, and then there are matters of faith, and matters of faith define what is "important" to us and humanity.

This argument is not new- it goes back to Hume 400 years ago and still those uneducated in philosophy miss the point entirely.  You cannot deduce what should be from what "IS".  That is a simple way the point has been characterized for hundreds of years yet of course Hume's point is quite a bit more complex.

The scientific fact that substance A kills cells of the type B is a mere fact with no importance to mankind.

The fact that cells of type B are called "cancer cells" and that substance A could save millions of lives is what makes that fact IMPORTANT- because we like humans and find their lives to be "important".

A fact and its importance are two different perspectives of the same "reality".  Religion and what gives our lives meaning is about what is "important" to humans and therefore empirical evidence and ethical/emotional/ faith evidence is different than that of science.  One is about being impartial and the other is EXACTLY about being PARTIAL and yes, biased.

And yes we are biased about what is important to us- but religion and ethics are precisely about what is IMPORTANT TO US.

If you don't get that, there is not much more that can be said about it.

We are biased about what is important to us.  All of us are and that is a tautology!   BIAS itself means the thing we are biased towards is more IMPORTANT to us.

That is an alternative way to explain the fact that religious/ethical paradigms are different and serve a different purpose that scientific/objective paradigms.

And therefore positivism is self contradictory because it alleges to be about what defines is "important" ie: "valid" and truthful, but the method it uses- science- cannot by definition even BE about what is "important".  By its own criteria, positivism cannot be empirically verified and is itself therefore "nonsense" and therefore "unimportant"

That is what neither @Exiled nor Riskas understands..

Edited by mfbukowski
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On 4/15/2019 at 9:43 AM, Kevin Christensen said:

Thank you, I shall believe what I want. 

There is more than one outsider test for faith.   An outsider test is not necessarily better just because it is an outsider test.  If you read my review of Riskas, you should have seen that I provided another outsider test for LDS faith claims (one provided by Ian Barbour's Myths, Models, and Paradigms: A Comparative Study of Science and Religion) that also conveniently provided a powerful outside test for the outsider test that Riskas provided.   That is, I drew on Barbour and Kuhn and comparative religion and critical thinking skills to examine both Riskas's positivism and my own faith. 

Notice that saying "One uses the same critical thinking skills one uses to determine scientology or flat-earthers are going down the wrong path" is a way of making that situation a paradigmatic metaphor for approaching the LDS, despite the huge differences between those claims and LDS claims.  We are not flat earthers, and we are not devotees of L. Ron Hubbard and the numerous scandals of scientology.  By me, that is not a valid paradigm for confronting LDS claims, but it is another good example of what Madan Sarup was talking about, that is, making your argument via metaphor rather than close and comprehensive and relevant comparison.

You ask:

I believe in what I am doing, just as you apparently do, as you proselyte here.  I've seen many lives changed for the better by the gospel, over a long period of time.  That strikes me as worth sharing.

You ask:

No.  Emphatically no.  Come back when you understand positivism.  And if you were as enlightened and as self critical as your pose, you ought to notice that "the one and only" is not a quotation from the formal statement of LDS claims in D&C 1.  "The one and only" is in fact, a misstatement of LDS belief.  This happens to be a subject I covered in detail in the Mantic Box and Sophic Vista essay I linked, which strikes me as good evidence you did not read the essay completely and carefully.  It is also a subject I post on regularly on this board.

Joseph Smith reported that one of the things that started his religious quest was his realization that "the different teachers of religion understood the same passages of scripture so differently as to destroy all confidence in settling the question by an appeal to the Bible."  Jesus stated of the parable of the Sower, "Know ye not this parable?  How then will ye know all parables?"   Recognizing that the same words can produce vastly different yields, ranging from nothing to a hundred fold, all depending on soil, nurture, and time, is key to understanding everything else he says.   Jesus also says that criticism ought to begin with self-criticism, removing the beams from our own eyes.  "Then shall ye see clearly."   And all of that strikes as as interesting in comparison to Alan Goff's observation that Post Modernism is what happened when the critical and skeptical eye of Modernism became self-critical and self-reflective.  And all of that leads to why I end up using Thomas Kuhn's The Structure of Scientific Revolutions as the foundation of my own self-critical and self-reflective contemplation of my own LDS beliefs.  And it's all nicely resonant with the Perry Scheme for Cognitive and Ethical Growth, which I also used at length in Sophic Box and Mantic Vista because of how neatly they expose the flaws of positivism. And all that points to my use of Barbour:

I've repeatedly made the case my LDS faith has allowed me to notice and value many features of life that critics and skeptics continually overlook.  And it is important that when we ask "which of two competing theories fits the facts better" that we also work to ensure that the way we select facts and measure better is not completely theory-dependent, not completely self-referential.  I've written about this at length many times.  We have to be comparative, and we have to use standards of measure that are not self-referential.  Testability, accuracy of key predictions, comprehensiveness and coherence, fruitfulness, simplicity and aesthetics, and future promise.

Goff points out that Positivists always give themselves away:

https://www.mormoninterpreter.com/the-inevitability-of-epistemology-in-historiography-theory-history-and-zombie-mormon-history/

From the same essay:

Notice that Positivism refused to be self-critical, to remove the beam from it's own eye in order to see clearly.

FWIW,

Kevin Christensen

Canonsburg, PA

It strikes me as very important that between what you said here and your quotes, the word "value" appears again and again.

That is the key, I think.

Religion is about what is important in our lives- even if what is important to us may not be about God at all.  That explains the rise of "secular religions"

I saw this video a couple of years ago on our local PBS and I was immediately struck by the similarities this family shares with a "religious" family- and how they live their version of "orthopraxis" without once mentioning God.

One might argue that they seek after "righteousness" within their paradigm, have definite values that are in many ways non-conforming to the wider culture in which they live, but the bottom line is that they are seeking what they find "important" and "fulfilling" and which makes them "happy".

To me they present all the trappings of religiosity without necessarily believing in God.

I find that fascinating.

https://www.kcet.org/shows/socal-connected/energy-saving-family

And here is an article speaking to the similarities between secular religions and fundamentalist Protestantism

https://www.the-american-interest.com/2014/03/17/the-rise-of-secular-religion/

Ironically I think those who oppose religion often do not realize how "religious" their opposition looks to those outside their zealous missionary activity in favor of atheism.

And we see that right here on this board virtually every day.

 

 

Edited by mfbukowski
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Now that I´ve read (or practically read) the whole article. I have a few quick thoughts that I will simply list here for now:
 

This article is all over the place! There´s so many questionable, if not downright wrong, moves or lines of reasoning here that it is difficult to respect this ¨reasoning¨ at all. It seems more like rhetoric. I haven´t read this site before, but this article is a great disappointment for a site claiming ¨philosopher" in its name. The second part of the article makes up for a little of the glaring issues in the first half, but overall its too little, too late, and really just too little.
 

I know we´re probably too deep into this thread to try to discuss the original article´s specifics (even if their critique will bring up good general points of discussion for the general topic of God´s doctrines changing).  But I´ll try anyway, soon, maybe tomorrow, maybe Friday.

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4 hours ago, Joshua Valentine said:

Now that I´ve read (or practically read) the whole article. I have a few quick thoughts that I will simply list here for now:
 

This article is all over the place! There´s so many questionable, if not downright wrong, moves or lines of reasoning here that it is difficult to respect this ¨reasoning¨ at all. It seems more like rhetoric. I haven´t read this site before, but this article is a great disappointment for a site claiming ¨philosopher" in its name. The second part of the article makes up for a little of the glaring issues in the first half, but overall its too little, too late, and really just too little.
 

I know we´re probably too deep into this thread to try to discuss the original article´s specifics (even if their critique will bring up good general points of discussion for the general topic of God´s doctrines changing).  But I´ll try anyway, soon, maybe tomorrow, maybe Friday.

I'd be interested in hearing why you feel the article was so horrible, especially from the point of view of someone who has never been a member of the church and the article is on LDS understanding the concept of continuing revelation.

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On 4/11/2019 at 4:48 PM, Exiled said:

Shifting the burden?  Why don't you just admit that your "certainty" is based on feelings and guessing as to what lies beyond?  I think you make the common mistake that a lot of members make in confusing "believe" with "know."  However, "know" sounds a lot more forceful, of course, and gives the one in the "know" a lot more authority.  But saying "know" means that you need to give a little more than just empty words and debate tactics.  Is it too "sacred" to tell?  Is that it?

Please elucidate the difference between "believe" and "know".

This has been debated for 2,000 years and no one else has been able to do it.

I am awaiting your reply with bated breath. The world is about to change.

 

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45 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

Please elucidate the difference between "believe" and "know".

This has been debated for 2,000 years and no one else has been able to do it.

I am awaiting your reply with bated breath. The world is about to change.

 

Actually,  Alma 32 discusses that, and I have long been impressed with what he shows.

Quote

7 Yea, there are many who do say: If thou wilt show unto us a sign from heaven, then we shall know of a surety; then we shall believe.

18 Now I ask, is this faith? Behold, I say unto you, Nay; for if a man knoweth a thing he hath no cause to believe, for he knoweth it.

19 And now, how much more cursed is he that knoweth the will of God and doeth it not, than he that only believeth, or only hath cause to believe, and falleth into transgression?

20 Now of this thing ye must judge. Behold, I say unto you, that it is on the one hand even as it is on the other; and it shall be unto every man according to his work.

21 And now as I said concerning faith—faith is not to have a perfect knowledge of things; therefore if ye have faith ye hope for things which are not seen, which are true.

Alma goes on to explain that "cause to believe" is based on things like experiments on portions of the word, fruitfulness, expansion and enlightenment of the of the mind in consequence of experiment and experience, deliciousness, enlargement of the soul (think of Enos whose concerns enlarge from himself, to family, to his people, to his enemies) and future promise.  All of that converges with what Kuhn depicts as the pragmatic grounds for paradigm choice and scientific progress.  So cause to believe is ongoing, progressive, and open-ended, falling short of perfect knowledge but addressing what is real.  "Knowing" is final, complete, static, free of the need for faith, and comes with instant accountability for everything.  

Exiled should not try to chalk faith choices up to feelings because there is more than that to it.  Heart and mind are fully engaged.  Both logical intellect and emotional intelligence as mutually supporting contraries.

FWIW

Kevin Christensen

Canonsburg, PA

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46 minutes ago, Kevin Christensen said:

Actually,  Alma 32 discusses that, and I have long been impressed with what he shows.

Alma goes on to explain that "cause to believe" is based on things like experiments on portions of the word, fruitfulness, expansion and enlightenment of the of the mind in consequence of experiment and experience, deliciousness, enlargement of the soul (think of Enos whose concerns enlarge from himself, to family, to his people, to his enemies) and future promise.  All of that converges with what Kuhn depicts as the pragmatic grounds for paradigm choice and scientific progress.  So cause to believe is ongoing, progressive, and open-ended, falling short of perfect knowledge but addressing what is real.  "Knowing" is final, complete, static, free of the need for faith, and comes with instant accountability for everything.  

Exiled should not try to chalk faith choices up to feelings because there is more than that to it.  Heart and mind are fully engaged.  Both logical intellect and emotional intelligence as mutually supporting contraries.

FWIW

Kevin Christensen

Canonsburg, PA

Yes excellent points and I am glad you brought that out. I think I went a little too far on to the "feeling" side in my previous comment. 

I see no dualism between reason and faith, nor faith and feelings, nor belief and a knowledge, I see all of these is just different regions in the realm of human reason, as a suggested by Alma.

The problem is that the semantics of the situation often drive the discussion, and because we use separate words we tend to reify them into separate categories.

I think Alma 32 is a masterpiece in using symbols to make this point very clearly and simply without dualism.

As the tree of human reason grows if the fruit is sweet and useful it is "true".

That takes in all of science and all of religion and all that is necessary for personal growth. In those few words we have all of post-modernism and Pragmatism and Kuhn, and to me is itself proof of the Divinity of the Book of Mormon.

But we must guard against such dualisms and understand that they are purely semantic.

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Just now, mfbukowski said:

The problem is that the semantics of the situation often drive the discussion, and because we use separate words we tend to reify them into separate categories.

Hey Dude! I sent you a PM to answer your question in a thread that got locked before I got back to it, touching on this issue. I PM'd two others on their questions as well; maybe something's not working.

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2 hours ago, CV75 said:

Hey Dude! I sent you a PM to answer your question in a thread that got locked before I got back to it, touching on this issue. I PM'd two others on their questions as well; maybe something's not working.

I didn't get a notification let me check it out.

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4 hours ago, mfbukowski said:

Please elucidate the difference between "believe" and "know".

This has been debated for 2,000 years and no one else has been able to do it.

I am awaiting your reply with bated breath. The world is about to change.

 

While you are waiting, please explain how magic seer stones providing revelation isn't fraud in your opinion. I'd like to know why you persist to believe despite the evidence. Do you relish a good magician's trick?

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4 hours ago, Exiled said:

While you are waiting, please explain how magic seer stones providing revelation isn't fraud in your opinion. I'd like to know why you persist to believe despite the evidence. Do you relish a good magician's trick?

I don't see why revelations through the medium of a stone is any more strange than any other source of revelation.  A talking donkey, a burning bush, voices from the clouds, or the words of a man returned from the dead.

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20 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

I don't see why revelations through the medium of a stone is any more strange than any other source of revelation.  A talking donkey, a burning bush, voices from the clouds, or the words of a man returned from the dead.

That doesn't help your point as much as you seem to think.

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6 minutes ago, ttribe said:

That doesn't help your point as much as you seem to think.

Depends if the reader is a skeptic, a traditional Christian, an anti, a believer...

A skeptic doubts all revelations so any objection unique to the stone can be set aside as there isn't a valid method they do accept.

The Christian accepts the methods I listed so they would have to explain what makes a stone less valid.

And so on.

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