The Chicken or the Egg?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Killer Joe, Nov 3, 2006.

  1. BigBlue Magic Jones

    Ignoring the religious discussion for the moment...

    Count me among those who side w/ the Egg...

    What's interesting to me though is... when did it become a chicken? What was it before it was a chicken?

    I think it's quite possible that birds evolved from dinosaurs... so, was it when the scales were lost for feathers that it became a "chicken"?

    In terms of the religious side of things... I'll caveat my statements by proclaiming my agnosticism up front...

    That said... Evolution is almost as much based on faith as creationism is... There may be a fossil record, and it makes sense, but it hasn't been proven concretely to me. The major thing in creation's favor is that we exist at all... if you buy the Big Bang... there was a creation... Who am I to say one way or the other that isn't God... I don't believe there is an omnipotent, omniscient, benevolent being or force which cares enough about their creation... but, I can't say there wasn't some sentient force which caused a "Creation" to take place... In terms of christianity etc... what is benevolent about requiring worship/fealty for forgiveness?

    Do good things in your life, try not to do ill... if you do somehow do ill, try to rectify it... Yeah, this is pretty much Karma... which I do agree with (not so much believe)... the world/universe is not "fair"... just try to be fair yourself to make it better for everyone.

    I think "God" is intuition. I think most people "know" what is right and just in the world. Some people just choose to ignore it. Some would say they're evil... I'd say they are ignorant... and deserve punishment in this life - the only one we know exists. (Not including the whole brain in a bottle discussion which can also be neither proved nor disproved.)

    As Nietzche said... God is dead. (yeah, this has been taken out of context I know....)

    </soapbox>
  2. EricBess Active Member

    Melkor - Not sure if you were responding to me or not. I'm hardly a science worshiping God-hater... I happen to be very religious. I just also don't believe that it is beyond the realm of possibility that God uses very sound scientific principles and laws to do his bidding.

    Take a flashlight back to the 18th century and see what they think. God certainly understands how natural things work much better than anyone on earth currently does.

    Don't get me wrong, if God says "be", then it will be. But the scriptures do teach that God works through eternal laws and principles. And I believe in the creation, not so-called "evolution", or "big bang", or whatever...

    BigBlue - As God said...Nietzche is dead.
  3. DarthFerret Evil Sith Weasel


    Not to get picky on ya BigBlue (and yes I respect the opinion of anyone, even if they are not of my personal beliefs!)..however you quoted one of my favorite mathematicians....you may even call him a mathematical philosopher...however...his name is spelled: Nietzsche. The only reason that I know this is that it is part of my email address, and I have studdied his contirbutions to chaos theory intently.

    I also think that, if taken in context (I know, you said it is out of context) that Nietzsche was trying to convey that Society itself has destroyed the concept of "God". This is amazing that he was saying this that long ago, and now some philospohers are saying the same thing in this age. I think that is a sign of a true "independent thinker". The ability to state something over a century before it becomes generally agreed upon!

    As for what Melkor said. I just have to make one comment. It may be written in the Bible in very simple plain text (although you can see the agrarian society argument in my previous post for that too), just remember that the Bible has been written and transcribed by fallible man. If you truly believe that we have been given free will by God (which I have never seen any christian argue against that), then we must also be able to have the free will enough to pervert something like the Bible. I am not saying that it has been done, however some things can be lost in translation. I also personally (and this is not a slam against you in any way shape or form) believe that it would be very arogant of myself to presume that I could understand how God thinks, or what His plan is or ever was. I really do not think we have the capacity to understand anything as monumentous as creation, the final days, or His plan. However, I really do respect your religious fervor. I think it is great that there are people out there that are not afraid to take a stand for what they believe in!

    By the way, if anyone thinks that God cannot exist because he would not allow our society to fall into such degredation, I only have this to say. We have kicked Him out of our schools, out of our courthouses and public government facility, out of our marriages, out of our military and there is now the desire to kick him out of our monetary system. Ever think that he is just doing what everyone wants, and leaving well enough alone?

    Ok, rant over...prolly will not go into any religious aspects any further in this thread..

    Tag Guard
  4. Melkor Active Member

    Perhaps I should clear things up, although, I thought I had made certain statements earlier that would show this. I have been, pardon the expression, playing the devil's advocate and arguing a strict sort of creationist theory because it is one of the only ways to get the chicken first. Additionally, I wanted to show some of the rigidity of the argument. My own religious beliefs are significantly more nuanced (although that may just be pride talking). The Jesus hating, and God hating comments were meant as parodies of this argument. I have enjoyed the resulting discussion of these sort of theological issues and to be honest it has been interesting to see some more of peoples personalities. I apologize that the personality I have portrayed hasn't been entirely truthful.

    However, I can't help but comment on one particular thing in DarthFerret's post, the question of free will. There has long been a deterministic thread of thought within Christianity. In fact, a lot of the original Puritan immigrants to America were adherents to the idea of predetermination. People were born saved, or not saved.
  5. Limited Yes, but we won't care

    I was just wondering.. does the Bible say anything about God belonging in our schools? Or in our monetary system?

    As I see it, the Bible contains a set of values that people, if they uphold these values, can claim they live a good life. In the most basic sense, this would not include any 'religious behavior' (going to church) but would merely need to be reflected in a person's personal descisions.

    In order to advance (or simply change) human societies, several constructs like a legal system, an educational system and a monetary system. These constructs were perhaps developed in societies were most of the people adhered to their religion, and thus incorporated this religion within this construct.

    Over time though, society has changed. People have come to realize that in order to feel safe and prosper within a society, it is paramount that every member of that society is happy and content. And unfortunately, religion isn't constant throughout any society. Within every major religion there are faction who interpret the same texts differently, creating opposing view points.

    So people realized that a society needs to be based on social values instead of religious values, in order to avoid making a choice between the many religious viewpoints that are held within a society. We need a separation of church and state.

    Remember that the nonconformists that fled Europe because they were being prosecuted for their religious beliefs. Instead of creating a society based on their own religious views, they were enlightened enough to realize that a society should be founded on social values.

    I can understand that you get the feeling that something is taken away from religious people if "In God we trust" no longer appears on your coins, but you have to realize that a society has no religion. Only then is each member of that society truly free to embrace any religion that they feel is right.

    And does it really obstruct your personal religious experience in any way if God is not mentioned on every coin you have? How do you think it will feel for those who don't believe in the christian God (or any God for that matter) to handle coins who say "In God we trust"? How are they supposed to feel like they belong in this society? That they are part of it?

    I truly believe that religion can be a beautiful thing, if only everyone would accept for the personal level on which everybody should apply it.

    /rant
  6. Killer Joe Active Member

    Are there religions that have their followers 'spread the word' of their religion and no others exist and are not allowed to exist? If so then 'personal religion' cannot EVER exist as long there are people who follow the notion that their religion is the one and only one and the others must be stopped.

    Isn't that what 'extremeists' do regarless of the name of their religion?
  7. Limited Yes, but we won't care

    I am not sure that I understand you correctly, but it is of course true that there are religions which
    • have their followers propagate the religion
    • proclaim to be the one true religion
    • and conclude that other religions are false

    It is also true that each religion has followers of different conviction, among them could be 'extremists' who think that the three statements mentioned above justify 'destroying' other religions (or bringing harm to followers of false religions).

    First, I want to make clear that I spoke of a personal religious experience and not of a personal religion. I feel the term personal religion seems to imply that everybody can think of their own God and holy texts. With religious experience, I simply imply that every person can have a different interpretation of a religion, simply because they are different people.

    To get back on topic: religion (or lack there of) does have the consequence of placing people in groups. Social group dynamics predict that people will show social behavior within a group, and unfortunately show asocial behavior to those outside of their group.

    If you meet someone with whom you don't share religious beliefs, a distance is present. How big this distance is, depends on the personal religious experience of those involved. You might become best friends, you might both feel that you are mortal enemies.

    If a society does not want to succumb to this phenomenom, it must set rules so that its members, regardless of motivation, are disencouraged to inflict hurt on each other. A society detached (but not against) religion, based on human and social values, would do just that.

    You cannot stop extremists from feeling better than those who are of another religion, but you create a healthy society by upholding rules, like the constitution or the Geneva convention. Under these laws, people have freedom of religion, in the true sense of the word freedom.

    /rant #2
  8. BigBlue Magic Jones

    Funny how a discussion about which came first, the chicken or the egg becomes an arguement over religion...

    Of course this is the Internet.... and we are in "Off Topic"...

    Thankfully it's a civil discussion.

    Sorry for they misspell - I sort of knew it was when I typed it, but was being too lazy to look it up. Personally, I read another Philosopher/Mathematician - Bertrand Russell... As far as your "context" mention... That's what my understanding of his statements were as well... Of course, for that statement to be true (as a logician)... that would imply that Man created God... Or that God can only exist when he has followers...

    Like I said... I'm an agnostic... I disagree greatly with much of what religion has wrought through the ages.... Not what "God" has wrought... Much violence and injustice has been done in His name... That's the other edge of Free Will... That and a presumption that religious leaders know His will and followers trust in those leaders to lead them... Herein lies the failure of religion as opposed to God... People equate the two of them and cannot discern the difference. While I say I'm agnostic, I do believe in God as a "concept"... just not as a sentient being.

    We don't trust ourselves. I'm not saying EVERY religion is bad... nor would I say every religious follower is bad... but I see more sheep than believers in the world.

    "God told me to tell you, we need to elect George Bush." Which sounds funny, but it happens... and people vote on that basis because they want salvation...
  9. Mooseman Isengar Tussle

    http://darwin-online.org.uk/
    Cambridge University is putting his complete works on the internet, so you can read them for yourself........
  10. Zigathon Registered Nerd

    So, let me get this straight, you're all debating whether or not a chicken or egg came first?

    The answer is obvious... the rooster did.

    Now, I know someone is going to say that said rooster needed to have a chicken around to place his seed... but let's just say, for the sake of argument, that this rooster was just, uhhhh, helping himself in the vicinity of another kind of fowl and the net result was chickenkind.

    I mean, if you want to get religious and all, God supposedly did create Adam before Eve, right?
  11. BigBlue Magic Jones

    Umm.... a rooster is a chicken.... just like a Hen is a chicken....

    :D

    But maybe you've never been on a farm...

    Looking at this from the engineers perspective.... Let's assume we have a spherical Rooster...

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