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Obama-hating white supremacist terror plotter murdered by wife
 
 
Andy62 Andy62 is offline
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03-17-2009, 03:53 PM
 
I am a non-denominational Christian,but during my college years I was an athiest. I agree with Jesus that the kingdom of God is within and not in some external organization.
 
 
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gruntbrain gruntbrain is offline
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03-17-2009, 04:29 PM
 
Although I mentioned a God debate, I realize that this forum is not the place for such a debate; my preference is reading a book that represents multiple perspectives. More generally I'd like a series of point/countepoint discussions on many topics as chapters in a single book. Any such book?
 
 
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Alan_OldStudent Alan_OldStudent is offline
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03-17-2009, 08:22 PM
 
Hi Grunt,

Quote:
Originally Posted by gruntbrain View Post
Alan
My reference to a debate between Prager & Hinchens was not an attmept to create a Alan/Free debate on God.
Yeah, I realize that now. My mistake.



Quote:
Originally Posted by gruntbrain View Post
.....the point/counterpoint format is desirable on many subjects but is rarely witnessed . Desparately seeking & confused souls wanna hear both sides on many subjects.
I quite agree. That type of intelligent debate is sorely missing, and it is a tragedy. None of us have all the answers. Additionally, we can all learn from each other if we just give an honest listen.

Socrates used what has been called the dialectic method of debate, as have many other serious thinkers. Here is an interesting article on that approach, tracing it through Hindu, Buddhist, Socratic, Medieval, Hegelian, Marxist, and Talmudic intellectual traditions.

St. Thomas Aquinas, one of the major medieval philosophers, used this method quite a bit in his works.

St. Thomas read and studied the classical philosophers of Greece and Rome, whose works the Spanish Muslims had previously rescued from the bonfires of earlier Christian censors.

The Muslims controlled Spain, which at that time was the intellectual center of Europe, with its great universities. In fact, over half of the students in the Muslim universities of Spain were European Christians, most of them clergy.

The Muslims of Spain also encouraged intellectual scholarship, and there were many famous Jewish and Muslim commentaries on the old classical learning. Actually, it was the Muslim Spanish intellectual establishment and scholarship that made the European renaissance and later the Enlightenment possible.

So St. Thomas read not only the ancient Greek and Roman commentaries, but also the major Jewish and Muslim scholars.

In his masterwork, Summa Theologica, St. Thomas sought to use this material to illustrate and explain his philosophy and theology.

This is the fascinating part:

St. Thomas always began each section with a 1- or 2-sentence statement of his position.

Then, under a series of points titled: OBJECTION, he stated in the strongest possible way, and in the most objective and fair way he could, the position of his opponent. It was as though he was trying to make their argument as well or even better than they themselves. It was obvious how much he respected the character and arguments of his opponents and how fairly he tried to treat them.

He then would begin his attempt at a refutation.

His treatise on the existence and nature of God is the starting point for almost all subsequent debates around God's existence, and those who have debated this since have been forced to deal with Aquinas's must-read arguments (which, by the way, I do not buy, although I have great respect for Aquinas as an important thinker).

For an interesting and brief explanation and critique of Aquinas's arguments, one can read the text of Bertrand Russell's short essay online called Why I Am Not A Christian.

So Grunt, there is an interesting point-counterpoint on this question from two great minds out of the Western philosophical tradition for you to look at. Have fun!



For those of us with radical and non-mainstream views, if we wish to discuss or debate our point of view, we need to learn a lesson from Aquinas.

We need to be dialectic in our approach. We need to understand and be able to state clearly the opponent's view. Indeed, we must make our formulation as convincing or even more convincing that the opponent himself could do.

Of course, doing that is risky, because we might (horror of horrors) find we need to modify our position or even find that we ourselves have been wrong.

Nevertheless, if we are to engage in real dialog instead of ego-stroking spitball fights, we must be brave and take the risk. Only if we ourselves are willing to take the risk can we hope those we argue against will do the same.

Then we must frame our argument as honestly as we can, addressing the relevant points as we see them.

Note that this requires the greatest trick in the debator's arsenal, the tactic of respectful listening. Those with confidence in their position will not shrink from this duty.

Our opponent will be less likely to attack us personally if he sees we are trying to understand where he is coming from in an honest fashion.


Regards,

Alan OldStudent
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Last edited by Alan_OldStudent; 03-17-2009 at 08:25 PM.
 
 
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MikeNY MikeNY is offline
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03-17-2009, 09:13 PM
 
As a kid our dad punished us using the Socratic method, you had to lay on your bed after being bad, no books, comics, radio or TV, no toys. Think about what you did, then make a confession and tell how you'd change. I hated it lol!

Alan stated: "St. Thomas read and studied the classical philosophers of Greece and Rome, whose works the Spanish Muslims had previously rescued from the bonfires of earlier Christian censors.

The Muslims controlled Spain, which at that time was the intellectual center of Europe, with its great universities. In fact, over half of the students in the Muslim universities of Spain were European Christians, most of them clergy.

The Muslims of Spain also encouraged intellectual scholarship, and there were many famous Jewish and Muslim commentaries on the old classical learning. Actually, it was the Muslim Spanish intellectual establishment and scholarship that made the European renaissance and later the Enlightenment possible.

So St. Thomas read not only the ancient Greek and Roman commentaries, but also the major Jewish and Muslim scholars. "

In respectful disagreement Alan it was my impression that the Renaissance was a direct result of the fall of the Eastern Roman Empire in 1453 at Constantinople that lead to the rebirth. From 1400 to 1453 upwards of 1,500,000 to 1,700,000 Eastern Romans/Greeks fled Islam to and went to Italy and the Italian held Greek Islands, taking thier books and Libraries.

Muslim Spain after the Conquest; did encourage arts and science, but was a slave Empire; some Toleration did exist. My recollection is Ben Yussef the Morrocan Emir that fought El Cid was a Muslim Fundementalist of the Almoravids and cut very much from the cloth of Al Qeada, they held an African Empire in addition to lands in Spain. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Cid http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Almoravid_dynasty
 
 
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MikeNY MikeNY is offline
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03-19-2009, 06:17 PM
 
Alan thought you'd enjoy these sites and the history. http://africanhistory.about.com/libr.../aa040201a.htm It seems Islam was involved 600 years in the African Slave Trade before the arrival of the Europeans.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islam_and_slavery Slavery is natural part of islam and Muslim Civilization, Islam regards nonbelivers are chatel to be owned, and Dhimmi (subject people's) as a asset to exploited.

http://www.amazon.com/Christian-Slav.../dp/1403945519 Islam was also enslaveing Europeans. There were even people from the British Isles enslaved.

http://www.markhumphrys.com/islam.killings.html here is an interesting site on slavery and killing for islam.

http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/med/lewis1.html Here is an online book " Bernard Lewis. Race and Slavery in the Middle East" .

When in Africa the People reported that 20 times as many Africans were taken as slaves into the Muslim World as by the Europeans. That figure might be low, the Muslims marched them across the Sahara Desert. I've read that the number of Africans brought to the Americas in much smaller than believed, the ships at the time were small, the Ocean is a desert without water and all the water and food needed had to be carried for everyone onboard. Columbus had warships that were much larger than commercial vessels.
 
 
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Alan_OldStudent Alan_OldStudent is offline
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03-19-2009, 10:06 PM
 
Hi MikeNY,

I thought the first two links are the most interesting and scholarly. The account in the second link seems much more nuanced than your brief one-sentence summation. As is often the case with Wikipedia, much material is covered in an in-depth way, presenting a variety of expert interpretations. It also has a wealth of links for further study and followup.

I recommend this article highly for its scholarship.

It is true that Islam provided for the legitimacy of slavery until relatively recently, as was the case in Judaism to a certain degree and Christianity to a much greater degree. By and large, both Judaism and Christianity oppose slavery today, and many leading abolitionists historically have been Christians and considered abolition of slavery to be a Christian imperative.

And, although most Muslim Shariah scholarship, for the last 100 or so years, has seen slavery as being unjust and opposed to Islamic principles of equality, there are still schools of thought in Islam who do not see much wrong with slavery, most notably the the Wahhabi school, the official state religion of our "moderate" ally Saudi Arabia.

Here is a quote one may find from that second link you provided:
Quote:
Historically, the major juristic schools of Islam traditionally accepted the institution of slavery.[1] Muhammad and many of his companions bought, sold, freed, and captured slaves. Slaves benefited from Islamic dispensations which improved their situation relative to that in pre-Islamic society.[1] At the end of the 19th century, a shift in Muslim thought and interpretation of the Qur'an occurred, and slavery became seen as opposed to Islamic principles of justice and equality.[2] This interpretation has not been accepted by the Wahhabis of Saudi Arabia.[3]

In Islamic law the topic of slavery is covered at great length.[1] The Qur'an, the holy book, and the hadith, the sayings of Muhammad, see slavery as an exceptional condition that can be entered into under certain limited circumstances.[3] They also consider manumission of a slave to be one of many meritorious deeds available for the expiation of sins.[4] According to Sharia, slaves are considered human beings and possessed of some rights on the basis of their humanity. In addition, a Muslim slave is equal to a Muslim freeman in religious issues and superior to the free non-Muslim.[5]
(emphasis added)
So, I'm not sure why you use the word "chattel" to describe this kind of Islamic slavery, although it most certainly was slavery. Here's how the Abolition Project defines chattel slavery.
Quote:
Chattel slavery :
A form of slavery, introduced by Europeans, in which the slave is treated as a piece of property, belonging to his or her owner, and has no rights; the slave is enslaved for life and his / her children are automatically enslaved too; chattel slaves can also be bought and sold just like cattle (from which the word chattel comes)
Here is what your citation on Islam and Slavery says about chattel slavery and Islam:

Quote:
The Qur'an, however, does not consider slaves to be mere chattel; their humanity is directly addressed in references to their beliefs,[24] their desire for manumission and their feelings about being forced into prostitution.[25] In one case, the Qur'an refers to master and slave with the same word, rajul.
It was slavery in the United States that was chattel slavery under the law of our founding fathers.

Regards,


Alan OldStudent
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Andy62 Andy62 is offline
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03-19-2009, 10:33 PM
 
Actually slavery was part of colonialism. The British Empire did not eliminate slavery until about 30 years before it was eliminated in America. Even after that time the Europeans were active in the slave trade and continued to make money off of it. In many cases indentured slavery, which existed in the British Empire into the early 1900s, was not that much different than actual slavery.
 
 
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MikeNY MikeNY is offline
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03-19-2009, 11:51 PM
 
Alan I too liked that link! It appears that Islam considers slaves more than property by religious law, but in real life practice it reflects the worst aspects of slavery and slaves and females are dehumanized into mere property. Plus there is a racism involved, the Arabic word for slave means nothingness. here are two links that will help http://www.jihadwatch.org/dhimmiwatc...ves/002661.php and http://en.allexperts.com/q/Islam-947/SLAVE.htm and the word abd means either Blackman or slave http://books.google.com/books?id=_2a...m=10&ct=result

Last edited by MikeNY; 03-19-2009 at 11:54 PM.
 
 
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