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Author Topic: here is a pantheist test...  (Read 9695 times)
Collinsky
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« Reply #15: April 22, 2011, 02:11:38 am »


(100%) 1: Naturalistic pantheist   
(84%) 2: Secular (atheist or agnostic) humanist       
(81%) 3: Deist or rationalistic panentheist       
(78%) 4: Dualist pantheist, "New Age", pagan, or other    
(69%) 5: Orthodox monotheist        
(63%) 6: Cynic or Objectivitst

Well, I guess that's as close as it can get. Smiley
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« Reply #16: April 22, 2011, 02:23:52 am »

It's not necessarily metaphysical nonsense to posit more than one substance, per se. The trouble comes in when you try and explain how different substances could interact with each other. Most (all?) philosophy accepts that for two things to interact in any way  they need to be fundamentally of the same substance. Many thinkers have posited that there is both physical and spiritual substance, but I am not aware of a persuasive philosophy that explains how they could interact.

So the shoprt version is "No, not that I'm aware of".
Where it goes off the rails for me is even before that point, with the very use of the word "substance" to refer to something nonphysical/nonmaterial.  Um, insubstantial even Cheesy.  While it's useful to have some way to refer to those things whose reality is not dependent on physicality/materiality, I'm not convinced that a word whose common/lay usage implies materiality is the way to do it.

Your long version was at least helpful to me for getting a handle on what the debate is about.  It still looks pretty "angels dancing on the head of a pin" to me, though.

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« Reply #17: April 22, 2011, 02:33:26 am »



It certainly suffers from common usage, but 'stuff' doesn't sound anywhere near rarified/wanky enough for philosophy Smiley It's mostly relevant when people want to make claims that something exists, but isn't bound by the laws all the other things we know of are bound by. The tendency is to claim that whatever it is is made of some different sort of stuff to everything else, which then leads to people saying "so, how the heck does it interact with us then?".

The short answer was because I hit post then realised I hadn't actually answered the question...doh
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« Reply #18: April 22, 2011, 03:09:29 am »

It certainly suffers from common usage, but 'stuff' doesn't sound anywhere near rarified/wanky enough for philosophy Smiley It's mostly relevant when people want to make claims that something exists, but isn't bound by the laws all the other things we know of are bound by. The tendency is to claim that whatever it is is made of some different sort of stuff to everything else, which then leads to people saying "so, how the heck does it interact with us then?".
Ah, okay.  I'll just file it under Rarified Philosophy Wank, then Cheesy.  (Which is pretty much what I was doing anyway; it looked to me to be, at best, an attempt to get philosophy to answer questions that it's really not designed to answer except insofar as some particular branch of philosophy acquires enough, ahem, substance, to become a distinct science - at which point it moves out of the house and gets its own place.)

"Stuff" could be said to suffer from the same problem of implying materiality, but it has the great advantage of having an extant colloqial usage of "I don't know what the heck to call it".  This is probably a key factor in the usage of "substance"; those who want their philosophy rarified absolutely hate having to say, "I don't know."

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« Reply #19: April 22, 2011, 03:15:38 am »



Funnily enough, the lack of any words with a definition (that you can pin down) is sometimes put forward as evidence that there are no non-material substances. Even when people try and talk about spirit as though it is a substance, they usually seem to drag out terms that relate to energy (which is the substance that the material world is made of). I can see why you would see it as wankery, but it can be very useful when trying to figure out if someone is actually saying anything, rather than just making noises that sound like words.
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« Reply #20: April 22, 2011, 08:55:50 am »


i mean, it's just for fun afterall <wink>
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« Reply #21: April 22, 2011, 08:57:19 am »

I guess I pass the test.  Tongue
ha! we almost got the same order (i guss i'm slightly more cynical? tee hee)
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« Reply #22: April 22, 2011, 08:58:38 am »

Honestly, I don't think any of the questions have a satisfying-to-me answer, and the fact that it thinks that I'm an atheist is probably indicative of the resulting issues. Wink

well, sure. none of these tests are really right. i just threw this up here 'cuase i always see the "belief" one and that test doesn't even *consider* pantheism.
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« Reply #23: April 22, 2011, 08:59:29 am »

   

I'm very far from being 4 or 5, but whatever.   Tongue

exactly <g>
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« Reply #24: April 22, 2011, 10:07:59 am »


Heres mine,  I am pretty okay with the results.  They dont surprise me one bit... I agree that some questions/answers/definitions are not necessarily what I would say or agree with.  All in all I think its an okay quiz though!
        (100%) 1: Dualist pantheist, "New Age", pagan, or other     
   (88%) 2: Deist or rationalistic panentheist       
   (88%) 3: Naturalistic pantheist       
   (76%) 4: Secular (atheist or agnostic) humanist   
   (73%) 5: Orthodox monotheist   
   (57%) 6: Cynic or Objectivitst   
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« Reply #25: April 22, 2011, 10:59:26 am »

What questions would you ask in this sort of quiz, what answers would you offer and what would you see them as indicators of? I ask because whenever one of these tests comes up here, we all tend to chime in with similar comments about the questions, the available answers, or the connection between the answers and various dimensions of belief systems. I'm interested to see what TC's equivalent quiz would be. If there's enough interest in the topic here, I'll start a thread asking for questions and knock one up just for shits and giggles Smiley

Heh, somewhere I have a half-finished pagan religions quiz.  Half-finished because it's hard!  But I'll critique this one:

"Do you believe in miracles?"

Okay, let's start with "Relevance to anything?"  But really, no option to say "No."  One can say "yes", express disbelief in supernatural miracles and claim that existence is miraculous, or express disbelief in supernatural miracles and dismiss the inspirational qualities of existence.

"Do you in a God, gods, or other some other spiritual force that began the universe and/or exists beyond, as well as within, the universe?"

No option for non-transcendent gods, which is ... weird for something purporting to be addressing pantheism in particular, since that's a concept fundamentally about non-transcendent divinity.

"Do you believe that a certain text or texts (the Bible, the Koran, or others) are divinely inspired?"

Big-time "Relevance?"  Also, I bet that this gives points for monotheism, since, say, the Vedas (canonically not of human origin, I believe) aren't mentioned.  No option for, "Sure, gods inspire texts, poems, whatever else, but most of those aren't relevant to most people since they're not their gods."

"Do you belive that religion should be based on reason and experience, rather than authority.?"

Wrong question.  This is attempting to be a revealed scripture question, or perhaps a straight-up "Are you a blind follower sheep" question.  A more neutral phrasing would be "What do you think is the most important basis for religion?", which might include "reason and experience", "authority", "tradition", "inspiration".

"Do you enjoy, or might you enjoy, organized gatherings, rituals or celebrations on a regular basis?"

This one mostly infuriates me with its complete lack of apparent relevance to the question the quiz purports to be answering, which means that it serves only to illuminate the assumptions of the test writer.

"Are you in awe of the forces of nature?"

No options for anything other than "awe" and "disgust".  Oh, "indifference".

"Do you enjoy, or might you enjoy, meditation?"

Actually, this question doesn't annoy me per se, though it does hit my "Relevance?" button again.  By this point I'm mostly convinced that the test writer has a very specific and quirky set of definitions in play and is trying to prove their relevance.  However, since meditation can be practiced in any religious belief system or none, it doesn't actually illuminate anything in reality.

"Do you believe in karma (positive or negative actions will inevitably come back to help or harm you on a personal level, or in a future life) ?"

Westerners asking about karma annoy me by definition because of the standard Western failure to understand what karma means within the religions to whcih it is actually relevant.

Also, ... pantheism?

"Do you believe that human beings are capable of being good to one another and living together peacefully?"

Is this also supposed to be a pantheist belief?  A subtle way of calling out people who believe in Original Sin?  What?

"I find the idea that after we die, our physical bodies will be “recycled” back into nature while our descendents and accomplishments live on"

Finally a question that can suss things out about nuances of potential pantheistic belief!  Every quiz gotta have a ringer.

No option for "To be a factual statement" though.

" I agree with the following statments
 I think that it is better to be sure to treat others with fairness and kindness than to behave out of self-interest only.
I think the world would be a better place if people thought about religion more rationally.
 I think the world would be a better place if people’s religious beliefs led them to respect the environment.
 I believe that people have basic human rights that should be respected.
Not sure"

Pick one and one only!

"Do you believe that crystals, talismans, or magick spells can alter the course of nature or fate in a desirable way, if used properly?"

Disagreement gets to express nuanced opinion, but one can't agree because such things have effects on the mind/substance of the caster, for example?

"Do you enjoy nature photography, examining natural objects, natural history, walking and hiking outdoors, gardening, or stargazing?"

Here's something that can in theory distinguish between nature-oriented pantheism and other forms, if done well.  That's two useful questions. :}  Though this one doesn't have an answer in which these are religious or spiritual and not community-oriented, whcih is an interesting conflation.

"Do you like to maintain an awareness of the weather, the passage of the seasons, the phases of the moon, or other aspects of your natural surroundings?"

I am pretty sure I answered "Ooops, get rid of this one" to this one. Wink
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« Reply #26: April 23, 2011, 03:56:32 am »

i just threw this up here 'cuase i always see the "belief" one and that test doesn't even *consider* pantheism.
That would probably be because the BeliefNet quiz is about religions as systems, not about a particular aspect of cosmology on which one's position might (or might not) be central (or not central but relevant) on its own (or in conjunction with other positions) to the system one chooses or develops (where people who share the same position might choose or develop wildly different systems).

Sunflower
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« Reply #27: April 23, 2011, 04:01:04 am »

But I'll critique this one:
Fisked and pwned!

Quote
"I find the idea that after we die, our physical bodies will be “recycled” back into nature while our descendents and accomplishments live on"

Finally a question that can suss things out about nuances of potential pantheistic belief!  Every quiz gotta have a ringer.

No option for "To be a factual statement" though.
Which, come to think of it, is markedly strange for a quiz purporting to centre on a cosmological position often associated with fact-focused rationalists.

Sunflower
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I do so have a life.  I just live part of it online.
“Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others
to live as one wishes to live.” - Oscar Wilde
My blog "If You Ain't Makin' Waves, You Ain't Kickin' Hard Enough", at Dreamwidth and LJ
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« Reply #28: June 03, 2011, 01:38:54 am »

Fisked and pwned!
Which, come to think of it, is markedly strange for a quiz purporting to centre on a cosmological position often associated with fact-focused rationalists.

Sunflower

(100%) 1: Dualist pantheist, "New Age", pagan, or other       
   
   (82%) 2: Orthodox monotheist       
   
   (76%) 3: Deist or rationalistic panentheist       
   
   (71%) 4: Naturalistic pantheist       
   
   (65%) 5: Secular (atheist or agnostic) humanist       
   
   (62%) 6: Cynic or Objectivitst
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