Junior Ganymede
We endeavor to give satisfaction

Good Questions from an Investigator

July 20th, 2015 by G.

The following are lightly edited transcripts of a conversation I am having with an honest inquirer, who is also a friend of the JG.  He can out himself in the comments if he wishes.  Comments are welcome.  If you would like to have a private conversation with him, say so in the comments and the Club Committee will try to oblige, subject to the consent of the inquiring gentleman. (more…)

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July 20th, 2015 11:52:56

Straining at gnats and swallowing camels

July 20th, 2015 by Vader

SCOTUS edition.

The whole conversation is worthwhile, but Chapter 3 focuses on the contradictions in Supreme Court free speech jurisprudence.

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July 20th, 2015 11:41:43

Mormon theology versus Classical theology – either may be Christian

July 20th, 2015 by Bruce Charlton

The fact that Mormons are Christian, and have remained Christian over eight generations – becoming more obviously Christian with each generation – proves to me that there is scope for at least two fundamentally different theologies and metaphysical systems to underlie Christianity.

Although I personally prefer Mormon theology and metaphysics; I acknowledge 100 percent that evidence from two thousand years demonstrates conclusively and abundantly that it is perfectly possible to be a Christian with Classical theology and metaphysics!

(To say the least of it!)

Therefore I regard metaphysics as proven to be (to some significant degree – although obviously not in an open-ended way) a matter of preference (individual preference, denominational preference) and not of fundamental necessity – furthermore I regard different metaphysical approaches as having different advantages and disadvantages because (being human constructions and understood and implemented by humans) none of them are completely-true.

The most I will say for Mormon metaphysics (which is a lot!) is that it has several advantages over Classical metaphysics – and that these advantages correspond to particular needs of our time and circumstances.

In some other respects mainstream Classical metaphysics are superior (e.g. in making clearer the greatness of God and His qualitative difference from Men – Mormon metaphysics does not deny this, of course! – but it is less-clear).

In sum, which metaphysical system a Christian adheres to should not be used as a criterion for challenging whether or not he is a Christian. Metaphysics is secondary to Christianity, which means we ought not to insist upon any particular species of it – the essence of the Christian religion is revelation.

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July 20th, 2015 05:36:26

His Majesty’s take on the Iran agreement

July 18th, 2015 by Vader

His Majesty has been shaking his head all week in astonishment.

Has anyone else said this yet?

This agreement takes Obama up a couple of notches in my estimation. I thought he was just another empty suit mouthing silly platitudes and breaking down the culture because he was too dim to appreciate what he was destroying. A bull in a china shop. But this move shows a glimmer of actual evil genius.

Of course Obama knows the Iranians aren’t going to honor the agreement. And Obama knows the Israelis know the Iranians aren’t going to honor the agreement. So the Israelis are going to have to strike the nuclear facilities, because for them, it really is an existential threat. They will calculate that they have no choice.

So the Iranian nuclear threat will be eliminated without Obama getting any (more) tarnish on his Nobel Peace Prize.

And Obama will then, in a burst of self-righteous fury, use that strike as a reason to cut all U.S. ties with Israel. Oh, he’ll offer to maintain ties if Israel gives the Palestinians everything they demand — but that is also an existential threat to the Israelis, who will calculate they have no choice but to refuse.

Israel will then have to look for allies wherever she can find them.

And if she can’t, she’ll have all the nation of the earth arrayed against her. Sounds positively apocalyptic.

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July 18th, 2015 16:41:39

Free Book: The Physics and Philosophy of the Bible by James Frederick Ivey

July 18th, 2015 by Bookslinger

Free Kindle version available today Saturday July 18, 2015, at Amazon.

It’s Judeo-Christian apologetics, using quantum mechanics.  I haven’t read it yet, but wanted to share since it is free for only a limited time. (more…)

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July 18th, 2015 13:54:41

Burying the lede

July 17th, 2015 by Vader

The headline: “CDC: Don’t kiss your pet chicken”

The real lede: “Our 9-year-old daughter wanted a dog for her birthday and we surprised her with chickens instead. She was at first disappointed,” said Ruth Harrigan.

What kind of parent would do that?

(more…)

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July 17th, 2015 10:45:47

College Kin

July 17th, 2015 by John Mansfield

I happened to notice a piece in the local paper about two Virginia cousins playing on the state champion high school baseball team who have decided on Brigham Young University as their college (link). It’s interesting in what it says about family ties and the place of BYU as part of those ties for some families.

Just before Matt Favero pulled the trigger on his college commitment Wednesday afternoon, the Madison rising senior pitcher had to make one call.

On the other end was Pete Nielsen, his cousin and fellow Warhawks rising senior. The two had played baseball together their whole life, and with Nielsen having narrowed his own recruitment to Brigham Young and Virginia, Favero thought his close relative would be interested to hear his college choice.

“I called him and said, ‘Hey Pete, I’m about to commit to BYU,’” Favero said. “I think maybe he was waiting for me to do it; I don’t know.”

In some ways, Favero was right. Even after watching Virginia hoist its first College World Series, Nielsen still felt a stronger tug on his heartstrings from BYU, the same school for which his father, Mike, once suited up and where both his and Favero’s older brothers currently play.

“When Matt told me he was committing to BYU, I was like, ‘Sweet,’” Nielsen said.

Even the Washington Post sports section is running a piece on the sweetness of Mormon life?

(more…)

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July 17th, 2015 08:41:00

The problem of Mormonism (for mainstream Christians)

July 16th, 2015 by Bruce Charlton

Musing on a recent posting and comments at The Orthosphere

The Theological Foundations of the Mormon Religion

The problem of Mormonism for mainstream Christians could be analysed as follows:

If we distinguish Mormon Fruits from Beliefs – with Fruits being the behaviour of Mormons, and Beliefs being the doctrines, theology and scriptures – then:

 

The basic observation is that

1. Mormon Fruits are very similar-to mainstream Christian ideals

But

2. Mormon Beliefs are very different-from mainstream Christianity.

So, to mainstream Christians there seems to be a large mismatch between Mormon Fruits and Beliefs.

How to explain this?

(more…)

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July 16th, 2015 05:23:58

The Founder’s Cult

July 15th, 2015 by G.

Peter Thiel says that successful new companies tend to turn into founder’s cults. It’s only natural. Building things is hard. Building institutions that build things is harder. You look around and see this successful thing, in a world of friction and entropy, and your heart is filled with respect. Respect is a form of love. It is akin to worship. (more…)

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July 15th, 2015 08:45:26

Pascal’s Wager

July 14th, 2015 by Vader

Is no longer an option.  (more…)

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July 14th, 2015 13:59:57

My sympathy goes out

July 14th, 2015 by Vader

To my thoughtful, conservative Catholic friends in their present perplexities.

Yes, I understand the Pope is considered infallible only when speaking ex cathedra and infallibility is not impeccability. Cling to that as long as you can.

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July 14th, 2015 11:15:30

Make them all valedictorians

July 14th, 2015 by Vader

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July 14th, 2015 08:40:17

News flash

July 14th, 2015 by Vader

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July 14th, 2015 08:37:04

Why does the Book of Mormon (apparently) work better than The Bible as an instrument of conversion in the modern West?

July 14th, 2015 by Bruce Charlton

Why does the Book of Mormon (apparently) work better than The Bible as an instrument of conversion in the modern West? (more…)

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July 14th, 2015 06:10:00

Following in the steps of the Soviet Union

July 14th, 2015 by Bookslinger

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July 14th, 2015 04:00:47