>>598764 The way I understand the whole heaven/hell tradeoff, Heaven is like a +infinity reward, and any amount of suffering on earth is finite. So from a numbers standpoint, having every single human being suffer a lifetime of pure agony would not outweigh the potential reward in the afterlife of a single soul.
>>598859 Let's say for the sake of argument that we have some kind of sophisticated neural surgery we can perform that will instantly and painlessly remove your faith. In addition we have a comprehensive neural scanner that can tell with complete accuracy what someone believes, to verify.
Given these convenient abilities, what is your price in human misery to hold on to your faith? Just as a hypothetical.
>>598870 Denying your faith nullifies in Christianity anyway, at least in God's eyes. You can secretly hold it without being blatantly, but you exist the covenant the moment you explicitly deny it. This is something you can repent of (like Peter did), but it has to open and vocal, you have to repent your denial of Christ with appropriate acts.
In the Gospels Jesus is said to have predicted that the Second Coming would happen within the lifetime of his followers at the time "Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place" (Mark 13)
We're now 2000 years or so down the line, does the Orthodox Church have a convincing explanation for why it didn't happen?
>>599019 "Generation" means the entire line of people, not like we use it today. It could mean how we use it today, but that was more of a secondary meaning, it was must more completely used to indicate a line (the "generation of Abraham" for instance, would mean all his progeny and their progeny and so on). So Christ means it will happen before humanity passes away. The day or the hour, no one knows, that is why trying to make predictions with Revelations is so futile.
However, Christians did get a "foretaste" of Revelations, so to speak (Simon bar Kokhba was a foretaste of the Antichrist).
>>599073 Then what about Matthew 16:27,28 "Truly I say to you, there are some of those who are standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in His Kingdom" ? Is death then meant in the sense that people only die when they are forgotten, and that since the Apostles are still remembered they haven't truly "died"?
>>599159 Probably not, must historians hardly say anything about the Essenes, let alone Christians who took a while to become a sizable demographic of Essenes. I don't see any reason not to accept what Papias of Hierapolis said about the Biblical accounts, though
>>599177 Hmmm. I'm trying to find historical evidence that supports Christianity being true but I don't consider the New Testament a factual historic document, so finding non-Christian sources that can correlate or confirm things in the Bible and events from that time (like Tacitus confirming the Crucifixion) is important to me. Thanks for you help though.
>>598764 There's no cutoff point. It is never better to give up the faith than not, because the good consists in the perfection of one's nature as what one is, and before anything else one is God's creature.
Only non-christians who have never heard of christ before get a very restrictive pass. If they heard of the good news of christ and continued to sin then they knowingly continue sinning. Like a cannibal who continues to eat men even if demonstrated that not being a cannibal is better
>>599214 Like I said, there aren't even any surviving historical records before Christ that mention the Essenes, except Philo. During the early Church, I think only Pliny mentions them, and at the time he was writing, Christians were only a fraction of the Essenes. So trying to find non-Christians who cared enough to be writing about Christianity before it was a massive movement, probably isn't going to pan out. There were tens of thousands of religious movements at the time, and Christianity was one of the smallest for quite a while.
>>598764 This question forces the answerer to make too many assumptions. What are the circumstances? Are those really the only options? Are you trolling a reaction in /his/ when others are better for that purpose?
>>599230 That is debatable, personally I think that the reward and objective morality system probably means people don't learn to appreciate the onherent goodness in feeling for your fellow man. All we know is that it is demonstrably true
>>599244 That's not what it means to love somebody. Of course, if you change definitions you can make everything fit according to your worldview. People raised in secular homes are demonstrably more just, compassionate and altruistic. Of course, if you change the meaning dishonestly and make it inherently a religious function, you are just doing a cop-out. Imagine if someone said all christians are evil, and then argued that "evilness is by definition to believe in god", would you find that a satisfactory argument?
>>599268 Tolstoy never wrote anything half as profound as Notes from the Underground. But it's not really appropriate to compare Tolstoy and Dostoevsky, since they had very different outlooks and concerns. Tolstoy didn't even write about the same economic class Dostoevsky did.
>>599273 >notes >even have as good as the death of Ivan ilyich
I'll grant that notes is very good
In any case, Christians gonna wank over whatever author they like most theologically, and Dostoevsky does that weepy "life is so horrible and tragic and god is the only answer to that tragedy :-((" and it makes me sick to read.
>>599278 If you're using the term "faith" to mean loyalty, as in "always faithful", then you can certainly renounce. If you're using it the way James does, as in trust in God coupled with fear, then no you can't voluntarily lose it, but since James says demons have strong faith (but not works), it's not worth anything on its own anyhow.
>>599269 Are christians compassionate to the rocks and roads they walk on? Empathy is to understand and realize that other beings can feel and that you are not the only one that deserves not to suffer. To empathize with the unborn is impossible, cause they neither feel nor do they live. It's a controversial subject though, there are plenty atheists that feel abortion is reprehensible. By the way Constantine, can you tell me a bit about yourself? I find you pretty fascinating. Are you a theologian or just an enthusiastic christian?
>>599286 Notes is a work of profound philosophy on the level of Nietzsche. It is extremely dense and has layers of literary, satire, philosophy, theology and politics. I actually plan to write a commentary of each chapter to post on /lit/ down the road, but I'll write as I go. It's such a powerful work. So is Crime and Punishment and his other long stuff, but that's too long for me to make extensive commentary on in one OP.
>>599297 Uh, it's not that great, but I suppose I'll have to read your arguments.
I don't see it having much profundity outside of Dostoevskys understanding of the psyche, and in either case you're reading that into his work, whereas it's undeniable in Nietzsche (the most profound thinker certainly of his age)
>>599297 Pastebin it and link it in your Orthodox FAQ when you're done? I've read Notes and C&P but knowing very little about the religious side of things It seemed like there was a lot I simply couldn't understand. Despite that I found both compelling reading.
>>599311 That's because he's probably reading a bunch into the work that's not there. The Brothers Karamazov is obviously Christian in its intentions. Notes has no such reading, it's no more than the story of the 19th century 4chan autist told with a deep understanding of the human psyche.
But I'll talk about it in a much more detailed way next thread
Notes from Underground laid out the concepts of ressentiment and the Last Man exactly as Nietzsche did, before he did, and Raskolnikov's explanation of the "extraordinary man" is 100% synonymous with Nietzsche's idea of thee Ubermensch.
>>599311 I will, if it's extensive enough to merit it. The Underground Man's description of "retrogate" guy who rejects paradise and leads a rebellion against it, parallels the Devil very much. Dostoevsky's work is laced with the paradox of freedom--freedom over reason is both what Christianity means to Dostoevsky, and also what defiance of God can mean (such as the atheist in hell in the Brothers Karamazov, who simply rejects 2 + 2 = 4, so to speak, when he denies the reality of hell because it disagrees with his sensibilities, and he says the whole thing is absurd and he just lies down and refuses to get up.)
>>599314 They are by definition human already. Dehumanizing them doesn't make killing them moral.
>>599318 Do you have concrete grounds to say the underground man is a response to that guy?
As far as your other speculation, claiming the underground man self-sabotages out of existentialist freedom is about the worst reading I can imagine. He's a self-sabotaging character because he's afraid of leaving his pattern in life. Dostoevsky is getting toward the existentialist message and he does that through that conduit by showing the life of the ultimate "last man"
He also doesn't capture the full nuance if Nietzsche, at all
>>599319 First off, Tertullian was the one who said that was a joy of heaven and he is the father of "Latin Christianity", not Orthodox. As for the second person Nietzsche ascribed the quote to, Aquinas, Nietzsche completely fabricated that, but Aquinas was also a Latin thinker anyway.
Moreover, the very idea is incoherent due to the Orthodox conception of hell: https://afkimel.wordpress.com/2013/03/19/st-isaac-the-syrian-the-hellish-scourge-of-divine-love/
I would give my life for those millions if I could, I would do anything I could, but denying God is not something I could do, because it is wrong. Christian morality is not flexible, it's not utilitarian. Right and wrong are not relative or varying, they are cut and dry. I cannot kill a person to save a million either. I couldn't switch the tracks on the trolley.
>>599334 >Do you have concrete grounds to say the underground man is a response to that guy? Yes, absolutely, the "Crystal Palace" was a structure in London that the protagonist of What Is To Be Done? fantasizes about turning into a utopia commune, and the Underground Man refers to utopia as "the Crystal Palace".
>>599343 Be careful with your line of thinking. Someone might say you aren't human one day, and say you don't think or feel consciousness because there is no proof you are more sentient than a complex machine. It might be because of your race or your IQ or any number of factors, but when you try to use a soul to define humanity without subscribing the soul, it is dangerous.
>>599342 That's interesting, but I think then the work is a reductio ad absurdum and you're still reading it wrong. I see no reason to infer that the underground man is a conscious existentialist. I mean, we both see /r9k/, it seems intuitive to me that he's trying to model that person, the living example of people who self-sabotage and avoid happiness. Except I don't think anyone on /r9k/ recognizes this motivation in themselves as neither does the underground man
>>599346 "I beseech you, my brothers, remain faithful to the earth, and do not believe those who speak to you of otherworldly hopes! Poison-mixers are they, whether they know it or not. Despisers of life are they, decaying and poisoned themselves, of whom the earth is weary: so let them go."
>>599349 >because there is no proof you are more sentient than a complex machine Be careful with your thinking. A fetus is less sentient than any machine, for at least they process on some level. Besides, do you think we should have the right to dismantle a machine that perfectly emulates human consciousness? Because it doesn't have a soul?
>>599334 Remember that Kaufmann said Notes from Underground is, "the best overture for Existentialism ever written." Nietzsche said after reading it, that Dostoevsky was a "kinsman" and "a psychological genius".
>>599359 >That's interesting, but I think then the work is a reductio ad absurdum and you're still reading it wrong. Have you actually read any commentary on it? I'm curious because I have read quite a bit, and what I'm saying is not anything knew, but common knowledge.
>"I beseech you, my brothers, remain faithful to the earth, and do not believe those who speak to you of otherworldly hopes! Christianity is about inheriting the earth.
>>599378 And fetuses have no consciousness, nor do they at all think anything. They are less sentient than ants. But if such a machine existed, would you feel it was not worthy of empathy? Such a machine could eventually exist
>>599385 >Such a machine could eventually exist According to what? Consciousness is not something that can be directly observed, it is barely understood. You're beginning the question in building in the idea that it is strictly materialist.
>>599396 Dostoevsky isn't saying you're "supposed" to disdain or admire him, he's not that simplistic. The only clear cut "don't be this" people in Dostoevsky are the nihilists who think morality is something to be transcended (and even these people he gives great depth and perhaps more cerebral power an argumentation ability than to anyone else), and the only character who is ever really a just a voice for Dostoevsky's own sentiments is the Elder Zosima.
>>599405 So Ilyusha's father isn't meant to be dostoevsky's mouthpiece either?
Nietzsche also believed people who tried to transcend morality were undesirable nihilists. But that's not at all what I'm talking about.
The underground man STORY isn't meant to be a judging story, yes, obviously, neither is the death of Ivan ilyich. But if your personal value set suggests the underground man is a piece of shit, as any person rightly should, then you can speak of that topic
The underground man made a promise and broke it. On any level of human interpretation, he's a shitty human being that we all ought to mock.
No, lying to a woman and breaking her heart is not existential heroism on any level
>>599337 >, but denying God is not something I could do, because it is wrong. Fanaticism has consequences. A choice so simple that harms no one but saves millions, and you take the moral high ground in spite of them.
>I would give my life for those millions if I could, I would do anything > I can opt to die in their place. I can be tortured for these people. All that I would be willing to do
But if you did renounce your faith and were in fact sent to hell for it, it would be the same sacrifice. No, your salvation and the petty whims of a tyrant are more important to you than the well beings of other. That's why you, the Catholic church, or any Abrahamic religion have no stock in morality, nor have any business lecturing others on it.
>>599427 >So Ilyusha's father isn't meant to be dostoevsky's mouthpiece either? No. Why do you think this?
>No, lying to a woman and breaking her heart is not existential heroism on any level The Underground Man goes on from the first sentence about how wicked he is. I think you missed the point. He might be repulsive (which he chooses to be), but he's not there to illustrate what you aren't supposed to be like.
>>599435 They'd by lying. There's no computer that could even process the most infinitesimal fraction of the data the human brain does in a second, we ourselves aren't even smart enough to comprehend a fraction of it, a great deal is unconscious.
>>599437 >No. Why do you think this? Because Dostoevsky had a son die young, who was named Alyosha? Ilyusha's father is the voice of his despair
>The Underground Man goes on from the first sentence about how wicked he is. So do /r9k/ frog posters
>I think you missed the point. He might be repulsive (which he chooses to be), but he's not there to illustrate what you aren't supposed to be like. Stop acting like one hermeneutic approach is the right one. I'm granting you every fact of the matter (I.E., that Dostoevsky is responding to that materialist [which is summarized even pithier in Nietzsche]), but I think you've just stumbled upon a pretty out there interpretation that you're clinging to, and at this point posturing as though that exegesis is present in the text itself.
>>599431 >A choice so simple that harms no one but saves millions, and you take the moral high ground in spite of them. A choice so simple would be for the person who is doing this ridiculous thing, not to kill them. Rather than creating this ridiculous hypothetical which is as perverse as asking if you would rape a woman if it would save a million lives.
>>599454 >Because Dostoevsky had a son die young, who was named Alyosha? Ilyusha's father is the voice of his despair I would say the distressed woman who comes to Zosima is more of that. But neither of them were voiceboxes.
>So do /r9k/ frog posters They don't have the same thought process the Underground Man does, c'mon, man. The Underground Man would intentionally wear a trenchcoat and fedora because it was "cinematic", knowing full well that is cringe-worthy, and in fact would cease to wear it if weren't cringeworthy, because that is the only reason he wears them.
>Stop acting like one hermeneutic approach is the right one There are way more layers to the work than just one, but like I said, I'll write that all out later, and I will quote Dostoevsky's letters quite a bit.
>>599466 >What does reason know? Reason knows only what it has managed to learn (some things, perhaps, it will never learn; this is no consolation, but why not say it anyway?), while human nature acts as an entire whole, with everything that is in it, consciously and unconsciously, and though it lies, still it lives. I suspect, gentlemen, that you are looking at me with pity; you repeat to me that an enlightened and developed man, such, in short, as the future man will be, simply cannot knowingly want anything unprofitable for himself, that this is mathematics. I agree completely, it is indeed mathematics. But I repeat to you for the hundredth time, there is only one case, one only, when man may purposely, consciously wish for himself even the harmful, the stupid, even what is stupidest of all: namely, so as to have the right to wish for himself even what is stupidest of all and not be bound by an obligation to wish for himself only what is intelligent. For this stupidest of all, this caprice of ours, gentlemen, may in fact be the most profitable of anything on earth for our sort, especially in certain cases. And in particular it may be more profitable than all other profits even in the case when it is obviously harmful and contradicts the most sensible conclusions of our reason concerning profits – because in any event it preserves for us the chiefest and dearest thing, that is, our personality and our individuality.
If that isn't existentialist, I don't know what is.
>>599460 >A choice so simple would be for the person who is doing this ridiculous thing, not to kill them And once again you try to absolve yourself of accountability. I'll let the other anons decide for themselves whether or not your reasoning is valid.
>you would rape a woman if it would save a million lives.
You're really going to equate inflicting rape with denying Christianity?
Regardless, here's your answer. If a million lives were at stake, I don't care if it was on camera and my name spread across the news, tarnishing my reputation forever. I would rape a woman. Then I would probably kill myself afterwards.
>>599488 >you repeat to me that an enlightened and developed man, such, in short, as the future man will be, simply cannot knowingly want anything unprofitable for himself This section is geared towards this. Dosto is arguing against any conception of man that ends in utopia, especially here sounding like Feuerbachian socialism, where "without the constraints of X, Y", humans will be perfect and happy.
Yeah. No shit. Being against Hegelian Ends of History, socialist Utopias, any project that determines what man should be and concludes our reason will take us there is stupid.
The underground man is a pure negation of that, the reminder that we are Human, All Too Human and even in a place of relative privilege, with everything set up for success, we may not do it. Again, I'll refer you to /r9k/.
How many times have you heard frog posters purposefully rejecting women to get one over against "the system"? They choose isolation and misery over the discomfort of chasing "sluts". Maybe that's existentialist, but if so, it tells you nothing positive about what you ought to be, it's demonstrating the negative.
But then, its a slave morality, because one ought not define their morality by negatives.
It's just a work of art to show a type of person who stands as a negation of "expectations" of men to be a certain way. To make men conform to one habit. That doesn't make each person who doesn't fit into society an existentialist.
>>599510 Yet nothing in reality substantiates that claim. Even if the brain was the most optimal processing unit theoretically possible, then considering the size and caloric expenditure it is well within the reach of computers in the foreseeable future. But of course, there's nothing to indicate the brain is even that good, and all you're saying is completely baseless
The martyrs were willing to let themselves die rather than publicly renounce their faith, but they're martyrs. Is it wrong for a normal person to renounce their faith in speech, but not their heart if their life depended on it? In other words, is there a concept of Taqiyya in christianity?
>>599967 I think that what we call "belief" is an emergent property of intellectual capacity as well as the impression of more-or-less convincing information or personal experiences.
Essentially you end up believing something if it strikes you as plausible. Sorry if that is tautological.
This is why people have diverse beliefs, due to the spectrum of intellect and the infinity of presentations of arguments. Any given statement might be believed by some people but rejected by others, each in their capacity to receive the statement and fit it into their concept of reality.
Some people are convinced of some "truth" only because of an emotional response. I'll come right out and say it, this is what I think religion is all about.
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