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Jews Again The Latest Scapegoat!
I've always suspected that what we call sociopaths are those who weigh the pros and cons and believe doing what most people believe is wrong, somehow benefits them. The real argument is that what we call good is so self-evident that it is impossible to not see it the same way as everyone else.

I ask you, what do kids in Palestine refugee camps come to believe about Israel when it does not even show up on their maps in school? John Dewey wrote about socially engineering students to believe what they are told. That was 100 years ago, and we are experiencing the results of that mindset.
(07-14-2018, 11:28 AM)Palladin Wrote: The reason the USA irks me so much and I get so upset is it's chock full of Christians who should know better than to have ever tolerated slavery, Jim Crow and all our wars w/o any decent morality and yet at the same time say we're superior to all other people.

People the world over are like this, not just Americans.  They were like that in biblical times.  Why do you think Jesus stressed forgiveness of sins so much?  We are all sinners.  Being unable to understand this is a mark of weakness on one's part, if you get what I mean.

Go read Matthew, Chapter 6:  14 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:
15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

Why is forgiveness so hard for you to show to others?
"Falsehood flies, and truth comes limping after it" - Jonathan Swift, 1710
It isn't.

It wasn't for Jesus and maybe you should read Matthew 23-24 tonight. Pointing out evil is not being unforgiving John.

You're not more forgiving than myself or Jesus, you just don't like to acknowledge the evil within your special little group, that's our difference. For whatever logic, for you to admit how egregiously cruel and evil southern society was for black folks is seen by you as a smear on you and it is NOT. It is a good thing when you can step back from the prevailing culture and say, "I ain't good with that".

If I were living in 1830, I'd have thrown right in with the pro slavery crowd because until 10 years back I was not introspective at all. I was super patriotic and held many in contempt.

I would have been a fire breathing southerner and 4 years later if I was alive, I'd probably feel like I was partially responsible for 40% of the southern males being dead and however many % of the US soldiers died.

There is 0 excuse for any Christian to ever have supported racism, slavery, contempt for another human being, period. Over and out.

We're supposed to hear Christ more than the zeitgeist.

No excuses for me either, none. I deserve no consideration for being that guy and don't want none. I know God will handle me with grace and love and I'm good with any bad reviews I get cause I earned them.

I'm good with serving Arabs in eternity cause I held them in contempt, first will be last, last will be first deal. That's on me, I hated those people. God loved them.

Still, back to William's point. Just take his Palestinian kid comment. Of course that kid is going to despise Jews.

I promise most Jews in Israel hold Arabs in the same contempt whether you 2 want to face that or not and they also hold you in contempt. You go to Israel and tell your Jewish neighbor Jesus is Messiah and let's see how often you get invited over for the Israeli wing ding.

We're conditioned to be this way, it's the human condition and it takes an external power to stop being that way and that's where Christ comes in. He can lift us out of that typical thing and has me. I ain't talking about "being saved", I mean paying attention to His ideas more than mine.

If I had paid attention to Christ, I never would have held Arabs in contempt. I would have felt sorry for them and prayed for them. Same with women, I was into the patriarchal idea and hated it when women started entering the work force and hated a woman being my boss at work. That didn't help me or slow down them doing what they do, just hurt me. That's all gone now, but, that zeitgeist view SUCKED and I was complicit with it.
Try not to beat up on yourself too much Patrick. Spiteful
"Falsehood flies, and truth comes limping after it" - Jonathan Swift, 1710

Here's a little anecdote. A researcher I saw on a show was studying psychopathic brains. He said there is a definite physical trait they all have and he showed several examples of their brain scans.

To have a control, he scanned his own brain. Turns out he's a psychopath himself. He said after the initial shock, he admitted he has lots of the known psychopathic qualities, lack of natural empathy, etc.

BUT, he never hurt anyone and never had the strong desire to hurt anyone. He felt it was due to his conscience which was very strong from earliest childhood, again, due to parenting. What if his parents were just low quality people?

He probably would be a murderer according to him. I agree with him.

You guys that are readers, take a couple of days to read, "The Spirit of The Rainforest". It's among the most fascinating reads you will ever be part of. Oral biography of a shaman. I highly recommend that book.
Thinking crazy things is not evil. It is how we are built.


It's a Cold War term first used by Edward Hunter in his 1953 book, Brainwashing in Red China, and made popular in the 1962 Frank Sinatra movie, The Manchurian Candidate.

I first learned about the principle of Religious Conversion (This is a laboratory appellation and does not have anti-church motives), through my University of Michigan Philosophy of Persuasion Professor John V. McConnell, who was interviewed by Walter Cronkite and others for his expertise in the field. (He was the professor who taught flatworms to turn to the right for a reward when a yellow light was switched on. He then ground up the trained flatworms, fed them to untrained flatworms who picked up the behavior chemically. he proved knowledge can be transferred chemically.}

He explained the psychological mechanism was documented by the famous Russian behavioralist Pavlov after witnessing the behavior of hundreds of animals in his compound who were saved from drowning by laboratory assistants in rowboats during the great flood of Leningrad. Some of these animals had been swimming for hours in their cages with less than an inch of air at the tops of their enclosures. These dogs were some of the most observed and documented animals on earth. Pavlov knew what training was required to teach them tricks and he knew what tricks were too difficult for them to learn. After the flood, he observed that the highly trained animals had completely lost their training, yet in the immediate plastic period after the trauma were able to learn new tricks, harder tricks then they had the capacity to learn before, and at a faster rate than before. After the plastic period was over, these animals had replaced their old collections of well-learned training with these new behaviors - at a much deeper and more retained level. For the rest of their lives, during moments of stress, these animals would start performing the training learned during the flood.

Pavlov was able to document this was a psychological mechanism which occurred to all mammals - including man. The concept of "conversion" in Christianity and some other religions is like a brainwashing process. This is the reason why so many patients in hospitals awaiting dangerous surgery undergo religious conversion (Hence the proper name of the effect.) Jews awaiting bypass surgery become Catholics. Catholics become Born- again Christians, Christians become Buddhists, Buddhists become Muslim, Muslims, become Hindu, and Hindu become Jews. The trauma of their situation brings on the plastic period, and if even simple persuasion is present with a modicum of reinforcement, can convert them to the proffered behavior.

Religious conversion in the process of revival meetings was invented in 1735 by Jonathan Edwards of Massachusetts. McConnell told us about Appalachian mountain illiterates who learned they could wait outside Revival meetings and then take almost any pretty young girls after they left the tents and easily seduce them regardless of their upbringing and moral scruples. (The day he taught "Seduction" we had to move to the largest assembly hall in the University for the huge numbers of drop-ins who were auditing that class.)

Quote:{The source of this quote is no longer available online, so is included in its entirety.) The history of Edwards is extremely interesting. During a religious crusade in Massachusetts in the 1730s, the theologian Jonathan Edwards discovered that he could make his 'sinners' break down and submit completely to his will. He achieved this by threatening them with Hell and thereby inducing acute fear, apprehension and guilt. Edwards, like many other preachers before and after him, whipped up the emotions of his congregation to a fever-pitch of anger, fear, excitement and nervous tension, before exposing them to the new ideas and beliefs he wanted them to absorb. To this day, live rattlesnakes are passed around some congregations in the southern parts of the USA; the fear and anxiety they induce can impair judgement and make the candidates for conversion more suggestible. Once this state of mental plasticity has been created, the preacher starts to replace their existing patterns of thought. There is quite a controversy surrounding Jonathon Edwards, because some vilify him for bringing so many attendees of his revival meetings to a point where they committed suicide because of their perceived past transgressions. He often didn't try to "Save" them until after they were already dead.

I stress this is a normally occurring mammalian psychological mechanism which is verifiable. You can easily understand the repercussions it has in religion, and why "Born-again" Christians and other converts are as zealous as they are. It has been demonstrated that it is possible with the right persuasive regimine and the proper schedules of reinforcement that any person can be utterly convinced that a chair is God - or some other equally illogical belief system. Our government did extensive testing of this mechanism in Project MK-Ultra, reintroduced to us in the Mel Gibson Movie, Conspiracy Theory.
While my church has acknowledged that such phenomena exist, and teaches that the best time to reach people with belief systems that are new to them, is during this "plastic period" following some severe stress. But the effort to reach people with new belief systems consists of presenting valid and logical evidence based on Scripture, interpreted according to sound methods of scholarship. So that it meets their minds, and its rationality can persuade them.

I do take exception to your presentation where it seems to go to the extreme of denying free will, freedom of choice. Most people do NOT accept ANY new belief system that is presented to them during times of stress; they are simply more willing to consider them. Most people feel settled in their world view, and do not want to be disturbed in that view. The Spirit of God can reach people with conviction that they ought to pay attention, and reconsider basic things. And this is easier during times of stress--which perhaps is why God allows times of stress to come to us in our lives. But no choice is ever forced upon us. That would be ludicrous. A denial of rationality.
Let's take Ron and I.

We're both in a critical health event. Conscious and aware our physical death is near. A "religious visitor" comes by and allows how we need to worship Vishnu/Allah/or 10,000 other gods as the most high god so we will be in good shape with in the next phase of our soul's journey.

Do we convert under that psychological pressure? No. We smile at the poor man and pray silently for him to see the true God's hand before he dies.

Now let's use an atheist Jewish WWII solider. He is about to die in WWII combat( this is a true event) and a Catholic priest drops on his knees and starts giving this soldier the last rites, what does this Jewish man do? His last ounce of energy is to violently scream "NO"! and then dies.

Might the Jew have prayed to YHWH if a rabbi had been there? Probably just in case.

No Hindu in Bangalore is going to believe Jesus is suddenly to replace Vishnu in that condition, we have 2000 years experience trying, they are not ready for "Pavlov". So, we are conditioned outside our free will, Pavlov had that accurate. But, we are not converting to another religion, we're hooking up with what our culture preached in that case.

So in a way I think Pavlov is accurate, he just made too much of conditioning into another religion.

It is not free will that separates Christian from non Christian though, the conditioning is outside our will.

That is a massive mis reading of the bible. That is not how the bible paints the picture. We are born into slavery to sin/evil/death/the law and the divine creature powers at odds with YHWH and don't know it. We do not have the ability to even know we need redemption or liberation as slaves.

We don't even have a concept of sin and our problem with it unless God has begun working on you, Paul himself said w/o the Torah, "I did not even know what sin was". Hebrew of Hebrews said that, God's elect people of the day needed an external source to show them what right and wrong was.

Sin is not a concept in ancient pagan religions, the virtues taught by the Greek philosophers were civic virtues to assist Greece, they were not about what their gods wanted, their gods taught them cruelty, drug usage and sexually perverse things across the ancient near east including massive child sacrifice.

When Jonah showed disapproval to God about his mission to Nineveh, God retorted(my vernacular) "Jonah, how could you not have compassion on those people that did not know their left from their right hand"?

Or with Moses asking God, "who do I tell them You are"? after God approached Moses to go talk to Pharaoh, not Moses approaching God. Moses had no clue who God was, not this specific One, how was He to have free will and worship Him???

Or with Pharaoh asking Moses, "Who is this YHWH that I should do as He commands"? That is exactly an accurate picture of how the human mind is relating to God. That is how the entire bible paints the picture.

God approaches us and shines into our hearts and it isn't IF we let Him, that's not accurate even though it is USA evangelicalism orthodoxy. It is God liberating our will, not our will choosing God.

That's the picture the NT paints.

Jesus on the cross praying for those people because "they do not know what they are doing" even though many were uber religious Jews. How could they not know what they were doing? 1000 years of tradition in YHWH worship??? Cause they were still just humans who had not had the light shone in their hearts is how.

Paul in Galatians and Romans states we are born in darkness and it is God that elects us, we do not elect God. Jesus reminded Peter of that, "I chose you, you did not choose Me".

So, why do some of us believe in Christ and some don't if free will doesn't play the evangelical role? 2 views:

A- God decides when like He did with Paul. "When God was pleased to show me Christ" Galatians 1:16.

B - God always wants us to know and is always working us, so to speak, removing obstacles in our minds that blockade the light. Some of us that is possible DUE to various conditioning, some of us must see like Thomas and Paul saw God so they won't believe until the eschaton.

I subscribe to B.

For me, there were no obstacles, I was fortunate to have loving Christian parents who I loved. So, for me Jesus was perfect even though I was at odds with Jesus once I was past childhood. That's natural according to the bible. He rapidly overcame that and voila. IF I lost my faith in Christ, it would be to agnosticism, there is no improving on Jesus.

With my Jewish buddy, NO. He has cultural blockades that God is NOT a man, God is ONE and not 3, etc.

In order for him to believe Jesus is Messiah, God has work to do He did not with me. But, when my friend does believe in Christ and he will according to Paul, it will have been God's work, not Phillip's.

The only free will humans have relative to Christ is He frees our slavish will to worship Him and then we have free will to follow Him or resort back to slavery to sin which Paul discusses a lot in Galatians and Romans.

The parable of the prodigal son is how I think it happens.

The more one is into depravity, the more likely the intrinsically GOOD God eventually gets to you IF you are not raised like I was, IMO. That's why I think the current jihad is helpful to converting some Muslims to Christ, there are already ISIS members converted, check online. That's why Europe fell into Christ's arms, they were sick to death of their hateful pantheons by then. It's the story of the shaman in the book above, everyone should read that book just due to human anthropology.
Palladin, you make the common mistake about the "good news" of the gospel of salvation in Christ. Christ has succeeded in wresting ownership of the human race away from Satan. Satan is pleased to have people suppose they are by default part of his kingdom, and that children are born in a condemned state.

The key truth being overlooked is that on Calvary, in that one act for all time, Christ Redeemed the entire human race. Our "Old man" was crucified in Him (Romans 6:6). It is because Christ has already redeemed and established ownership of every human being, that God can legally send the Holy Spirit to each of us, touching our lives from the very beginning with the love of God, and thus enabling us to be convicted, have faith in God, repent, and be truly converted with a complete change in mindset and worldview. Were the human race not already Redeemed, then the Holy Spirit could not be sent to us, and no one would be able to repent and change.

The true proclamation of the gospel is not "Repent and be saved." It is actually, "All humanity is already saved, therefore repent, so you can receive the benefits of all that Christ has already obtained for us. Repent so you will not lose the salvation Christ has already obtained for us!"
Naah... too much certainty, not enough conscious reserve. One can never be totally sure of everything - nor should one be. The Bible intimates that things are not black and white, but that one must choose without enough knowledge to be certain.

That is what Pavlov proved. The choosing is the point.

To have faith, one must choose without enough certainty to be sure. But the process of leaping into the abyss places a person into gratification that all is right. Then that person spends a lifetime rationalizing that leap of faith. What Pavlov proved, as did Jonathon Edwards, was that certainty, or faith, is never 100%. Faith can be present, but never total - because it can be altered. The Plastic period just makes that process easier.

If you argue this then realize that this is the way that God made us. We are supposed to never be sold 100%.
If faith means that you can never really be sure, then how do you explain martyrs willing to die for what they believe in?

God does give all of us enough evidence that we can rationally choose to have faith in His goodness, and that the Good He embodies is worth everything.

Moses, when God told him He was considering destroying all Israel and making a new nation of Moses and his children, objected that the wicked who denied the goodness of God would use that as an excuse to condemn God as unloving and treacherous. But then Moses went even further. He said:

"'But now, if Thou wilt, forgive their sin--and if not, please blot me out from Thy book which Thou hast written!' And the Lord said to Moses, 'Whoever has sinned against Me, I will blot him out of My book. But go now, lead the people where I told you. Behold, My angel shall go before you; nevertheless in the day when I punish, I will punish them for their sin.'" (Exodus 32:32-34; NASB)

Notice that Moses was willing to give up eternal life for himself--willing to give up his very existence, to be blotted out of the divine Book of Life--so that the people might be spared. He grasped the goodness and love of God as being ultimately desirable, even if he himself could not partake of them. Good and Love are supremely right for their own sake.

What kind of faith would enable a person to make such a commitment?

Many people make the mistake of thinking that faith somehow involves what you believe without proof. But faith is much more. The true essence of faith is COMMITMENT. To what are you willing to commit yourself, your life, everything you hold dear?

God always allows a person to have excuses for disbelief if that is what he freely chooses. But God does also always provide sufficient evidence to enable a person to have certainty of belief and commitment if he is willing to make that choice.

Ellen G. White, in her magnum opus, The Great Controversy, put it this way: "While God has given ample evidence for faith, He will never remove all excuse for unbelief. All who look for hooks to hang their doubts upon will find them. And those who refuse to accept and obey God's word until every objection has been removed, and there is no longer an opportunity for doubt, will never come to the light." (GC 527)

Why does God not remove every "hook" for people to hang their doubts on? Here is why: God desires to have His universe governed by love. But true love requires freedom of choice. Freedom of choice implies the possibility for rebellion against God, doubt in His goodness. God accepted this price, and all it would cost Him, so that He could have the kind of universe He wants, the one that is the best for us. This is the God who is worthy of worship!
The answer is unarguable. No matter what a person believes: Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, Judaism, genetics has given us the psychological mechanism to believe it totally. And any belief can be supplanted by any of the other belief systems with the proper reinforcement. Documented.

But everyone is different. However; the only way a person can not be at risk to change is if they never adopt something on Faith. All persons who do accept such faith will rationalize it. Again documented. But everyone's documentation is their own, and is as changeable.

Since it is embedded in our makeup, I figure it is a good thing. Without faith, we'd all be Clinton or Obama.
Bill, not all documentation is valid proof. Just because you call it documented, does not mean it is proven. The same kind of biased dishonesty that afflicts many news anchors also afflicts virtually all scientists. I could prove this chapter and verse when it comes to the foolish and unscientific myths of evolution. It is foolish to put your trust in men. Any humans. Go by the evidence, and weigh the evidence honestly, for yourself. If anyone tells you to trust in their "expertise" without providing sufficient evidence for you to evaluate it for yourself, then never listen to that person again.

Because the universe does exist, therefore truth exists. And there is one and only one truth. Anything else is the pretentious, equivocating lie of agnosticism. If the universe were created by an Intelligence--and it is impossible for it not to have been--then there can only be one truth about this Intelligence and His creation. It would be fundamentally and deliberately stupid to refuse to consider what this Intelligence has chosen to communicate to us. Any belief system created according to human opinion, without regard to what the Creator has revealed to us, can only be at best guesswork, and at worse deliberately evil devised by someone who hates us and wants us to be ruined as a race.
This is not concerned with good vs. evil. This is only about the proven fact that an individual can find faith whether it is true or not, and be totally supportive of that faith - even if whatever the belief is is proved wrong or invalid. The belief once it is expressed is stuck in place, unless another plastic period is induced, and a new belief system supplants the old. It does not matter what belief system it is, or what it is changed to. My point is only that that is the way we are wired.
(07-19-2018, 12:50 PM)Ron Lambert Wrote: Bill, not all documentation is valid proof. Just because you call it documented, does not mean it is proven. The same kind of biased dishonesty that afflicts many news anchors also afflicts virtually all scientists. I could prove this chapter and verse when it comes to the foolish and unscientific myths of evolution. It is foolish to put your trust in men. Any humans. Go by the evidence, and weigh the evidence honestly, for yourself. If anyone tells you to trust in their "expertise" without providing sufficient evidence for you to evaluate it for yourself, then never listen to that person again.

Because the universe does exist, therefore truth exists. And there is one and only one truth. Anything else is the pretentious, equivocating lie of agnosticism. If the universe were created by an Intelligence--and it is impossible for it not to have been--then there can only be one truth about this Intelligence and His creation. It would be fundamentally and deliberately stupid to refuse to consider what this Intelligence has chosen to communicate to us. Any belief system created according to human opinion, without regard to what the Creator has revealed to us, can only be at best guesswork, and at worse deliberately evil devised by someone who hates us and wants us to be ruined as a race.

Ron, if what you say in the first paragraph is a fact, then why should others trust a book that is written by men?  After all, the bible was written down by humans, who were "Inspired" by the Creator.  Being "inspired" is not the same as being a robot and acting as a stenographer.  And, of course there is the multiple 'translation' thing to go with it too.  

Furthermore, I am a Christian, not an 'agnostic', and at the same time I am not a Fundamentalist either.  Does this make me a lesser human being, and an unbeliever, because I do not adhere to your thinking?  

Just saying................
"Falsehood flies, and truth comes limping after it" - Jonathan Swift, 1710
John, I never said that having different beliefs makes you less of a human being. You are just wrong. A little less straw-man making, please.

Bill, I dispute your wrongly called "proven fact," if you use it to imply there is no objective, absolute truth. Truth must exist, because the universe exists.

SOME people may be persuaded of anything. Especially during what you call the "plastic period" following a traumatic event. But there is only one reality, no matter what anyone thinks. Only God has the power to create reality by His Word. (Psalms 33:6, 9.) And not everyone can be persuaded of anything just because they have experienced some trauma. The experts you cite so reverently are guilty of reasoning from excessive generalities and cherry-picking data. Have you bothered to read the responses of other scientists who have critiqued your favorite guru? You may have to go back and forth several times in exchanges of opinions, before you can arrive at a comprehensive conclusion.

This is what most people fail to do when confronted with the overwhelming facts of Creation vs. Evolution. Such as when Robert V. Gentry published his findings concerning radio halos in granite. After a few years, someone finally came up with the suggestion that there might be cracks in the rock through which radiogenic products leaked. All the evolutionists celebrated, trumpeting the "fact" that Gentry had been "proven" wrong. Then Gentry did the lab work, and proved that the suggestion about cracks was invalid, they were not at all involved in the observed phenomena. But how many people bothered to respond honestly to Gentry's responsible further research? I have seen none in any pro-evolution literature. Not even any acknowledgement of the further lab work Gentry had done.

You throw around the term "proven" too recklessly. None of what you have called proven is really proven at all. You are basing your "faith" on the intellectual equivalent of vaporware. Are there no challenges to what your guru claimed? You owe it to yourself to check further.

Just as a quick exercise--if the theory is true that people are at the mercy of some "plastic period" that they are wired to respond to with being converted to new worldviews, then why is not the whole human race constantly being converted from one ideology to another? How can any consensus ever be developed? The free marketplace of ideas would be nothing but chaos, if we are at the mercy of being "wired" to change what we believe after experiencing some trauma. In fact, we are only wired to open our minds relatively more than normal to CONSIDER novel new views as the result of experiencing trauma.
A proven fact: a life-long, deeply religious person will deny anything that runs afoul of his/her beliefs, yet that belief system becomes transitory during the plastic period brought on by a traumatic experience. A new belief system introduced during this time, with a proper schedule of reinforcement will be accepted more deeply than the original belief system, and can only be changed if another plastic period occurs. This is a mammalian psychological mechanism, not just human.

Hysterical illnesses are scientifically treated by the laying on of hands. All the same psychological mechanism. Why argue about what God has given us?

I have often mentioned here, in this forum, and in other places, that it is possible to prevent this brainwashing - but only if during the plastic period, one is able to step outside the moment and realize what is happening. However; such opposition to the process occurs by using rationality, but not soley faith, per se.

The hundreds of different religious beliefs are all held deeply and honestly by believers. All in all, they all make us better, not worse.
I would say again that you misdefine what faith is. It absolutely is NOT belief in something without factual evidence. That is mere presumption. Faith is a choice that you make based on factual evidence. Faith is where you conclude that you do have enough factual evidence to make a commitment that goes beyond what is conclusively proven.
That is the definition of the psychological mechanism. When in a plastic period, the indoctrination is considered by the participant to be fully rational and fact-based. It may or may not be, but the person is sure and cannot later be dissuaded.The fact that the same person can be affected differently at different times shows that the first belief system adopted was fully embedded until it wasn't. Like I said, it doesn't matter what religion or what sect it is, the results are real. It is not a bad thing, but it is a thing.

I pretty much share your view of what happened at the cross. Where I disagree is that a human can cancel out what Jesus did. It's a done deal. That first sentence you wrote is a done deal.

It isn't contingent on us, it's contingent on Christ, IMO. I think that's how Paul taught it.

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