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Everything posted by Judith

  1. That's why I started this thread. Rich, if you could put down some of the links you've found to be helpful, I'd find that very useful. Also, if someone could provide a link for downloading that Club of Rome document for free that doesn't require one to register or anything, that would also be very useful. Judith
  2. So it was a colorful meetaphor. Metaphors aren't perfect; otherwise they wouldn't be metaphors. Let's say that the herd of sheep in that metaphor are kept by a vegetarian who wants to make wool for her lovely crafts. :-) Judith
  3. It sounds like you worship evolution as some sort of god. If you're talking about growth and development of humanity, imagine how much a single human could learn if the lifespan were extended greatly. What a waste to learn a limited amount and then to die! Did you know that the human brain has the capacity to store the memories for 1,000 years of life before it has to start kicking out memories to make room for more? (Source: Frank Tipler, "The Physics of Immortality".) We're vastly underusing ourselves with our puny current lifespans. Judith
  4. Sounds like question begging to me, Brant. You're assuming that mysticism is irrational or invalid without making any arguments for your position. And no one ever said that mysticism was useful for flying airplanes, driving cars, buying food, etc., any more than microscopes are useful for determining the correctness of a syllogism, or linguistic analysis is useful for measuring a waistline. Judith
  5. Doesn't satisfy me, either. I'm an individualist to the core; I'll ALWAYS value the individual over the species. My answer to "Why do we have to die?" is that we DON'T have to; we just haven't yet solved the problem of immortality. I think it's solvable, and that the answer is damned close, but that you and I, Michael, will probably not live to see it, and that idiots in governments will probably screw things up badly if it ever is developed. And I don't know what kinds of nightmares would develop with reproductive rights after its development, because while I am staunchly libertarian, I ca
  6. Actually, the book is "The SOCIOPATH Next Door", by MARTHA Stout. Judith
  7. One link with a video that provides some food for thought: http://hubpages.com/hub/Astonishing_Interv...ick_Rockefeller Judith
  8. Twenty Cases Suggestive of Reincarnation. (1966). (Second revised and enlarged edition 1974), University of Virginia Press, ISBN 0813908728 This one Judith? Adam That's one of them, yes. I don't remember which one has the accounts of the North American children, but I found that one particularly interesting because North American children aren't brought up in a culture redolent of reincarnation the way Indian children are. The one with the photographs was one of the later books, as I recall. Where Reincarnation and Biology Intersect (1997), Praeger Publishers, ISBN 0-275-95282-7 and Childr
  9. How did I miss this topic when you brought it up last month? Bad, bad me.... Judith
  10. If anyone is interested in reading serious research on this subject and not just nutcases rambling on, take a look at Ian Stevenson's books. He died recently (February 2007) and was until near the end of his life the head of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Virginia Medical School. He traveled widely, documenting cases of children who remembered past lives, for example in India, among the Druse in Lebanon, and in North America. The books describe the kind of documentation he did and contain case reports. In some cases there are photographs of bizarre physical similarities
  11. Xray, You better not bet me. I have heard oodles speak of such and worse. I had to go through both AA and NA to clean up my life from alcohol and drugs. You don't find either of these organizations housed in the homes of Objectivists or like-minded people, but instead you find them in churches. I didn't go anywhere else, because at that time, there was no where else for me to go to get better. These meetings are sometimes called beauty parlors because of the dramatic transformations that occur right before people's eyes within a few short weeks. A total bum gradually starts wearing clean cloth
  12. I'm not sure I'd define religion so narrowly. And I'm also not so sure that I'd define mysticism to be about knowledge whose judgments are ABOVE the authority of sensory observation and reason. I've discussed Ken Wilber's work on OL before (and Nathaniel has discussed it and disagreed with it in at least one of his books). I can't dig up the thread offhand, but I don't want to rewrite in exhaustive detail what I've written before; it was sometime around August of 2006, discussing his book "Eye to Eye: the Quest for a New Paradigm". I would listen with respect to anyone claiming to be a mysti
  13. I think that Nathaniel Branden and others use the word "need" to refer to things that lead us to flourish and live at our best, not to things without which we would literally die. Think more along the lines of Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs. I don't necessarily agree with Maslow's hierarchy; for example, he rates sex pretty high in importance, and many nuns and monks seem to choose lives of celibacy quite voluntarily and at the ends of their lives show no regret whatsoever. Judith
  14. I've just been doing some reading on the history of early Christianity, including a number of Bart Ehrman's books. It's amazing how many beliefs have come under the umbrella of "Christianity". A number of diverse beliefs do now in different parts of the world; don't assume that Christianity is limited to Roman Catholicism and Bible Belt fundamentalism. I for one would not limit the definition of "Christianity" so tightly. Judith
  15. Christopher, there's a thread on this topic under "Chewing on Ideas" that may interest you. Judith
  16. And also, of course, a citation for the U.S. Circuit Court decision for the point at issue, which cited these two cases. If we have that case, it will contain the other two citations. Judith
  17. How do you come to that conclusion? Do you advocate we keep military bases in 130 foreign countries? Are you in favor of the kind of foreign intervention such as led to the instillation of the Shah of Iran in 1953? Are you in favor of the kind of trade embargoes which led to deaths of tens of thousands of children in Iraq but didn't hurt Saddam? What is your definition of isolationism? Was George Washington an isolationist? I came to that conclusion from the following statement at C4L's website: I advocate that we keep military bases wherever we need to do so to protect ourselves, but I also
  18. I read it fairly often. It does publish a mixed bag. It is known to have a Roman Catholic bias, and I have seen articles there in favor of rational atheism. Judith
  19. The C4L website also actively supports an isolationist foreign policy. I must say that that point is the only one of the movement's with which I find myself disagreeing. Judith
  20. (*smile*) I don't know that I'd disagree with her. I'd put middle age between 30 and 70, myself. Judith
  21. Oh, my. Well, that'll show 'em for sure. Nice to see our country making a difference in the world. Ahem. Michael, WE are around that age. Are you calling us old? Judith
  22. It's an interesting point. How do those at C4L think things in general would improve for the better if the Senate were composed of those appointed by State Legislatures? I considered it, but thinking about how power tends to corrupt, I ended up wondering if things eventually wouldn't be much the same as they are. Judith
  23. I thought of your point when I made my point. I'm a bit hypersensitive on this issue precisely because of the laws in places like France making it mandatory to render assistance to others. It can be a very short jump from "morally obligatory" to "legally obligatory", so I wanted to raise the point. Judith
  24. It is precisely because of the difficulty in drawing the line between "the life of someone I loved depended on my immediate presence" and "a dental appointment" that the Anglo-American common law has (wisely, in my opinion) never required one to render assistance to another. Who is to determine what is an unreasonable sacrifice on another's part? I wouldn't want to make that determination on behalf of another. And I would resent greatly another's presuming to make it on my behalf. So we can continue to look down socially on those who refuse to render assistance in extremely obvious situati