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Yes. It's just one of the blessings of living in a country built upon Judeo/Christian values, where the Founding Fathers understood that the right to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness do NOT come from government but are granted by God. So they designed a system of government that only works when people are decent... which also explains why it is not working today.

Greg

"Granted by God" means granted by human nature. If you want to interject "God" here, that's fine,

I didn't.

They did.

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

You don't want to "inject 'God' here"?

It wasn't an argument against what you had said, but only the acknowledgement that the Founding Fathers had already put God where He belongs a long time before I ever came along. I was only pointing out that fact.

Are you aware you don't really read or respond to a great deal of what I write but imply you do?

--Brant

typically

You can chalk that up to Aspberger's. :wink:

Greg

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Actually you are naming the creator, not them.

God is not a name any more than Creator is.

Greg

True, but you said America was built on Judeo/Christian values and as proof you offered a phrase from the D of I.

That's not proof, only an acknowledgement of the self evident truth of What made us. And that our liberty does not come from the government. And I'd add that the government cannot take away your liberty either. You can only piss away your liberty by failing to be a decent American who lives by the Judeo/Christian moral values upon which our country was founded. There is absolutely nothing to coerce you in any way to deny your freely chosen belief that America was not founded on Judeo/Christian moral values.

In America, at that time in the english speaking world, God is the name of the G of A (god of Abram(ham) ), yes? Even the papists used it , no?

In the old Testament God was referred to as "Lord"... as in "The Lord is my Shepherd I shall not want."

Greg

I never denied that America was founded on j/c values. But I think that is more a consequence of the people involved being 'products' of western culture and the state of the culture at the time. I doubt they had a meetin' and said "this here nation is gonna be a Christian one".

And the men who wrote that phrase used the word Creator, I still think that is interesting given that they did not use the word God, which I think you would agree they would have used if they wanted to mean explicitly the G of A. And I think this is evidence that they did not consider the burning bush to be the font of morals. I think they did not consider revealed religion to be a rational enough explanation of things politic.

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'... they did not consider the burning bush to be the font of morals...'

Yep, Ben Franklin and I agree that a burning bush is a wonderfully immoral place...

A...

nothing like a red head...

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I came across Natahiel Branden's article, which I read in The Objectivist Newsletter years ago.

THE CONCEPT OF GOD

Question: Since everything in the universe requires a cause, must not the universe itself have a cause, which is god?

Answer: There are two basic fallacies in this argument. The first is the assumption that, if the universe required a causal explanation, the positing of a "god" would provide it. To posit god as the creator of the universe is only to push the problem back one step farther: Who then created the god? Was there still an earlier god who created the god in question? We are thus led to an infinite regress - the very dilemma that the positing of a "god" was intended to solve. But if it is argued that no one created god, that god does not require a cause, that god has existed eternally - then on what grounds is it denied that the universe has existed eternally?

It is true that there cannot be an infinite series of antecedent causes. But recognition of this fact should lead one to reappraise the validity of the initial question, not to attempt to answer it by stepping outside the universe into some gratuitously invented supernatural dimension.

This leads to the second and more fundamental fallacy in this argument: the assumption that the universe as a whole requires a causal explanation. It does not. The universe is the total of that which exists. Within the universe, the emergence of new entities can be explained in terms of the actions of entities that already exist: The cause of a tree is the seed of the parent tree; the cause of a machine is the purposeful reshaping of matter by men. All actions presuppose the existence of entities - and all emergences of new entities presuppose the existence of entities that caused their emergence. All causality presupposes the existence of something that acts as a cause. To demand a cause for all of existence is to demand a contradiction: if the cause exists, it is part of existence; if it does not exist, it cannot be a cause. Nothing cannot be the cause of something. Nothing does not exist. Causality presupposes existence; existence does not presuppose causality. There can be no cause "outside" of existence or "anterior" to it. The forms of existence may change and evolve, but the fact of existence is the irreducible primary at the base of all causal chains. Existence - not "god" - is the First Cause.

Just as the concept of causality applies to events and entities within the universe, but not to the universe as a whole - so the concept of time applies to events and entities within the universe, but not to the universe as a whole. The universe did not "begin" - it did not, at some point in time "spring into being." Time is a measurement of motion. Motion presupposes entities that move. If nothing existed, there could be no time. Time is "in" the universe; the universe is not "in" time.

The man who asks, "Where did existence come from?" or "What caused it?" is the man who has never grasped that existence exists. This is the mentality of a savage or a mystic who regards existence as some sort of incomprehensible miracle - and seeks to "explain" it by reference to non-existence.

Existence is all that exists, the nonexistent does not exist; there is nothing for existence to have come out of - and nothing means nothing. If you are tempted to ask, "What's outside the universe?" - recognize that you are asking, "What's outside of existence?" and that the idea of "something outside of existence" is a contradiction in terms; nothing is outside of existence, and "nothing" is not just another kind of "something" - it is nothing. Existence exists: you cannot go outside it; you cannot get under it, on top of it, or behind it. Existence exists - and only existence exists: There is nowhere else to go.

-- Nathaniel Branden
.







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'... they did not consider the burning bush to be the font of morals...'

Yep, Ben Franklin and I agree that a burning bush is a wonderfully immoral place...

A...

nothing like a red head...

Ben was The Man

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Pretty good article mimicking critical thinking. I say "mimicking" because he deductively shut all the doors throughout everything.

--Brant

Objectivism, whatever its empirical roots, is a deductive philosophy and there's tremendous power in deduction for seduction and Objectivists were seduced, at least I was back in the time

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This quote acquires fresh relevance simply by substituting "God" for "existence"

The man who asks, "Where did God come from?" or "What caused God?" is the man who has never grasped that God exists."

Greg

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Actually you are naming the creator, not them.

God is not a name any more than Creator is.

Greg

True, but you said America was built on Judeo/Christian values and as proof you offered a phrase from the D of I.

That's not proof, only an acknowledgement of the self evident truth of What made us. And that our liberty does not come from the government. And I'd add that the government cannot take away your liberty either. You can only piss away your liberty by failing to be a decent American who lives by the Judeo/Christian moral values upon which our country was founded. There is absolutely nothing to coerce you in any way to deny your freely chosen belief that America was not founded on Judeo/Christian moral values.

In America, at that time in the english speaking world, God is the name of the G of A (god of Abram(ham) ), yes? Even the papists used it , no?

In the old Testament God was referred to as "Lord"... as in "The Lord is my Shepherd I shall not want."

Greg

I never denied that America was founded on j/c values.

Really?

But I think that is more a consequence of the people involved being 'products' of western culture and the state of the culture at the time. I doubt they had a meetin' and said "this here nation is gonna be a Christian one".

You just did. There's your denial.

And you have the God given right to hold it along with all of its consequences.

Greg

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