Questions in the Religion & Philosophy category.
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November 22, 2014
It was said by Wittgenstein that a perfectly good work of philosophy could be written which was entirely composed of jokes. Has anyone done it, in analytical or continental philosophy? [more inside]
November 21, 2014
I'm looking for a copy of Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations that isn't in the en face format (German on one page, English translation on the other). I had a straight Anscombe translation in college but have since lost it. Any ideas? Everything I've seen on Amazon is the en face. Thanks for your help!
November 18, 2014
Hi! I'm interested in finding some information about the way that Hephaistos is guessed to have come to be worshipped in ancient Greece. Please note that I am not looking for psychological theories (for example: "he represents the creative drive, and functions as a symbol of social exclusion and early technology"), but historical ones (for example: "he is found on an Athenian vase in 500 BCE, but no earlier, so that may have been when they began worshipping him" or, for example: "the philosopher Anaxamagazine tells us that the Thracians worshipped Hephaistos above all other gods, so it is possible Thrace was the initial origin of his cult"). Book recommendations or well-sourced websites would both be welcome! If you're dropping by the thread to merely mention a fact you know regarding Mister Hammer's origin point, that's great, but please link to a primary source. Thank you!
November 16, 2014
A family member lost her sense of smell in an accident and we would like to hold a little "memorial ceremony" to help her process it. Can you think of any songs, poems, quotations, readings, symbolic activities we could use? Serious and humorous suggestions are fine.
November 13, 2014
I've been basically a lifelong atheist, but a small part of me is extremely tempted by some of the more comforting aspects of various religions (such as the idea of an afterlife). But the logical part of me just can't bring myself to seriously believe in things for which there is no evidence. I am interested in hearing stories of people who have gone from being firmly atheist to accepting religion later in life, and how they were able to do so without cognitive dissonance. [more inside]
Help me out, Hivemind. I'm looking for respectable, scholarly books, friendly to the layman, on the early beginnings of Christianity. More specifically, I'm interested in its first few centuries. I'm also hoping to attain a better understanding of Gnosticism and its place in Christianity's history. I am NOT looking for New Age-y neognostic inculcations.
November 10, 2014
I'm looking for a peppy, upbeat, quick-paced version of the Gloria Patri and of the Doxology, perhaps in use in the 1980s. This is not the traditional, more stately version of the songs heard in most churches: it often took visitors by surprise. Does anyone have any suggested leads? (I would ideally need to hear it, since I can't read music well.) [more inside]
November 6, 2014
My wife is working on her dissertation on the topic of self-deception and self-knowledge. She'd like to create a database of examples of self-deception from literature or film to better illustrate her work. What are some interesting or novel fictional examples of people who are (or have been) self-deceived, ignorant about themselves, or who, conversely, have unnaturally good insight into themselves?
November 5, 2014
Someone I am close to is increasingly getting into the videos of a blogger who talks about an occult group as a stand in for the power elite, occult symbolism in media, the trivium, natural law, etc. My friend seems to see this person as a bringer of new truth, whereas upon my few listenings it mostly seems to be vaguely intellectual cobbling together of anti capitalism, some moral political philosophy, money is religion type stuff. My question is if there's a way for me to connect with him on these topics more generally. [more inside]
November 4, 2014
Connecting to my Dad's past [more inside]
I recently happened to sit down and read the Book of Revelation in the Bible. Wow, that is some crazy shit! I'm now fascinated to learn more... [more inside]
October 18, 2014
Did English peasants in the Late Middle Ages--say, 14th c.--take Communion? If so, how often? How about the other sacraments?
October 11, 2014
I'm looking for phrases to use when you see someone who has a strong passion the appeal of which you just cannot understand--a passion that appears to be one of the things the person lives for, one of the things that gets them out of bed in the morning. (I'm looking for secular passions, not religious ones.) Funny is good but not required. [more inside]
October 8, 2014
In the bible we have the example of the Prophet Samuel, whose mother is so grateful for him that she gives him to God to be raised by the priest Eli. Has this ever been a common practice – children being given over to an organized religious organization? Can anyone give me examples? More specifically, has the Vatican ever done this? [I'm not interested in the Philomena type of stories, with young girls getting pregnant, just because I'm already aware of them.]
October 7, 2014
I heard this in an ethics class several years ago. I believe the original fable is Indian in origin, but I'm not sure. Here is the overview according to my memory: [more inside]
September 22, 2014
How critical is it to understand the egocentricity/self-hate concept when reading Cheri Huber's 'There is Nothing Wrong With You'? [more inside]
September 16, 2014
In your personal experience, how true are quotes like these? "In the end, we only regret the chances we did not take" or "Regret for the things we have done will be tempered by time. It is regret for the things we did not do that is inconsolable.” [more inside]
September 15, 2014
I have lately and coincidentally been reading (American) pre-Civil War history and also some Transcendentalist work and fiction from the era. One thing I've noticed is how often prominent abolitionists and Transcendentalists are noted as being unusually indulgent towards their children; the point is often echoed in fiction of the era. Can you point me to any studies or commentary on the relationship between abolitionist thought and attitudes towards childhood? (Any country is okay!) [more inside]
September 8, 2014
When discussing how many "x" can fit on the head of a pin, are we talking about the pointed end or the end that one would push on? [more inside]
September 7, 2014
Hi, I'm an almost lifelong athiest. I have a job interview in 3 days (was given very little notice) for a job in a church. The job is pretty community-development-ish, but they are looking for someone with some understanding of different faiths. This is the one thing they want that I'm pretty thin on. I think it would also me good to know the main commonalities of them too. Any straightforward resources would be welcome. Thanks