June 30, 2006

Berkeley's Taxonomy of Ideas

Since my post on Berkeley's metaphysics generated so much interesting discussion, I thought I would write a post on Berkeley's taxonomy of ideas. A particularly interesting (to me) aspect of this discussion is the way it plays into his critique of John Locke's theory of abstraction. Also of interest is the way this view (may have) influenced Immanuel Kant's epistemology of metaphysics. I'll skip lightly over that last one, because I don't understand Kant very well (who does?), but I re-read the Prolegomena recently and was thinking about this, so I'll float a few ideas by toward the end of...
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June 27, 2006

Tradition Essay Posted at the Sergius Bulgakov LiveJournal

My essay "Tradition as the Platonic Form of Christian Faith and Practice", which I posted on my writings page a few months ago, was published online today at the Sergius Bulgakov LiveJournal, a blog devoted to the 20th century Russian Orthodox theologian Sergius Bulgakov, whom I cited in the essay. It looks like there are some other interesting materials up at the site as well. I reccomend checking it out. Also, this seems like a good time to remind everyone that all of my writings on this site are released under Creative Commons licenses. There are different licenses for this...
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June 22, 2006

A Blog About the Trinity!

Not long ago, I posted on the question of whether the doctrine of God as three 'Persons' in one 'Substance' was a solution to the Scriptural paradox of God's threeness and oneness, or merely a restatement. Now, thanks to thanks to The Prosblogion, I have found a new philosophy blog, devoted entirely to the Trinity! (I try, as a matter of principle, to be devoted entirely to the Trinity myself, but here we are talking about the direct subject of speech, in addition to the goal of life!) Dale, the author, has begun with a series of posts (three, so...
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Another Suspicious AT&T Operation

Homeland Stupidity is pointing to a salon.com article about yet another suspicious operation being undertaken by AT&T. In this case, an entire building in Bridgeport, Missouri has been secured in a manner suggestive of NSA involvement. Salon reports that, "according to one of the former workers, Bridgeton serves as the technical command center from which the company manages all the routers and circuits carrying the company�s domestic and international Internet traffic." According to Homeland Stupidity's source, Russel Tice, there is an "arduous six-month clearance process" for employees who work in this building. Building security requires fingerprinting and retinal scans on...
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June 21, 2006

PCUSA on the Trinity

Update (6/22/06, 9:17 PM): A fascinating post at Siris discusses the use of 'Mother' and 'Womb' langauge in the tradition of orthodox trinitarian theology. The considerations Brandon brings up are such that the PCUSA statement makes less rather than more sense because of them. GetReligion reported yesteday on the Presbyterian Church (USA) General Assembly's vote to 'receive' (but not 'approve') a paper suggesting liturgical use of new trinitarian language. Alternate formulations mentioned in the paper include "Rock, Redeemer, Friend;" "Lover, Beloved, Love;" "Creator, Savior, Sanctifier;" and "King of Glory, Prince of Peace, Spirit of Love," but the formulation everyone is...
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June 18, 2006

Hebrews 2:2

I'm leading a Bible study this summer on the book of Hebrews, and I've just switched to using the HCSB as my primary Bible translation, so right now I'm studying Hebrews in preparation, and comparing the HCSB (and some other translations) with the Greek. There will probably be more posts related to the translation of Hebrews over the course of the summer. Today, I want to deal with Hebrews 2:2, and maybe some of you can help me figure out what it means! The HCSB renders vv. 2-3a as "For if the message spoken through angels was legally binding, and...
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June 17, 2006

"He did not consider it robbery..."

In the New King James Version, Philippians 2:6 says that Jesus, "being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God." Because of having seen the NIV translation, which says that he "did not consider equality with God something to be grasped," and because of the relations of the clauses in my English translations, I always thought that the idea here was that Jesus, even though he was "in the form of God" did not try to take advantage of his inherent equality with the father, but instead took on a subordinate role while...
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June 14, 2006

Equating Christianity With Politics

Jeremy Pierce at Parableman is responding to an obviously utterly false misinformed, rhetorical, and manipulative rant about Campus Crusade for Christ International at The Huffington Post. As Jeremy points out, the author seems utterly unable to distinguish Christian missionary activity from neo-conservative 'democratization' campaigns. Unfortunately, some 'Christians' (Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell,* and friends) seem to have the same problem. However, let me assure you that Campus Crusade is emphatically not such a group. Campus Crusade generally does a superb job of separating theology from politics. While serving as a leader in CCC at Penn, I have had to respond to...
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June 13, 2006

Poll: Is My Color Scheme Too Hard to Read?

I like my color scheme. It looks like an old computer terminal, which I think is kind of neat. I can read it fine, myself. However, since I posted the the Philosophers' Carnival here yesterday, I've had two different people (Clark at Mormon Metaphysics in his post linking to the carnival, and play_jurist, commenting on the carnival itself) comment that the text is too difficult to read. So, what I want to know is, how many people think the blog in its current format is hard to read? If a lot of people do, I'd like to get a feel...
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June 12, 2006

Philosophers' Carnival XXXI!

Greetings one and all, and welcome to blog.kennypearce.net and the 31st Philosophers' Carnival! The Philosophers' Carnival is an every-few-weekly compilation of philosophy posts from blogs all over the web. The next Philosophers' Carnival is scheduled for July 3rd, and is still in need of a host! If you would like to host Philosophers' Carnival XXXII, visit the hosting guidelines then contact Richard Chappell of Philosophy, etc. to volunteer. Today's Philosophers' Carnival contains a truly fantastic collection of deep and insightful posts which will be divided into the three traditional sub-divisions of philosophy: metaphysics, epistemology (including logic/dialectic), and ethics (including political...
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June 10, 2006

The Foundational Argument of Berkeleian Metaphysics

Metaphysics (theory of reality) is notoriously difficult to get off the ground. There is very little to start from, because everything else starts from here. However, as Descartes so famously observed, I, the one reasoning about metaphysics, am, in fact, reasoning about metaphysics, and therefore must, in some sense, exist. Descartes has been challenged by Neitszche (in Beyond Good and Evil) and others, for his inference from "there is thinking going on" to "there must be a substance which does the thinking," and, as little sympathy as I have for Neitzsche in general, I think that this may be a...
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June 7, 2006

Christian Carnival CXXV at Random Acts of Verbiage

Christian Carnival CXXV is now up at Random Acts of Verbiage with a link to my post on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth....
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June 6, 2006

Why Believe The Bible?
Part 2: The Life and Teachings of Jesus of Nazareth

Welcome to part 2 of my promised series on divine revelation! My apologies for the long delay (it's been over a month since I first posted my plan of attack), but I've been very busy moving here there and everywhere, and I still don't have all my books and stuff unpacked (nor do I have a desk). According to the plan of attack, this part of the argument "will argue in a manner based heavily on Swinburne that there is good reason to suppose that the life and teachings of the historical person Jesus of Nazareth represent a revelation of...
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Part 2: The Life and Teachings of Jesus of Nazareth"

Arguments From EFF's Motion for Preliminary Injunction Against AT&T

I reported last week on the unsealing of documents related to the ongoing litigation against AT&T by the EFF relating to the NSA's warrantless domestic surveillaince program. I have just now had a chance to read EFF's motion for preliminary injunction, which brings out some new arguments relevant to my previous discussion of why this program is bad. I think that these two new (to me) arguments substantially refute my previous claim that the program is a violation of libertarian rights if and only if the companies' privacy policies represent to the customer that they will not voluntarily release the...
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June 5, 2006

Philosophers' Carnival #31 Reminder

Just a reminder: Philosophers' Carnival #31 will be hosted right here at blog.kennypearce.net on Monday, June 12, one week from today! Any philosophy-related blog post is eligible for inclusion, so get those submissions in! The submission deadline is midnight, US Eastern time, next Sunday night....
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