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December 10, 2013


It seems like a contradiction to say, "I believe X," while at the same time saying, "I don't think X is true." So the first thing I would ask is what they mean by "believe." Usually the way people use that word to believe something is to think it is true. The thinking in this interview seems to be really muddled unless they're using their words in unusual ways.

It also sounds like they have a point of view they think is true (i.e. that beliefs are "just beliefs"), and they want everybody else to adopt that point of view. Isn't it just their belief that their beliefs are just beliefs? And if so, why impose it on everybody else?

Sherlock can't be convincing beyond the road map-actual territory analogy of the first paragraph. A road map is to be an accurate portrayal of the region under consideration. But only one road map is suitable per area. It is useless for a person traversing Illinois to be using an Indiana map. We could argue that the city we approach is Indianapolis, when in reality we are closing in on Chicago. There is an ultimate reality, and only one road map could do.

Sherlock's failure is in his reduction of this matter as the individual's "egocentrism in an ever-shrinking world," as if this becomes the grand disqualifier of all opinion and belief (except for Sherlock's ideas I suppose). The individual has the opportunity to be right against all the world (Galileo's defense of heliocentrism against the religious and scientific authorities of his day, for example).

It brings all matters of discussion to crashing halts. It dismisses the idea that "the belief that the missionary, or whoever spreading the belief, has the correct belief," is not capable of being right in the first place. Such notions are intellectually bankrupt, not allowing the conflicting ideas to be discussed, with the thought of one idea over-riding all others as the truth.

So what about Sherlock's belief that beliefs are just beliefs? Is that just a belief?

At first glance, it seems that he is making the same claim many others have made and that is that no one can claim to have the truth while, at the same time, claiming to have the truth, i.e. beliefs are just beliefs.

" I’m not going to be so certain of my beliefs anymore and mistake them as truths. I’m going to realize that I need to suffer the cognitive crucifixion—that is, the psychological crucifixion—of considering the possibility that my beliefs are just that: beliefs…"

Isn't he making a truth claim here when he says "I'm going to realize that I need to suffer the cognitive crucifixion"? How can he know this to be true.

But, to make such a claim, you have to assume that your belief that beliefs are just beliefs is true. But, using that description of beliefs, I could say that was just his belief or that he was being egocentric. So then, my question would be just what is it that he is saying?

Secondly, how can he say anyone claiming to have the truth is being egocentric or at the very least use that as a way to eliminate the truth claim? If something is true, even if a person is egocentric, it doesn't mean that what they are claiming isn't true, that is a genetic fallacy of sorts.

The trouble with religions like Christianity is they spread with the belief that the missionary, or whoever spreading the belief, has the correct belief, and all others should conform with their belief...

As an aside, I'll go one step further and say not only is our belief the truth and that all others should conform themselves to the truth, but that all others are in fact COMMANDED to do so:

The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent, because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead. - Acts 17:30-31

You spurn this command at your own peril.

If Sherlock were a missionary speaking the gospel of Individual Cartology or whatever you want to call it, then I can choose to believe something else and he should be just fine with that. But then, why would he want to show me his map?

Really, though, when he says "belief" the definition he begs is "unsupported assertions." However, he ignores the fact that we can believe things that are well-supported. So he's trading on the naturalistic epistemology over and against rationalism to persuade people to adopt romantic relativism.

On the other hand, I don't want to completely obliterate his argument. We bring presuppositions to understanding God as he has revealed himself in the Bible that we should be honest with. We need to be able to question our own understanding of the Bible, once the authority of the Bible is established to us, so that we can cast aside unreasonable presuppositions in favor of those the Bible teaches rather than twisting the text to say what we want it to say.

What if egocentrism is "my map"? Surely, Sherlock doesn't have anything against a little self-indulgence? Sigh.

An accurate map will show you the way to reach your destination. An erroneous map will lead you astray, possibly to your death, all while you are searching in vain for an imaginary destination. We as Christians don’t just follow a religion, we follow our leader. He knows the way to our destination, because He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. He has provided the map. He has commanded us to help others find their way to Him. He is our destination!

1. Sherlock's unspoken premise is, “YOU are WRONG and I am RIGHT, so just SHUT-UP!”

2. The problem is the eternal objective, unchanging, moral requirements of the written Biblical Law and its Supreme Law Giver.

3. The call for silence and all sequestering of the Truth does not change the Truth. Beliefs do not make Truth true. Truth is true, whether or not you believe it.

4. Christianity is both the problem and the solution. The Truth makes every dissenter and unbeliever a liar, but those who abide in Truth will not be put to shame.

5. Relativism is illogical, untenable and suicidal. It holds no regard for truth and is replete with error.

6. The Truth of Christianity cannot be united to the error of any other religion. Christianity is absolutely antithetical to relativism. To assume that all religions can be syncretized with Christianity is to misunderstand what Christianity is; the only Way to the only one true living God.

When a man of any mindset sacrifices children atop a fire, and the collective We approves of such as Good, the individual and collective conscience are precisely wrong, for such is evil in all possible worlds.

E Pluribus Unum, Love's triune Ontology of Unity's Self-Other-Us, is the Immutable Whole by which all lesser fragments find "definition". In fact, without this Whole the word 'definition' itself is without definition.

The Highest Ethic in all possible worlds just is Love.

Mind itself, perception itself, knowing itself, just do happen amid and among this very same contextually triune landscape that is on necessity Unity's Self-Other-Us.

1. Sherlock's unspoken premise is that there can be more than one correct map of the same territory. There can be more than one path to the same Truth.

2. The problem is stubborn inflexibility about paths. It's the arrogance of thinking everyone must follow your same path or else they'll fail to arrive at the one Truth.

3) Sherlock's idea might inspire some, but most people will scoff.

4) Christianity's solution is to love God and to love your neighbor as yourself. This is compatible with Sherlock's idea.

5) I disagree with the interviewer because we don't want to unify all religion or get everyone to follow the same path to the Truth. It's essential for people to follow diverse paths.

6) Maybe Sherlock makes a mistake in leaving himself open to accusations of relativism. He should make it clear that there is just one Truth, and that any map that does not lead to that Truth is false and dangerous.

Sherlock seems to be speaking along a line of agnosticism, rather than speaking of all men describing some different part of the same (truly real) elephant.

Either option is problematic.

Pantheism's ontological necessities do not lead to the same ontological end points there at the end of ad infinitum as we find Love's Ontology necessitating.

Agnosticism, Pantheism, and Love's triune ontology inside of E Pluribus Unum's Self-Other-Us lead Mind's perceptions, ultimately, to contradictory end points.

In fact, the Start Points and the End Points in these three ontoligies are contradictory.

Child Sacrifice:

Agnostic: we cannot know.

Atheism: If the collective We defines such as Good, then such is Good. If the individual disagrees with the collective, then might will settle the matter. What is, just is, and that is all there is to say.

Pantheism: Such is part of God, even is God.

Love's necessarily Triune Ontology: Such is Evil, Non-Love, Non-God, in all possible worlds.

It is not "essential" to follow child sacrifice.

Sacrificing children will not lead us to God. Because God is Love.

Love costs us something, at some point.

For anyone who is interested, here is my reply to this "refutation."

Thanks and kind regards

Michael Sherlock


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