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Pledge “LordInTheLords” - Comments

Mitch Kahle's Avatar Comment 1 by Mitch Kahle

1. Do chimpanzees and humans share a common ancestor?

Yes.

2. Did the earth exist 100,000 years ago?

Yes.

3. Is a long and happy life available to those without religious faith?

Yes.

4. Are prayers responded to?

No.

5. How do you explain the diversity of life on earth?

Evolution by Natural Selection

6. Can one be moral/ethical without a belief in God?

Yes.

7. Do you support blood donation and transfusion?

Yes.

8. Who made man? Nonsensical. Who made God?

Man.

9. What will happen to you after your death?

Body to medical science.

10. Does a supernatural intelligence take an interest in your daily activities?

No. There is no supernatural intelligence.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 07:19:00 UTC | #440186

gruebait's Avatar Comment 2 by gruebait

Oh, great. Mitch went and posted a cheat sheet.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 07:43:00 UTC | #440190

TrickyDicky's Avatar Comment 3 by TrickyDicky

Mitch

Your answer to No 9 ( whilst laudable) could be seen as as a cop out and the first part of No 8 well...

Still 8 1/2 out of 10 is not bad;<)

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 07:51:00 UTC | #440191

Jos Gibbons's Avatar Comment 4 by Jos Gibbons

I wonder how many of the 26 Bishops will agree to this, knowing that doing so will put 1k in the Red Cross. I bet not all will. Even those that do may not answer these direct questions as straightforwardly as one should. I'm not sure how they would obfuscate, but they are the experts on such matters of course, not me. I think this effort is worthwhile, however many or few bishops hand over answers, and however direct or indirect their answers are, as it'll bring in some charity money, and probably embarrass people who deserve embarrassing.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 08:04:00 UTC | #440192

hungarianelephant's Avatar Comment 5 by hungarianelephant

This is a great idea - except that I'd extend it to all members of the Lords and Commons.

After all, we already recognise that covert outside influence is a bad thing. That is why we have a register of members' financial interests. If we know an MP is taking cash from - say - the banking industry, we can take an informed view as to whether they are acting in the interests of that industry or the country as a whole. Disclosure keeps them honest.

But financial interests aren't the only possible outside influence. Members may also be influenced by their religion or other philosophical position. That is always going to be the case, and we're not talking about banning any specific positions, but if a Cabinet minister is a member of Opus Dei, then I want to know about it. And why would they hide it anyway? I say expand the register of interests to include affiliations to any religious, philosophical or political body.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 09:07:00 UTC | #440198

chris41's Avatar Comment 6 by chris41

According to an old episode of Yes Mininster you might get some suprising answers, :)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBtDIVfhh8khl=en_US&fs=1&" >http://www.youtube.com/v/nBtDIVfhh8k&hl=en_US&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344">

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 09:21:00 UTC | #440201

beriukay's Avatar Comment 7 by beriukay

I disagree with the answer to number 4. I respond to prayers with exasperated sighs in public, but with "and Mom's good cooking" in my parents' home. I'm sure plenty of other people respond to prayers in a similar fashion.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 10:15:00 UTC | #440207

Taliesan's Avatar Comment 8 by Taliesan

Do chimpanzees and humans share a common ancestor?

Yes. Surviving examples of this ancestor commonly go into politics.

Did the earth exist 100,000 years ago?

Yes.

Is a long and happy life available to those without religious faith?

Well, yeah.

Are prayers responded to?

Yes. If you pray loud enough at midnight your prayers may well get responded to - by your neighbours telling you to shut up.

How do you explain the diversity of life on earth?

Most of it is evolution by natural selection.

Can one be moral/ethical without a belief in God?

I seem to manage it okay.

Do you support blood donation and transfusion?

Yes.

Who made man? Who made God?

1: People who had sex.
2: People who didn't.

What will happen to you after your death?

My organs will be donated to saving lives. My brain will be donated to someone young, rich and healthy.

Does a supernatural intelligence take an interest in your daily activities?

No. And besides, if there was such a thing as a supernatural intelligence and it did it would be kind of sad - after all wouldn't you rather think God wasn't a crazy stalker type?

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 10:36:00 UTC | #440208

GBile's Avatar Comment 9 by GBile

4. Are prayers responded to?


Some answers above:

-No.

-I respond to prayers with exasperated sighs in public, but with "and Mom's good cooking" in my parents' home. I'm sure plenty of other people respond to prayers in a similar fashion.

-Yes. If you pray loud enough at midnight your prayers may well get responded to - by your neighbours telling you to shut up.

I think that when someone prays alone, he/she is basically talking to him/herself. This might have some impact !
'Public' praying may also have some impact on the behavior of those praying together.

So prayers might be responded to, nothing supernatural required of course.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 11:10:00 UTC | #440212

Rich Wiltshir's Avatar Comment 10 by Rich Wiltshir

1 Yes
2 Yes
3 Yes
4 No
5 evolution
6 Yes (more likely to from my experience)
7 Yes
8a time and randomness
8b those seeking power but lacking leadership skills
9 some charities (BHA RDFS and others) will benefit
10 No

Would love to see Religoons out of our political heirarchy AND MP's & Advisor's religious interests declared.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 11:24:00 UTC | #440218

Mr Blue Sky's Avatar Comment 11 by Mr Blue Sky

Surely, it is easier for a camel to pass through they eye of a needle than it is for a politician let alone a bishop to answer such questions with anything that WE might recognise as truth!

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 11:44:00 UTC | #440221

Duff's Avatar Comment 12 by Duff

I think we all know how many bishops will respond to this pledge.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 11:46:00 UTC | #440223

mixmastergaz's Avatar Comment 13 by mixmastergaz

I doubt that they'll walk straight into what they'll perceive to be trap.

An imaginary bishop might answer as follows:-

1.) Yes
2.) Yes
3.) Yes
4.) Yes
5.) Evolution by natural selection
6.) Yes
7.) Yes
8.) God made man, but God is the uncaused cause so no one made Him (and that was two questions not one)
9.) I hope to enjoy Christian salvation
10.) Yes

I don't mean to be pedantic, but what is the point of this(qm) We're talking about the C of E. I doubt there's a single member of the Lords spiritual who would answer these questions significantly differently. As it happens, I'd answer most of these questions in the same way!

Perhaps they will answer afterall, although I doubt that they'll appreciate being held to ransom...

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 12:03:00 UTC | #440224

the great teapot's Avatar Comment 14 by the great teapot

Of course Bishops will not respond.
This is known on message boards as WUMing.
What is the purpose. We all know that they believe in God, prayer and some sort of afterlife and some sort of god who had some sort of imput in the creation of the Universe. We also know that most if not all Anglican Bishops believe in evolution by natural selection.
Given that this is clearly intended to expose them in some sort of way, why would they treat it with anything other than contempt.
If I were them I would be worried that someone was trying to either expose them as creationist or damn them as one of those theoretical theologians whose God has nothing to do with the god of their "flock".
Its a lose, lose situation for them.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 12:04:00 UTC | #440225

Cartomancer's Avatar Comment 16 by Cartomancer

Seems to me that somebody has missed a trick. These questions are all very simple. Why don't they have some genuinely important questions relating to actual social issues, like what is your opinion of gay people, should women have full equality, and should religious conviction grant individuals special legal privileges or not?

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 12:07:00 UTC | #440228

Agrajag's Avatar Comment 15 by Agrajag

12. Comment #459907 by Duff on February 10, 2010 at 11:46 am
I think we all know how many bishops will respond to this pledge.

"Nearly 1"?
Steve

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 12:07:00 UTC | #440227

Art Vandelay's Avatar Comment 17 by Art Vandelay

I think the point is that there are are many in the clergy who don't believe there is any kind of life after death, and some who don't actually believe there is a god, and this survey is daring them to "come out". And the fact that 26 bishops would give 26 different answers would serve to point up the complete vagueness that is religious belief.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 12:55:00 UTC | #440235

SaganTheCat's Avatar Comment 18 by SaganTheCat

1. Do chimpanzees and humans share a common ancestor£

The available evidence strongly suggests they do

2. Did the earth exist 100,000 years ago£

without doubt

3. Is a long and happy life available to those without religious faith£

of course

4. Are prayers responded to£

depends if they're directed to an entity capable of responding ot not

5. How do you explain the diversity of life on earth£

I refer to Darwins "on the origin of species" if pressed then strongly recommend Dawkins "the selfish gene"

6. Can one be moral/ethical without a belief in God£

almost exclusively

7. Do you support blood donation and transfusion£

yes I have donated

8. Who made man£ Who made God£

man evolved, man then made god as a tool for understanding his surroundings in leiu of accumulated evidence

9. What will happen to you after your death£

I have made it clear I would like to have my body donated for know-all students to pull apart and generally goof about with or whatever they do in universities

10. Does a supernatural intelligence take an interest in your daily activities£

no don't be silly


I agree with carto though, this could be seen as an uppity know-all stroppy atheist whine when it could well put a spotlight on serious issues and people who have power to influence them

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 13:01:00 UTC | #440239

the great teapot's Avatar Comment 19 by the great teapot

The Bishops have achieved too much (in terms of promotion)and are all too long in the tooth to admit any of the beliefs they hold that are contrary to those held as essential to be a Bishop. If they were going to come out they would have done it long since. This is pointless other than as a piss take.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 13:09:00 UTC | #440242

Logicel's Avatar Comment 20 by Logicel

Got to agree with Carto. Perhaps in America these questions would be apt, but not in Great Britain. This is just a wasted opportunity. Great idea in general though, to get them indirectly to raise money for a secular charity (providing they realize that the Red Cross is a secular charity!)

Taliesan: Who made man? Who made God?

1: People who had sex.
2: People who didn't.

A good one!

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 13:17:00 UTC | #440243

flying goose's Avatar Comment 21 by flying goose

Questions:

Do chimpanzees and humans share a common ancestor?
Yes
Did the earth exist 100,000 years ago?
Yes
Is a long and happy life available to those without religious faith?
Yes
Are prayers responded to?
Don't know.
How do you explain the diversity of life on earth?
Evolution by Natural selection.
Can one be moral/ethical without a belief in God?
Yes
Do you support blood donation and transfusion?
Yes
Who made man?
Woman?
Who made God?
Man?
What will happen to you after your death?
I shall be buried in a forest.
Does a supernatural intelligence take an interest in your daily activities?
No.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 14:11:00 UTC | #440255

Raiko's Avatar Comment 22 by Raiko

Oh, awesome! A survey!

It would be really interesting to see what the bishops think, but I doubt, I REALLY doubt that they're going to give straightforward answers to all questions. It will either cost them a lot of trust from the faithful or from everyone sane.


1. Do chimpanzees and humans share a common ancestor?
Yes.

2. Did the earth exist 100,000 years ago?
Absolutely.

3. Is a long and happy life available to those without religious faith?
Obviously.

4. Are prayers responded to?
Never.

5. How do you explain the diversity of life on earth?
random mutation x natural selection

6. Can one be moral/ethical without a belief in God?
I would even suggest that people without belief in God ARE be more ethical on average.

7. Do you support blood donation and transfusion?
Absolutely. I give my blood regularly and faint every time.

8. Who made man? Who made God?
Man wasn't made, man came into existence through evolution, but it depends entirely on the definition of "man" what exact "non-man" made the first "man". As for God: humans invented God.

9. What will happen to you after your death?
My conscience will be gone, my body will decompose and I won't know a thing of it.

10. Does a supernatural intelligence take an interest in your daily activities?
No. I am not even sure my boss takes an interest in my daily activities and he is far from supernatural, just superior.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 15:04:00 UTC | #440268

ridelo's Avatar Comment 23 by ridelo

1. Do chimpanzees and humans share a common ancestor?
Rather sure about it, because growing older my ears get bigger and hairier.

2. Did the earth exist 100,000 years ago?
I don't see why not. Seems rather stable.

3. Is a long and happy life available to those without religious faith?
Define 'happy'.

4. Are prayers responded to?
Once in a while. Don't know by whom. I once won a bike. But don't remember if I prayed for it.

5. How do you explain the diversity of life on earth?
What would we eat if there where only humans?

6. Can one be moral/ethical without a belief in God?
Not easy. Can one be moral/ethical with a belief in God? Also not easy.

7. Do you support blood donation and transfusion?
Yes, but especially blood reception. If necessary.

8. Who made man? Who made God?
Don't look at me.

9. What will happen to you after your death?
Avec moi? How could I know?

10. Does a supernatural intelligence take an interest in your daily activities?
Define 'supernatural'. Some kind of wordplay?

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 16:11:00 UTC | #440275

lordshipmayhem's Avatar Comment 24 by lordshipmayhem

1. Do chimpanzees and humans share a common ancestor?
Yes

2. Did the earth exist 100,000 years ago?
Yes, and for millions of years before that

3. Is a long and happy life available to those without religious faith?
Yes

4. Are prayers responded to?
No

5. How do you explain the diversity of life on earth?
Evolution by natural selection

6. Can one be moral/ethical without a belief in God?
Yes

7. Do you support blood donation and transfusion?
Absolutely

8. Who made man? Who made God?
Nobody "made" man, he evolved. Man made God.

9. What will happen to you after your death?
Consciousness will end, those parts of the body not transplanted or used for medical research will rot. For many of my friends, consciousness will be suspended toward the end of the wake, as a side-effect of alcohol consumption.

10. Does a supernatural intelligence take an interest in your daily activities?
No.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 16:15:00 UTC | #440276

Rikitiki13's Avatar Comment 25 by Rikitiki13

1.Do chimpanzees and humans share a common ancestor£
Only if you live in the Ozarks and marry your cousin.

2. Did the earth exist 100,000 years ago£
If the taste of this TV-dinner is any indication, then yes!

3. Is a long and happy life available to those without religious faith£
Actually, without religious faith, a much happier life is available.

4. Are prayers responded to£
Yes – in the same way yelling in a canyon is ‘responded to’.

5. How do you explain the diversity of life on earth£
Life! (ain’t it amazing£)

6. Can one be moral/ethical without a belief in God£
Absolutely, since then choice and open-mindedness become possible.

7. Do you support blood donation and transfusion£
Who wouldn’t£ (see #6 above).

8. Who made man£ Who made God£
a)My parents (oh, the obstetrician helped also).
b)Far too many confused and irrational individuals.

9. What will happen to you after your death£
I certainly won’t know, will I£

10. Does a supernatural intelligence take an interest in your daily activities£
Only when my paranoia kicks in or if I’m under investigation by the government.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 16:19:00 UTC | #440277

mixmastergaz's Avatar Comment 26 by mixmastergaz

I don't see why these are loaded questions that it would cost a C of E bishop anything to answer. Most Anglicans of my acquaintance would give the same rather obvious answers to those I've put in the mouth of my hypothetical bishop above. Anglicans aren't crude, literalist creationists. There doesn't seem to be anything to catch them out with here. The Anglican church has long since come to terms with Darwin, and many of those who first argued for a much older earth than had previously been supposed were Anglicans, even Anglican clergy.

The answers the lords spiritual would most likely give are completely uncontroversial. I think our own Flying Goose's answers would be more controversial, particularly to questions 9 and 10 (no offence intended my friend!)

Carto is right - we could ask much more taxing questions. But If we attempt emotional blackmail in order to compel them to answer we shouldn't really be surprised if the bishops ignore or avoid them. And we can't claim the moral high ground if we make our donations to the Red Cross conditional. Honestly, I think this is all a bit shabby and ill-thought-through.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 16:38:00 UTC | #440280

prettygoodformonkeys's Avatar Comment 27 by prettygoodformonkeys

Reminds me of the late '60's when you'd see young people on the beaches or in parks, throwing frisbees and wearing t-shirts that read, top to bottom: "No. No. No. Yes. Yes. No." Entering these answers on your unemployment claim card kept the checks coming and kept you out of the workforce.

I like to think that properly answering the Sober Survey questions will help to keep me out of heaven, much like a public denial of the holy spirit.

Sang enough hymns when I was a kid.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 16:39:00 UTC | #440281

flying goose's Avatar Comment 28 by flying goose

On Cartomancer's questions,

What is your opinion of gay people?
Same as the one I have of hetrosexuals.

Should women have full equality?

Yes

Should religious conviction grant individuals special legal privileges?

No.

No surprise there but I agree, these would have been much better questions, or at least additions to the originals.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 16:51:00 UTC | #440286

jaytee_555's Avatar Comment 29 by jaytee_555

Comment #459964 by mixmastergaz more or less matches my own feelings on this topic.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 17:08:00 UTC | #440289

chuckg's Avatar Comment 30 by chuckg

Question 9. I've contracted with a commercial enterprise.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 17:09:00 UTC | #440290