Passion According to Mary

Passion According to Mary February 18, 2017

Finding music related to the Bible is easy. Coming across a composition in Syriac, on the other hand, is a real rarity. And so I had to draw your attention to this piece by Zad Moultaka.

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  • John MacDonald

    It is excellent that you are using a variety of teaching tools (e.g., songs, lectures, etc.). It is also important to allow students to be evaluated in a variety of ways. Dr. Howard Gardner proposed the theory of “Multiple Intelligences” that recognizes every student is unique in their various areas of competency, and so should be evaluated in a way that is appropriate to their unique individuality. So, for instance, it would not be appropriate for a student who is musical and bodily/kinesthetic, but sub par linguistically and mathematically/logically, to always be evaluated by an essay or pencil/paper test.

    This also relates to the atheist/theist/agnostic debate. I seem to find that atheists and theists that I encounter online tend to demonstrate high levels of aptitude in linguistic and logical/mathematical intelligences, but not in what Gardner calls “existential intelligence.” Existential intelligence refers to interest and competency in tackling “the big questions.”

    Regarding “the big questions,” (a) theists tend to be delusional and illogical, while (b) atheists tend to be illogical.

    Regarding (a), theists tend to run in packs and have history to their beliefs, so their religious ideas and practices seem to have a superficial sense of “normal” to them. But this illusory sense of normalcy would likely disappear if, for instance, I make up a new religion tomorrow that has rituals and a God that no one has ever heard of. I would probably be considered insane. Beyond this, theists seem very eager to commit the “God of the Gaps fallacy,” inserting God as a causal explanation into an event that doesn’t readily present a naturalistic explanation. This is a leap of faith.

    Regarding (b), Atheists commit the “God of the Gaps” fallacy in the opposite direction, seizing on the naturalistic explanation any chance they get. In this case it is a possible/probable fallacy, making the unjustified leap from the fact that something is “possible,” to the epistemological gold nugget that it is “probable.” In answer to questions like: (I) Where did the universe come from?, or (II) How did life originate?, atheists conclude before hand that any answer they attempt to model is more likely than the miraculous explanation. The reasoning is circular, a leap of faith. In the case of (I), it may in fact be impossible to model a purely naturalistic explanation because our contingent universe seems to logically imply an uncaused first cause. The question of “how” and “why” regarding the so-called “naturalistic first event” is always implied.

    Getting beyond atheism/theism, agnosticism simply points out there are boundaries beyond which our ratiocination can’t reach. Atheism and Theism are just guesswork.

    • “Atheists commit the “God of the Gaps” fallacy in the opposite direction, seizing on the naturalistic explanation any chance they get.”

      Erm… no. You’re falling into the trap of thinking that atheism is a worldview. It is not. Atheism is disbelief or lack of belief in a god or gods. The atheist position doesn’t require a naturalist explanation (or any other explanation), because none is necessary in order to say “I don’t believe you” in response to the assertion that a god exists. Atheists don’t have to care about where the universe came from or how life originated. That doesn’t matter, because atheism isn’t about any of that.

      Agnosticism is irrelevant to the subject at hand. You seem to think it’s some kind of “rational middle of the road position” between atheists on one hand and theists on the other. It is not. Agnosticism is a question of knowledge, not belief. The reality is that everyone is agnostic, because no one knows everything about anything. To claim that atheists are not also agnostic is ridiculous.

      • … and, in fact, the terms “agnostic atheist” and “agnostic theist” have been a part of the philosophical lexicon for almost as long as the word agnostic has existed.