Hey Ptripp,I can answer most of your questions but the answer to one may be leave something to be desired. I am 32 y/o and i’ve been out of college for over 10 years. I have a BS in marine science from UM and i’ve been in Florida for 13 years. I am anything but a “tech geek”. I don’t like to define myself (goth ,surfer,punk,hippie,left,right or any other silly labels).Politically speaking,I guess the closest thing you could get to a definition is Noam Chomsky’s, “Libretarian Socialist”. I must make it clear that I DO NOT idolize or fetishize the man. His critique of the problems of the world,contemporary society etc… I GENERALLY agree with. I simply find his alternatives to be EXTREMELY ambiguous. Chomsky uses the Spanish collectives of the 1930’s (pre-Franco,ofcourse) as something of an ideal and Orwell who observed them first hand had positive impressions as well. IMO, they seemed to be something between a rustic peasant’s life and a"mildly” industrialized society. The people seemed to have few options for education,poor libraries and a paucity of arts and culture. They also had seemed to have little ability to travel,less than ideal medical care etc….This extreme level of simplicity may work for some or myself even for a limited time,but eventually I would wither from boredom.
So like I said, I generally eschew most self-definitions I think to define is to limit. What would be my idea of an ideal world? I have serious doubts that an ideal world is possible in this life/planet and this is the only one we can be reasonably certain of. I am just convinced we could do light years better than we are(but I could be wrong).
Now the tricky question,“how did I get to where I am”? Jeez Ptripp how long do you want this post to be?!?!?!? I ‘ll try to be as succinct and simultaneously complete as possible. Like I said,I am anything but a tech geek. One of my greatest passions is anything having to do with nature and in my free time,that’s often where you’ll find me. I scuba,hike,whitewater,canoe and generally commune with the ineffable splendor of “Mother Earth”. I love to read a wide variety of books,mags,etc…I play guitar and trombone mostly these days for my own edification, I was in some bands a few years back. I don’t want go to much into hobbies,interests,lifestyles etc… but that’s some of the main ones. I am not married,never wish to be,zero kids don’t want em’. I have tried the long term relationship thing but I am too much of a “gypsy soul” for lack of a better term,for that. As a matter of fact, I just got out of an LTR (mutual decision) over a year ago. My ex-girlfriend lives with me because she currently goes to school and she is my best friend. I know I called her my girlfriend in my last post,but actually she is an ex. I was with her for 5 years and this is by far the longest relationship i’ve had and I never want another. The compromise,commitment,monogamy and all the other stuff that comes with LTR is just alien to my nature and not worth the price,IMO. If it works for others, great but I spent my LTR time in “quiet desperation”.
I am a small businessman and have been for 9 years. It has nothing to do with my degree and I don’t feel comfortable being too specific here about that (yes it’s legal). I am no millionaire,but I make enough to fulfill any expectations I might have. I choose this profession instead of working as a marine biologist,because I got sick of school(if you want to get anywhere in the hard sciences you need a doctorate ofcourse,I had three more years atleast). I pondered the prospect of working for someone else and it just did’nt sit well with me. In a nutshell,that is the story of my daily bread.
I was born and raised in Pittsburgh,Pa as an only child. My parents divorced when I was 11 and my Mom lives in Florida too. The rest of my family lives up in Pittsburgh still and I see them as often as possible. I have a great,loving family and there are few significantly negative things I can say about my immediate family. I hated K-12th grade and have few positive memories there. I was in advanced placement from early on,but definitely was an “underachiever”. I don’t ever remember studying for anything,but somehow I got my H.S. Diploma. Because of my less- than -stellar academic performance, I attended community college for my AA and transferred to UM for my BS. I loved my college experience and have terrific memories of it. I did well enough to perhaps go on to any grad school,but I just felt I had proved enough to myself and any more would be redundant. My college experience and my K-12th have a worldwide gulf between them. I was always a loner,misfit etc…in elementary/highschool. As a result,I endured more than my fair share of bullying. This surely has alot to do with my propensity for anger. It also has much to do with my lack of patience with bullies of any kind. These days, I resist as much as possible being anyone’s victim. This is another reason (but hardly the only one ) that I am self-employed and reject long-term romantic entanglements. Despite my anger, I would say i’m a fairly happy guy in a terribly unhappy world. I am also a “guilt-monger” and often feel guilty about the smallest things. Yes I have my sorrows and emotional issues,I find few these days if any, that have none and a large % have a whole helluva lot more.
I travel alot, but I can never travel too much and this is where most of my money goes. I have been to every part of world and many places several times over. Again, I spend much of my travels in nature-related activities, but try to keep my horizons broad and do other things such as visit the historical sites,get aquainted with the local cultures,museums, etc…Well my friend,I really should get some work done and I hope I was amply succinct and complete. If you have any other questions,feel free so long as you understand there somethings,for the sake of safety/privacy that I won’t answer. I am sure you have a fairly good idea what these are,if not I ‘ll let you know what’s off limits. If you care to share some things about yourself, I ‘d be interested to know,but that decision,ofcourse is entirely your own. I may be back tonight,but this internet thing gets real old,real quick. I heard Sam’s talk on CSPAN this past Sunday and came to his web site Monday. Before that ,I have not used the computer(other than for business and to check/respond to Email for several months). It was a novelty for many years and i’ve done my fair share of time as a “web junkie”. The novelty wore off about 5-6 years ago for me. Like I said, I may be back tonight but it’s just as likely that i’ll cool it for a few days.
Take Care,for now Ptripp
Hi Landulf. Thanks for the informative reply. I stand corrected about the speed inference and tech geek classification. In fact, I apologize for that.
I am 50, divorced and live with my signifcant other. I have 2 children. A 15 year old son from my marriage and a 3 year old daughter with my significant other.
We have a lot in common. I am also a nature lover and have travelled extensively. 5 trips mostly to Western Europe, Egypt, Turkey and Greece for a combined time of about 10 months. One trip was for 6 months. Our views on religion are very similar and I also abhor hunting/killing for pleasure.
I can’t write much right now because I am heading to Mammoth to go skiing in a few hours. You are on the right coast, I am on the left coast. We stil have great skiing.
I understand your anger regarding the illogic and irrationality of organized religions. It is almost painful to consider the waste of energy and money that goes toward basically a belief in Santa Claus. I have had much of the same anger in the past. Perhaps you will mellow with age. I know that I have.
You are clearly a very complex individual and I admire your world view. I am softer these days because I finally figured out that no amount of logic or rational argument will ever persuade religious people to see things any other way. In fact, their minds are not capable of seeing things any other way. You and I and many of the readers of this forum are hard wired completly different.
Have you ever know a shizophrenic? Try to tell them that the voices they hear are not real. No amount of rational discourse will convince them other wise. The very same problem occurs with religious people. They suffer from a different form of insanity. That is my opinion anyway and it helps me to understand.
Take care. I’m off to the slopes. Phil in Murrieta
[quote author=“TheChampion”]I thought my thoughts were linear and coherent. I will try to be as such in the future.
Why do you believe as you do? What convinced you? Is there a single compelling reason to hold to your Christian faith and if so, what is it?
There is no need to apologize, I often attempt to size up individuals I know little about and my impressions often wrong. Therefore,I try not to do it but I’m pretty sure it will happen again. I hoped you enjoyed skiing in mammoth.Personally,i’m not much of a ski buff although I have done it and enjoyed it. I just have somewhat of an aversion to cold and snow,hence one of the reasons I live in florida!
As a matter of fact,I have known a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic. A friend of mine in high school had a brother who was one. We used to hang out at his small apartment (it was the only place we could drink without hassle!). He had auditory hallucinations and many delusions regarding local female newscasters(he believed they were in love with him) and he attempted to contact them on several occasions,even showing up at local tv stations!! Basically,like most of the mentally ill the guy was harmless. I often hear Bill Maher,who I have a degree of respect for , claim that the religious have a neurological disorder.
I do believe there is a neurobiological componant,but we live in a society that enables many negative propensities to flourish while hindering some more positive ones. Since perhaps non-believers may not possess this neurobiological componant(if there in fact is one) we are the “outcasts” and life is arguably more difficult in some respects for non-believers in this society. I often find myself alone during the xmas season because on principle, I refuse to participate in the “festivities” in any fashion. I have many friends and family members who are non-believers who still insist on celebrating this overtly xtian holiday. Please don’t be offended if you do,I just personally feel i’m not being true to myself if I partake in the “yuletime cheer”. If others feel differently, I don’t hold against them. It’s just that I loathe christianity (although I find some of the teachings of christ,whether he existed in reality or not, to be the ideal of human conduct) so much that I refuse to support it, however indirectly, in any manner. Well,I don’t have much else to say at this time,just wanted to reply to your last post. Take care for now,Landulf
For all that it is worth, I believe whole heartidly in the Lord Jesus and his Father, and as for support to TC and his none reply to 40 plus questions, here is an excerpt that might help others out.
The Temptation of Jesus
1Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil. 2After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. 3The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”
4Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’[a]”
5Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6“If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written: “ ‘He will command his angels concerning you,
and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’”
7Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’[c]”
8Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. 9“All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.”
10Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’[d]”
11Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.
For as long as I can remember I have been a very angry person, always beaten up by bully’s for most of my childhood. Since then I developed an inner rage that when provoked it came and showed its ugly head causing me all kinds of trouble. Trouble with work, relationships, family, the list goes on. As time went by and I got older I realized that I had to fix the problem in order to succeed in life, however the only way I knew of was with the help of phsyc’s etc. At the time I was married with my 3rd wife, and things were going down hill after a layoff from a big company. Finances were horrible just gave my second car back to the bank, filed BR you know the deal. Oppurtunity of a life time comes around Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom, and I went, I went to defend my country and use take advantage of the fact that I would be getting paid regularily for at least a year to provide for my family. 2 months into the war my wife decides she can’t take it anymore and kicks me out. Well now comes even more headaches. Time goes by, things slow down for my unit, and we are released from active duty. While I stayed at Ft. Stewart I moved to Jax, Fl. met and made a few new friends and moved to FL. Now comes the best part. Months of living at Ft Stewart for medical issues, allowed me to meet a great person who lived in FL. and so, I told her my lifes issues, and she turned out to be a devowed Christian, akward at first for me, but I knew about God already, I am a Catholic, so I continued my relationship with her. As time went by I felt the burning in my heart to give myself to God and take him into my heart. Upon that immediate moment I felt a rise in my chest like a huge weight had lifted off of me and I cried, I cried with Joy and happiness because I knew at that moment he was there for me and had been there for me all along. Well we have been together now for almost 2 years. We go to church every week, sometimes 2 times a week, we pray, we pray for as many people as we can, and I try my absolute best to follow his commands. The best part is that the Lord Jesus knows we are not going to be able to follow them, so he allows us to ask for forgiveness, and he forgives no questions asked. I think the most important part is to have a relationship with him like you would anyone else. Back to my past temper issues, I can honestly say that in the past 1 1/2 my personality has changed, I am a lot kinder person, my heart has softened to be more compasionate to others. Alot of the road rage I had has disappated, and I am able to reason a lot better than ever. My parents even noticed a huge difference with me. I wanted to also let you know that I prayed for everyone that has made an entry into this posting. Hate the Sin not the person. With all I have said, one point comes out of it. Without believing in God and Jesus Christ and without doing my best to follow his wishes none of what has happened to me in the past 2 years would have happened.
Now an answer to some who might ask why I would choose to write to this forum, or ask have I read his book, or why am I interested in Sams Book. Well a very simple answer, in order to combat your enemy you must know him very well, and I feel the more I know about Sams Point the more armour I will have in order to fight against the prince of darkness and his evil ploys.
Jesus has made me happy inside, and I feel the joy in my heart that he promised me.
One question for all of you? who do you want on your side? God Creator of heavan and earth? or, his fallen angel who continues to try to take over, but knows he cannot, and uses us humans against each other. I know my choice.
Hey, thanks friend. Much blessings to you. Keep up the faith and my God richly bless you.
Very sorry to hear about the Pope. I thought he was a dynamic leader for the Catholic Church. I hope the next one is a good one as well.
Dear TC’s Friend….
I am happy to hear you forgave yourself and got rid of your anger issues finally. I am happy to hear it was the love of a woman that helped you get over it. I do not mind if you give credit to Jesus for this.
However, I suspect from the tone of your post your anger really isnt gone, its just seeking another target, and your wholehearted embrace of Christianity has now allowed you to justify your anger by persuing “devils” and “evil”.
I am no Christian, of course, but I abhor violence. I have had my own inner anger issues, and deal with them a bit differently, but still spiritually.
Far from reassuring me you have found love, your post sounds to me more like you found a new “safe” target for your hate.
Since now that target seems to be me, I am not so sure I am happy with your final resolution.
Naaaah…..that’s just another sheep bleating in the distance.
Go TheChampion! Know you have support and God’s love.
Gee, there’s now enough wool in here for next winter. Someone hurry up and fetch them shears!!!
I think the majority (outside of biologists, intellectuals, and the like) would say that evidence based on fossil records is controversial.
Champion, you disappoint me once again. You just said, in so many words, that the fossil record is only taken seriously by those people who have devoted themselves to studying the intracacies of life.
Where are the bones? Where are the bones? Where are the bones?
The fossil record is a sham, a paper tiger in the effort to discredit creationism. In reality, you intellectuals and scientists, you probably sit in an empty office fretting about the fossil record and what the missing links truly mean. I can just see the beads of sweat across the brow….“doggone it, maybe these religous nuts are right afterall, maybe I have been wrong all my life, maybe I need a savior, maybe all my wonderful scientific work actually compliments intelligent design…”
Don’t fret, don’t regret, get a clean slate and when doing it, don’t be late. Repent and be baptized for the remission of you sins. God will do the rest.
Tchamp: your statement that the fossil record is a sham is precisely why I don’t waste my time discussing science with religious fanatics. Your arguments against the fossil record are ludicrous. All I can do is shake my head in disbelief and count to ten and remember that your type can’t help themselves. You really are just lambs.
I think Landulf nailed it when he agreed with Bill Maher that you and your brethren have a brain disorder that encourages you to believe in fantasy.
Thanks, but I’ll take reality.
I’ll bet you don’t even consider yourself a fanatic. You probably believe that your world view is as grounded as the earth beneath your feet. Do you honestly believe that your powers of persuasion will convert even one of the doomed non believers in this forum?
I doubt very much that any of the non believers who read this forum would waste even one minute of their life going into a religious website in an attempt to convert the readers over to Atheism.
So why do you and your brethen feel such a need to come over here and stir things up? What’s up with you guys? Why don’t you just be content that you are going to heaven and leave the non-believers to their own destiny? Do you get extra points with God if you bother us?
“maybe all my wonderful scientific work actually compliments intelligent design…”
The keyword is “maybe”, as every true scientist MUST acknowledge. The first word of every scientific theory is “If”. Not so with so-called christian “science”. If you trust the senses that (maybe) god gave you, and the rational brain that (maybe) god gave you, then you will give more credit to the evidence at hand than to claims made by people who lived 2000 years ago and thought the earth was flat.
“Intelligent Design” is evolution with someone at the wheel, so it is far better than Creationism. In my opinion, it is an important step towards acknowledging the plausibility of evolution by faith-based “scientists”. That being said, if you really believe in “Intelligent Design”, then you believe that the creator of the universe is guiding his greatest creation (human beings) to create weapons that will cause the destruction of his creation at the hands of his most devout followers.
Your god has a strange sense of humor.