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Same-sex Marriage


Larv
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Larv,

 

Please persevere. I think the idea that homosexuality is unnatural (which has been forgotten here) has merit, since sex is nature's way of preserving and promulgating the species, and all the actions once referred to variously as sodomy do not further that cause.

 

What we could say is that while the naturalness or unnaturalness of same-sex partnerships might matter biologically, it doesn't matter socially, legally, or even religiously. We should be strong enough to be able to hold those two concepts in our minds and hearts at the same time: the biological versus all the others.

 

I think, Larv, I'm beginning to understand your frustration. Can anybody understand the dichotomy I'm trying to present here? Thanks to all of you who are willing to work at it.

 

--lemit

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This debate is over the wrong things. Look, as I said, by the laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts I was wed to the other-half of my heart, of now twelve years. The most important part of the event was not a slip of paper, a number, or bragging rights, it was to be in front of family (and God) to crystalize it.

 

<...>

 

Primarily marriage is about family, God, and society--legal aspects and verbal definitions are so trivial.

First, I appreciate you sharing your story, and congratulate you on being able to spend your life with the person you love. I also appreciate the overall positive tone of your post. I just want to comment briefly that (especially for people like me) god has nothing to do with it. I'm an atheist, through and through... as are many of my closest friends and relatives. However, we still marry, as that's the social convention.

 

Either way, god plays about as much of a role in the event as the tooth fairy or easter bunny (or Thor, or Zeus, or Apollo, or any of the other thousands of figures laying dead in the graveyard of human mythology), but it's still a marriage all the same. :clue:

 

 

 

 

What we could say is that while the naturalness or unnaturalness of same-sex partnerships might matter biologically, it doesn't matter socially, legally, or even religiously. We should be strong enough to be able to hold those two concepts in our minds and hearts at the same time: the biological versus all the others.

 

I think, Larv, I'm beginning to understand your frustration. Can anybody understand the dichotomy I'm trying to present here?

I think I understand what you're saying, but I disagree with the conclusion you've drawn. Let me quickly explain.

 

When considering marriages or partnerships, biology is rather irrelevant, despite your suggestion above to the contrary. As you well know, we don't require that two opposite sex partners be reproductively viable before allowing them to marry. We don't disallow infertile people from marrying, or people who simply have no plans to ever have children. Or, look at the elderly... people in their 70s or 80s... They're allowed to marry without question, despite the impossibility of offspring conception from their pairing.

 

So, my point... the biology is not factored in... not one iota... for opposite sex couples, so it should not be factored in either for same sex couples either. Anyone who suggests biology should be relevant is offering a double standard... putting forth an inconsistent criterion... applying it to one group, but not the other... without a relevant secular reason for doing so. :smilingsun:

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Natural and unnatural is not really a good argument, when it comes to human behavior, because all that is natural human may not be progressive for humans. For example, it is natural for animals to relieve themselves of body wastes, where they stand. Although this is natural for animals and maybe for even humans, it does not work out well for humans living in civilization, since this particular natural behavior would lead to unsanitary conditions, that would cause disease. This natural behavior may have worked for pre-humans living in small groups within nature, due to a natural balance.

 

Modern humans could go back to this natural way, if culture provided the logistical support to make it possible. For example, if we had an army of millions of do-do cleaners, whose job was to clean up and sanitize the waste, where it falls, we could go back to this natural. But without this prosthesis, this particular natural would have an adverse effect. In this case, new instinct is needed.

 

If culture took away all the logistical prosthesis, connected to all the natural instincts that science has found, which of these could continue to thrive in civilization, without any adverse effect to the group? For example, sexual promiscuity may be quite natural, but if we took away all the prosthesis, to make it completely natural, (no do-do cleaners), it would lead to all types of disease. The ancients did not have the logistics for the needed prosthesis to keep the old way going. They saw the need to advance culture into the way of the new instinct.

 

Institutions, like marriage, does not require the same prosthesis as the natural way, even if it is not natural. It is just more advanced as a function of required prosthesis. Gays are trying to move in the direction of this cultural advancement, but some are trying to leave them in the retro of natural animals, which data could show to have the higher prosthesis cost.

 

Science appears to be working under the false assumption that natural is better in all cases, because this is a cultural buzz word that sells soap and snake oil. What we should do is an objective study, to see if new instinct in more advanced, relative to natural instinct, based on tangible cost. This will take it out of subjective opinion and turn the subject into objectivity.

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So, your problem is mere semantics?

Just the use of the word "marriage" is your problem?

 

Words always change in meaning over time-- and even according to the society using them .

eg "Silly" originally meant "saintly".

 

"Marriage" is now also a legal term, not just a religious word.

If homosexuality is natural, which I believe it is—indeed it may even be beneficial—then there is no good reason to prevent homosexuals from any of society's rights and/or privileges. This I believe. But is getting “married” one of them? Surely getting civilly united into a domestic partnership must be one them. But “married”?

 

Yes, it’s all about the titular word.

 

Given the present legal disposition of supreme courts in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, Iowa, etc., I have to conclude that “marriage” can be a right and/or privilege for the people, regardless of their sexuality. I can only defer to supreme-court decisions on the matter, because, privately, I seem to hold on to this notion that two men can’t be married (my Middle Age affliction).

 

But, hey, I’m getting better and I’ve seen the light. Two men can be married, and happily, to, according to Hasanuddin, and I believe him. This has to be a good thing. (None of my three marriages lasted 12 years!)

 

Now, here’s the rub in many good people’s eyes: What about the polygamists and members of other groups of preferred sexuality, or combinations there of? Yes, maybe even bestiality, necrophilia, incest, and other permutations of nature will gain a legal foothold with the legalization of same-sex marriage. So, with my philosopher’s hat on, I have to as if this is where we’re headed.

 

I’d be willing to bet London to a brick that more than half of the American population privately feels this way, rightly or wrongly.

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I think the idea that homosexuality is unnatural (which has been forgotten here) has merit, since sex is nature's way of preserving and promulgating the species, and all the actions once referred to variously as sodomy do not further that cause.

 

As someone who is pro gay marriage, I would concede the above point. Though would suggest this doesn't mean it is unnatural. Kissing and hugging would be "not furthering the cause" by the standard above. And arguably artificial insemination would be furthering the cause, though I'm guessing most consider that unnatural.

 

But stating all that which doesn't further the cause, would only seem to narrow the definition of what is natural. I'm one of those people who thinks if biology is the standard for what is natural, then arguably it is all natural. How could anything man made be considered unnatural? I don't get that logic. Thus homosexuality would indeed be natural, even while it may not further cause of promulgating the species. Most sexual / intimate acts do not further that cause.

 

Homosexuality is not conducive to pregnancy. I think some can see high benefit in that, among the natural order of things. If everyone were homosexual, then Houston, we would have a problem. But wake me up when we suddenly live in a world where 10% of the population is heterosexual and we are TRULY concerned about that problem.

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Either way, god plays about as much of a role in the event as the tooth fairy or easter bunny (or Thor, or Zeus, or Apollo, or any of the other thousands of figures laying dead in the graveyard of human mythology), but it's still a marriage all the same. :wave2:

 

Depends on how one identifies with God.

Is (Agape) Love lying dead in the graveyard of human mythology?

Is Life (as we know it) lying dead in the graveyard of human mythology?

 

God is said to be that which joins the marriage / relationship in (Holy) union, that no human can put asunder. In my worldview that happens (long) before the ceremonial aspect that humans construct around marriage. And it occurs (long) after the divorce / separation proceedings that humans imagine as a parting of ways.

 

If you believe the union is established by a Cause that goes by another name, I am likely to honor that substitute concept. I really am. If you perchance you believe no such union truly exists, then perhaps we could discuss further (in another thread?).

 

 

When considering marriages or partnerships, biology is rather irrelevant, despite your suggestion above to the contrary. As you well know, we don't require that two opposite sex partners be reproductively viable before allowing them to marry. We don't disallow infertile people from marrying, or people who simply have no plans to ever have children. Or, look at the elderly... people in their 70s or 80s... They're allowed to marry without question, despite the impossibility of offspring conception from their pairing.

 

I very much agree with this.

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Now, here’s the rub in many good people’s eyes: What about the polygamists and members of other groups of preferred sexuality, or combinations there of? Yes, maybe even bestiality, necrophilia, incest, and other permutations of nature will gain a legal foothold with the legalization of same-sex marriage. So, with my philosopher’s hat on, I have to as if this is where we’re headed.

 

I’d be willing to bet London to a brick that more than half of the American population privately feels this way, rightly or wrongly.

 

I agree it is the rub. I alluded to this earlier, and for all I know, it was brought up much earlier before I arrived on this thread.

 

Same-sex marriage as legal process is gateway for other forms of atypical unions. Things that may very much be considered taboo today, could be deemed legal unions (and marriage) in rather short order. I don't think it will be within same decade as the inevitable okay that will come with same-sex marriage, but I believe it is bound to happen.

 

I tend to go two ways on this. First, I believe it all ought to be allowed. For me, it has to do with the spiritual principle that we are all joined anyhow, so let's not allow our prejudices to blind us to what marriage actually is within our species (of consciousness).

 

But since it could be another 10,000 years before humanity sees things as if we are literally all in this together, then I say another viable solution is to cleanse the proverbial waters of all forms of human defined marriages. Meaning heterosexuals no longer are allowed to use the term "marriage" in relation to their unions, and in so doing, every other type of human relationship would be made to follow suit. Privately, people could call their unions whatever they want, but publicly, marriage would be looked at as primitive concept from our past, that only led to division as we couldn't quite work out the idea that this word could apply to anyone and everyone. And instead certain factions of society attempted to claim ownership as if their relationships reflected "true" marriage.

 

While the two ways I look at this seem opposed, I see both as realistic. The latter one would (perhaps) prevent us from going to a place that I see as inevitable, which is confronting even more "taboo and yucky" forms of human relationships in the vein of "true marriage" and the former idea allows us to accept marriage in a way that isn't exclusive. Cause if marriage is seen to be exclusive, uh yeah, you can (and will) count me out.

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Depends on how one identifies with God.

Like I said, with me, it's in much the same way as I "identify" with santa claus, the easter bunny, the tooth fairy, pink unicorns, and leprechauns. It's really not something I take seriously whatsoever. I don't find the imaginary sky pixie to be all too compelling, so it doesn't factor into my life.

 

 

Is (Agape) Love lying dead in the graveyard of human mythology?

Nope, but we call it "love" for good reason. It's a different concept, and is hardly a "myth." It's well grounded in the science of psychology, neurobiology, sociology, and evolution. To suggest somehow that "love=god" is to equivocate the two terms, and really is nothing more than a bald assertion with no basis. You may define this god-concept using terms of love, but there is not a one-to-one correspondence. Love is a concept which does not need god for definition. In much the say way, god is a concept which does not need love for definition.

 

Love is perfectly explainable using reality and empirically based science. There is no need for metaphysical, unprovable, speculations... no matter how poetic or appealing someone may find them.

 

 

Is Life (as we know it) lying dead in the graveyard of human mythology?

Obviously not, as we're here... ourselves alive... communicating about it. Although, considering you've chosen to capitalize the letter "L," I'm quite sure you're working from a very personal definition derived from some worldview which we do not share.

 

 

God is said to be that which joins the marriage / relationship in (Holy) union, that no human can put asunder.

It is also said that little green aliens abduct people and insert probes into their anus late at night, and it is said that relativity and evolution are wrong, and that dancing and chanting in a special way makes it rain. It doesn't mean it's true. It just means "it is said."

 

As stated previously... religion and belief in deity is completely irrelevant to marriage, as atheists have been getting married for decades.

 

 

If you believe the union is established by a Cause that goes by another name, I am likely to honor that substitute concept.

Define what you mean by "Cause," as I see you've used a capital "C," so you appear to be positing a priori some designer... some cosmic dictator... some idea which I personally dismiss as a silly remnant of our neocortical and social mechanisms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Same-sex marriage as legal process is gateway for other forms of atypical unions. Things that may very much be considered taboo today, could be deemed legal unions (and marriage) in rather short order. I don't think it will be within same decade as the inevitable okay that will come with same-sex marriage, but I believe it is bound to happen.

Just out of curiosity... In what way does polygamy have any impact on you whatsoever? Basically, why do you (and others) care whether or not it's legal? Does it really cause you some sort of harm, or impact you and your own family in any way?

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The point I was making is, what is natural does not always mean progressive relative the unique needs of humans in civilization. The social costs, in the terms of the prothesis needed to maintain some of the natural instincts is like restoring an old house. It does have a certain subjective appeal and charm, which if one could restore it to its original splendor will have natural advantages. But if it is a money pit instinct, that is requiring a constant flow of resources to maintain, one has to know the difference.

 

What I was proposing is look at each of the natural animal instincts, which humans share and see which old houses can be restored and which are money pits, which would fall down if not propped up constantly.

 

If we told children, peeing where you stand is natural. However, this is a money pit natural instinct, because the social costs would be quite high and would never end. We would move from wild fire to wild fire. On other hand, if you look at animals they all seem so naturally fit. This is a glorious old house, which will take resources to restore, but once in place it will save money. This a good investment in instinct and is not be a money pit.

 

But I would not throw anything out. We might be able to restore some of the money pits, but may have to modernize them and not just use the original equipment which makes them a money pit.

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Marriage used to be arranged by the social group for the purpose of procreation, that is, for the purpose of bolstering the population of the social group. I'm sure this was directly adaptive. I believe something happened inside of this. That it just turned out that the monogamous partnership was very beneficial to the individuals involved. Natural selection could promote monogamy if it was adaptive (for the genes, not the individuals) by plugging it with psycological rewards. Maybe this is what we experience as "love". The fact that we think we're looking for something very special to explain love, because it's so very special to us, should make us skeptical of explanations that are more than mundane.

 

Anyway, marriage today seems to be about the individuals, and I like the trend. Religion doesn't have to be involved. For some reason the govornment does, which I find irritating. I don't know why it has to be treated any different than any other leagally binding contract between private parties, like a handwritten IOU. If the private parties want to make a big ritual deal of it or involve their religions...whatever. The govornment should stay out of it until the contract is taken to court. I think the way it is is a residual from the past, when marriage was not about the individuals, and should go away.

 

It is not unwarrented, or prejudice, to ask ourselves, as a society, whether same-sex marriage achieves the same benefits of monogamous pairing - but studies show that there is not much difference in the happiness or well-being of gay couples compared with straight ones. Also, there seems to be no statistically significant variation in the way childeren turn out. (Childeren of same-sex marriages do not, BTW, show any more likelyhood to become homosexual adults as the childeren of more traditional marriages.)

 

Define what you mean by "Cause," as I see you've used a capital "C," so you appear to be positing a priori some designer... some cosmic dictator... some idea which I personally dismiss as a silly remnant of our neocortical and social mechanisms.

 

 

Silly, but universal and world-dominating. We are the exceptions, my friend. Not unlike homosexuals.:wave2:

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Nope, but we call it "love" for good reason. It's a different concept, and is hardly a "myth."

 

Agreed on the final part. For me the concepts are synonymous, especially when considering Apape Love and/or unconditional Love.

 

It's well grounded in the science of psychology, neurobiology, sociology, and evolution.

 

As it is in the traditions of spirituality and religion. If it is so well grounded in these other disciplines and this thread is (indirectly) about marriages, please share with us the marriages you are aware of where the ceremonial event utilized the "well grounded" language of these disciplines while presenting the love between the two persons marrying. You said you were married. Did your vows and/or words shared by public speaker at the event delve into the science of love? Did it delve into the neurobiological component as what is bringing the two together? How about evolution? How many references to evolutionary theory were brought up in your own ceremony? Feel free to cite whatever human marriage ceremonies you are aware of in which love as union was talked about from the basis of science. I feel very open to the idea that this could occur and that you may present such cases.

 

To suggest somehow that "love=god" is to equivocate the two terms,

 

This is correct.

 

and really is nothing more than a bald assertion with no basis.

 

There is much historical basis for why one might assert this. I base it on that partly, and I would say mostly on my philosophical / spiritual views. You can pretend I'm all alone in these views, though that would be inaccurate. I also base it on feeling and Identity. Though I don't feel dogmatic in the term that forms the Identity. If I got into habit of calling God - Flying Spaghetti Monster, I feel it would work about the same way. Love equals FSM.

 

You may define this god-concept using terms of love, but there is not a one-to-one correspondence.

 

There is for me. And I would argue for thousands, if not millions, of others.

 

Love is a concept which does not need god for definition. In much the say way, god is a concept which does not need love for definition.

 

I agree with this. And yet, we live in a world where spiritual teachers correlate (Agape) Love with God. The definition is not needed, though I observe that it is desired.

 

Love is perfectly explainable using reality and empirically based science.

 

LOL, if only that were true. Well, depends on what you mean by "reality" I guess. Does science perfectly allow for the experience of (Divine) Love?

 

I guess more to the point of this thread, would you care to take a gander at explaining homosexual love via empirically based science. You've made the claim, and I'm interested in said explanation. Again, I feel very open to idea that you can do this, and am just hoping you will.

 

There is no need for metaphysical, unprovable, speculations... no matter how poetic or appealing someone may find them.

 

Again, it is not a matter of need, but of desire and applicability. Are the scientific explanations applicable to marriage ceremonies? Perhaps they are. If so, is there case history that suggest such a trend? If little or no history, is it (only) because such explanations and languages would be unappealing, and/or is it (also) because it is collectively deemed not applicable?

 

 

It is also said that little green aliens abduct people and insert probes into their anus late at night, and it is said that relativity and evolution are wrong, and that dancing and chanting in a special way makes it rain. It doesn't mean it's true. It just means "it is said."

 

.... in vast majority of human marriage ceremonies.

 

In my view, atheist could take "God" out and say something along lines of, "what Life has joined together in this union we have come today to celebrate, let no human put this asunder," and it would mean essentially same thing to me, while not giving allegiance to "skyman."

 

As stated previously... religion and belief in deity is completely irrelevant to marriage, as atheists have been getting married for decades.

 

So, it would be (perhaps) completely irrelevant in those cases, while completely relevant to cases where persons were married in presence of God.

 

Like saying that neurbiological explanations of love would be completely irrelevant to marriage, because orthodox religious folk have been getting married for years.

 

Even I wouldn't care to make that logical fallacy, but it could be asserted. Maybe if you bolded "completely irrelevant" it would seem to carry more weight.

 

 

 

Define what you mean by "Cause," as I see you've used a capital "C," so you appear to be positing a priori some designer... some cosmic dictator... some idea which I personally dismiss as a silly remnant of our neocortical and social mechanisms.

 

I mean Source. But I feel Cause is more applicable. Are you living in effect of civil union? Did you have ceremony which as a result of that and legal documentation means that you are married? If yes, now think back to this union that you may either feel or believe is there between you and the other? Got that? What, if anything, do you see as cause of that union? If you are really not sure what I'm asking, feel free to ask me more questions. I think I can explain it further, as desired.

 

 

Just out of curiosity... In what way does polygamy have any impact on you whatsoever? Basically, why do you (and others) care whether or not it's legal? Does it really cause you some sort of harm, or impact you and your own family in any way?

 

I think from legal perspective, and sense of benefits and/or entitlements, it could have impact on me. I think it could arguably drain the system. What if there is no limit. People who are in polygamous marriage where their stated goal is to have as many spouses as human possible? Perhaps ridiculous in today's mindset, but IMO, not far fetched based on human behavior. So, this woman now has 14,000 spouses and is looking to get all the same legal benefits that come with monogamous marriages, but times 14,000 or at a proportion that is deemed sufficient.

 

Personally, I'd vote for allowing polygamous marriages if legal entitlements were not tied in with them. But for me, same goes with monogamous marriage.

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I fear that you have painfully misunderstood me, and request that you give another shot at reading my posts. You've come away with a completely skewed and inaccurate view of what I've typed, as evidenced by the strange response you offered.

 

 

As it is in the traditions of spirituality and religion. If it is so well grounded in these other disciplines and this thread is (indirectly) about marriages, please share with us the marriages you are aware of where the ceremonial event utilized the "well grounded" language of these disciplines while presenting the love between the two persons marrying.

Read again. My point was that the concept of love is very well explained using science. My point is that belief in god is getting more explained each day using those same sciences. My point was NOT that we spend time with professors lecturing about these explanations during marriage ceremonies.

 

To restate: The concept of love is well defined in the sciences of psychology, neurobiology, sociology, and evolution. Please... don't put words in my mouth. My point is clear.

 

 

You said you were married.

No, actually... I did not.

 

 

There is much historical basis for why one might assert this. I base it on that partly, and I would say mostly on my philosophical / spiritual views.

My point remains. Your assertion that god equals love is equivalent to saying that leprechauns equal euphoria. It doesn't matter how many people in the past (in "history") have held this view, as truth is not determined by popularity. You have not defined either god or love in a way that is accepted by all readers, so perhaps you should start there.

 

As it stands right now, you are making up your own meanings to words which we all use, and we don't all agree with the personal meanings you are using. For example, with me and others, love has nothing whatsoever to do with human mythology (the aforementioned god concept). It's as if you're talking about a banana, but keep saying that bananas equal unicorns. If you want to use the word unicorn to define a banana, that's fine, but you're doing so does not necessitate that the rest of us accept that a unicorn is the same as a banana.

 

Do you understand what I'm saying here? You even conceded that love can exist without god, so I consider my point made. To restate, though, two people can love one another, and they can be married, and they can do so all without god ever factoring into the equation, especially since proof of the existence of god is sorely lacking, despite millenia of people like you trying to find it.

 

 

You can pretend I'm all alone in these views, though that would be inaccurate.

Frankly, I don't need your permission to do any damned thing, and, further, I agree that pretending you're all alone in these views would be inaccurate. I never once claimed, nor even insinuated, that you were alone in your views. So, really... please... read my post again.

 

 

There is for me. And I would argue for thousands, if not millions, of others.

See point above about truth not being based, or in any way whatsoever contingent, on popularity.

 

 

 

LOL, if only that were true. Well, depends on what you mean by "reality" I guess. Does science perfectly allow for the experience of (Divine) Love?

Yes, it's very easily explained in context of psychology, belief, and the fallacies and tendencies of the human mind. You should review my thread about how religion hijacks neocortical mechanisms, and why so many believe in a deity (although, it hasn't gained much traction here at Hypo, I've contributed somewhat extensively on the topic at another site and would be glad to elaborate).

 

 

I guess more to the point of this thread, would you care to take a gander at explaining homosexual love via empirically based science. You've made the claim, and I'm interested in said explanation. Again, I feel very open to idea that you can do this, and am just hoping you will.

Sure. Simple, really. Humans are a social species. We've evolved as pack/troop animals. Love has different forms. We love family, friends, kin, and reproductive partners. That love gets reinforced with oxytocin, dopamine, and other chemicals such as vasopressin. Those who in our evolutionary past formed strong bonds with others tended to be more reproductively successful than those who did not, so the ability to love and care for non-self pack members was heavily selected for.

 

We love because we are social animals, but the things we love exist on a long spectrum. We love our parents. We love our children. We love our brothers and sisters. We love our friends, and we love our pets. I struggle to understand why you cannot understand why somebody would love someone of the same sex.

 

Put rather simply: We love the person, not the gender. Your feelings and desires for a person are not somehow dormant until you've looked down their pants (checked under the hood). They are there from the start, and you don't generally "choose" who you love. You just "find" them... that is, if you're lucky.

 

 

 

 

In my view, atheist could take "God" out and say something along lines of, "what Life has joined together in this union we have come today to celebrate, let no human put this asunder," and it would mean essentially same thing to me, while not giving allegiance to "skyman."

 

So, it would be (perhaps) completely irrelevant in those cases, while completely relevant to cases where persons were married in presence of God.

The point being, we are discussing marriage itself, and if god is completely irrelevant in some cases, then you cannot in the next breath claim that the concept of marriage is in any way dependent upon he/she/it.

 

Either marriage can happen without god, or it cannot. It's an either/or state, and you've already conceded that it CAN happen without god. Ergo, my point is confirmed.

 

 

 

I mean Source. But I feel Cause is more applicable.

What evidence can you offer... evidence which is replicable and falsifiable... of this "source?" What consistent definition of this concept can you share, and is that definition universal and accepted by everyone? If not, then you've got nothing. You may as well be saying that the walking tree creatures from Lord of the Rings are required for a marriage.

 

 

Either way, your continued request for me to give examples of weddings which discussed evolution of love or the psychology of god suggests to me that you've completely missed my point, and I ask you again to please re-read what I've previously posted. :wave2:

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I fear that you have painfully misunderstood me, and request that you give another shot at reading my posts. You've come away with a completely skewed and inaccurate view of what I've typed, as evidenced by the strange response you offered.

 

 

I disagree. But we will continue.

 

Read again. My point was that the concept of love is very well explained using science. My point is that belief in god is getting more explained each day using those same sciences. My point was NOT that we spend time with professors lecturing about these explanations during marriage ceremonies.

 

To restate: The concept of love is well defined in the sciences of psychology, neurobiology, sociology, and evolution. Please... don't put words in my mouth. My point is clear.

 

As I stated, love as concept and practice is well grounded in traditions of religion and philosophy. It is from this usage that marriage ceremonies elaborate on the concept and from which human unions are defined. On this thread, I believe that matters. It is pertinent to the subject.

 

I acknowledge that I was mistaken about you specifically being married. I believe I misconstrued this from what I read in post #175, where you said:

 

I just want to comment briefly that (especially for people like me) god has nothing to do with it. I'm an atheist, through and through... as are many of my closest friends and relatives. However, we still marry, as that's the social convention.

 

I now stand corrected as you were speaking of general "we" rather than one that includes yourself, at this time. My questions regarding marriages and ceremonies and language used still stand.

 

 

My point remains. Your assertion that god equals love is equivalent to saying that leprechauns equal euphoria.

 

Is there historical, philosophical, religious and spiritual examples to back up your equivalency claim? If yes, please cite these. Are there any current texts published today that are stating what you are saying is equivalent? If yes, please cite.

 

It doesn't matter how many people in the past (in "history") have held this view, as truth is not determined by popularity.

 

It matters as far as consensus goes. I was making point that this isn't my unique mental construct, and is something that humanity has thought for hundreds, if not thousands of years.

 

You have not defined either god or love in a way that is accepted by all readers, so perhaps you should start there.

 

Perhaps. But I have provided a synonym that has historical and current basis in our world. Whether all readers accept that is not my concern. Have you provided any refutation based on scientific explanations, that will find acceptance by all readers? If yes, please cite.

 

As it stands right now, you are making up your own meanings to words which we all use, and we don't all agree with the personal meanings you are using.

 

So, we are back to it being popularity contest. The views I am citing are hardly unique to me. I am claiming they are written in ancient texts, current literature and are addressed often in marriage ceremonies that I've attended. Your attempts to isolate them to my own ideology are so far inaccurate.

 

For example, with me and others, love has nothing whatsoever to do with human mythology (the aforementioned god concept).

 

And yet, for many it does. I accept that for you it does not. And for several others that are like you. Could you concede that in reality we share that for several like me, it is equivocal? If not, why not?

 

It's as if you're talking about a banana, but keep saying that bananas equal unicorns.

 

It's like that, but I don't believe I can cite either marriage ceremonies nor literature in human history where persons have said "bananas equal unicorns." Personally, as an open minded person, I could see how that equivocation could be made. I can see overlap between the two. But I would acknowledge that based on historical evidence and current literature, I would be one of a very small handful that would hold to this equivocation. So, on that popularity contest, I might be in small company. I'm okay with that.

 

 

If you want to use the word unicorn to define a banana, that's fine, but you're doing so does not necessitate that the rest of us accept that a unicorn is the same as a banana.

 

How about considers it? Where have I said that you must accept that Love equals God, and if you don't you are not accepting universal truth? I am equivocating Love and God. Just as I equivocate Life and God. If you choose not to accept this, I'll be okay. If you desire to discuss this on public forum, I'll be okay.

 

Do you understand what I'm saying here? You even conceded that love can exist without god, so I consider my point made.

 

Where did I concede that? Can you please quote this?

 

To restate, though, two people can love one another, and they can be married, and they can do so all without god ever factoring into the equation, especially since proof of the existence of god is sorely lacking, despite millenia of people like you trying to find it.

 

Depends on what proof must look like. God is found everyday within Me. I find God everywhere. But if I must have physical proof that something is God and is only God (aka, I must validate dogma), then i may come up empty handed. Okay by me. Just as Love as physical object, and something that can only be called love thus far is without physical proof. If you have such proof that Love exists, and only exists as Love within physical world, I'd be interested in said proof.

 

Frankly, I don't need your permission to do any damned thing, and, further, I agree that pretending you're all alone in these views would be inaccurate. I never once claimed, nor even insinuated, that you were alone in your views. So, really... please... read my post again.

 

I have and you have insinuated such. When you said this before:

"and really is nothing more than a bald assertion with no basis."

 

That insinuates that my equivocation is isolated to me. The basis I have cited is philosophical and religious literature. There are plenty examples in modern culture where the equivocation is made, thus there is a basis and not a bald assertion.

 

You have also said:

"As it stands right now, you are making up your own meanings to words which we all use, and we don't all agree with the personal meanings you are using."

 

Which implies that my meanings are my own and not part of a collective. If your point is they are not accepted by all, I will agree. I don't believe you could provide explanation of love within science that is accepted by all. I believe you would be utilizing meanings that are available to all, but not accepted by all. I believe you would be part of a collective, but not necessarily addressing Love that is used by all. So far, you have not offered up those explanations, so I'll stand here and continue to claim that (Agape) Love equals God.

 

 

Yes, it's very easily explained in context of psychology, belief, and the fallacies and tendencies of the human mind.

 

I disagree. Feel free to cite sources of what you speak. Where (Agape) Love is explained as such.

 

You should review my thread about how religion hijacks neocortical mechanisms, and why so many believe in a deity (although, it hasn't gained much traction here at Hypo, I've contributed somewhat extensively on the topic at another site and would be glad to elaborate).

 

Please do. And please link me to thread of which you speak. Personally, "neocortical mechanisms" being hijacked sounds like balooey. I understand the terms being used, but you are seemingly putting this forth as intention by religion. To do just what you feel is taking place in the hijacking process. As if religion would be unique to this as well. Wouldn't this be true of any dogma? Someone who is convinced in scientific dogma, wouldn't they be up to same thing?

 

Sure. Simple, really. Humans are a social species. We've evolved as pack/troop animals. Love has different forms. We love family, friends, kin, and reproductive partners. That love gets reinforced with oxytocin, dopamine, and other chemicals such as vasopressin. Those who in our evolutionary past formed strong bonds with others tended to be more reproductively successful than those who did not, so the ability to love and care for non-self pack members was heavily selected for.

 

This explains why reproduction is successful, it fails to explain why love exists. Love is not necessary in what you are speaking of. Forming strong bonds isn't all that explained, and to the degree explanation is lacking, I believe it lacks in why ability to love matters. Theoretically, you could form strong bond with another and not have love for them.

 

While you acknowledge that love has different forms, I believe you are speaking of Eros Love from that point forward. Perhaps not, and perhaps we discuss this further. I have stated Agape Love = God.

 

We love because we are social animals, but the things we love exist on a long spectrum. We love our parents. We love our children. We love our brothers and sisters. We love our friends, and we love our pets. I struggle to understand why you cannot understand why somebody would love someone of the same sex.

 

I have not said this. Where are you getting this from?

 

You also aren't explaining, but are describing. I agree with what you are saying when you say "we love x." I'd add in there, that WE love ourselves. And WE love God. Doesn't mean everyone does, but some of "we" does and thus if "we love pets" is allowed, I would say "we love God" is to be allowed. Though I'm pretty sure you won't allow for that. Perhaps you will. Maybe you'll surprise me / us.

 

Put rather simply: We love the person, not the gender.

 

But why? You are yet to explain homosexual love.

 

Your feelings and desires for a person are not somehow dormant until you've looked down their pants (checked under the hood). They are there from the start, and you don't generally "choose" who you love. You just "find" them... that is, if you're lucky.

 

With Agape Love, you cannot not find them. No luck involved. It happens always and in all ways. With Eros Love, the act is a choice. The feeling and allowing for attachment of that feeling to another does appear to be luck. Though that, IMO, is a lazy excuse for what is likely at work (i.e. chain of events that may be beyond immediate, low level, awareness).

 

 

The point being, we are discussing marriage itself, and if god is completely irrelevant in some cases, then you cannot in the next breath claim that the concept of marriage is in any way dependent upon he/she/it.

 

Correct, I wouldn't claim that God is completely irrelevant in some cases. I would concede that the concept and connotations of God is for some, in the proverbial room, irrelevant to how they feel in relation to others.

 

Like, I might claim that gravity is completely irrelevant to what we are discussing here. While you (and really I) would claim that the concept may be, but as experience and existence goes, no gravity is not completely irrelevant in cases where the concept is denied and deemed invalid.

 

Either marriage can happen without god, or it cannot. It's an either/or state, and you've already conceded that it CAN happen without god. Ergo, my point is confirmed.

 

Without the concept of God. I've already said I equivocate God with Life. For me this is not either / or. I can relate to that dualistic set up, but is not how I choose to understand reality anymore. God can be both Life and both Love and more concepts, all at same time. So, what I did say, but apparently you didn't quite get is, "In my view, atheist could take "God" out and say something along lines of, "what Life has joined together in this union we have come today to celebrate, let no human put this asunder," and it would mean essentially same thing to me."

 

Human constructed marriage ceremonies can occur without conceptual acknowledgment of God or Divine. Even in those cases, God is still relevant.

 

 

What evidence can you offer... evidence which is replicable and falsifiable... of this "source?"

 

Will you allow for inner observation and non physical evidence?

 

 

 

What consistent definition of this concept can you share, and is that definition universal and accepted by everyone? If not, then you've got nothing.

 

Literally, I got no-thing? I'm okay with that. By the way you are using the term, inaccurate. I may have something or be onto something, even while I may not have universal acceptance. You're saying all current scientific theories that don't have universal acceptance, have nothing? I don't think you believe this, but it is what you are insinuating.

 

I am saying Agape Love equals God. I can / will elaborate on this as if concepts can help in understanding and if you will allow for inner observation, I believe it plausible to provide direct experience.

 

You may as well be saying that the walking tree creatures from Lord of the Rings are required for a marriage.

 

This again, would be area where I feel you are insinuating that what I am saying is isolated to my own personal beliefs, and nothing more. I realize you are not saying this, but it comes off that way.

 

IMO, what I am saying is like saying gravity must be present if a marriage is occurring on earth. Can't see gravity and some people in room may say it is a myth and choose not to accept any theories which provide evidence of it at work. Shall we then conclude that for these people, not only is the concept of gravity irrelevant, but it is not present at their ceremonies, because of their convictions?

 

 

Either way, your continued request for me to give examples of weddings which discussed evolution of love or the psychology of god suggests to me that you've completely missed my point, and I ask you again to please re-read what I've previously posted.

 

Nope dude. I'm pretty sure I'm spot on with your point. And I stand by the questions I've asked which thus far are being evaded. I'm guessing questions you've asked of me in this post will, for you, have to come first before you dare respond to my thought provoking questions. Surprise me and perhaps again, I will stand corrected.

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Jway - There are too many flaws in your logic, and too many misperceptions of my points. I am not inclined to make YET ANOTHER attempt to clarify my position, nor to squander energy attempting to dislodge your mind from that heavily indoctrinated web of mumbo jumbo which you appear to sincerely hold so dear. We are merely venturing farther and farther off-topic, and doing nothing to further the thread topic. All I can say is that, despite your disagreement, your responses truly don't show an understanding of my points, and I'll leave it at that, trying to wrestle this thread back to it's previous topic of discussion.

 

To summarize my position, in the hopes that we can get back on track:

 

1) Marriage requires neither god nor religion to still be a marriage

2) Love requires neither god nor religion to still be love

3) Calling two things by the same name does not make them equal, nor does it prove the existence of either.

4) Marriage defines the relationship, not the genitals the participants in that relationship are required to have.

5) I have yet to hear a single relevant secular reason why two same sex partners should not be allowed to wed, nor why their relationship should be called by a name other than "marriage."

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Mod team. Thanks for the split! Much appreciated.

 

IN - Funny you choose not to cite the flaws you allude to nor discuss what I have said in relation to quotes you made. I find this evasive. I stand by that I have squarely addressed the points you have raised, and that it is you who fail to speak to what is truly being said and the logic used.

 

In post 17 on this thread (the new one), Hasanuddin claims: Primarily marriage is about family, God, and society--legal aspects and verbal definitions are so trivial.

 

And you apparently took umbrage to this, by counter-claiming (in post #19): Either way, god plays about as much of a role in the event as the tooth fairy or easter bunny (or Thor, or Zeus, or Apollo, or any of the other thousands of figures laying dead in the graveyard of human mythology), but it's still a marriage all the same.

 

And I am asking you to cite references where what is spoken or written and shared during ceremonies makes use of these concepts? I believe you could find some cases where humans thank Zeus for the blessings of their union. Perhaps you find a case or two where tooth fairy is cited. But I assure you, I can cite dozens to thousands of cases where God is cited as a) present, :hihi: blessing the union and c) in some cases where God is that which is the Union. God is the Love that binds. So, it would stand that in many cases, God plays a huge role for (some, I'd say vast majority of) humans and the way in which they choose to express their union in a very public way. I acknowledge that for you, the concept of God would be forbidden from the context. Perhaps I am mistaken in what I am assuming here, but do tell me if you feel you would tolerate (concept of) God in either vows you wrote, your spouse writes, or the person who performs the ceremony?

 

So, to summarize:

1 - While marriage neither requires god nor religion to still be a marriage, it is desired in the vast majority of human marriages, playing a significant role during the ceremony where the unison is said to (officially) occur.

2 - Agape Love = God. As does Life = God. There is no requirement for acceptance of these equivocations. You are free to believe this and/or to identify with concepts that work in your own worldview.

3 - Some equivocations, like Love = God have basis in both spiritual and philosophical literature, both ancient texts and modern ones. While these equivocations may be made, and held as acceptable by some or many, they may not be universally accepted by all. If terms are not universally accepted, this does not (alone) make them invalid.

4) Marriage is the experience of one form of human relationships. Like many constructs of human defined relationships, this is not predicated on sexual orientation, gender, race, age, etc.

5) I have yet to hear a single question I raised be squarely addressed by InfiniteNow, and if I don't get my way on this, I shall pick up my ball and go home. And then I'll tell my mommy on him. Or her. As the case may be. :)

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