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  1. #46
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    It's also implying that they are foolish and lack the philosophical skill to work out how to avoid going to Hell. (KB)

    Anyone who thinks philosophical skill is the key is foolish (IMHO).

  2. #47
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    Rugby fans support Folau; only atheopathic bigots like that Qantas boss want him gone

    Hear it or read it, the message from Israel Folau fans is clear
    ALAN JONES, The Australian, 26 APRIL 2019

    On The Australian’s website, where you can only comment if you are a subscriber, there were 1900 further individual comments.

    The overwhelming majority of these comments support Folau and his right to basic freedoms.

    Rugby Australia argue that one of their values is “inclusiveness”, but they don’t want to “include” Folau; more importantly, they obviously don’t want to “include” the supporters of the game.

    There is a golden rule in life. When you are digging a hole for yourself and getting deeper and deeper into trouble, it is a good idea to stop digging.

    Yet here are Rugby Australia, on the wrong side of their constituency on almost every other issue, now isolating thousands of fans by prosecuting Folau for expressing his religious beliefs. The public comments are telling:

    Carolyn: “Thank you Alan for such a well-written article. May God richly bless you for standing up and supporting this young man and the right of all Christians to share our faith.”

    That is a touch indulgent, but Carolyn is surely entitled to her view.

    Or, when Rugby talks “diversity”, does it really mean “uniformity”?

    Fred: “If they drop Folau, I’ll drop rugby. No support, no going to games, no watching it on TV.”

    Susan: “This is discrimination and humiliation of an individual on the basis of his religious beliefs. The only victim here is Israel Folau.”

    Adam: “I spend $1500 a year on tickets to watch the Wallabies. This year I won’t be spending a cent. Leave Israel alone Rugby Australia.”

    Cassie: “Why was Alan Joyce allowed to use his platform as Qantas CEO to push his agenda and Folau not?”

    Maria: “Goodbye rugby union. I have been a fan of the Wallabies since I was young. You have lost me forever.”

    Andrew: “I’m out. I’m done with rugby. I’ll never watch it again.”

    John: “The RA Board needs to go and so does the CEO of Qantas.”

    Corey: “Political correctness has infected all media and sports codes. Rugby Australia are scared to offend a 2 per cent minority.”

    George: “The Folau incident is forcing us to ponder … are we still a Christian country?”

    Gerrard: “It is amazing how politicians are praised for respecting our Christian traditions by not campaigning at Easter but Israel Folau loses his job for upholding the same traditions. Perhaps we need rugby sponsors who believe and uphold our western Judaeo-Christian values.”

    At least Kent put a smile on our faces when he wrote: “My experience of hell is watching the Wallabies play.”

    There are simple fundamental questions at work here. Can a sponsor include any conditions it likes to control the activities of all the employees of the organisation it is sponsoring?

    Yet the same sponsor can enter a commercial partnership with countries that openly commit atrocities against gay people.
    Last edited by Capablanca-Fan; 26-04-2019 at 12:09 PM.
    “The destructive capacity of the individual, however vicious, is small; of the state, however well-intentioned, almost limitless. Expand the state and that destructive capacity necessarily expands, too, pari passu.”—Paul Johnson, Modern Times, 1983.

  3. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Capablanca-Fan View Post
    Hear it or read it, the message from Israel Folau fans is clear ALAN JONES, The Australian, 26 APRIL 2019
    … On The Australian’s website, where you can only comment if you are a subscriber, there were 1900 further individual comments. The overwhelming majority of these comments support Folau and his right to basic freedoms. …
    On the website of The Australian, where only subscribers can comment? Not a very representative sample. And what does Jones have to say about Folau's teammates, or Folau's broken promise to resign?

  4. #49
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by idledim View Post
    It's also implying that they are foolish and lack the philosophical skill to work out how to avoid going to Hell. (KB)

    Anyone who thinks philosophical skill is the key is foolish (IMHO).
    It's obviously not what those who believe in it would maintain to be the only key or the main one. But to mount an argument that a generic unbeliever deserves to go to Hell - in a credible sense of deserving rather than an obviously silly one of transferred guilt for somebody else's "sins" - they have to explain what the unbeliever is getting wrong. And that does often end up with some kind of accusation that the unbeliever is making a big mistake with their thinking (even if the believer in Hell can't demonstrate what it is), is missing out on wisdom available to even the least intellectually equipped members of the in-club (provided that they follow the instructions), really should be able to see that they are getting it wrong, and therefore deserves to be fried.

  5. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    It's obviously not what those who believe in it would maintain to be the only key or the main one. But to mount an argument that a generic unbeliever deserves to go to Hell - in a credible sense of deserving rather than an obviously silly one of transferred guilt for somebody else's "sins" - they have to explain what the unbeliever is getting wrong. And that does often end up with some kind of accusation that the unbeliever is making a big mistake with their thinking (even if the believer in Hell can't demonstrate what it is), is missing out on wisdom available to even the least intellectually equipped members of the in-club (provided that they follow the instructions), really should be able to see that they are getting it wrong, and therefore deserves to be fried.
    In the specific case, the prescribed remedy is repentance. Most religions require some kind of penance or process of purification. Repentance is a protestant strategy and arose from Erasmus' translation from the Greek (the Latin in the Vulgate put the emphasis on doing penance). The consequence is an emphasis in the protestant traditions on living by faith (Romans 1:17) - and also the idea that we are 'saved' from our animal selves not by our deeds or by the intercession of an intermediary priest, but by repentance and the grace of God.
    The aim of purification is to understand that our true identity is spiritual - but it is experiential, not philosophical. To experience mystical union with God is the kingdom of heaven.
    Thus, the evangelical message of the Protestant Christian is a call to overcome what s/he knows (note emphasis) is the category mistake the ego makes when acting as though the animal self is the true self.
    Unfortunately, my regrettable alter-ego keeps popping up its head to tell me that (actually) hell is watching the Wallabies play the Blacks (with or without Folau).

  6. #51
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    Even if there was no evidence (and apparently there is) why take the risk? It's reasonable to expect that as a member of a team a player will avoid public actions that have the capacity to harm team morale.
    Firing him has a risk of upsetting many rugby fans who are either Christians or who support free speech.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    And the less professional ones don't. Disharmony in Olympiad teams can have a severe impact on results and even the availability of players for selection.
    Would that not depend on whether players with animosity towards each other can put that aside for the sake of the team?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    I don't want to go into specifics but I have seen this first-hand through my past selections role.
    OK, confidentiality is the right course here.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    Well sometimes you have to make choices. I can't be both an outspoken public commentator and a public servant, for instance, so I choose not to be a public servant.
    Public servants should be politically neutral in public. I don't know that a sportsperson needs to be.

    Of course it could. For people who are vulnerable for reason of minority stress, being told they're going to Hell can exacerbate it.

    Even for a non-believer, it carries insulting connotations. To say a person is going to Hell is to say that they would deserve to be sent there by an all-good God if one existed. It's also implying that they are foolish and lack the philosophical skill to work out how to avoid going to Hell.
    I doubt that a non-believer in Hell would worry. To worry, one would need to accept the premise that Hell exists.

    Anyway, what happened to sticks and stones?

    Also what about another scenario: Folau's great ‘crime’ was quoting a biblical passage in public. But suppose another player doesn't do this, but goes to a church with Bibles in the pew that contain this very passage, or preaches a sermon (worst case) on this passage or just from the Bible that contains this passage? Should this person be excluded from the oh-so-inclusive rugby team? Or, if a team member says he is a Christian who supports an inerrant and infallible Bible, which means that he implicitly supports the passage Folau quotes? Or are we going to get to the stage where players must repudiated an inerrant Bible to be on the team (they will never need to repudiate an inerrant Koran that gay-murdering Islamist Sharia states claim to follow, of course)? Or will they need to repudiate esus who affirmed that marriage was one man and one woman?
    Last edited by Kevin Bonham; 27-04-2019 at 11:26 AM. Reason: repair quote tags only, no changes
    “The destructive capacity of the individual, however vicious, is small; of the state, however well-intentioned, almost limitless. Expand the state and that destructive capacity necessarily expands, too, pari passu.”—Paul Johnson, Modern Times, 1983.

  7. #52
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Byrom View Post
    I can't believe I need to explain how rugby union works to a former Kiwi!
    This former Kiwi was never a rugby fan! But I do understand the teamwork needed more than in cricket and chess.
    “The destructive capacity of the individual, however vicious, is small; of the state, however well-intentioned, almost limitless. Expand the state and that destructive capacity necessarily expands, too, pari passu.”—Paul Johnson, Modern Times, 1983.

  8. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Capablanca-Fan View Post
    This former Kiwi was never a rugby fan! But I do understand the teamwork needed more than in cricket and chess.
    I hope you've repented of your heresy

  9. #54
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Capablanca-Fan View Post
    Firing him has a risk of upsetting many rugby fans who are either Christians or who support free speech.
    It does. But nowhere near all Christians think that publicly telling people they are going to Hell in such a way is appropriate or even true. And people who are that concerned about "free speech" (when the speech is so obviously offensive) that they would switch sports over it will be rare.

    Would that not depend on whether players with animosity towards each other can put that aside for the sake of the team?
    Which sometimes they can and sometimes they can't. Admittedly chess might be more prone to problems because some players will be more interested in going to an Olympiad for personal reasons - the subsidised trip overseas, the social atmosphere and so on - than they will in how the team goes.

    I doubt that a non-believer in Hell would worry. To worry, one would need to accept the premise that Hell exists.
    Not so. People who are vulnerable can hear hellfire talk and feel heightened apprehension that they will be discriminated against or rejected, or that it might incite hatred and violence against them from homophobes.

    Anyway, what happened to sticks and stones?
    Being banned from a rugby team because he keeps telling people they are going to hell is neither a stick nor a stone and won't break any of Folau's bones. Indeed he's far more likely to break bones if he continues playing rugby.

    Also what about another scenario: Folau's great ‘crime’ was quoting a biblical passage in public. But suppose another player doesn't do this, but goes to a church with Bibles in the pew that contain this very passage,
    I would have no issue with that at all. People do that for many different reasons and it is essentially private worship.

    or preaches a sermon (worst case) on this passage or just from the Bible that contains this passage?
    Depends on context. If he is preaching to fellow believers behind closed doors as it were, then no big deal. If he is preaching more publicly, if it is being advertised and so on, and he is including inflammatory stuff then it is much the same as posting on social media.

    Or, if a team member says he is a Christian who supports an inerrant and infallible Bible, which means that he implicitly supports the passage Folau quotes?
    Even this is not by itself the same thing. It's a level of abstraction and inference away from saying that people are going to Hell, and different Christians might agree that the Bible is inerrant and infallible while having different views about what it actually means. There shouldn't be a problem with some sportsman quietly making it known that they're a devout Pentecostal or Muslim or Satanist or whatever they are. But if they think their religion compels them to publicly attack others with hellfire nonsense or similar, then they might have to make choices about what is most important to them.

    I wonder how a sportsplayer who was a known Satanist, but who didn't make incendiary public statements based on their faith, would go. Would Christians accept having a Satanist in a national sporting team?

  10. #55
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    In the mad rush to burn the heretic, what he said seems to be less important here than what the heretic burners, in their ignorance and bigotry, think he said.

    Free Will, Free Speech and Israel Folau

    The sporting champion’s sin was to post on Instagram a list of sins the Apostle Paul says will disqualify people from Heaven, the only alternative as Folau sees it being Hell. It’s remarkable that people who claimed to be indifferent to God and Hell yesterday are no longer indifferent today. That fact is that Folau’s haters are upset by figments of their own imagination. They scream that he is the hater and bigot, but ignore every fact inconvenient to that sensational narrative. As Folau seeks to save the eight varieties of sinners he specifies from Hell, his social media admonition was actually full of compassion: “Those that are living in sin will end up in Hell unless you repent. Jesus Christ loves you and is giving you time to turn away from your sin and come to Him.”

    Indeed, only an intolerantly hateful bigot could project hate or bigotry onto that message. It contains a warning of impending harm, based in personal conviction, and intended to help avoid that harm. It contains unconditional love for all regardless of identity or behaviour. It contains hope and patience for mature, free-will decisions. The only possible objection in the mind of the reader would be the premise that there is actually an objective moral standard which God has ordained. And so, like children told not to play with objects that will harm them, Folau’s detractors made tantrum their first response, the gagging of his views the second, and stern punishment for having uttered them the third.

    The message of Israel Folau ... is not a personal insult directed at certain hyper-sensitive individuals. It’s not ‘hate speech’, it’s true-love speech. It’s a universal description of the human condition: hopelessly lost on our own, wondrously saved in the risen Christ. The free-will choice is yours.

  11. #56
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Pellowe via idledim View Post
    As Folau seeks to save the eight varieties of sinners he specifies from Hell, his social media admonition was actually full of compassion: “Those that are living in sin will end up in Hell unless you repent. Jesus Christ loves you and is giving you time to turn away from your sin and come to Him.”

    Indeed, only an intolerantly hateful bigot could project hate or bigotry onto that message.
    I wouldn't say that Folau realises he hates the people he's saying will go to Hell, but his message is nonetheless hateful in the sense that it promotes the message that people's essential characters are sins that God hates enough to put people in Hell for them. And there are a range of definitions of bigotry; I think it ticks boxes for some and not others.

    Even if it's not hateful or bigoted, the concept of "love" being represented is still phony. It's not a love that is based on considering the person's current personality and essential nature and loving them for that; it's a love that's based on the prospect of that person becoming a Christian even at the expense of their belief system, sexuality, or whatever. You cannot truly "love the sinner and hate the sin" if the so-called "sin" is an essential part of who they are and one they would not want to change, and have no reason to want to change. To call this "unconditional love", to say "God/Jesus loves you even though God/Jesus hates some of the things that are big parts of who you are and thinks it's proper that you go to Hell if you don't change them" is simply nonsense.

    It's a similar sort of bogus "love" to that of some overbearing and interfering parents who want their child to be something their child doesn't want to be, claim it is out of love, but harm the child in the process. And when it comes, as it often does, with support for political actions against gay rights, claiming that something that is obviously harmful is out of love simply comes across to those targeted by it as harassment. Which, whatever the motives behind it, is in effect exactly what it is.

    We don't cut stalkers who act out of misconceived "love" for the celebrities they harass any slack, even though the stalker may be so delusional as to think they are acting out of love and be truly unable to see it any other way. If Folau really can't think for himself, he is in the same boat, and that's unfortunate. If he can and is capable of any form of moral thinking beyond looking stuff up in the Bible then there is no excuse at all for believing in an all-good, all-knowing God who sends people to Hell over philosophical differences or because of their sexuality. It is simply an absurd, irrational, self-contradictory belief and one that deserves to be firmly discouraged.

  12. #57
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    Anyone is free to believe that they are their bodies and that their essential character is to satisfy their bodily desires. Religious traditions like Hinduism, Islam and Christianity have a different view. They know that we are not these bodies; that we are spirit souls; and that our essential character is to seek union with God. That's all! The idea that God goes about putting people in hell because they put bodily desires ahead of their essential characters doesn't make sense from a religious perspective. If heaven is mystical union with God, then hell is the absence of God. It's where we put ourselves when we don't choose God.

    We are free (in Australia, at least) to accept or reject the religious conception of reality - to call it 'phony' or 'bogus' or whatever. However, claiming that freedom does not include denying people who accept it the freedom to promote it, and to take away their livelihood because of it.

    In the case of Folau, you have to ask: who is actually doing the harassing here? His Instagram post broke no law. Its essential message is older than Christianity itself. It's clearly not unlawful. Some homosexuals (Alan Joyce) took offence. Other homosexuals (Alan Jones) took offence at other homosexuals taking offence. The lesson should be, as if we didn't know it already, that simple offence, absent an incitement to violence, is a ridiculously problematic measure.

    At the risk of sounding like Malcolm Turnbull, Folau will probably be found to be in violation of RA's Code of Conduct - 'and the independent panel will so rule.' I doubt if his EBA includes a clause about intellectual freedom, so he won't have access to the defence that saved the noble Peter Ridd. However, he should have access to a defence based on religious freedom. Whether people agree or disagree with the message of the Apostle Paul, and his messenger Israel Folau, we should not sit idly by and let the law of contract trump our basic human rights - in this case, Articles 18 & 19 of the Universal Declaration.
    Last edited by idledim; 29-04-2019 at 09:48 AM.

  13. #58
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    Just a reminder that Folau agreed to resign if asked:
    After we’d all talked, I told Raelene if she felt the situation had become untenable – that I was hurting Rugby Australia, its sponsors and the Australian rugby community to such a degree that things couldn’t be worked through – I would walk away from my contract, immediately.
    So all the ARU is asking is that Folau keep his word.

  14. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Byrom View Post
    Just a reminder that Folau agreed to resign if asked:
    After we’d all talked, I told Raelene if she felt the situation had become untenable – that I was hurting Rugby Australia, its sponsors and the Australian rugby community to such a degree that things couldn’t be worked through – I would walk away from my contract, immediately.
    So all the ARU is asking is that Folau keep his word.
    Thanks for the link - Rugby clearly needs Israel more than Israel needs rugby.

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    NRL says Israel Folau fails rugby league's 'inclusiveness culture' and will not be registered
    12 Apr 2019

    The NRL has declined to offer a career lifeline to under-fire cross-code star Israel Folau.
    Folau is set to be sacked by Rugby Australia after he doubled down on his comments that homosexuals were going to hell, in an Instagram post.
    But any hope of a return to the NRL, where he began his career, has evaporated after Australian Rugby League Commission (ALRC) boss Peter Beattie said the dual international failed the character test and they would not register a contract.

    Key points:
    Israel Folau played 91 games for the Broncos and Storm in his NRL career
    Peter Beattie said Folau failed the 'NRL's inclusiveness culture'
    The NRL publicly supports same-sex marriage ...
    meep meep

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