Children & Holy Communion

Discussion in 'Sacraments, Sacred Rites, and Holy Orders' started by Clayton, May 23, 2022.

  1. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    The takeaway is, facts don't matter unless they come from preferred sources. And things would have turned out better if we had hindsight...maybe (lots of conjecture and guessing about what might have been).

    Soccer.... meh.
     
  2. Ananias

    Ananias Well-Known Member Anglican

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    That's alt-history -- maybe it would have gone that way, but probably not. England's subsequent experiences in the Caribbean, Ireland, India and South Africa mitigate against that interpretation. American culture was distinct from the British right from the start; we have never in our entire history (even before the Revolution) been particularly "English" in culture or governance. Australia is probably the closest analogue to the US, but its distinctive history and composition led to quite different outcomes than we had here.

    I think a more interesting scenario would have been if the French had held on to the Louisiana territory and Spain had retained the Mountain and Pacific west (having in this timeline prevailed over the insurrectionist Mexicans from 1810-1827) along with Central and South America. The rump American colonies in the northeast would long since have been annexed by France, along with most of the landmass now known as Canada. The whole western hemisphere would now be a combined French/Spanish imperium. It's interesting to hypothesize an alliance between Spanish and French empires that would, combined, cover more than half the landmass of the earth.

    But it didn't work out that way and now we've got what we've got. Maybe it's for the best. (And I'm serious here: maybe this really is the best of all possible worlds. You mistakenly think a different outcome would necessarily be a better one. I argue that it would almost certainly have been worse, human nature being what it is.)
     
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  3. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    Here's a recent example from Epoch Times:
    Demographers Warn of Impending Population Collapse
    Fertility data contradicts U.N. predictions of overpopulation and environmental devastation
    By Kevin Stocklin
    June 5, 2022 Updated: June 6, 2022

    This article cites a study published in Lancet. Facts matter, regardless who reports them.

    BTW, it is interesting that the in-vogue climate change doomsday forecasts rely on the assumption that population will continue to increase. Does anyone think the climate change alarmists will change their tune in response to this data? Fat chance. :no:
     
  4. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    My initial statement was a moral one, not a counterfactual: the War of Independence was an unjust one. Human nature already was what it was, so if the American colonies had achieved independence from the UK in a just manner - as Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, among others, did - it is difficult to see why the result would have automatically been worse. As it happened, the achievement of independence necessitated a change in the political constitution, which was invented and then imposed. Those attempts - the Articles of Confederation and the antebellum Constitutional regime - both failed. It was not until about 9 decades later that the U.S. system achieved some stability, and it was precisely at that point that Canada achieved independence, peacefully. Canada is the nearest analogue to the US socially, linguistically, and culturally among the Commonwealth countries today, so I don’t think the alternative scenario I’ve laid out need be seen as farfetched at all.
    The issue is not whether partisan sources contain facts; the issue is whether those sources are trustworthy. I read print media from a wide variety of sources, both Left- and Right-oriented, both opinion/narrative-based as well as purely fact-based reporting. I wouldn’t put Epoch Times in the latter category any more than I would The Huffington Post or The American Conservative. What reading those publications will tell me is what they think their readers want to hear, which itself can be important and useful information, but not in the same way or to the same degree that fact-based reporting can be.
    Epoch Times is hardly the only outlet to have reported on this. Publications with an inherent stake in the current state of climate science didn't hesitate to report the study. For example:
    At the same time, the study published in The Lancet can be challenged by new data, alternative explanatory statistical models, and so on. This did in fact happen within two months of publication, in a study by researchers from Austria and Hong Kong (see attached PDF). We won't know who's right until the year 2100 arrives, of course, but we can be sure that none of the researchers involved intended their respective studies to be the last word on the subject, nor as an excuse to cast aspersions on those genuinely concerned about climate change or those leading efforts to craft policy solutions. Christians ought to be at the forefront of support for such efforts, as a matter of principle.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2022
  5. Ananias

    Ananias Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Yes, it is bad form to quote one's own post. Apologies, but I want to explain what I mean here.

    If we leave God's will out of it, let's tinker with the "many worlds" physics that are all the rage in the culture right now. There is a certain grounding to this idea in physics, stemming from work done by Hugh Everett among others, which postulates that anything not flatly impossible is therefore guaranteed. Every possible decision point in physics, down to all possible paths of every single photon, are realized -- just not in the same timeline. This can be scaled up to the macro.

    I am presented with a door. Do I open it or close it? In traditional physics, my choice "collapses" the probability wave into one realized outcome: I opened the door. The opened-door event then passes into history as a fixed and unalterable predicate upon which future events then hinge. However, the many-universes model says that both events happened: I opened the door and I left it closed. The universe basically split into two timelines and both possibilities were realized. Multiply these potentialities by the trillions and you'll see what a mess of a concept this is.

    But there are people* who say that only one course of action in any given scenario is viable, that the arrow of time follows that basic track. Many possibilities, but only one viable outcome. Some postulate that this "splitting" of universes is only temporary and "unwinds" if the outcome fails some unknown viability test. (You can see where this is going...) But who determines what "viability" is? If you're a Christian, you have a simple answer: God himself. God's plan cannot be frustrated. Therefore the way things are at any given moment is exactly how they're supposed to be. It must be so, for it is God himself who created the cosmos. To him, unbound by time, this creation was an event and not a process -- he sees the beginning and the end all at once, as we would see a painting on the wall.

    *Nor are these people all Christians or even religious people by any means. Many atheist physicists will assert that there is only "one viable path" for time's arrow to follow.
     
  6. Ananias

    Ananias Well-Known Member Anglican

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    There lots of ways it could have been worse. What would a western hemisphere composed of massive Imperial world powers France and Spain looked like? How would they have felt about the slave trade? And what if continued warfare with a much-more-powerful France would have prevented the Industrial Revolution from taking root in England? Perhaps the Counter Reformation would have successfully wiped out Protestantism, or at least rendered it a footnote in history. Certainly the rise of democratically-elected governments in the Americas and Europe would never have happened.

    May be, could be, perhaps, who knows. I repeat: I think we already live in the best timeline, and should be grateful for what God has given us, not bitter that we weren't given more and sooner.
     
  7. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    The key word in your original quote is “automatically”. Of course, there are many different ways an alternate history could have played out. The point I was making was in response to the statement by @Br. Thomas that
    It's not my intention to pick on @Br. Thomas, so assuming it’s a commonly held belief, let’s analyze the statement for a moment. The result of our Revolution was a society, culture, and system of rights that is strikingly similar to what developed in the other Anglophone countries. Since the War of Independence cannot explain that convergence (as those other countries achieved independence gradually and peacefully), something else does, which means the free society we enjoy in the US today not only could have developed apart from a violent break with the mother country, but in fact did do so, in actual history, not merely in an alternative one. What I think a comparison of the respective histories of these countries actually tells us is that the US achieved independence too early, as a result of its violent break with the British Empire, with consequences that persist to this day.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2022
  8. bwallac2335

    bwallac2335 Well-Known Member

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    Not going to weight in the source material but once Covid hit all those populations projections can be thrown out the window. What you see is that when Covid hit fertility tanked in many areas. We will take Mexico as one such place. It went from 2.09 tfr to a 1.63 tfr. You see this in a lot of countries around the world. You also saw extra deaths. Now a lot of those births that were delayed because of covid can be made up but a lot of births will not. China with their lock down policies and all their craziness is a huge key outlier and so is India. I am not sure of how India handled covid on how bad they were hit and their policies but what I do know is that covid has pushed the size of the future worlds population to a much smaller and lower number.

    Case in point is China. China went from a 1.47 tfr to a 1.16. That is a huge drop. There was 4 million less children born in a two years time.
     
  9. bwallac2335

    bwallac2335 Well-Known Member

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    Oddly enough the argument you present is one that was presented by colonialists as to why they should maintain their colonies once decolonization started. Also oddly enough they were right in many ways.
     
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  10. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    That is very interesting. I do want to be clear that I'm not trying to state a defense of colonialism, only to point out something that I think is relevant for the development of political culture in the United States specifically, viz., that while the War of Independence was the cause of our national freedom, its results and legacy taken together were not the cause of our culture of civic freedom. We already had the latter prior to the War of Independence. In other words, in the long run we would have been no less free, in either sense, had our path to independence followed the same course as Canada, New Zealand, etc., and we might have avoided some of the problems we have today as a result, problems that we largely do not have in common with our Anglophone counterparts.
     
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  11. bwallac2335

    bwallac2335 Well-Known Member

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    Let me see if I can remember the book that it was talked about in and I will try to remember to post it for you
     
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  12. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

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    Err - Facts might not be as factual as they seem if they come from certain sources previously mentioned.
     
  13. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    Thank you!
     
  14. Ananias

    Ananias Well-Known Member Anglican

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    None of those countries would be what they are now if America did not exist. To a large extent, the developed West is what it is because America is what it is, which is to say, the richest and most militarily powerful nation the earth has ever known. Every time I hear someone ask why America can't be more like Canada, I point out that the only reason Canada gets by with almost no military is because the US is right next door. Ditto Mexico. Ditto Germany. And so on. American arms have sheltered the modern West from any encroachment for 80 years or more. All those social-welfare programs and public works in Europe? American spending on defense made it all possible.

    Absent America, Europe would have been defeated by the Nazis by 1943. The Russians shortly thereafter. And even if the Allies had by some miracle managed to defeat Nazi Germany, the continent would have remained a bombed-out rubble for decades afterward. The Europe you see today was gifted by the Marshall plan.*

    My point is not that Americans are selfless saviors of all that is right and good. We have done much evil in the world, and I do honestly think South America would have benefited more by our neglect than our "help". But to assert that a world with a smaller, poorer, weaker America would somehow be a better or more functional world is just silly. Rome wasn't a picnic back in Jesus' time either, but it held the world together and allowed the Gospel message to spread far and wide...and ultiamtely Rome itself became Christian.

    America as a nation and a people is no better than any other nation of the earth in any absolute sense, but neither is it worse. Whatever evils America has committed (and there have been many very evil things), it has done good also. When much of our culture has turned to dust, there will still be a plaque on the moon that reads WE CAME IN PEACE FOR ALL MANKIND. And American astronauts put it there. America has bestowed an era of peace on the world unknown since Roman times, and granted not just ourselves but the world a standard of living humanity has never known before. Some gratitude is owed.

    Every nation has innocent blood on its hands; every nation grows at the expense of indigenous peoples (who in turn ejected the previous indigenous peoples, and so on back to Adam and Eve). There are no heroes in the story of nations. This is pretty much the essential story of the Old Testament.

    Genesis 6:5:
    *Today is June 6, the anniversary of D-Day, by the way.
     
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  15. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    Who said anything about America not existing in this hypothetical? (I certainly didn't.)
    Since the reasons for that are a combination of innate culture and an accident of geography, I have little doubt this would have been true in the 20th century regardless of when America gained independence in the 19th.
    Huh? To the best of my knowledge, Canada has never had to fight a true defensive war. They're bordered by 3 oceans, the U.S., and ice. Canada's not in danger of being invaded by anyone. What would they need a big military for? (For that matter, what do we need a huge military for?)
    Encroachment from whom? We aren't in any danger of being invaded.
    Europe was defeated by the Nazis, in 1940. Yes, the British and the Soviets were ultimately saved by Lend-Lease, but this doesn't impact my counterfactual (see second point above).
    Who is asserting this? (I certainly didn't.)
    I agree, and I'm proud of that fact.
    I agree, wholeheartedly.
     
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  16. bwallac2335

    bwallac2335 Well-Known Member

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  17. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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  18. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

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  19. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    That's a new one to me; I wonder where that school district is located?

    It seems like folly to resort to 'bulletproof blankets' when other measure would be much more effective at protecting the children. Such as arming teachers, for one. Even bulletproof classroom doors would be better than those blankets.
     
  20. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    Arming teachers is a terrible idea, for a whole host of reasons. That’s not even close to a real solution. Conservatives are always griping about Millennials and Zoomers; you’d think that would impact their opinion of Millennials’/Zoomers’ fitness to handle firearms (Lord knows conservatives don’t trust them to do anything else right), but I guess they’re willing to make an exception in this case, for reasons known only to them. Raising the minimum age to purchase a firearm to 21 (which is already required in the case of pistols) makes all the sense in the world and is far and away the least draconian thing we could do, and yet the bought-and-paid-for GOP members in the Senate won’t even agree to that. That’s not the way a normal political party behaves.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2022
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