Are angels natural or supernatural?

Discussion in 'Religion' started by Jan Ardena, Jan 5, 2017.

  1. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    I'm not saying they are either supernatural or natural.
    I'm stating that if they are supernatural, then by definition, they will be natural, once having been observed, because supernatural doesn't define their nature, only our perspective.

    I've given a list of definitions that I'm prepared to work with.
    Perhaps you have one you want to work from?

    You call this basking?

    What words do you object to?

    jan.
     
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  3. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Jan Ardena:

    Why can't you give a simple answer to a simple question? Why the run around all the time? Why the constant attempts to define your way out of the problems you create for yourself?

    I asked you directly whether you consider angels to be supernatural or natural.

    Apparently, you're either unwilling or unable to answer that question.

    Why is that?

    Look at the opening post of the thread. If you think angels are natural, then they can't be supernatural, and vice versa. The two options can't be true at the same time. Oh, and if you want to argue that angel have some natural and some supernatural characteristics, by the way, that makes them supernatural, because the supernatural aspects wouldn't be subject to natural laws, obviously.

    I did try again. I asked you directly (a) if angels are supernatural, and (b) if they are a different, natural species?

    Why didn't you answer those direct questions?

    I continually try to get answers from you. But, almost invariably, you ignore the questions completely, or you answer questions with questions, or you try to change the subject, or you introduce irrelevancies, or you try to redefine the natural meanings of the words you used previously in order to weasel your way out of previous statements you've made.

    I would much prefer it if you could discuss things in good faith, Jan.

    Does this mean you're telling me that you don't have an opinion on whether angels are natural or supernatural, then? Or that you think they are natural, but you have no way of supporting that position?

    Birds use wings to fly. Wings appear to be useful for flying, primarily. So, if angels have wings, as they are commonly depicted in art, then those wings presumably relate to flight in same way. Unless you wanted to argue that they have wings for warmth, or that they are useless vestiges of some prior evolution, or something.

    Are you trying to redefine what an angel is now, Jan? Do you think you can wriggle your way out of this by doing that?

    I thought you said existence wasn't the point of this thread. Why do you care what I think about their possible existence?

    No. That's not what supernatural means.

    supernatural (a.):
    1. Not subject to explanation according to natural laws.
    2. Not physical or material.
    3. Attributed to some force beyond scientific understanding or the laws of nature.

    If something is a frog, it's a frog. If something is an aardvark, it's an aardvark.

    This doesn't seem a difficult point to grasp, Jan.

    ???

    This thread was split from another thread, where the subject of discussion was off topic.

    It was you who wanted a debate about whether angels are natural or supernatural.

    Even now, you won't admit that they are supernatural.
     
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  5. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    What's the middle ground?

    Part supernatural and part natural means it's fair to describe them as supernatural, because no natural explanation alone will be sufficient to account for them.

    Accepted definitions of "supernatural" say nothing about our perspective (except to the extent that all definitions record common usage of words, from the perspective of human beings who use language).
     
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  7. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    Your entire philosophy is well condensed into that statement.

    "Well, it's black, so by definition it's white!"
     
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  8. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    They don't have to be either natural or supernatural if they are imaginary.
     
  9. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    Where did you get this definition from?
    I don't understand why they would add the secondary definition, as it contradicts the other two defs.

    Jan.
     
  10. Ophiolite Valued Senior Member

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    I believe I was infracted several years ago for always addressing Jan as A Darn Jane. I believe it may violate one of the forum rules.

    I imagine several of you may now be thinking that addressing him as A Darn Jane, is not such a bad idea.

    Clearly I am not actually doing that here, since that would be, apparently, a violation of one of the forum rules. I think it would relate to respecting fellow members. It's odd that Jane, I mean Jan, gets away with disrespecting many members by his devious responses and passive aggressive behaviour. Perhaps his approach is too subtle for the mods, whereas they can spot a more honest and direct act of disrespect, such as addressing him as A Darn Jane.

    So much to think about.

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  11. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    Like I said, supernatural is a perspective.

    Accepted definitions are all about our perspective, namely our lack of it. They say nothing about the nature of supernatural. Apart from your definition, which I'm very curious about, as none of the definitions I looked at mention anything about the nature of the supernatural.

    Jan.
     
  12. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    You're trying to turn this into a dispute about definitions again, Jan. And don't think I haven't noticed that you've ignored the rest of what I wrote above. Again, it would be preferable if you could argue in good faith instead of ... this.

    But let's look at the definitions you posted:

    supernatural:

    attributed to some force beyond scientific understanding or the laws of nature.

    of,relating to, or being above or beyond what is natural; unexplainable by natural law or phenomena; abnormal.

    of or relating to an order of existence beyond the visible observable universe; especially: of or relating to God or a god, demigod, spirit, or devil

    departing from what is usual or normal especially so as to appear to transcend the laws of nature

    The supernatural (Medieval Latin: supernātūrālis: supra "above" + naturalis "natural", first used: 1520–1530 AD)[1][2] includes all that cannot be explained by science or the laws of nature, including things characteristic of or relating to ghosts, gods, or other supernatural beings, or to things beyond nature.

    not existing in nature or subject to explanation according to natural laws; not physical or material.
    I've bolded the parts I consider most important.

    These definitions all match the ones I posted.

    They say nothing about perspective, other than the fact that all definitions are usages coined by human beings, as I said previously.

    And note the words "not physical or material" in the definitions you approved of, Jan. What does that tell us about the nature of the supernatural? Something, I am sure.

    ---

    Have you worked out whether angels are natural or supernatural yet? Do you intend to venture an answer to that question at any point in this thread?
     
  13. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    I regard this deliberate misquote as an attack.
    I would report you, but I don't feel it would make any difference.

    Jan.
     
  14. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    What do you mean by "attack". It's just a different perspective isn't it?
     
  15. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    There is no dispute, these are acceptable definitions.

    I haven't ignored it. I just haven't responded to it in it's entirety.

    I disagree. The terms above and/or beyond pertain to a lack of ability to perceive, from a human perspective.

    It can be perceived as non material/physical because we can't perceive it, not because it actually is non physical/material. To claim that one would have perceived it.

    I've already given you the answer.
    Go back through our conversation.

    Jan.
     
  16. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    29,699
    To tell you the truth, I'm bored with the conversation now. It's just more of the usual attempts at misdirection and changing the subject. You won't even commit to expressing the actual view that was implicit in your original post.
     
  17. Baldeee Registered Senior Member

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    747
    No, nor do I need to be to know that some things are prohibited.
    If you mean you don't know how, then for winged aircraft it's a matter of generating lift through aerodynamic means in excess of your weight (to raise you off the ground) and also in excess of your drag (for directional travel in the air).
    The lift is generated through the creation of pressure differentials as aerofoils move through the air.
    Different aerofoil shapes create different pressure gradients at different speeds, with a circular cross sectioned-aerofoil producing no pressure gradient whatsoever.
    "Flying" can be achieved by natural means and supernatural means.
    I.e. Just because birds fly via natural mechanisms does not mean that all proposed mechanisms of flight are natural.
    So to dismiss Angels' flight as having a bearing on their natural nature or not is flawed.
    One needs to examine the mechanism by which that flight is purportedly achieved.
    If the only mechanisms by which Angels can fly are ones that defy the laws of nature, ipso facto they are supernatural.
     
  18. Baldeee Registered Senior Member

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    And are anti-gravity devices small enough to avoid detection to be considered "natural"?
     
  19. Michael 345 Registered Senior Member

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    Humpty Dumpty method should be in use here but he is licking his wound.

    Poe is in attendance.

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  20. Ophiolite Valued Senior Member

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    In what way does the alleged misquote not accurately reflect your assertions about the character of angels?
     
  21. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    What would mechanism would determine a supernatural flight?.

    jan.
     
  22. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    In every way. Which is why he had to edit my post.

    jan.
     
  23. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    That's not a "deliberate misquote." It is an analogy. Saying "if they are supernatural, then by definition, they will be natural" is quite similar to saying "Well, it's black, so by definition it's white!"

    However, I am beginning to realize that you don't really have the mental horsepower to understand analogies - and even if you did, you'd purposely misunderstand anyway. You have yet to say anything coherent in this thread, I think because you realize that you have no point.
     
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