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[gthomas] Re: Saying 97 (Mats)

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  • Mike Grondin
    There is so much to respond to in your previous two notes, Mats, that I hardly know where to start. The impression I get is that you re willing to say just
    Message 1 of 2 , Jan 2, 1999
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      There is so much to respond to in your previous two notes, Mats, that I
      hardly know where to start. The impression I get is that you're willing to
      say just about anything, whether you believe it to be true or not, to
      support your point of view. Am I being unfair? Look at what you yourself
      have written, in response to my claim that many of your assumptions are
      unwarranted:

      > Concerning "unwarranted assumptions" I must point out the following:
      > I have all the right in the world to make any assum[p]tions I want.
      > I live in a free world. When I make these rather "strong" statement[s],
      > it is because I want to make a point. Do you see?

      I think I do see, but do you? Notice that the first thing you do is to
      respond with a non sequitur ("I have the right to make any assumptions I
      want"). You then follow with the lame excuse that your assumptions
      shouldn't be taken too seriously anyway, because all you're trying to do is
      to make a point. In the space of these few sentences, you've not only given
      an example of, but essentially admitted to, what I said above - that you're
      willing to say just about anything (plausible or not) to make your point.
      To me, this is a serious charge - tantamount to an implicit claim on your
      part that the end (your point) justifies the means (faulty assumptions).

      But let's get back to your interpretation of #97. The issue of the colour
      of the meal arose precisely because you made it an important aspect of your
      interpretation. It was important to you that the meal be white, because if
      it was, your contention that the meal was a symbol of light was
      strengthened. But notice what you said when I challenged your assumption
      that the meal was white:

      > Well, the colour is not significant when proving that it is spirit that
      > is spilled out. But Jesus in the Gospels always talk[s] about wheat, so
      > we can assume that the meal is white. But avoid fixation [on] the colour.

      Here again, as in the example above, you've given multiple responses, the
      implications of which contradict each other:

      (1) the colour is not significant
      (2) the assumption that the meal is white is warranted
      (3) don't "fixate" on the colour

      In other words, you're saying that you were right about the colour in the
      first place, but that you don't want to be questioned about it. In light of
      (1) and (3), what is one to make of the statement contained in your latest
      note:

      > ... the different kinds of meal that I've come across (wheat, corn,
      > rye, oats) are more or less white. The only exception I know of is
      > maize, but it is yellow like sunlight - an even better approximation
      > to the spiritual light.

      If the colour is not significant, and you advise me not to "fixate" on it,
      why do you yourself come back to it? I'll tell you why: because your
      statements (1) and (3) were disingenuous from the start - they were only
      meant to stop someone from disagreeing with you. In particular, you
      believed that (1) was false, but you wrote it anyway, because you'll say
      anything to make your point.

      (Let me interrupt this discussion of methodology to point out that the
      lightly-colored meals with which Mats is familiar are evidently made from
      bleached flour, a product presumably unavailable at the time in question.
      If the flour is not bleached, the meal made from it will have a natural
      [non-white] colour. And again I say: if the colour was important to the
      meaning of #97, the writer would have specified it.)

      Since I've given you quite a bit to chew on already, I won't go into your
      current interpretation of #97 at any length. I do want to make this point,
      however: WE DON'T KNOW WHICH (IF ANY) OF THE SAYINGS IN GTHOM ARE
      ATTRIBUTABLE TO JESUS HIMSELF. Some of them may be, but it's virtually
      certain that not ALL of them are. So it's misleading to speak of Jesus
      himself as the speaker in #97 (or any other specific saying, for that
      matter). If you want to say that _the writer intended_ that the jar
      symbolize Jesus, then that's OK. But the assumption that it was Jesus
      himself speaking is unwarranted and must be defended. (I know - you're free
      to make any assumption you want to. But if your assumptions are unwarranted
      and/or implausible, why should anyone listen to you?)

      Mike

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