Power Corrupts

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AuthorTopic: Power Corrupts
Infiltrator
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If absolute power corrupts absolutely ,where does this leave god?

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Posts: 462 | Registered: Tuesday, June 21 2005 07:00
Warrior
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In accordance with the prophecy, I believe the correct phrasing is "I'm not so think as you drunk I am." but I encourage the creativity. In response maybe there is a point when power is too absolute that it actually isn't absolute at all. Much like dry ice can be so cold it can burn or blister skin.

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Posts: 54 | Registered: Wednesday, April 12 2006 07:00
Agent
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"The God is out of our comprension".

This is the reply of my "teologic friend". :)

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Posts: 1310 | Registered: Tuesday, December 20 2005 08:00
Master
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Since God is holy and man is not, God is the only one capable of handling absolute power without corruption.

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-ben4808
Posts: 3360 | Registered: Friday, June 25 2004 07:00
By Committee
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"Power is intoxicating. So is wine. I prefer wine."

- Dr. Douglas Domingo-Forraste

"Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. But it rocks absolutely, too."

- one of the "Demotivators."

The subtext of your original notion, however, is that power corrupts man. Is God a man? We don't know. Is the application of human limitations on a god apt then? I think it is not.

EDIT: Ugh, Ben, here we go again! How about defining what "holy" is? If you don't, then your explanation lacks meaning.

[ Friday, April 21, 2006 08:19: Message edited by: Drew ]
Posts: 2242 | Registered: Saturday, April 10 2004 07:00
Law Bringer
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I think we might have had this discussion before. "Holy" means filled with holes.

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When I saw the title of this topic I almost thought someone was complaining about my job as a mod. Is this a sign of a bad conscience?

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Posts: 8752 | Registered: Wednesday, May 14 2003 07:00
Lifecrafter
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quote:
Originally written by Kuranes-:

When I saw the title of this topic I almost thought someone was complaining about my job as a mod. Is this a sign of a bad conscience?
Possibly. How many of us have you murdered in our beds thus far?

quote:
Originally by Shuan Wuan
If absolute power corrupts absolutely ,where does this leave god?
Above the system, as always.
Part of the ideology of a perfect God is the idea that He is incorruptable (which is part of perfect).

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The Silent Assassin believes that if absolute power truly did corrupt absolutely, then the Voices would have brought the world to chaos by now.
I don't know what he's talking about, but he did make mention that he wants said voices to go away.

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Posts: 735 | Registered: Monday, January 16 2006 08:00
Shock Trooper
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The phrase is a bit of a fallacy. It'd be more correct if it were stated "quasi-absolute power corrupts absolutely." "Absolute Power" corrupts because it is not, in fact, absolute.

It is important to note that, incomplete as it may be, quasi-absolute power is very advantageous to the individual possessing it. Succintly, it gives them access to a disproportionate amount of society's goods and services. Thus, any individual possessing it has an interest in maintaining it.

The "corrupted" actions of "absolute" rulers are usually a direct response to the insecurity or to the limitations of their power. The former is obvious. Because their situation is inherently unjust, those possessing power can have either or both of two justifications for it. The first is that they wield it for the common good, and that the gross amount of goods and services available to the population is higher because of the power vested in one person (at this point, power is hardly quasi-absolute). The second is when power is used reflexively as its own justification; "I have power, and I can use it to maintain or extend itself." Of course, since the power of an individual is limited, the second is very shaky ground, and any individual seeking to maintain power, as logical self-interest dictates s/he should, must stoop to measures hardly considered ethical. The most obvious time when an individual would transition from the first to the second is when s/he has failed at the first; using power for the common good, unlike what those out of power would contend (read: Democrats, Republicans in '94) is not at all easy.

The second is a little less cut-and-dried, but I think it's very important. A lot of times, people are trying to accomplish things that they simply do not have the power to accomplish ethically. Because their power is limited, they are forced into choosing between accomplishing their aim and acting ethically.

Stalin is a rather good example of this. His stated goal was to industrialize Russia, an admirable one by itself. Of course, he didn't have the ability to do that any way besides forcibly stealing grain from peasants and overworking industrial laborers. When people rightly disagreed with where he had his priorities, my first point came into play, and he used his power to protect his power.

So, short version:

What actually corrupts are the ways in which "Absolute Power" falls short of being absolute. (That's what Prophet of Trump was getting at, I believe.)

NOTE: This is not related to the question of God. I suppose you could extend it to the idea of a God, but, come on, the concept of power is much more interesting than listening to Aran's condescending gibes and Ben's blatant trolling, which is all you're going to get if you use the G or R words on this forum.

[ Friday, April 21, 2006 10:06: Message edited by: PoD person ]
Posts: 293 | Registered: Saturday, May 29 2004 07:00
Shaper
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If God is a he, she, or it I don't see how it can be compared to humans. You might as well compare a human's capacities to those of a gerbil.
Posts: 2032 | Registered: Wednesday, January 26 2005 08:00
Law Bringer
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quote:
Originally written by Drew:

"Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. But it rocks absolutely, too."

- one of the "Demotivators."

Awesome... Despair forever!

Please, no God discussions. We don't need to repeat "Eep! Christians!", do we? And please don't even bring up the gender of any god, or we'll have TM in here screaming in no time.

And I for one think that power simply allows the corrupt elements of people's psyches to manifest themselves more strongly.

[ Friday, April 21, 2006 10:43: Message edited by: Ephesos ]

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Posts: 4130 | Registered: Friday, March 26 2004 08:00
Agent
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quote:
Originally written by Dolphin.:

.... You might as well compare a human's capacities to those of a gerbil.
v_v Most unfortunately there is no big difference sometimes.

edit:
:P but I definitely would love to have TM screaming in here.

[ Friday, April 21, 2006 10:49: Message edited by: spy-there ]

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Posts: 1420 | Registered: Wednesday, October 2 2002 07:00
Shaper
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quote:
Originally written by Ur-Noob:

Since God is holy and man is not, God is the only one capable of handling absolute power without corruption.
Saying God is "holy" or "perfect" is in itself faulty logic, as the only evidence to support Christian's idealisms of what God is thought to be are based a book written by humans.
Posts: 2032 | Registered: Wednesday, January 26 2005 08:00
Shock Trooper
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A book written by humans while under the influence of the holy spirit, i.e. directly influenced by God. At least, according to Jahvist lore.
Posts: 353 | Registered: Monday, January 9 2006 08:00
Law Bringer
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That lacks an antecedent and probably begs the question. But I don't really follow (note point 1), so maybe not. (This is deliberately poorly stated. Figure out why!)

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—Alorael, who takes God to be uncorrupted by definition. Then the limit as human approaches godly is corrupted, but human(godly) = divine. Strange, isn't it?
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Shaper
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quote:
Originally written by Redstart:

A book written by humans while under the influence of the holy spirit, i.e. directly influenced by God. At least, according to Jahvist lore.
Yes, according to the religions that follow the bible that is true.

In the end statements like that are used to avoid having to get into in-depth discussions or give elaborate explanations. I'm tempted to bait this further, but responses like that are a matter of personal belief more than anything else.
Posts: 2032 | Registered: Wednesday, January 26 2005 08:00
Warrior
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quote:
The subtext of your original notion, however, is that power corrupts man. Is God a man? We don't know.
god supposedly created us in his own image.
Therefore, he must be a man.
Posts: 57 | Registered: Monday, December 20 2004 08:00
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"Supposedly" = "must?" Not in my logical framework, baby.
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Councilor
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And that's assuming that because two things look alike, they must be alike. Which isn't always true.

Dikiyoba's response to Shaun Waun's question is "There is an exception to every rule."
Posts: 4346 | Registered: Friday, December 23 2005 08:00
Electric Sheep One
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Some say that God is not mocked, but even theology is much less mockable than one might think. Heck, the Ontological Proof had Bertrand Russell going, for a little while.

"By definition, God is the greatest of all possible beings. A non-existent being is clearly less great than one which exists. Therefore God must exist." (Anselm of Canterbury, 11th century).

It's hard to imagine who might actually be convinced by this argument; but major philosophers ever since Anselm have struggled to put their fingers precisely on what is wrong with it.

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Nuke and Pave
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quote:
Originally written by Student of Trinity:

...
"By definition, God is the greatest of all possible beings. A non-existent being is clearly less great than one which exists. Therefore God must exist." (Anselm of Canterbury, 11th century).

It's hard to imagine who might actually be convinced by this argument; but major philosophers ever since Anselm have struggled to put their fingers precisely on what is wrong with it.

This looks like a good examples of people's assumptions interfering with their logic: The problem with this proof is external to the proof itself and lies in the definition of "God":

1. By the Bible's definition, God is the greatest of all possible beings.
2. A non-existent being is clearly less great than one which exists.
3. 1 and 2 imply that God must exist.

However, how do we know that Bible's definition of "God" is true? Because Bible is the word of god.
4. God exists, implies that Bible is true.

If we assume some other definition for "god", for example, any polytheistic definition, Step 1 of above reasoning would no longer apply.

EDIT: This also illustrates why religious arguments between religious people and atheists, or between followers of different religions usually go in circles, getting nowhere. Since different religions have different definitions of divine, morality, soul, life, and so on, the axioms of one side, don't apply to the other side in such debates, which makes any logical reasoning pretty difficult.

[ Friday, April 21, 2006 16:20: Message edited by: Zeviz ]

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Posts: 2649 | Registered: Wednesday, October 3 2001 07:00
Infiltrator
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Aha! A religion debate topic! Time to throw out one of my questions.

If god is infinitely fogiving and benevolent, why did he not let us back in to the Garden of Eden?

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Posts: 420 | Registered: Sunday, January 8 2006 08:00
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quote:
Originally written by Wonko The Sane:

If god is infinitely fogiving and benevolent, why did he not let us back in to the Garden of Eden?
Well, if forgiveness requires true repentance, there you go. Or, if you consider the statement "ignorance is bliss" to be at all true, then eating the fruit of the tree of knowledge may have made existence in Eden as Adam and Eve knew it impossible - like trying to get the toothpaste back in the tube.

[ Friday, April 21, 2006 16:39: Message edited by: Drew ]
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Shake Before Using
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Well, that certainly was an intentional topic derailment. I'd have to suppose that it's because humanity no longer truly wished to return to the Garden of Eden after eating the apple.
Posts: 3234 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Infiltrator
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Ehhh? I'd sure like to live in paradise. Don't know about you. I'm pretty certain that I know what I'd truly want.

EDIT: And this topic was pretty darn derailed already, I'd say.

[ Friday, April 21, 2006 16:41: Message edited by: Wonko The Sane ]

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If you consider "paradise" to be living an unaware, caveman-like State of Nature existence, then you are welcome to it. I much prefer the life-lengthening/improving effects of participation in society and enjoying the protection of its laws.

EDIT: On the other hand, if you describe the pre-fruit of knowledge state to be similar to the state of mind of a small child, maybe it wouldn't be so bad. I did have a great time being five.

[ Friday, April 21, 2006 16:46: Message edited by: Drew ]
Posts: 2242 | Registered: Saturday, April 10 2004 07:00

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