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 Message
    From: Jms at B5
 Subject: Re:To JMS
      To: AOL  
    Date: 12/1/1995 9:52:00 AM  

Message 1 in thread 

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Hogan: thanks. And at this point, we're in no particular jeapordy of
being canceled; the ratings keep improving, slowly, but it's there, and the
folks at WB have openly discussed the notion of our fourth season long before
those words would usually ever come out of their mouths, so we'll probably be
okay.


jms
    From: Jms at B5
 Subject: Re:To JMS
      To: AOL  
    Date: 12/6/1995 9:20:00 PM  

Message 2 in thread 

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{Don't let the Usenet folks annoy you.}

Thanks. If it were just me, I could try to ignore some of the
nonsense; but the problem was that it soon involved vast numbers of other
people, who were being flamed or driven off the system, and every thread was
contaminated by it. A number of folks came to hang out at rastb5 because I
was there, as many of them have stated since; that wasn't/isn't the only
draw, theres' lots of good conversation, but that was a component...so my
being there put people in the position of being available to be attacked,
derided, flamed, insulted and assaulted, and I can't allow that to happen.
And it began to have an impact on my writing, and that I *definitely* can't
afford.

One way or another, that particular chapter in the experiment will find
a way to continue, in the fullness of time. I'm a patient man.


jms
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: To JMS
      To: rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated  
    Date: 12/15/2004 4:25:49 AM  

Message 3 in thread 

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>I would like to ask you why in the world you would play insult toward the
>Holy See, I am a big fan of your show, but after watching Crusade for the
>first time, you made on purpose a female Pope, this does NOT even in the
>slightest coincide with our beliefs nor would cannon change. We are not
>protestants, nor do we get along with them when it comes to dogma.

Two things....

First, as you probably know, the Roman Catholic Church has been hoping for a
long time now to re-unite with the other churches that broke off from it long
ago...which do, in many cases, recognize female priests.

If the church achieves its goal, then it will probably have to make that
adjustment over time. That being the case, the possibility of a female pope is
altogether reasonable.

Second, are you aware that during the Black Plague, when the ranks of priests
had been decimated by illness and death, the church allowed the ordination of
female priests to minister to the sick? Because if they didn't, they wouldn't
HAVE anybody else.

Further to this point...for centuries, Catholic priests were allowed to marry.
This only changed when the children of priests began to make the claim that
they, not the church, owned the land on which the churches were built. When
this became too problematic, they passed the rule that priests could not marry.

The church's dogma has always been flexible when it was politically or
financially expedient. Those who think otherwise have no familiarity with
history.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: To JMS
      To: rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated  
    Date: 12/27/2004 6:11:03 PM  

Message 4 in thread 

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>I belive you're mistaken. The excesses of the
>Crusades, the Inquisition etc. etc. are NOT things based on true Church
>teaching.
>
>Look only to the Gospels themselves as a guide. The Church's
>'tolerance' for other religions is right there in black and white.

So in other words, as long as it's written down in a book you don't actually
have to do what it says. All you have to do is read about it or know it's
there.

I refer you to James 2:14-26.

"What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not
have works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister is naked and destitute
of daily food, and one of you says to them, "Depart in peace, be warmed and
filled," but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body,
what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is
dead. But someone will say, "You have faith, and I have works." Show me your
faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe
that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe; and tremble! But
do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead? Was not
Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the
altar? Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works
faith was made perfect? And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, "Abraham
believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness." And he was called
the friend of God. You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by
faith only. Likewise, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she
received the messengers and sent them out another way? For as the body without
the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also."


>As I've said before, many abuse the teachings of the Church, just as
>many abuse and exploit the letter of _any_ law. That doesn't make it
>right, and that doesn't negate the authority of the teachings.
>

Then how about this, from the book of Matthew. chapter 7:

17Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree
bringeth forth evil fruit.
18A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree
bring forth good fruit.
19Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into
the fire.
20Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.

Your point seems to be that the acts of the church, or its representatives, is
irrelevant to the teachings. But the teachings you cite say otherwise.

If anything, it makes the offense worse. If you break the speed limit once,
and get a ticket, without knowing the limit, that's one thing. But if you
*know* the law, and go out of your way to break it, then that's even worse.

>They are as they are, and have been so for quite some time, regardless
>of circumstance or history.

So you're therefore in favor of not suffering a witch to live? Of the
standards set for selling ones daughter into slavery? How about the one that
says women should not speak in church? Or the stipulations that if a man grows
his hair long, or disagrees with his father, that he should be put to death?

Because either you follow your thesis and say that these are still correct,
which is a bit scary and tells us quite a bit...or you admit that times have
changed, and times changing affect how one follows scripture, in which case you
reject your thesis.


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: To JMS
      To: rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated  
    Date: 12/28/2004 4:55:44 PM  

Message 5 in thread 

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>The distinction being made by the previous poster reminds me of the
>distinction that some (especially Catholic) theologians make between
>the Church of the flesh and the Church of the Spirit. The Church of the
>flesh can sin, but the Church of the Spirit does not. The right
>teachings of the Church come from the latter, while the sinful acts of
>the Church come from the former.

Which is, of course, another way of saying "When good stuff happens, we're
happy to take the credit, but when bad stuff happens, we won't take the blame."


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: To JMS
      To: rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated  
    Date: 12/29/2004 2:53:14 PM  

Message 6 in thread 

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>>Which is, of course, another way of saying "When good stuff happens, we're
>>happy to take the credit, but when bad stuff happens, we won't take the
>blame."
>>
> Sounds like pretty much every other bureaucracy I have dealt
>with (g).

But when a given bureaucracy lays claim to divine authority, it seems right and
appropriate to hold it to a higher standard than the local Elks Lodge.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: To JMS
      To: rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated  
    Date: 12/29/2004 6:04:25 PM  

Message 7 in thread 

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>We're talking about the Pope, here. Was that not made clear? It was the
>Pope (multiple Popes) who ordered the different Inquisitions. This the the
>Pope, who was (within the past 10 years) REAFFIRMED as infallible by the
>current Pope.

And let us recall one other thing.

In 1632, Galileo wrote and published "Dialogue on the Two Great World Systems,"
which build on the work of Copernicus stipulating that the Earth revolved
around the Sun, which went against the notion -- propagated and defended most
vigorously by the Catholic church and its Inquisition -- that in fact it was
the Sun that went around the Earth.

The Bible clearly states that at one point the Sun was stopped in its orbit
around the Earth, and that, as far as the Pope and the Church was concerned,
was that...and Galileo was forced to face the Inquisition and spent the last
ten years of his life under house arrest.

The first, and most obvious point being that the infallible Church and Pope
were wrong.

The second point being the irony that the Church could not even begin to admit
its mistake for *centuries*. It wasn't until 1980 that John Paul II
(reluctantly, some said) finally requested a "re-examination of the evidence"
in case they MIGHT have made a mistake about this whole earth/sun business. It
then took another 12 years, until 1992, before the Church finally said, okay,
so maybe he had a point, and exonerated Galileo.

The accused, now proven innocent, could not be reached for comment.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: To JMS
      To: rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated  
    Date: 12/29/2004 6:04:45 PM  

Message 8 in thread 

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>All our disagreements here revolve around WHAT the Church is.
>
>If it is merely a human institution, then we should properly measure it
>only by human standards.
>
>If it is a divine institution, then we should properly measure it by
>divine standards.

And personally, I think that the Divine should be at least as moral and upright
as the average human being, don't you?

It should not deliberately and falsely punish people like Galileo for the crime
of being right.

It should not be a jealous god, a trait we find petty and embarrassing in
ourselves when we detect it.

It should not be capricious and prejudicial, should be accessible to the gentle
strains of wisdom and discussion.

It should not have created the fly, or plague bacilli.

It should have warned Adam about the snake at the same time it mentioned the
Apple.

It should be powerful enough that it would not allow its name to be used to
bolster the engines of war, for the greater destruction of lives, innocence and
the future.

It should have been willing to hire a good editor, because the poetry of Job
and the lyricism of Psalms is much diminished by the banality of Deuteronomy
and the pounding relentlessness of Numbers.

And finally, it should understand, as any decent human parent does, that the
apple (a different one) does not fall far from the tree, that the child often
resembles and reflects the parent...and that if the parent is jealous, and
vindictive, and judgemental, and violent, then so too will the child reflect
those things...and that perhaps some of the blame for the child's behavior can,
in some tiny way, be laid at the feet of its architect.

Because if we were made in god's image, and god is perfect, then the
advertising is incorrect, and we were made deliberately imperfect. And that
would be a terrible indictment for any parent.

So I for one, in sum, would be willing to allow the church to be judged by
divine standards as soon as they could be raised to the standards of the
average really good person. Until that time comes, I refuse to grade on a
curve.


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: To JMS
      To: rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated  
    Date: 12/30/2004 7:32:03 PM  

Message 9 in thread 

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>You are correct... the Pope is infallible only in his teaching office,
>when speaking ex cathedra on faith, doctrine and morals.

By faith and doctrine, the Sun goes around the Earth. Hence the *reason* they
went after Galileo. So he was wrong. Hence, not infallible when speaking ex
cathedra.


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: To JMS
      To: rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated  
    Date: 12/31/2004 6:48:05 AM  

Message 10 in thread 

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>Hmm...the quoted part didn't show up. I was referring to...
>
>

>>Jms at B5 wrote:
>
> > The Bible clearly states that at one point the Sun was stopped in its
>orbit
> > around the Earth,

>> Where in the heck is that? Specifically, by chapter and verse? I don't
>> recall reading anything like that... (not calling you a liar or
>> anything, just curious).

"He set the earth on its foundations; it can never be moved." (Psalm 104:5)

"The world is firmly established; it cannot be moved." (Psalm 93:1)

"Say among the nations, 'The Lord reigns.' The world is firmly established; it
cannot be moved." (Psalm 96:10)

"Tremble before him, all the earth! The world is firmly established; it cannot
be moved." (1 Chronicles 16:30)

"'O sun, stand still over Gibeon, O moon, over the Valley of Aijalon.' So the
sun stood still, and the moon stopped, till the nation avenged itself on its
enemies." (Joshua 10:12-13)

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: To JMS
      To: rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated  
    Date: 12/31/2004 6:48:05 AM  

Message 11 in thread 

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>From what he said, while there he uncovered many documents
>that proved that the RC Church used to have a marriage ceremony for same
>sex couples.

Don't know how much accuracy is there, but there's info about this at:

http://www.ashe-prem.org/five/duffy.shtml


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: To JMS
      To: rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated  
    Date: 1/2/2005 10:11:39 AM  

Message 12 in thread 

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[ The following text is in the "utf-8" character set. ]

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[ Some characters may be displayed incorrectly. ]

>Note that I didn't say the church didn't condemn Galileo, only that in
>doing so it did not (could not) use the Pope's infallibility argument, as
>the topic on hand was not germane to it. Faith, Doctrine and Morals have
>well defined boundaries

Your logic doesn't parse. They went after Galileo (and Copernicus and others)
because the church MADE these issues matters of faith. The distinction (one
might say excuse) you are making now, with hindsight, is one that the church of
that time would not support.

Galileo was not arrested for bad science. He wasn't arrested for littering.
He was arrested for HERESY.

Heresy, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, is a "theological or
religious opinion or doctrine maintained in opposition, or held to be contrary,
to the catholic or orthodox doctrine of the Christian Church, or, by
extension, to that of any church, creed, or religious system, considered as
orthodox."

So the church of that time considered the place of the Sun and Earth in the
heavens so thoroughly a matter of faith and doctrine, because the notion of man
as the center of the universe was central to their faith, that that in order to
preserve the morals of the time, they arrested Galileo and would have likely
executed him if not for his high profile and position...and had he not recanted
and spent the last ten years of his life under house arrest.

The church DID consider these to be matters of faith, so I don't understand how
you can say now, well, they weren't. If a leader is infallible on matters of
faith, then should he not know what is faith and what is not so he can know
when he is being infallible and when he is not?

But in any event, to say that the arrest of Galileo had nothing to do with
matters of faith is ludicrous on the face of it, and totally inconsistent with
history. Or, more simply, it just ain't true.

The church maintained that these were matters of faith worth murdering and
imprisoning over until the day came when they were proven, conclusively, to be
wrong...then they said, well, those weren't *really* matters of faith, we wuz
just funnin' ya. The whole Papal Inquisition, the trials, the torture, that
was just a goof.

Come on.
jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)

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