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User talk:Bertrc

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How serious are we - well, we welcome all voices but be prepared to defend your viewpoint against some rather pointed criticisms. Bad Faith (talk) 22:31, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

Cool! --Bertrc (talk) 21:41, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Hello Bertrc[edit]

Let me share with you my opinion on the problem of evil. I believe God loves us as particular persons. Let me give an example - Patrick and Michelle had a daughter Sarah, but Sarah died when she was three months old. Then they had a son Steven. Now, Pat and Michelle may very much wish that Sarah had not died - but if she had not, would their son Steven exist? Quite possibly, if Sarah had lived, they would still have had another child anyway - but would that other child have been Steven? There would be a significant likelihood that next child would have been conceived at a different time than Steven was, quite possibly with a different egg. If you consider the millions of sperm, and the myriad chance events which must determine which sperm fertilises the egg, it would almost certainly be a different sperm also. So this other child would have had different DNA. And his or her experiences of growing up, having an older sister vs. being the eldest, would be very different also. So, it seems, Steven's existence depends on Sarah's death; in a world in which Sarah lives, Steven is never born, even if a younger sibling is, that younger sibling is not going to be Steven. (Even if they had a boy, and named him Steven, these two "Stevens" would have different experiences and likely different DNA too, and thus not be the same person despite having the same name.) It is like Sarah and Steven are incompatible existents. But, since God loves us as particular persons, God loves Steven as a particular person, and loves him enough to cause his existence. But since his existence requires Sarah's death, thus God causes Sarah's death as a means to the end of Steven's existence. God creates good as an end-in-itself, and evil as a necessary means to the end of good. (((Zack Martin))) 23:12, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Bert, pay no attention to Mara. He spouts this sort of cretinous prattle constantly. Eventually he becomes a bit like the hum of a rather shabby household appliance. You cease to notice. MtDPinko Scum 23:24, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Mratrean's muttering sounds like my old vacuum cleaner. AceAce For Mod! 23:25, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Or a cheap vibrator whats batteries is running down but you don't care enough to replace them. --MtDPinko Scum 23:36, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
I got this razor with an electric bread-trimmer on one end. It sounds like Maratrean when the batteries run down. Funnily enough when the blade goes dull it is akin to Maratreans cutting wit. AceAce For Mod! 23:41, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Let's be honest: It is no worse than most of the stuff I have been spouting.  :-) --Bertrc (talk) 00:18, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
Maratrean, I think you should be very careful. I think it is quite dangerous to think we can understand things to such specificity. Heck, I even think it is dangerous to try to understand things at the vague, general levels with which I have been irritating people on those talk pages. I just do not think we can come close to understanding the why's and wherefore's of suffering that way. Personally, I feel a little affronted when somebody claims my suffering (miniscule though it might be) is part of God's plan and I feel even more irritated if they try to tell me what good might come out of it. However, I gladly accept that, ultimately, God can bring good out of it and that God's plan for my good has not been derailed by it. That is the metaphysical level. On a practical level, the people on this site could tear huge holes in the scenario you give above.  :-) . . . I don't want to be harsh . . . but it is a little simplistic. Their daughter died. That is a tragedy and no earthly reasoning can change that. I would pray that God be with them and that they turn to God. I would grieve, as God is grieving, with them. If it were at all appropriate (if they came to me or some such) I could tell them I am praying and grieving for them; I might talk about God being with them and feeling their pain; at most, I might talk about how God can bring about all things for our good, even though "how" is beyond me . . . Heh, actually, I hope that I would first pray that God help me center myself on Him; I would pray that loving and being loved by Him might lead me to make the correct decisions in what to say to Patrick and Michelle.  :-) --Bertrc (talk) 00:18, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
Bert, this line of thought, to explain the evil in the world, I'm not suggesting that at a pastoral level it is necessarily the right answer for every person in every situation, but that something isn't helpful for someone in their immediate situation doesn't mean it's wrong either. Myself, I'm sure if once you told me that my sufferings were part of God's plan for the greater good, I would have got rather angry and thought you stupid. But having thought about the topic an awful lot, I have reached the conclusion that it is the right answer. Now, if I'm in the middle of some pain or trauma, I'll still believe this in my head but probably not in my heart, whereas in more pacific times I can believe it in my heart more. But my difficulty in fully absorbing this answer, at an emotional level, doesn't mean for me it is wrong. (((Zack Martin))) 01:33, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
Oh, I should add, I actually am the equivalent of Steven in the above example. Well, the names and some of the details have been changed, but in broad outline that is my own life story. Maybe that is why the explanation makes most sense to me, since I've thought about that personal fact about me (I am the eldest surviving child of my parents, but not the eldest child of my parents) a fair amount over the years. (((Zack Martin))) 01:38, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
Dude, I don't know if that kind of thinking is healthy for you. You are more special than that. To be blunt, your sibling is more special than that as well. If the heart of the all-powerful, all-knowing creator of the entire, friggin' Universe overflows at the thought of you, then, IMHO, no sibling had to die any more than any sibling had to live for you to be there. Death is a tragedy and the fact that you are growing up without a sibling is a tragedy; don't forget how Jesus wept when Lazarus died. However, none of those statements needs to remove hope or cause despair. Yes, I pray that you realize God is there, for and with you, and that you are moved by the wonder of it; but I also pray for you to realize God is there, for and with your sibling, and for you to realize how blindingly wonderful that is. --Bertrc (talk) 02:00, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
Well, maybe this is where you really get off the bus... but my own thinking is that there exists a parallel universe (or universes) in which my elder siblings lived, but myself (and my younger siblings) were never born. If God can create one universe, why can't he create several? Us two groups of siblings (my deceased elder siblings, and myself and my living younger siblings) are incompatible, we can't exist in the same universe, but that doesn't mean God can't create two universes, one for us and one for them. That is how God shows his love for both of us groups of siblings, by creating for each of us universes containing the events necessary for our existence. (((Zack Martin))) 02:20, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
. . . But this is what I mean by unhealthy. You can imagine one universe where you are, and one where your elder sibling is, but none where you both are? Aside from that, this is God we are talking about. Sure He might have created parallel universes but why would he want to? Again, I am sorry to be blunt, but it sounds more like something that you want. My life has lead me to the belief that God tends to give us what we truly long for, not what we happen to think we want. What we truly need and long for is God. Do you know the passage in the Bible where a paraplegic comes to Jesus through the hole in the roof? Jesus doesn't heal the guy; instead, Jesus forgives his sins because that is what the guy truly wanted and needed. Jesus only heals the guy for the sake of the other people around. If I were to venture a guess, I think you need to see the power and majesty of a God that can go beyond your paltry imaginings. A God that doesn't have to bother creating separate Universes for each of two children He loves so dearly; instead He can create a single, eternal existence that will be a wonder for both of them, even if the younger one can't grasp it yet. --Bertrc (talk) 02:48, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
Oh, I don't think separate universes are forever separate. God will, in due time, bring them together into union/communication with each other. In my belief, souls and universes merge and divide. (((Zack Martin))) 03:15, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
Yes . . . but try to see how this might not be a healthy. Why can't you imagine that there is a universe with both of you? You can believe that there is a Universe where you are not alive (or even exist), but you cannot believe there is a Universe where you both are alive; that strikes me as some sort of emotional or mental block. Not that I think there is a universe where both of you are alive any more than I think there is a universe where you are not alive; I truly think you are underselling God to think He cannot express perfect love to you both within the same universe, even if your elder sibling died in infancy. --Bertrc (talk) 03:36, 20 December 2011 (UTC)
Michelle? Is she that fundie brood sow with the eleventy-squillion offspring? --MtDPinko Scum 00:21, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
No, they were just random names I pulled out of a hat. (((Zack Martin))) 01:29, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
Ah. I really should read these things before I mouth off. I'm surprised to see you equating yourself with "Steven". I had always assumed you're as a queer as a double breasted hat. --MtDPinko Scum 01:48, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
MtD . . . So, if I understand your logic, you no longer think he is gay because you found out he had an elder sibling. That seems to imply that you do not think gays can have siblings . . . Wow, I have encountered a lot of forms of homophobia, but that is a first. --Bertrc (talk) 02:04, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
Settle down Bertie! I can't be homophobic as I am a big nelly queen myself. --MtDPinko Scum 02:07, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
That didn't stop Larry Craig, Mark Foley or Rush Limbaugh. --Bertrc (talk) 02:12, 18 December 2011 (UTC)
You left out the Fabulously Reverend Ted Haggard. ;) --MtDPinko Scum 02:16, 18 December 2011 (UTC)


whats your goal here?--il'Dictator Mikal (talk) 22:04, 5 January 2012 (UTC)

Ha! Ask vague questions much? It depends what you mean by "here". If you mean rationalwiki, then my goal is to have fun and to have discussions where I am not limitted to the neutral, non-snarky tone of wikipedia. If you mean "the problem of evil" then my present goal is to make the Christianity section less . . . lousy, I guess. Why? What are you thinking? What are your thoughts? --Bertrc (talk) 02:28, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Just curious. And im whatever i feel like being at that moment. --il'Dictator Mikal (talk) 22:38, 11 January 2012 (UTC)
So what do you feel like being at the moment? --Bertrc (talk) 00:25, 16 January 2012 (UTC)


GoatsforSterile.svg sterileGoatsforSterile.svgno new information 05:32, 19 June 2012 (UTC)

"See you can include comments in a revert!"[edit]

You are confusing "rollback" with "undo". Secondly; talk page. Not edit war. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 17:51, 19 September 2016 (UTC)

 ? Is rollback even an option? Cool! (Although it does seem to allow editor to be lazy and by making it easier for them to not discriminate between the changes they are moving!  :-P~  ;-) ) --Bertrc (talk) 17:54, 19 September 2016 (UTC)
The weakness of the "undo" is that it can only undo the latest edit, one at a time. A rollback undoes back to the last editor (whoever that was). Which is why, sometimes, you have to rollback and give your reasons for the rollback somewhere else (and that is the weakness of the rollback) — talkpages, block logs and/or in the edit notices for further edits. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 18:03, 19 September 2016 (UTC)
Meh, I still call laziness facilitation. Rollback undoes everything. Individual edits takes more work. Certainly, you were not being lazy (This time!  :-P~  ;-) ) when you subsequently did additional edits to move some things back, but therein, I call inefficiency!  ;-) --Bertrc (talk) 18:12, 19 September 2016 (UTC)
Noticing that Wiki software can be inefficient at times? Feel free to join our club (and I do mean that — that's the place we discuss things like that). Reverend Black Percy (talk) 18:16, 19 September 2016 (UTC)


stick your comments in the middle of someone else's post, it's really confusing for someone reading it a week later. Christopher (talk) 14:35, 12 June 2017 (UTC)

*HA*  :-D When I was reading your page, I saw that my comments were indented after the wrong post. I thought I had done that. I hadn't realized it was you. I didn't consider it "in the middle" of RBP's post. I believed RBP had made two posts (The first was that what I was writing made no sense, and the second was that God is putting the charge for evil on somebody else's bill) I had a separate response for each, so I indented them after each. Still, it is your talk page, so if you consider them one post, that's what they are. --Bertrc (talk) 15:00, 12 June 2017 (UTC)
There was only one signature so I think it was only one post, in general you should always put new comments at the bottom anyway. (FYI, all talk pages are considered community property, although your userpage is considered "yours"). Christopher (talk) 15:27, 12 June 2017 (UTC)
I chocked the single signature up to RBP being lazy. And if the dag'um gov'mint thinks my talk page is community property, I gots me a shotgun says different! --Bertrc (talk) 15:34, 12 June 2017 (UTC)

         /\          /\
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You've got a mop as well! Here's how to use it. Christopher (talk) 15:39, 12 June 2017 (UTC)

I hope this finds you well[edit]

Having randomly re-read some of our 'old' discussions, the impression I was left with was not a pleasurable one.

Across the few disparate threads I happened to peruse, the presence of an apparent pattern slowly dawned on me. This morning, after taking a long good look in the mirror, I sat down and started writing you this.

During my reading, I could honestly swear I discerned several instances in which your certifiably friendly attempts at striking up some amicable conversation with a random editor — just, the way people do — were either left ignored, or instantly made suspect (and sometimes even ridiculed outright, typically by me).

Looking back at our 'recent' conversations, it's perfectly plain for anyone to see that I wasn't justified in losing both temper and patience with you (and so quickly at that). I now hang my head in shame.

Due to my inability to deal with the situation more maturely, I ended up conducting myself like an entitled grumpass towards you. I was mistreating you, and you did not deserve that.

I now experience pangs of disappointment with myself for thinking I was somehow 'within my rights' to act like such an abrasive pencil dick towards you.

Possible explanations as to why can be explored some other time, and that's assuming the veto of interest is yours. What matters here is only how sorry I am if ever I hurt you (which I could almost guarantee you that I did). I take full responsibility for the way I acted, and I only hope you could ever forgive me.

If given the chance, I'd be downright honored to discuss with you (amicably this time!), should the fancy to do so ever strike you.

PS: The last thing on Earth which I, of all people should ever pretend to 'place myself above' is fart jokes. Th hug.gif

All the best, Reverend Black Percy (talk) 15:52, 3 August 2017 (UTC)

@Reverend Black Percy, Hey RBP, Sorry that I never responded. I have been completely off-line from rational wiki due to stuff out here in meat-space. I just read this, now. Thank you, I'm grateful and have to tell you: Do not worry!! Yes, I noticed you sometimes seemed a little . . . overly grumpy . . . but we all find ourselves in that place at times (my afore-mentioned meat-space problems have certainly put me in a surly mood) and there were also always light-hearted touches from you. Beside, let's be honest: I'm often asking for it!  :-) I'm really glad you're here. In fact, I have some really, really bad news for you: You've helped me grow in my faith and in my walk with God -- Trying to figure out how to express my ideas and confronting weaknesses in them has helped me come to, what I hope are, more accurate beliefs in God. Seriously, having people like you to talk to about God encourages me in my prayer life and in my spiritual journey -- So don't worry; I appreciate you and you haven't hurt me. Thanks, again. --Bertrc (talk) 14:51, 11 August 2017 (UTC)
FYI, I only dialed in, now, to see if we had any articles about that wacko Ed Klein. I'm still dealing with stuff out here in the real word which is why any responses from me might be very delayed. If you have a chance, say a prayer for me.  ;-) --Bertrc (talk) 14:51, 11 August 2017 (UTC)

"I replied to your message here"[edit]

You post a lot of messages like that, an easier way to let someone know you've responded to them is to include {{ping|their account name}} somewhere in your response, usually the start. It looks like this: @Bertrc and . Christopher (talk) 16:31, 11 August 2017 (UTC)

@Christopher, Awesome! Thanks! I had always thought those were just somebody explicitly typing "@", as some kind of standard. Heh, you should have just pinged me in my post over at RBP's page.  :-D --Bertrc (talk) 13:48, 14 August 2017 (UTC)


Your arguments are incoherent - and accusing people of being on drugs is unlikely to make them look favourably on you.

If 'most of the universe' runs according to scientific laws ('entropy increases', 'things move in a straight line until something diverts them' etc) so God doesn't have to consider such localities - are they by definition evil? Or does sentience have to be present - and why would God create entities which have an evil nature?

Bear in mind I am rather more patient than you will ever be - and I have an inclination towards 'If I find myself born or drafted into a universe wherein the laws of nature do not obey consistent principles, I will depart for an alternate universe created by a more reasonable author.' Anna Livia (talk) 15:05, 9 October 2020 (UTC)

@Anna Livia, Oh no! I did not at all mean to imply you were on drugs. I am so sorry if it came across that way!!!!!!
When I wrote:
I would fully accept any of the following admissions from you, but just want to know which:
  1. Yeah, I'm just messing with you by repeatedly talking about God doing things as the definition of good, even though you keep screaming that "God being present" is the definition of good. It is funny to see you tie yourself up in linguistic knots.
  2. You blather on so much that I don't actually bother to read everything you say. Seriously, would you read all of that?
  3. You are really incoherent and have not at all explained how "God being present in the void" is at all different from "God actively having to do things in the void". At least, you haven't explained it in a way that makes sense to any sane person who is not high on drugs.
I meant I would accept any of those if written from your perspective. ie. if you wrote the phrase "At least, you haven't explained it in a way that makes sense to any sane person who is not high on drugs." See? If you write a phrase with "you" in it, you would actually be referring to me!  :-D --Bertrc (talk) 14:24, 13 October 2020 (UTC)
Why do you keep on bringing drugs into the argument?
@Anna Livia, Because I like putting myself down, and the best way I see for that is to compare myself to somebody on drugs. :-D --Bertrc (talk) 18:39, 15 October 2020 (UTC)
You have not answered the Vicar of Stiffkey question.
You seem to be conflating two different usages of 'good/evil' - 'the presence or absence' of God and 'being "ethical"/doing malicious things.' There is a place 'beyond Hell' where the Devil does not go due to the stinging nettles - is God there?
The 'places between those universe-geography localities where sentience is absent' are probably those where God is indifferent/does not need to take action.
I am patient (and can bring in any number of quotes and references) - and you, dear B, have not answered the question. Anna Livia (talk) 18:35, 13 October 2020 (UTC)
Und Anzug war es nicht. Anna Livia (talk) 19:02, 14 October 2020 (UTC)
@Anna Livia, I'm not quite sure what you are asking with Vicar and StiffKey and Nettles and "the Question" and somebody's Anzug but you should probably ask on the articles talk page. Otherwise, you'll be the only one who gets to poke fun at my fancies. --Bertrc (talk) 18:39, 15 October 2020 (UTC)
Look up the Vicar yourself Bertrc.
The question is one, you Bertrc, have to answer - why is 'where God (which one?) is not by its nature evil?' If God is coterminous with the universe - God is everywhere and with all sentients, so no-where is evil: if evil is associated with some sentient entities (and most are 'naughty' at most) and involves 'malicious wrongdoing' then 'outer space and the centre of a black hole cannot be evil.'
Be more coherent in your argument - or you are likely to get mocked/given some 'dead dove' (which you can also look up). Anna Livia (talk) 19:55, 15 October 2020 (UTC)
@Anna Livia, I'll move that question over to the article.--Bertrc (talk) 23:44, 15 October 2020 (UTC)

A suggestion[edit]

Get involved in the 'omnipotence paradox' discussions (where your views may be relevant). Anna Livia (talk) 15:31, 9 October 2020 (UTC)

@Anna Livia, *HA* (just search for "Bertrc"  ;-) ) --Bertrc (talk) 14:46, 13 October 2020 (UTC)