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Below are the 12 most recent journal entries recorded in Ethics' LiveJournal:

Wednesday, July 5th, 2006
4:02 pm
No Such Thing As Luck - A Biblical Perspective
Luck’s True Identity

Luck is a much-used word in our modern-day vocabulary. We hear it used over and over again today. Good and bad luck are concepts we actually have known about from our youth. References to luck being the direct cause behind this-and-that event are as commonplace to us as the daily rising of the sun. What luck truly is and is not, however, are going to become fully evident shortly.
The following straightforward presentation of luck’s true meaning should be tremendously helpful to those who need honest answers about this wayward concept. First we will look at what luck is not:
Luck is not fate, fortune lot, destiny, or chance. All of these concepts are outgrowths of pagan idolatry. They describe the meaningless qualities and attributes of false, pagan gods. Consequently, they are bogus concepts that describe nothing existing in reality – they cannot rightfully define luck.

Luck is not an inexplicable force that cannot be understood, explained, or accounted for. The natural-minded, irrational man mistakenly imagined the existence of a force called luck, and then said, “It can not be explained.” The only forthright and truthful explanation for the ultimate forces behind good and evil, however, are clearly defined by God’s Word – our Bible. There are no other spiritual forces affecting our lives beyond those named by this greatest of all books, and upon this reality we can confidently rest.

Luck is not a source of prosperity, nor is it the cause of evil and destruction. Early in their existence, men denied God and His Word. They began to devise their own explanations and beliefs about the causes of prosperity and destruction. Eventually, in Roman times, men attributed prosperity to a goddess named Fortuna. Today, the goddess Fortuna is called luck and people continue to foolishly and mistakenly credit it with the power to bestow prosperity. The true and abiding source of prosperity, however, is God, the Creator of heaven and earth. The blessings we enjoy in life are from Him. The source of evil, destruction, and death is from the archenemy of God, called the devil or Satan.

Additionally, luck is none of the following:
An innocent, harmless, crutch-word that can be used without any real impact or consequences.
A natural impulse operating through personal instinct.
A force that comes and goes in cycles.
An accident, happenstance or circumstance.

Now that we have established what luck is not, finally we can move ahead with certainty and accurately name what luck is, and what it has been, throughout its sordid history.

Luck is a religious devotion. Those who embrace its meaning, sing its praises. They pay it homage. They bow to it within the depths of their hearts and minds, seeking its blessing and summoning its protection from harm’s way. They believe in luck’s power and they attribute its works to many categories of life. Their outstanding confession, and the manner in which they embrace luck, certainly is a religious devotion. A Confession of luck is surely a religious acknowledgement of one’s belief in the power of a god.

Luck is a corruption of sound thought and will. It was after Adam lost his spiritual connection with God that the sound thinking of men and women started to corrupt. The foolish reasoning of natural-minded men sought to elevate their thinking above God’s Word. The evil conclusions of godless men attributed prosperity and safety to idolatrous gods- gods they had imagined and made with the works of their own hands. Their corrupted theology ascribed power to objects that had no power.

Luck is a misguided belief in the existence of a metaphysical god. The supposed god of luck is mysteriously hidden from view; nevertheless, many believe it is a generating force causing good, and working evil. Although there is no physical semblance to see or touch, active belief in this metaphysical god continues. Popular belief in luck is kept alive by the metaphysical teachings of mythology. This bewildering body of metaphysical theology has been elevated to a place almost like Scripture. These legendary, “scripture-like” records have captivated people’s believing. They depict the defining qualities of what luck is. It is to the unsound, idolatrous images of chance, fate, destiny, and fortune that they give homage. Luck has become the modern embodiment of these ancient pagan theologies, and it is to this metaphysical luck god that people knell with reverence in their thinking and believing.
The following is a three sentence, concise, “nutshell” summation for the meaning of luck:
Luck is a religious devotion, an idolatrous confession, a corruption
of sound thought and will. It is a misguided belief in the existence
of a metaphysical god; a denial of cause and effect. Luck is passive
submission to fatalistic thinking; a doctrine of devils that stands
diametrically opposed to the Word of God.
Not exactly the dictionary’s definition, but free from cloudiness. It paints a clear picture. It accurately points out truth and exposes error.
The next time a good intentioned friend or acquaintance wishes you “good luck”, be ready. Tell them you had rather have their heartfelt prayers. Tell them how you look to your Heavenly Father for His blessings upon the activities of your life. Let them know it is God who enriches and protects. Let them know that confessing luck is just a modern day form of idolatry. Teach them to count on God. God is always faithful to His Word.
As “luck would have it” is no longer available; it is no longer a viable option. Luck has had its day and that day has ended. It has been buried and laid to rest. All of us can now say, with tremendous authority, “There is no such thing as luck!”

Excerpts from the last chapter of Charlie P. Johnston’s book, No Such Thing As Luck – A Biblical Perspective, available at www.JohnstonPublications.com or Amazon.com.
Copyright © 2005 by Charlie P. Johnston Jr. All rights reserved.
Tuesday, September 13th, 2005
4:30 pm
Since this community doesn't seem very active,
And I can't find any other ethics-related communities on LJ

I've created my own at moraltheory
Please feel free to join.
Thursday, August 25th, 2005
1:57 pm
The Unofficial Carlos Mencia Fans Community
You hate him?
You love him?

The Unofficial Carlos Mencia Fans Community here on LJ was lucky enough to have the one and only Carlos Mencia join them! Yes, you heard it. The REAL deal has joined the Unofficial Fan Club, here on Livejournal.

Why don't you come join us today as well?

Wednesday, February 26th, 2003
10:04 pm
Hi everyone,

I wanted to tell you all about the Grassroots Animal Rights Conference coming up next month. It's from March 31-April 3rd in Manhatten, New York. Now is the time to register. Check out info about the conference at garc and The Grassroots AR Conference.

Hope to see you there,

Monday, February 7th, 2005
5:38 am
So... hi. I'm new. I... like discussing morals and whatnot. Umm... my own stance on morality is mostly that it's silly unless backed by statements like "it's productive/constructive because..." as opposed to "it's the right thing to do". And... that's all I can think of to say at 5:42 AM.
Friday, December 24th, 2004
10:29 am
Camus on Guilt
(x-posted liberally ;)

The theme of guilt in Camus' novels has been a bit of a puzzle for me. In The Stranger, Mersault feels no guilt for his actions until he is condemned by other people. In The Fall, we're made to feel guilty of being a selfish fraud by means of comparison. If Clamence, the outstanding moral paragon, is shown to be a fraud then how much more are we? Is Camus suggesting that to be human is to be guilty or merely to feel guilty? Or is that he suggests both because the confines of existentialism do not permit such a distinction? Why is this important to his existentialism? I think that if guilt is not only a function of one's own conscience but is also the tool of others in order to have us conform to their will, then we are in danger of being tempted to become inauthentic. I suppose this would be the same thing as what Sartre would call "bad faith". Yet this still leaves the problem of making an important distinction between matters where our conscience is telling us that we have done something wrong versus others telling us that we have done something wrong. How can we tell the difference?

The problem is especially confounded if we consider that our conscience doesn't need real people around us to trigger it even in those cases where the phenomena of guilt is socially constructed. Take for instance, homosexuality. The closet homosexual feels guilty for being who he is not because anyone has ever told him directly that there is something wrong with being who he is. Rather, the closet homosexual is feeling guilt because he fears becoming an object of hate. He may also refuse to admit his own homosexuality to himself because everything that he knows about the stereotypical category called "homosexual" does not fit him because it is thought to be something so perverse. Using logic and rationality alone to demonstrate to himself that there is nothing inherently wrong with an attraction to other men has little or no affect upon him because the social reality is so powerful that it blinds his inner conscience.

A better example, one that troubles us all, is the myth of progress. I've been out of university and out of work a little longer than I'd planned to, and as a result I feel guilty because I'm not amounting to much within the context of my society. This guilt seems to be manifest more clearly when people ask what I've been up to and I fail to meet the criteria of what they expect my answer to entail, or at least what I believe it to entail. The ethic of the times is to always be working toward some telos, or some final purpose. And as we see in mid-life crises, it can cause a great deal of depression once we realize that our telos has been undermined or never was achievable from the get-go. Is this guilt and this depression our own? Or has the burden of the times weighed so heavily upon our shoulders that we see no alternative but to subscribe to its creed?

What about murder? How do we know that murder is wrong? It seems absurd to suggest that murder is wrong only because everyone believes it to be wrong. Has there ever been a society where random murder has been considered morally permissible? Probably not, but this doesn't help us solve the problem. We would have to conceive of a society in which it was permissible and figure out whether a murderer in that society feels any subsequent guilt to know whether we can ever trust our own conscience. So I'll leave it up to you to decide. Under what conditions can we trust our conscience, if ever?
Sunday, December 12th, 2004
1:13 pm
I like this quote:

"Ethics is the restriction someone takes upon themselves, while moral is the guidelines society bestows upon you." - Deternal

Morality is a mean, not an end.
Monday, September 6th, 2004
12:49 am
medical ethics
I want to know other people's opinions on a situation. My friends and I were arguing this scenario this other day:
There is a medical malpractice case currently going on in the US. I forget the location. But the case is that a woman went to have an abortion. The fetus survived the procedure in some bizarre way. The doctor then told the woman she aborted the fetus and put the baby up for adoption. When the child was 5, the woman found about him and sued the doctor for malpractice.

The doctor is going to jail. My friend argues that the woman did not want the baby and the doctor gave the child a better chance at life, ect. I argue that it was not the doctor's choice to make about the child's future and he lied to his patient, a criminal offense.

So my question: Is the doctor a criminal?
Sunday, May 23rd, 2004
1:39 pm

I decided to join this community because I have questions regarding honesty.

It seems to be the opinion of very sensible people that deception isn't necessarily lying-linguistically this is apparently an accurate statement.

I guess I am just looking for ideas and opinions on the separate concepts of honesty, deception, and lies i.e. if someone is deceiving you, is this still considered lying?

Also, how is "none of your business" involved. Obviously, people have a right to privacy. But, what is the correct way for a person to simultaneously maintain an honest relationship with themselves, their compatriots, and their community, and still be a private person.

Saturday, May 3rd, 2003
5:02 pm
Hi all,

I'd like to invite anyone interested to questionofgod for the discussion of the Christian faith.

A place to share your views/thoughts/opinions/beliefs/ideas/Scripture, ask questions, share experiences and meet others with similar beliefs and interests.

Note to maintainer: If you'd like me to remove this promotion, lemme know :)
Monday, January 27th, 2003
5:09 pm
Morality, not religion
I hope this appropriate for this community.

I have to wonder why we are so focused on religion rather than on "being good people". I've often said the Ten Commandments have some great ideas, but the religion of Christianity has problems from my perspective. So, why can't the morals be embraced and the religion be left behind? Do the rules and ideals that guide our lives HAVE to be connected to a god(ess/s)? Why can't we just work to teach our children how to get along, how to like each other, rather than placing them at odds from the get go with "they're going to hell" or "they're Christian, unlike us Pagans".

It's just a thought.

Current Mood: thoughtful
Sunday, September 29th, 2002
10:48 pm
Hello? *echo* *echo*
Is this community still active? I'm new to LJ and very interested in ethics of all sorts, especially bioethics. *looks around apprehensively*
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