There is a distinction and a difference between what is only a potential in contrast to what is an actual.
Confusing the two leads to false choices and needless crisis of conscience.
Let us examine on a very definite basis what and why these two terms are so confused.
Look at a stack of bricks and lumber. Is that a house? No.
A house is an actual. The stack of bricks and lumber are potential to house while being actual to brick and board.
An outside agency, an architectural plan and a span of time for building must be applied for one to become the other.
Directed action is key. Decision followed by application of purpose is key.
Look at an outbreak of Mad Cow on a ranch in Wyoming. Is that a pandemic? No. It is apotential
for gross epidemic outbreak everywhere.
What do these two examples have in common? The human mind must actively apply what IS with what my POSSIBLY BE.
An interpretive assessment is called for.
A potential is SPECULATIVE and not concrete.
An actual is concrete. It is an IS.
An embryo which is fertilized is a potential person until it is born close to full term and becomes an actual person--outside the womb.
This potential is under construction by natural process. Like bricks and lumber being made into a house.
Until the house is fit for habitation it isn't inhabitable as a Home. Human life requires constant maintenance to be viable at any age.
Confusing the two states of being is needless murkiness brought on by emotional counterfeit thinking.
In view of the above, there is a philosophical SLIPPERY SLOPE.
At some point in the CONVERSION from potential to actual there is a scale of completeness. An arbitrary judgement can be applied as to WHEN.
Cooking a steak, for example, is a casual gray scale process arbitrarily linked to personal preference and not actual absoluteness of perfection.
Matters of Taste are unnecesary disputes.
Asserting taste as justification for Absolutes is counterfeit thinking.
False quandries arise when we become ARBITRARY about potential and actual.
For example, the Abortion war.
One group declares the potential person is absolutely the same when an embryo as the actual person who is born and insists on EQUAL status.
The other group declares the potential person as embryo is NOT an actual person while asserting the ACTUAL woman has superior status.
The artifice of framing an argument of personal taste for absolutes is counterfeit morally because it wrests from others the freedom to apply actual values.
By what authority do arbiters of taste wield their absolutes? By phony appeals which misdirect and blur responsibility.
Nowhere is this more evident than in Religion and Politics.
Religion relies on supposed sacred texts or vested hierarchy directed by Divine power.
Politics relies on empowered representatives or the might of armed retribution in the hands of a despot.
It is not my place here and now to TELL YOU what is right or fair.
But, I can direct your attention toward BECOMING AWARE of phony arguments relying on the blur and confusion between potential and actual.
Jehovah's Witnesses are prey to confusion especially!
Truth is potentially a direct one-on-one correspondence between a claim and reality itself.
But, JW's idea of THE TRUTH remains a potential never achieving that reality!
The magazines and books published by the Watchtower Society create a counterfeit illusion: OUR CLAIMS=REALITY.
Predictions about End Times are potentially fulfillments of bible prophecy. But, their CLAIMS are never actually evidenced and remain potential only.
The blood transfusion warnings from the Governing Body confuse actual life and death choices with potential violations of God's blood laws.
Why are these blood laws only potential? Because, the claims and assertions made by Watchtower religion are entirely a matter of personal taste by those interpreting proof texts. There is no actual test by which violation can be demonstrated in reality! It is semantic nonsense.
No voice of God from heaven thunders disapproval. Feeble rants from Brooklyn are a poor substitute! Matters of taste are not proof.
The promises of life in a Paradise Earth are potential and not actual. Why? NOTHING has happened to actualize into fact.
CLAIMS are not proof. Personal interpreations are just claims. They are potentially "true".
A quick survey of all the claims by the Watchtower Society since 1879 yield a good statistical fact foundation for judging the actuality of authority from God.
How many claims of potential importance have been realized into an actual historical happening?
Here is the statistic: ZERO!
The potential has never become an actual ever!
Yet, the counterfeit arguments, assertions from phony authority which are nothing more than matters of PERSONAL TASTE by men in Brooklyn continue to issue dire threats, warnings and authoritative rants just AS THOUGH there has been actual real-world happenings.
The earthquakes, famine, diseases, wars, civil unrest that have occured throughout every era of man's history are proof of NOTHING but human nature
under leadership at odds with reality. Watchtower leaders pretend otherwise. They point to these events as somehow NOVEL to the 20th century as a fulfillment of a "sign" of End Times.
However, religious zealots have done so practically every decade for the last 2000 years.
Why? They confuse a potential with an actual.
Final words: CLAIMS are not PROOF of anything.