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Old 03-16-2023, 10:08 AM   #11371
enorbet
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Thank you hazel for your response but I'm not quite clear on your position yet. Are you reserving "morality" for the "spiritual" commandments like proper ways to sacrifice? and separating out the here-on-Earth social. and to become legal, edicts? Naturally since not only am I not a Believer but even if I were I could not subscribe to the idea that the "Creator of All Things" requires worship from puny humans, let alone sacrifice.

To shed some light on the difference, and possibly lighten up the discussion with a wee bit of humour, I'd like to offer a link to some philosophical comedy. First, being an old guy brought up with all that chivalry programming, I should mention that I do hesitate some to recommend humour that includes any profanity as this does ev en though I don't find it suffering from actual vulgarity, just playfulness, but I will l;eave that to you since I respect your intellect and character after years of reading your posts, enjoying them and who you seem to be.

In any case this is decades old but still very relevant and quite funny as well as thought provoking. I hope you find it fun and interesting and not overly offensive.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CE8ooMBIyC8

Cheers!
 
Old 03-16-2023, 10:34 AM   #11372
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I don't normally do YouTube because of limited bandwidth. But in any case, you misunderstood me. Rules about religious ritual are not morality. In many ancient societies great importance was attached to the right way to make offerings to gods, because if you got it wrong, they would not grant your requests. The Roman rules for sacrifice were actually much more onerous than the Jewish ones. If even the slightest mistake was made in the ritual, the priest had to go back to the beginning and do it all again. But most ancient religions were not about morality any more than many ancient social codes were. Homer's gods were certainly not interested in enforcing (or practising!) any kind of moral code.

We take the Jewish view of morality so much for granted (because after all, it's been the Christian view too for a couple of millenia) that we can hardly imagine anything else. We see it as an unarguable inner voice that lays down certain kinds of behaviour and forbids others because this is right and that is wrong. It has nothing to do with what best greases the wheels of society. Religious people attribute this inner voice to God; unbelievers have other explanations. But both feel that the voice of conscience is absolute and cannot be argued with.

I don't know how far back in history this kind of moral absolutism goes. Certainly it was a familiar concept to people like Socrates. But as far as I know, the Greeks did not meld it with religion and nor did any other ancient people. Except for the Jews. Their God required of them righteous behaviour as well as properly conducted sacrifices. Or even (according to later prophets like Amos, Hosea and Isaiah) instead of properly conducted sacrifices. If we were not so familiar with this type of religion, I think we would find it seriously weird.
 
Old 03-16-2023, 11:31 AM   #11373
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Thanks hazel. I can relate a bit because although my Grandad was devout Roman Catholic, his wife, my beloved GrandMaMa, was Jewish and used to read to me from her 4+ inch thick, embossed and elaborately illustrated, leather-bound ancient Bible. It was beautiful and interesting and likely worth a small fortune these days but nothing compared to my time with her. I have no doubt that environment influenced my character, not so much the words, just the characters of the people I loved.
 
Old 03-16-2023, 12:45 PM   #11374
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Without going into pre-christian morality, it seems to me that the heavily distorted christian moral code that emerged from the fall of the Western Roman empire was weak. And history shows that, weak as it turned out to be, that code was honoured more in the breach than the observance. Ireland has yet another child abuse scandal in the local news here.

@hazel: I never do youtube either, due to ads. I grab the url, feed it to yt-dlp and view when it's landed the latest python3 based yt-dlp (2023.03.04) works. That works even for dialup. Many of the clones use yt-dlp for negotiation.

Last edited by business_kid; 03-16-2023 at 12:47 PM.
 
Old 03-16-2023, 02:56 PM   #11375
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One of my family's prized possessions is a big(!), leather-bound Bible that my maternal grandfather got from his great-grandfather, who got it from I don't know. I don't know what kind of still-crisp paper they used or why leather that is probably a hundred years old is still soft and supple, but here we are.

Nevertheless, I simply find no need to proclaim that "the book is 'infallible.'" It is a book. And, it is an intentional compilation which included some (particular versions of some) texts and intentionally excluded others. It now is what it now is. And quite a lot of it is very dull reading. However, this "dull" book has changed millions of people's lives, so there might be something extraordinary about it after all.

My general opinion on this matter is that, when you pick up a [religious book] and read it, the book is the constant, while you(!) are the variable. The book isn't going to be affected by the fact that you read and studied it, but you might. And, this encounter or lack thereof is private and personal to you alone. ("Pray in secret.")

Last edited by sundialsvcs; 03-16-2023 at 03:00 PM.
 
Old 03-16-2023, 03:43 PM   #11376
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enorbet View Post
Thank you hazel for your response but I'm not quite clear on your position yet. Are you reserving "morality" for the "spiritual" commandments like proper ways to sacrifice? and separating out the here-on-Earth social. and to become legal, edicts? Naturally since not only am I not a Believer but even if I were I could not subscribe to the idea that the "Creator of All Things" requires worship from puny humans, let alone sacrifice...
The creator of all things wouldn't require worship or sacrifice--however, perhaps a little credit is due; and perhaps acknowledgement. Sometimes my domestic partner tries to claim that she's the only one doing chores around our home, which, is not true, and in general irks me some for stealing the credit for the chores the rest of us are doing...

I suspect that the creator likewise could get slightly peeved over puny humans claiming that they're the ones doing all the chores in the universe.

A simple acknowledgement and thanks is far from worship and sacrifice... but better than nothing at all.
 
Old 03-16-2023, 05:44 PM   #11377
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That's a nice sentiment slac-in-the-box but it still assumes a Creator exists with nothing solid to go on. At least your significant other knows for a fact the others are actually there, alive and present which from my POV is what is rather egregious with such behaviour. Plus I assume you both entered into that relationship accepting such responsibilities.

I have met some massive egos in my time but not one that actually assumed they were "doing all the chores in the Universe". I'm incredibly grateful to have lived but I have no idea where to direct any thankfulness beyond to my ancestors, and frankly my experience with the base urges that lead to reproduction have never looked like thoughtfully directed planning for offspring. Particularly in my time, before effective birth control, most births I know anything about were largely a byproduct of Romance if not an actual "accident" or at the very least, mere happenstance.

To be perfectly clear this doesn't mean such children are not loved, I was, and so is my Son but I and he were in no way planned. In my Son's case, my wife and I lost a child to miscarriage before he was born. I wanted m,ore children but my wife's health prevented any Brothers and Sisters. That's not planning. That's chance. Nevertheless I'm grateful to be alive and have a great Son, and I know for a fact he is grateful to have been born and cared for but he doesn't owe me any thanks.

Last edited by enorbet; 03-16-2023 at 05:47 PM.
 
Old 03-16-2023, 06:10 PM   #11378
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hazel View Post
Homer's gods were certainly not interested in enforcing (or practising!) any kind of moral code.
Didn't they turn that woman into a spider for hubris? Isn't that enforcing of a moral code? Maybe one that you don't agree with, but still...
 
Old 03-17-2023, 09:19 AM   #11379
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I sometimes recall this enigmatic verse, quoting Jesus:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew 9:13; Hosea 6:6:
Then he added, “Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: ‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.’ For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.”
 
Old 03-17-2023, 11:56 AM   #11380
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enorbet View Post
...and frankly my experience with the base urges that lead to reproduction have never looked like thoughtfully directed planning for offspring. Particularly in my time, before effective birth control, most births I know anything about were largely a byproduct of Romance if not an actual "accident" or at the very least, mere happenstance.
I concur... in fact, I've never quite understood people who plan to inflict this existence offspring: my boys had to defeat all our best efforts to thwart their existence... and because they did, I know they're meant to be.

I believe you are correct with your assessment of most births. Sometimes, when I attend a church I haven't attended before, which I do on occasion, mainly to expose my youngest son to church communities, the new congregation wants to know who we are etc, and will often ask me to introduce myself, and a few pastors have made the mistake of passing me the microphone... and I like to raise my hand and say: how many of you got married because you were already in the family way? I can tell by the blushes who's not raising their hand...
 
Old 03-17-2023, 12:21 PM   #11381
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sundialsvcs View Post
I sometimes recall this enigmatic verse, quoting Jesus:
A pleasant change of subject from pagan Gods. What's the enigma, though? I thought the verse in context was plain enough.
 
Old 03-17-2023, 04:48 PM   #11382
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The ancient Jewish religion has always struck me as more than a little bit strange. Their primary god, "El," had a very peculiar-to-me fondness for the 'aroma' of burned meat, and apparently, "the more, the merrier." If you wanted to be "forgiven," start incinerating lambs by the hundreds or thousands.

There are no surviving records of human sacrifices, other than the one head-fake reference to Isaac, although there are many who believe that in this respect they were actually no different from their neighbors.

Last edited by sundialsvcs; 03-17-2023 at 04:53 PM.
 
Old 03-18-2023, 02:00 AM   #11383
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slac-in-the-box View Post
I concur... in fact, I've never quite understood people who plan to inflict this existence offspring: my boys had to defeat all our best efforts to thwart their existence... and because they did, I know they're meant to be.
Everybody enjoys agreement but this doesn't look like concurrence to me. Firstly, I take considerable issue with any concept that includes considering existence as being "inflicted". Yes, Life is hard. It requires struggle. What manner of Life can you imagine that would not?

As for "meant to be" that is exactly what I mentioned as the fallacy of "seeing agency everywhere". Such views often ignore the reverse, situations in which people including newborns (much like the recent case in the Hamburg mass shooting) where despite the desire and efforts to live healthy and well, life is snuffed out sometimes rather horribly. Not only do I not buy the concept that an All Knowing, All Powerful, Master Plan Creator would indulge in such meaningless cruelty that smacks of changing ones mind midstream, I don't buy "Not a sparrow falls". Not only is that an extreme in micro-management, a sign of particularly poor planning not befitting Omnipotence, it's more like the petulant childlike behaviour of the more ancient "Gods" and seems the antithesis of All Knowing.

Such accepted anomalies and contradictions remind me of a verse from Bob Dylan, ne: Robert Zimmerman

Quote:
Originally Posted by Highway 61 Revisited
God said to Abraham, "Kill me a Son"
Abe said. "Man, you must be putting me on"
God said, "No". Abe said, What?"
God said, "You can do what you want, Abe, but
The next time you see me coming you'd better run!"
All for a test? For someone who knows All, has planned All, and should need to test nothing?

At the very least Chance does exist, so every miniscule detail is obviously not planned (and how boring would that be if it was?) so Agency is NOT everywhere, not for every sparrow or bacteria or particles winking in and out of existence constantly in the trillions every second, and again, if it were, it just means it is even less likely a human can grasp any aspect of The Mind of God, than e coli can grasp human concerns. That seems to me the pinnacle of sanctimonious hubris.

That seems more grandiose and conceited than the example of the flea floating down the river on his back with an erection yelling "Quick! Raise the drawbridge!"

Last edited by enorbet; 03-18-2023 at 02:05 AM.
 
Old 03-18-2023, 05:19 AM   #11384
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sundialsvcs View Post
The ancient Jewish religion has always struck me as more than a little bit strange. Their primary god, "El," had a very peculiar-to-me fondness for the 'aroma' of burned meat, and apparently, "the more, the merrier." If you wanted to be "forgiven," start incinerating lambs by the hundreds or thousands.
Actually, if you read the instructions in Leviticus (and most people don't because they find them weird and boring), you will see that no more than one animal is required for each type of sacrifice. The idea that if you offered more, you might get more, was a purely human riff on the theme.
 
Old 03-18-2023, 06:29 AM   #11385
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I would agree with hazel on Leviticus. It was one animal, with plenty of provisions for poorer folks. IIRC a bull was required for one particular type of sacrifice, but in that case, poorer offerings went right down to flour. Motives, not money was required.

In the case of Jesus Christ, his parents offered the poorer offering of two pigeons (Luke 2:24). Where there was no compromise was quality. Everything had to be the best they could give. So the roasting the priests got from the prophet in Malachi chapter 1 was thoroughly deserved.

And on human sacrifice: Jehovah gave them the land of the Canaanites with orders to exterminate 7 tribes there because the Canaananites were practising child sacrifice, among other things. But in time, some Israelites themselves fell into the practise themselves and other gross sins around idolatry. After they were exiled for 70 years in Babylon, those that came back had learned that lesson the hard way.

EDIT: Somewhat rarely, I would agree with enorbet and don't feel things are meant to be. When safety precautions are taken, fatalaties are reduced, and vice-versa. The implication of "things are meant to be" would make God a micro-manager, and a Vivisectionist or torturer, if you think about it. On the contrary,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ecclesiastes 9:11
I have seen something further under the sun, that the swift do not always win the race, nor do the mighty win the battle, nor do the wise always have the food, nor do the intelligent always have the riches, nor do those with knowledge always have success, because time and unexpected events overtake them all.
BTW, we had one of those kids, too. We adopted a well advertised washing powder slogan at the time: "Not impossible - biological!" He's enriched our lives and is a musical genius.

Last edited by business_kid; 03-18-2023 at 06:53 AM.
 
  


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