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  #51  
Old 08-06-2019, 10:55 AM
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I disagree, but my disagreement is ultimately baseless. because I assert you have no objective standard by which to compare two different moral systems.

I have my own system of morals which agrees with the tenets of The Satanic Temple, but I admit that my own morals are ultimately baseless.

~Max
I've never claimed an objective standard. I'm interested in people's feelings about morality, including the basis (even if it's not objective) behind their own moral systems.

Geez, how can it be this frickin' hard to get people to talk about their own thoughts and feelings about morality?

Last edited by iiandyiiii; 08-06-2019 at 10:55 AM.
  #52  
Old 08-06-2019, 10:58 AM
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Lucien Greaves was on Dan Savage's Lovecast last week and I really enjoyed listening to the interview. I agree with kaylasdad99 that calling it the Satanic Temple makes it a loaded term, but I also see why they're doing it and it's to respond to politicians putting overt Christian imagery into public spaces to appease the "Religious right." Greaves sounded very reasonable and smart in the discussion and he did acknowledge that "trolling" was part of it without saying "Heh heh, yeah we're trolls." The only two things that I really wanted to hear from him is whether or not he really worshipped Satan (and they danced around that, Savage didn't really ask or press on that angle), and how many Republicans are a part of the church and why wouldn't more be involved seeing as how many don't act very Christian.
  #53  
Old 08-06-2019, 11:43 AM
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I've never claimed an objective standard. I'm interested in people's feelings about morality, including the basis (even if it's not objective) behind their own moral systems.

Geez, how can it be this frickin' hard to get people to talk about their own thoughts and feelings about morality?
I'm not sure what kind of discussion you expect. If I were a Jew, the ten commandments would necessarily be morally superior because they are God's commandments, and in that religion morality is literally defined as following God's commandments. If I were a Catholic, the Catechism would be morally superior because it is the will of God, and in that religion morality is literally what is prescribed by God. If I were a Buddhist, I would necessarily disagree with anchoring all beliefs in science or the material world; that would actually be incompatible with mainstream Buddhist beliefs about rebirth, which goes beyond our "best scientific understanding of the world".

~Max
  #54  
Old 08-06-2019, 11:48 AM
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I'm not sure what kind of discussion you expect. If I were a Jew, the ten commandments would necessarily be morally superior because they are God's commandments, and in that religion morality is literally defined as following God's commandments. If I were a Catholic, the Catechism would be morally superior because it is the will of God, and in that religion morality is literally what is prescribed by God. If I were a Buddhist, I would necessarily disagree with anchoring all beliefs in science or the material world; that would actually be incompatible with mainstream Buddhist beliefs about rebirth, which goes beyond our "best scientific understanding of the world".

~Max
That's what I'm looking for, but not hypothetical others -- your genuinely held beliefs and opinions.

Last edited by iiandyiiii; 08-06-2019 at 11:51 AM.
  #55  
Old 08-06-2019, 12:32 PM
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Most philosophical arguments for morality are superior to ones that rely on a belief in the commands of a mystical sky pixie.
All philosophical arguments for morality are based on unproven axioms, and are therefore neither superior or inferior to any other.

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  #56  
Old 08-06-2019, 12:34 PM
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All philosophical arguments for morality are based on unproven axioms, and are therefore neither superior or inferior to any other.

Regards,
Shodan
You're still not answer the OP, which is about personal feelings and opinions about morality (and the 7 tenets in particular as compared to other religious moral guidance). Do you have any feelings or opinions on the subject? This isn't a gotcha in any way; there are no right or wrong answers.
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Old 08-06-2019, 12:43 PM
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You're still not answer the OP, which is about personal feelings and opinions about morality (and the 7 tenets in particular as compared to other religious moral guidance). Do you have any feelings or opinions on the subject? This isn't a gotcha in any way; there are no right or wrong answers.
You claimed this -
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I posit that these tenets are far superior to the moral guidance provided in the Ten Commandments or the New Testament of the Bible.
Prove it.

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  #58  
Old 08-06-2019, 12:52 PM
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You claimed this - Prove it.

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Shodan
I can't -- it's just my opinion and feeling. I'm interested in the feelings and opinions of others. If you feel differently, that's fine, but I'm curious as to why you (and any others) feel differently.

Is it really that hard just to have a discussion about feelings and opinions?

Last edited by iiandyiiii; 08-06-2019 at 12:52 PM.
  #59  
Old 08-06-2019, 12:58 PM
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Explain why you feel that way.

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Shodan
  #60  
Old 08-06-2019, 01:05 PM
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Explain why you feel that way.
Because I'm curious about the opinions and feelings of others on morality, and on these tenets in particular.

I believe these 7 tenets are superior to the guidance of the Old and New Testaments of the Bible because they focus on behaviors that are inherently harmful to other people, not wasting time on other sorts of behaviors, and my moral system focuses on avoiding harm to other people.

Your turn. Do you think these tenets are superior or inferior, and why?
  #61  
Old 08-06-2019, 01:11 PM
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You claimed this - Prove it.

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Shodan
I'm not iiandyiiii but, in terms of proof, the tenets are just humanism.

Humanism started to develop about 500 years ago and created the modern world.

The Ten Commandments created the world from 2500 years ago until about 500 years ago.

Which time period would you rather live in? Which one had the concept of Basic Human Rights? Which one believed in the equality of humanity - regardless of race or gender? Which one axed slavery?

The Ten Commandments say bupkis about equality. They endorse the existence of slavery and require obedience to your parents - with the extended law making it clear that you're supposed to stone to death a disobedient child.

Dad likes to have sex with his little girl? Great! She's supposed to do what he tells her!

The Bible, fundamentally, presents the view that the world is organized and planned. Certain people are special and have divinely granted rights that trump basic logic or morality. Why can dad do whatever he wants? Because God knows what he's doing, just trust that there's a plan that makes this somehow work out correctly.

The concept of basic human rights and that all people are equal is a viewpoint that is in direct contrast and competition to the Biblical view of divinity and God-granted rights. The Bible provides a framework to justify slavery, spousal abuse, child abuse, abuse of minors by priests, and so on. It provides a framework to justify monarchy.

Humanism doesn't provide that framework. It demolishes it and says that it's wrong. We're all just people, trying to get along as best we can. There's no plan. It's on us to think and figure out how to lessen the hardships of life and the bodies we're born into. Praying won't make an abusive father stop, the police will.

Ain't no police in the Bible. Ain't no Democracy. Ain't no gender equality.
  #62  
Old 08-06-2019, 01:17 PM
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All philosophical arguments for morality are based on unproven axioms, and are therefore neither superior or inferior to any other.
You can certainly say that - whether or not you believe it, but it smacks of sophistry. I consider an argument for morality that is based on what we understand of science and what we've observed in human interaction - that can be debated and refuted by other peoples' observations and understandings, is superior to one based on "a magical figure told me so."
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  #63  
Old 08-06-2019, 01:29 PM
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That's what I'm looking for, but not hypothetical others -- your genuinely held beliefs and opinions.
Philosophically speaking, I do not wholeheartedly subscribe to any specific mores. I consider myself an agnostic and extreme skeptic. In response to the original post, I disagree that the tenets of The Satanic Temple are superior to the Judeo-Christian tradition, or the Buddhist tradition, or a number of religious traditions. The inviolable right to one's body is in fact violable if someone willfully encroaches upon the freedoms of another; it is possible to willfully kill somebody without willing your own imprisonment. The tenet asking Satanists to root their beliefs in science is itself not rooted in science - no moral beliefs are. That may not actually be a contradiction depending on how it is construed. I think the final tenet is a sort of catch-all that undermines the rest, but such a thing is not unheard of in moral proclamations.

Even with these criticisms I do not hold any particular religion above The Satanic Temple. Philosophically speaking, I do not prefer any system of morals because I don't have an objective way to compare them. I do not yet rule out the possibility that such an objective standard exists, and in fact last month I discovered that I am partial towards kraterocracy (might makes right) as a basis of morality.

Personally speaking, I defer to what I think society finds moral, which is in our case the constitutional system of law based on natural rights. I think this is compatible with certain platitudes of The Satanic Temple, but there are many points where I disagree. The choice between law and justice is sometimes a false choice: there are laws which are unjust and must not be followed; there are laws which are unjust but should still be followed. Either way, the law ought to be changed, but that does not necessarily give one the right to skirt the law now. The right to one's body is not inviolable (inalienable), and may be justly curtailed if an appropriate law or constitutional amendment calls for such treatment. The freedom to offend in all cases is similarly without guarantee except by grace of the law - for example, I support certain restrictions on obscene speech. People's beliefs ought not be based on science, but are inherent in the people and answerable to no-one. Were society-at-large to willfully abandon science, so long as certain inalienable rights are not threatened, I would not object.

When you ask why my beliefs are superior, my answer is to point to the constitution and natural law - and I will defend my interpretation of those things. If you ask why the constitution is superior, my answer is to appeal to democratic principles. If you ask why democratic principles are superior, my newfound answer is to point at kraterocracy; ultimately, might makes right. If you ask why kraterocracy is superior, my answer is that if you disagree, your disagreement could be forcibly mooted. If you ask whether that is right or wrong, I would say it is wrong and point at the constitution and natural law. If you ask whether that ought to be right or wrong, regardless of the democracy or kraterocracy, my response is that you have asked me to speak without a tongue, for there is no right or wrong without kraterocracy, and this is an axiom.

If you were to give a hypothetical where society thought that torturing me is moral, and ask my opinion on a proposal for my own torture, I would condition my response. If I was raised in that society, and knew their mores, and identified with their mores, then I must conclude as a matter of principle that my own torture is moral. Such a situation is not merely hypothetical, we have a rich history of slave and serf culture where people "accept their place". If I was abducted from this society and placed in a society where my torture was considered moral, barring Stockholm syndrome I would consider myself a part of the former society, and therefore reject the mores of the torturers.

~Max
  #64  
Old 08-06-2019, 01:34 PM
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Philosophically speaking, I do not wholeheartedly subscribe to any specific mores. I consider myself an agnostic and extreme skeptic. In response to the original post, I disagree that the tenets of The Satanic Temple are superior to the Judeo-Christian tradition, or the Buddhist tradition, or a number of religious traditions. The inviolable right to one's body is in fact violable if someone willfully encroaches upon the freedoms of another; it is possible to willfully kill somebody without willing your own imprisonment.
I believe this is covered by the subsequent tenet: "To willfully and unjustly encroach upon the freedoms of another is to forgo one's own."

Quote:
The tenet asking Satanists to root their beliefs in science is itself not rooted in science - no moral beliefs are. That may not actually be a contradiction depending on how it is construed. I think the final tenet is a sort of catch-all that undermines the rest, but such a thing is not unheard of in moral proclamations.

Even with these criticisms I do not hold any particular religion above The Satanic Temple. Philosophically speaking, I do not prefer any system of morals because I don't have an objective way to compare them. I do not yet rule out the possibility that such an objective standard exists, and in fact last month I discovered that I am partial towards kraterocracy (might makes right) as a basis of morality.

Personally speaking, I defer to what I think society finds moral, which is in our case the constitutional system of law based on natural rights. I think this is compatible with certain platitudes of The Satanic Temple, but there are many points where I disagree. The choice between law and justice is sometimes a false choice: there are laws which are unjust and must not be followed; there are laws which are unjust but should still be followed. Either way, the law ought to be changed, but that does not necessarily give one the right to skirt the law now. The right to one's body is not inviolable (inalienable), and may be justly curtailed if an appropriate law or constitutional amendment calls for such treatment. The freedom to offend in all cases is similarly without guarantee except by grace of the law - for example, I support certain restrictions on obscene speech. People's beliefs ought not be based on science, but are inherent in the people and answerable to no-one. Were society-at-large to willfully abandon science, so long as certain inalienable rights are not threatened, I would not object.

When you ask why my beliefs are superior, my answer is to point to the constitution and natural law - and I will defend my interpretation of those things. If you ask why the constitution is superior, my answer is to appeal to democratic principles. If you ask why democratic principles are superior, my newfound answer is to point at kraterocracy; ultimately, might makes right. If you ask why kraterocracy is superior, my answer is that if you disagree, your disagreement could be forcibly mooted. If you ask whether that is right or wrong, I would say it is wrong and point at the constitution and natural law. If you ask whether that ought to be right or wrong, regardless of the democracy or kraterocracy, my response is that you have asked me to speak without a tongue, for there is no right or wrong without kraterocracy, and this is an axiom.

If you were to give a hypothetical where society thought that torturing me is moral, and ask my opinion on a proposal for my own torture, I would condition my response. If I was raised in that society, and knew their mores, and identified with their mores, then I must conclude as a matter of principle that my own torture is moral. Such a situation is not merely hypothetical, we have a rich history of slave and serf culture where people "accept their place". If I was abducted from this society and placed in a society where my torture was considered moral, barring Stockholm syndrome I would consider myself a part of the former society, and therefore reject the mores of the torturers.

~Max
Thanks for the thoughtful response! This is the kind of response I was hoping for, though I have no expectation that everyone will be as comprehensive.
  #65  
Old 08-06-2019, 02:10 PM
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I posit that these tenets are far superior to the moral guidance provided in the Ten Commandments or the New Testament of the Bible.
They don't strike me as particularly pithy and memorable, compared to commandments like "Thou shalt not steal" or "Love your neighbor as yourself." So in that sense at least (which I believe genuinely counts for something), they're not superior.
  #66  
Old 08-06-2019, 02:18 PM
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Titus the fixer:

"5 For when we came into Macedonia, we had no rest, but we were harassed at every turn—conflicts on the outside, fears within. 6 But God, who comforts the downcast, comforted us by the coming of Titus, 7 and not only by his coming but also by the comfort you had given him. He told us about your longing for me, your deep sorrow, your ardent concern for me, so that my joy was greater than ever.

8 Even if I caused you sorrow by my letter, I do not regret it. Though I did regret it—I see that my letter hurt you, but only for a little while— 9 yet now I am happy, not because you were made sorry, but because your sorrow led you to repentance. For you became sorrowful as God intended and so were not harmed in any way by us. 10 Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. 11 See what this godly sorrow has produced in you: what earnestness, what eagerness to clear yourselves, what indignation, what alarm, what longing, what concern, what readiness to see justice done. At every point you have proved yourselves to be innocent in this matter. 12 So even though I wrote to you, it was neither on account of the one who did the wrong nor on account of the injured party, but rather that before God you could see for yourselves how devoted to us you are. 13 By all this we are encouraged.

In addition to our own encouragement, we were especially delighted to see how happy Titus was, because his spirit has been refreshed by all of you. 14 I had boasted to him about you, and you have not embarrassed me. But just as everything we said to you was true, so our boasting about you to Titus has proved to be true as well. 15 And his affection for you is all the greater when he remembers that you were all obedient, receiving him with fear and trembling. 16 I am glad I can have complete confidence in you."

Translation: The letter I sent with my guy Titus here made you all sad because it gave Titus authority to deal out hurt to anyone teaching heretical versions of Christianity (e.g. Cerinthus of Corinth and his followers). Obviously, you all weren't guilty of any of those heretical ideas like the one Titus had to deal with - the injured one - and we expect continued obedience to whatever Titus tells you to do.

Praise be to Jesus.

It's not for nothing that, as soon as the Romans stopped killing Christians, the Christians started to kill Christians as fast as possible to get rid of the heretics.

Western Civilization came 1500 years later, when the printing press allowed thinkers to hold debates from long distances.
Yes what was that first pressing about again?
  #67  
Old 08-06-2019, 02:18 PM
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Here are the seven tenets of the Satanic Temple:

https://thesatanictemple.com/pages/tenets

*One should strive to act with compassion and empathy toward all creatures in accordance with reason.

*The struggle for justice is an ongoing and necessary pursuit that should prevail over laws and institutions.

*One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone.

*The freedoms of others should be respected, including the freedom to offend. To willfully and unjustly encroach upon the freedoms of another is to forgo one's own.

*Beliefs should conform to one's best scientific understanding of the world. One should take care never to distort scientific facts to fit one's beliefs.

*People are fallible. If one makes a mistake, one should do one's best to rectify it and resolve any harm that might have been caused.

*Every tenet is a guiding principle designed to inspire nobility in action and thought. The spirit of compassion, wisdom, and justice should always prevail over the written or spoken word.
I agree that these are a fairly good start for anyone trying to develop a moral or ethical sense of how to be a human among humans. I therefore must question the claim that they are Satanic. But then I've never really thought the Satanic Temple was trying to be Satanic, but rather overtly contrarian to anti-Christian evangelical teachings which claim to come in the name of Jesus Christ. These seven tenets are far more in line with the New Testament of the Christian Bible than, say, the ministry of Pat Robertson. Robertson is far more evil.
  #68  
Old 08-06-2019, 07:40 PM
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Yes what was that first pressing about again?
Something that would make money.

Last edited by Sage Rat; 08-06-2019 at 07:41 PM.
  #69  
Old 08-06-2019, 07:49 PM
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Something that would make money.
Fun Fact: The Diamond Sutra is the first known printed book with a date, and according to its ninth century colophon, it was printed for 'universal free distribution'.

~Max

Last edited by Max S.; 08-06-2019 at 07:50 PM.
  #70  
Old 08-06-2019, 08:26 PM
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Fun Fact: The Diamond Sutra is the first known printed book with a date, and according to its ninth century colophon, it was printed for 'universal free distribution'.

~Max
Did the church that spread it collect alms, tithes, tributes, or any other form of money, as a side to teaching people religion?

Any chance that there was a cost-saving component to switching from hand-written versions to a printed version?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loss_leader

Last edited by Sage Rat; 08-06-2019 at 08:27 PM.
  #71  
Old 08-06-2019, 11:28 PM
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Did the church that spread it collect alms, tithes, tributes, or any other form of money, as a side to teaching people religion?
Buddhists consider giving to monks and needy people to be a good thing, but not if you expect something in return. The donation must be an act of voluntary, unattached, and unconditional generosity.

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Any chance that there was a cost-saving component to switching from hand-written versions to a printed version?
I think the books were printed because they are faster to produce, and duplicating such texts was considered a meritorious act. That being said, only officials and other monks could read at the time; Buddhism was already ubiquitous and was in fact being heavily prosecuted by the government.

~Max
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Old 08-07-2019, 02:32 AM
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It sounds good, but I'd never join any religion which would have me as a member.
Don’t be such a Groucho. You can wade into the Satanic Temple up to your knees while proudly singing out: whatever it is, I’m against it.
  #73  
Old 08-07-2019, 07:31 AM
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Most people are weasels. They prefer a list of "do not's" because its absolves them from thought. And, invariably, something will be missed or, through some torturous twisting of language and logic, loopholes are discovered and they will feel free to do what what was not intended to be allowed.
This Tenets list pretty much forces people to actually think about what they should do and how it affects others. Sadly, as we have seen too often, thinking seems to be too tough a task for many.

Look how much trouble some people have had on the SDMB with the simple concept of "don't be a jerk".
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  #74  
Old 08-07-2019, 09:52 AM
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To be honest, I tend to see the word “Satanic” as being so semantically loaded, that it’s pretty much trolling to use it in your religion’s name.
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Yeah, if the were serious about this, they wouldn't have chosen the name the Temple of Satan. That would put potential converts off.

If they wanted a symbol of a rebellious font of reason for humanity, why not choose a name like the temple of Prometheus? Same concept, less obnoxious.
Well, yes, of course it’s trolling; that’s kinda the point, as Intergalactic Gladiator noted. I’m sure GreenHell will correct me if I’m mistaken, but as I understand it, The Satanic Temple doesn’t really want to see a Baphomet statue at the Arkansas statehouse; they just don’t want to see a Christian one there, either. So they use a literal bogeyman to drive the point home: If your government wants to promote one god, they must also promote any god. Including the one that evangelical Christians (who are the most common pushers of the “America is a Christian nation” narrative) most greatly fear and abhor. I suspect most evangelicals wouldn’t recognize Prometheus as a symbol of humanism and atheism, but evruh good Baptis’ knows the Devil.

As far as their seven precepts, I’m sure that most Satanic Temple members revere and fail to live up to them just as much as Christians fail to live up to “You shall love your God with all your heart, and your neighbor as yourself”.
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  #75  
Old 08-07-2019, 01:52 PM
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Something that would make money.
Yes, which is more evidence why you’d have to do the intellectual equivalent of a flying trapeze act in order to deny that western civilization was built on Christianity.
  #76  
Old 08-07-2019, 03:53 PM
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Yes, which is more evidence why you’d have to do the intellectual equivalent of a flying trapeze act in order to deny that western civilization was built on Christianity.
I deny that Western civilization was built on Christianity. I further deny that I must do a flying trapeze act to do so.
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Old 08-07-2019, 08:43 PM
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Yes, which is more evidence why you’d have to do the intellectual equivalent of a flying trapeze act in order to deny that western civilization was built on Christianity.
If you mean it was built on hypocritical Christians, who deny the Bible in practice and choose to live according to humanist doctrine, I suppose that I can't deny that. Western Civilization did, certainly, come out of Christian Civilizations. It certainly was nominal Christians publishing the Gutenberg bible, for a nominally Christian audience, for sinful, devil-loving money and everyone on all sides swearing all the way that this was all by and for God.

But, if that's your argument, it's like saying that the History Channel is the alpha and the omega of historical educational content production because "History" is in the frickin' name!

I could use the Bible to make any philosophical argument you could ever want, but likewise I could use the writings of Confucius, the Vedas, or quotes and excerpts from the Highlander TV series to make that exact same argument. Ultimately, the philosophical argument is the important thing, not the "trappings". If you buy a pair of black pajamas and connect two sticks together with duct tape, that may give you the trappings of being a ninja - but you ain't no ninja.

Any argument that Jesus or the New Testament made a clear argument for peace and kindness and introduced that into the world is false. The New Testament is, on the whole - minus a few well-couched examples that you have to read between the lines to suspect the real story of - a pretty benevolent and kindly work compared to most things of the time. But there were more benevolent and kindly things from before it. Nothing that Jesus introduced on that side was original nor is it completely undebatable that a pacifist reading is correct.

More original to Jesus would be the view that he introduced the basis for Socialism / Communism. Outside of the Parable of the Talents - the historical reliability of the ending of which is questioned - there's really nothing in the New Testament that's anything except anti-wealth. Doing anything with wealth or fortunes, except to give it away to care for others, is fundamentally a bad thing. And living in a commune of shared property with no personal possessions is idealized. (This is further supported in extra-biblical sources like Eusebius' description of James the Just, The Passing of Peregrinus, the letters of Julian the Apostate, etc.)

As said, you could certainly hang Christian trappings on any action taken within Western Civilization over the last few millenia, by simple virtue that Christian trappings have been commonly used through that whole period. But actual Christian values, it's probably fair to say, were fairly well dead by the end of the Early Medieval Period (and even that is only when we are discussing the Pauline orthodoxy). The Arthurian tales are probably the last writings that I know of that still emphasized something like Christian values, in Europe.

Last edited by Sage Rat; 08-07-2019 at 08:48 PM.
  #78  
Old 08-07-2019, 09:27 PM
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I can only think of metalocalypse when I hear about The Satanic Temple.

Satanic priest:Hello? Greetings, you children of Satan.
Tonight, we will pay homage to our Underlord and make sacrifices unto him.
But first a couple of announcements.
Last week, some people left some trash behind candy wrappers, coffee cups, and empty chip bags.
This is a church of Satan.
This isn't a waste paper basket, can.
So if you could please just remember to clean up after yourselves and we can avoid having, you know, ants, worms, raccoons.
Hail Satan.

Congegation:Hail Satan.

Satanic priest: Also, the neighbor next door is on a real tear.
He wants He's towing cars so try not to park in front of his house because your car will be towed, and that's around $300.
$300.
Hail Satan.

Congregation:Hail Satan.

Satanic Priest: Pray now the prayer of revenge.
From whom do you seek revenge?

Toki: I seek revenge on Rachel Ray from Food Network.
Can't you make her eyes fall out or something? Tits fall off?

Priest:Satan, grant this man the gift of revenge against his foes at the Food network.

Toki: Seriously?
Priest: Yes.
Toki: Seriously?
Priest: Yes.
Toki: Really?
Priest: Yes.
Toki: That's cool.

Priest: And now we will summon the four demons of the apocalypse! Mephistopheles, Beel Beelzebub...

Murderface: Excuse me! Excuse me! Does anyone know where the nearest bar is? Does anyone know any good bars around here? You're killing me.
You're killing me here.
It's all the same.
It's all the same.
All religions are a bunch of boring crap! Does anybody know where there's a good bar around here?
__________________
It may be because I'm a drooling simpleton with the attention span of a demented gnat, but would you mind explaining everything in words of one syllable. 140 chars max.
  #79  
Old 08-09-2019, 01:45 PM
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I'm not iiandyiiii but, in terms of proof, the tenets are just humanism.

Humanism started to develop about 500 years ago and created the modern world.

The Ten Commandments created the world from 2500 years ago until about 500 years ago.

Which time period would you rather live in? Which one had the concept of Basic Human Rights? Which one believed in the equality of humanity - regardless of race or gender? Which one axed slavery?

The Ten Commandments say bupkis about equality. They endorse the existence of slavery and require obedience to your parents - with the extended law making it clear that you're supposed to stone to death a disobedient child.

Dad likes to have sex with his little girl? Great! She's supposed to do what he tells her!

The Bible, fundamentally, presents the view that the world is organized and planned. Certain people are special and have divinely granted rights that trump basic logic or morality. Why can dad do whatever he wants? Because God knows what he's doing, just trust that there's a plan that makes this somehow work out correctly.

The concept of basic human rights and that all people are equal is a viewpoint that is in direct contrast and competition to the Biblical view of divinity and God-granted rights. The Bible provides a framework to justify slavery, spousal abuse, child abuse, abuse of minors by priests, and so on. It provides a framework to justify monarchy.

Humanism doesn't provide that framework. It demolishes it and says that it's wrong. We're all just people, trying to get along as best we can. There's no plan. It's on us to think and figure out how to lessen the hardships of life and the bodies we're born into. Praying won't make an abusive father stop, the police will.

Ain't no police in the Bible. Ain't no Democracy. Ain't no gender equality.
You...don't seem to be particularly knowledgable about either the Bible or history.

The Ten Commandments don't mention anything about slavery.

The Torah does accept the institution of slavery, which existed everywhere in the known world at the time it was written, but it never explicitly endorses the practice and enacts many laws to protect slaves from the most extreme forms of exploitation and abuse. Biblical slavery, although obviously immoral, was a far more humane institution than nineteenth-century American slavery. And the movement which abolished American slavery wasn't led by "humanists", but by Christians like William Lloyd Garrison.

I'm not sure what you think you mean by "the extended law". For Jews, the extended law would mean the Talmud, which clarifies and concretizes the laws of the Torah. Deuteronomy 21:18-21 says that rebellious children should be stoned to death, and specifies gluttony and drunkenness as examples of "rebelliousness". Pretty fucked up. But the Talmud, in Sanhedrin 71a, defines "rebellious" in a way that allows it to state flatly that "There never was a rebellious son and there never will be. These verses are in the Torah solely in order that we may study them and receive reward for doing so". For Christians, of course, this is just one of the many laws that were abolished by the coming of Jesus. So any implication that, for at least the last 1800 years, anyone has actually taken that verse literally is false.

Obviously the Bible doesn't permit fathers to rape their daughters; incest is defined in Leviticus 18 as a crime punishable by death. And although Deuteronomy does permit the institution of monarchy, it strongly advises against instituting it and warns against allowing kings to maintain standing armies.
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Old 08-09-2019, 01:50 PM
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More original to Jesus would be the view that he introduced the basis for Socialism / Communism. Outside of the Parable of the Talents - the historical reliability of the ending of which is questioned - there's really nothing in the New Testament that's anything except anti-wealth. Doing anything with wealth or fortunes, except to give it away to care for others, is fundamentally a bad thing. And living in a commune of shared property with no personal possessions is idealized. (This is further supported in extra-biblical sources like Eusebius' description of James the Just, The Passing of Peregrinus, the letters of Julian the Apostate, etc.)
Hardly a concept original to Rabbi Jesus. Leviticus 25 establishes a classless, egalitarian society by mandating that all land be equally redistributed every fifty years. One wishes the people who are so enthusiastic about the Levitical prohibition of homosexuality would pay some attention to these passages.
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Old 08-09-2019, 02:05 PM
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Anyway, to the OP: Yes, humanism, very nice and I endorse all of those precepts. But (at least some of the proponents of) every mainstream religion on Earth have managed to get there independently without abandoning their faith traditions. Comparing these recently written tenets to the literal text of ancient Scriptures is apples to oranges. It would be fairer to compare them to the ethical teachings of liberal 21st century Jews/Christians/Whatevers, which wouldn't suffer by the comparison.
  #82  
Old 08-09-2019, 02:16 PM
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You...don't seem to be particularly knowledgable about either the Bible or history.

The Ten Commandments don't mention anything about slavery.
https://www.biblegateway.com/passage...20&version=ICB

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage...20&version=CJB

Strangely, it's the children's Bible that maintains the original language - it seems because they want to use simple and straightforward language. "Servant" is understood by adults to mean slaves.
  #83  
Old 08-09-2019, 03:09 PM
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Well, that's embarrassing.

The general point still stands, though, and neither translation is really more accurate than the other. The word eved could be applied to either actual slaves (whose status as slaves was immutable and hereditary) or to what we would consider indentured servants (who "voluntarily", albeit presumably due to extreme poverty, assumed their eved status, for a term not to exceed seven years).

And look at the context. How do you suppose nineteenth-century American slaveholders would have responded to a proposed law requiring them to give their slaves one day off every week? Not very humanistically, I'm betting.
  #84  
Old 08-09-2019, 03:45 PM
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Well, that's embarrassing.

The general point still stands, though, and neither translation is really more accurate than the other. The word eved could be applied to either actual slaves (whose status as slaves was immutable and hereditary) or to what we would consider indentured servants (who "voluntarily", albeit presumably due to extreme poverty, assumed their eved status, for a term not to exceed seven years).

And look at the context. How do you suppose nineteenth-century American slaveholders would have responded to a proposed law requiring them to give their slaves one day off every week? Not very humanistically, I'm betting.
Indeed. They mostly used the Bible. That was, in fact, my point.

Humanism is still crunching forward. It's not complete. It's currently working on things like LGBTQ+ rights.

Last edited by Sage Rat; 08-09-2019 at 03:46 PM.
  #85  
Old 08-09-2019, 04:23 PM
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You...don't seem to be particularly knowledgable about either the Bible or history.

The Ten Commandments don't mention anything about slavery.

The Torah does accept the institution of slavery, which existed everywhere in the known world at the time it was written, but it never explicitly endorses the practice and enacts many laws to protect slaves from the most extreme forms of exploitation and abuse. Biblical slavery, although obviously immoral, was a far more humane institution than nineteenth-century American slavery. And the movement which abolished American slavery wasn't led by "humanists", but by Christians like William Lloyd Garrison.

I'm not sure what you think you mean by "the extended law". For Jews, the extended law would mean the Talmud, which clarifies and concretizes the laws of the Torah. Deuteronomy 21:18-21 says that rebellious children should be stoned to death, and specifies gluttony and drunkenness as examples of "rebelliousness". Pretty fucked up. But the Talmud, in Sanhedrin 71a, defines "rebellious" in a way that allows it to state flatly that "There never was a rebellious son and there never will be. These verses are in the Torah solely in order that we may study them and receive reward for doing so". For Christians, of course, this is just one of the many laws that were abolished by the coming of Jesus. So any implication that, for at least the last 1800 years, anyone has actually taken that verse literally is false.

Obviously the Bible doesn't permit fathers to rape their daughters; incest is defined in Leviticus 18 as a crime punishable by death. And although Deuteronomy does permit the institution of monarchy, it strongly advises against instituting it and warns against allowing kings to maintain standing armies.
(My bolding).
Matthew 5:17-18: "Do not think that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets. I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For amen I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot, or one tittle shall not pass of the law, till all be fulfilled."

Not really making a point, just nitpicking, in the grand tradition of the SDMB.

Last edited by Slow Moving Vehicle; 08-09-2019 at 04:24 PM.
  #86  
Old 08-09-2019, 04:36 PM
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Well, what point are you not making? Are you claiming that Christians don't regard Mosaic law has having been superceded by their "new covenant"? Or are you claiming that this verse proves that Christians don't know what their own religion "actually" teaches?
  #87  
Old 08-09-2019, 06:09 PM
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Well, what point are you not making? Are you claiming that Christians don't regard Mosaic law has having been superceded by their "new covenant"? Or are you claiming that this verse proves that Christians don't know what their own religion "actually" teaches?
It depends. Paul certainly intended for the Jewish laws to be toast (if you're a gentile). If you accept Paul's divine revelation as authentic (and you're a gentile), then you don't need to stone your rebellious child.

(To be fair, I would presume that "rebellious" was like if the son was going around torching the town or raping other peoples' daughters and such, not simply if he wasn't cleaning his room.)

Matthew is the most Jewish-Christian of the Gospels and likely comes from one of the Jewish-Christian groups (and then edited to some unknown level by the Pauline church).

I would and have argued that the Jewish-Christian church was a far more faithful presentation of the teachings of Jesus.

In essence, Paul started to teach his version of Christianity sometime after being cared for by a Christian adherent, largely in Italy, Greece, and the Western coast of Turkey. His church had a large alms-gathering wing and was fairly profitable as a venture.

After he had been doing this for a few years, there was a famine in Jerusalem and potentially a lot of people left the city for other lands. Maybe not but, at either rate, In Corinth (in Turkey - a ways back from the coast) Paul tried to start up his church but there was already a group of Christians there, lead by a man called Cerinthus. Paul's church was teaching that Jesus said to abandon the rules of Judaism, etc. that Jesus was the son of God, etc. Cerinthus taught that Jesus received a revelation from a giant angel and that he still ordered that people follow the Noahide laws. (Eusebius)

Paul went back, collected a bunch of bags of silver and went to Jerusalem, saving them from the famine. He then proceeded to make his case - and note, this is the first time he ever interacted with the disciples of Jesus, something like 2-5 years after the death of Jesus - that he had been given a divine revelation, that Jesus didn't want anyone following the Noahide laws, etc. (Acts)

James the Just (brother of Jesus and inheritor of the church) decided that Paul's church and testimony were valid, but that the Noahide laws were still on for Jews, but not for gentiles. (Acts)

During his time there, Peter decides that he would rather go with Paul rather than continue to be a part of the Jerusalem church. The Gospel of Mary notes that Peter found out that she had started to share the things that she had learned from Jesus and how he had considered her to be an equal and full apostle of his church, and when Peter learned this he was disgusted and horrified. Later, we see things like a questionable insertion of a section into 2 Corinthians where "Paul" tells them that women are never to speak.

The full list of the 12 apostles is a vague and confused thing, from the Pauline sources.

Arguments continued between Corinth and the Pauline church over the next 50-100 years. Potentially, Team Cerinthus continued to try to teach the locals that they needed to follow the Jewish laws. But, certainly, Paul ended up sending Titus to the city with or after "The Letter of Sorrows" and subsequently followed that up with 2 Corinthians where he apologizes for making them all sad and how he's happy that they all have decided to side with him, unlike the instigator and the injured one. I.e., Titus may have smashed some heads.

Eventually, Jerusalem is destroyed by the Romans around 70 AD. By this time, James the Just is dead. After his death, the Jerusalem church is lead by John I and he is in charge during or just before the destruction. Eusebius tells us that he was a Jewish-Christian who maintained the Noahide laws. (Eusebius)

Eusebius alternately says that, no, actually James the Just appointed a different guy named Simeon to be the head of the Jerusalem church after his death. But also that Simeon started up as Bishop following the destruction of the city. James the Just died 20 years before that point. How he appointed the guy post-death is left a mystery.

Eusebius tells us that Simeon and a man named Thebutis had an argument about who was to lead the church. Purportedly, Thebutis is the head of a small schism that believes in the mandatory nature of the Noahide laws and other heretical things.

Eusebius and Epiphanius agree that, just prior to the destruction of Jerusalem (e.g. before Simeon took over) the entire Christian church left Jerusalem for Pella (near Nazareth) and that they either left under the direction of Thebutis or "Ebion" (the "Black One"). What church Simeon might have taken over is unclear, if no one still lived in the city at the point in time of his appointment.

Tertullian, Jerome, and Epiphanius all note that Ebion and his followers (the Ebionites) used the same writings and doctrine as Cerinthus did.

That is to say, the entire church of people who knew Jesus or were directly appointed by them, sided with Cerinthus.

It would be too long to continue but if you further follow the churches of Syria, Egypt, and Armenia over the next two centuries, there's a very consistent image of "Giant Frickin' Angels" giving revelations (particularly Elchasai and, later, Mani), an emphasis on Jewish-Christianity, and Gnostic thought.

As to the gentile vs. Jewish question, I'll also note that (as I understand it) Jewishness is inherited through the mother. If you have any female Jew in your entire ancestry, you need to stone your rebellious child to death.

Last edited by Sage Rat; 08-09-2019 at 06:14 PM.
  #88  
Old 08-09-2019, 06:16 PM
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There are also some Arabic sources that link the Ebionites, Naassenes, Nazoreans, and Elchasaites, etc. You might look those all up.
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