Monday, October 15, 2018

Creation Stories In The Bible Compared To Near Eastern Religious Beliefs

 I want to start by saying this is not a theological post. So, to say it's not "biblical" makes no sense because that's not the point of this article. The goal of this post is to explain what the writer of Genesis says from the perspective of Near Eastern religions. The pagans and Greeks had competing religious views, and much of the first two chapters of Genesis seek to view the world from not only the true God, Yahway but to knock down competing religious worldviews from a Jewish cultural perspective. Also, the Bible is not a science book, nor would the writers have intended it to be such a document.

The writer, or writers, of the Book of Genesis, molded it to destroy Near Eastern religious symbolism. The Bible was not the first book written, nor was it the first religious book written. Of course, the writers of the Bible didn't think it to be part of a book. Nor at the time was it intended to be part of a book. But God did. In the ancient world, especially in the Near East, there were other creation stories written by pagans who worshipped multiple gods; or, were polytheists. The Book of Genesis was written by Hebrews to counter the Pagan religions and identify the one true God. Writers of the Bible used Greek, Aramaic, and Hebrew dialect. The people at the time would have understood the symbolism in The Book of Genesis. The Book of Genesis opens with God Spirit hovering over the sea or a mass of water. At the time, in other religious beliefs a sea monster, yes a sea monster was believed to have been killed and its body split in half to form the heavens in the sky, this is why we see God separate the waters/masses.

 In the Pagan religions, gods created the earth through violence whereas the God of Israel created the Earth with words instead of violence. God created the sun on the fourth day; again this symbolism is something the ancient Hebrews and people at that time would have understood.

It is not a scientific question. The reason God created the sun on the fourth day in the Book of Genesis or it was to flip the worship of the sun on its head. The Israelites portrayed God as the God who created all things and not a God that was subservient. So in the Book of Genesis, it is going through a list of things that God said he created which are things that pagans worshiped; so the Book of Genesis says God created the heavens and the Earth; God created the Sun rather than the sun being in existence before God created it. And God said let there be light, and there was light. That is to say, let time begin. God created time. Also, the Israelites wanted people to know that God was the light and didn't need the sun for himself, but for man.

The Creation story, among other things, is about God creating a habitat for himself to dwell; Heaven and earth. Humankind reflects the image of God.

In other Near East religions, the gods created humanity to serve them, because they needed service. The gods of the ancient world had the same material make-up as humanity. Therefore, the gods were susceptible to sin and death. The God of the Bible did not need man's help to do anything.

The gods of Near Eastern religious beliefs had the same qualities of the elements in that each had the same genetic makeup, but the gods had superiority. Because the gods had both good and evil, relativism ruled, not absolute truth or genuine goodness.

No one created the God of Israel; therefore, absolute truth is possible.

The Book of Genesis is not a science book. It is a book about the character and nature of God & His interpersonal relationship with humankind. The establishment of His kingdom and dwelling place for humans.

In effect, the story of creation in Genesis 1:1-2:3 answers the previous creation stories using the symbolism from a new unique cultural perspective, which explained a truth claim of the one true God.

For many Christians, this has been seen as problematic because view the Bible as all authority and derived as a unique revelation from God. The creation stories are said to give information unassessable to other ancient cultures.

One cannot miss God saying after creating each thing, "it was good," that is to say it was functional. Although this sounds simplistic as a God admiring His creation, it's deeper than that. What Near Eastern creation stories lacked was that because God created it, it was good and that God created things good.

When God said he created man from "dirt" He did not mean from dirt; what God meant is He formed our identity, who we are in Him. By the way, have you tried to make anything out of dirt? You can't. God would have said clay if He wanted to articulate a literal definition, which was not the purpose of the Genesis.

God created man with an identity, unlike any other creature. Regardless of how you believe the world began, with a big bang or what have you; God formed man's identity to steward the land, which has many connotations, and act as His ambassadors on earth. God created man in His image. God interacts with a man on a personal basis, unlike any other creature.

God created man with a soul, unlike other creatures. Whether, like some, you believe the earth is billions of years old, that doesn't negate the fact that God created everything and everything by His will for His purpose, giving humankind a special place on His dwelling; giving man an opportunity to receive salvation, which is a free give, through His son, Jesus Christ.

In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve had access to eternal life through the Tree of Life. But when God banished the couple from the Garden, they lost the access to eternal life; therefore, God would later send His son to grant eternal life. This tells us Adam and Eve did not have eternal life on their own but access to it through the Tree of Life.

Note: This post is the first in a series, that is not sourced yet; nevertheless, I wanted to post it.

Friday, October 12, 2018

"The 1st thing the white man does when he comes in power, he takes all the Negro leaders, invites them for coffee to show that he’s all right and those Uncle Toms can’t pass up the coffee. They come away from the coffee table telling u and me that this man is all right. - Malcom X "

MSNBC panelists lay out damning evidence of collusion: 'Trump was signaling to the Russians'

MSNBC panelists lay out damning evidence of collusion: 'Trump was signaling to the Russians'

Monday, October 8, 2018

After The Senate Narrowly Confirmed Brett Kavanaugh To The Supreme Court, City Councilman Calls For Women To Grab Their Coathangers For Abortions

After The Senate Narrowly Confirmed Brett Kavanaugh To The Supreme Court, City Councilman Calls For Women To Grab Their Coathangers For Abortions

Regardless of a person's view on abortion, telling women to "get their coathangers," with anticipation newly sworn-in Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, will vote to overturn Roe vs. Wade is plain wrong.

City Councilman, Eric Barber, made the derogatory comment about women using coat hangers to abort children on a since-deleted Facebook post.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

White Evangelical Christians Laugh At Attempted Rapist Kavanaugh's Accuser Because They Believe Jesus Would Do The Same

It should come as no surprise to see right-wing evangelical Christians support President Trump's attack on Christien Blasley Ford. Many, otherwise decent, evangelicals, let's be specific, white evangelical Christians believe Judge Kavanaugh's account, without evidence. They dismiss Dr. Ford's credible allegations of sexual misconduct. Kavanaugh has shown himself not only to have lied under oath but to be a drunk, temperamentally unqualified, partisan supreme court justice. Dr. Ford's friends did not say the assault of the party "didn't happen," in fact, Dr. Ford's friend said she doesn't recall, but she believes Dr. Ford. Other friends said they didn't remember the house gathering, which is inconsequential to whether or not the assault occurred.

It's noteable, 83 percent of African-Americans believe Dr. Ford's account, and over all, most of the country believes Dr. Ford. But white evangelicals are more likely to overlook the assault.

Men have been taught to avoid emotions & when confronted with allegations, men have a tendency to compartmentalize rage rather than conflict resolve. If Kavanaugh lied under oath, and he did, how can we believe anything he says?

White, and I have to specify ethnicity because polls do, evangelical Christians do not believe Dr. Ford, not because of her credibility rather the patriarchal system, which is baked into the minds of conservative Christians. "Women are subservient to their husbands." And, accusing powerful white men of misconduct, so long as seen as a conservative Christian, speaks volumes. Women don't have the benefit of the doubt regardless of how credible the allegation. After Dr. Ford testified last week, no one said she wasn't a credible witness. Even the President said Dr. Ford appeared like a "nice person," and "credible."

In many religious cultures, if a woman has sex before marriage, it's seen as her fault. So, a sexual assault victim exposed herself to the possibility of "tempting" a man. If a woman wears provocative clothes, it's her fault that a man lusts after her. Not his lack of self-control.

 Huffington Post

Last night, at a campaign-style rally, Trump mocked Dr. Ford, not just a little swipe, but an all-out assault on her memory, the alleged incident, and her disposition. Now we have idiot conservatives claiming she has "emotional issues," which goes against their position, just last week, that Ford told the truth.

Their new position, yes something happened to her, but it wasn't Brett Kavanaugh despite a calendar (his calendar) placing him at a house gathering with the people Ford put at the party. And, no one has suggested she knew anything about a timeline, which Brett released after Ford released a statement regarding the assault.

Carly Gelsinger of the Huffington Post explains:

White evangelical Christians see women as property. Of course, they wouldn't come out and say it, but everything they believe within a fundamentalist framework points to a worldview where women submit to their husbands, after all, Paul tells Christian women to "submit to their husbands as man is the head," and man "submits to Christ," as Christ is the head of the Church and man is head of the woman.

Trump Berates Dr. Ford, Who Passed A Lie Detector Test, Credible Allegations Of Sex Assault

At a rally in Mississippi, Donald Trump bashed alleged sexual assault victim, Dr. Ford. Dr. Ford is the career professional professor & psychologist, who accused supreme court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault at a house gathering in the early 80s.

Dr. Ford did pass a lie detector test, which is somehow lost on Fox News. I haven't heard them cover in detail that fact.
Trump, like his state television support network Fox News, repeated the lie that Dr. Ford had no witnesses and that everyone said the assault did not happen. In fact, no witness or friend said any of the sorts. One friend said she didn't recall, but she believes Ford's account. Others said they don't remember, which is not the same as saying it didn't happen.

Christine Blasey Ford’s Friend Doesn’t Deny Assault Claim, Lawyer Says Huff Post

Often victims of sexual assault, or any abuse, remember the incident, but not always the surrounding details. For example, people, as Dr. Ford did, recall specific information about the assault, but not for example, how exactly she arrived, who she left with, which are inconsequential to the underlining claim.

In fact, Brett Kavanaugh's calendar gives a date with the same people Dr. Ford said were at a party. He wrote it down on his calendar. Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee have pointed out the date & people at the party, the very individuals Christine Ford placed at the party.

I am glad to be in the party where sexual assault is treated serious.

What's more significant about the calendar, Dr. Ford did not see it before her lawyers released her statement; so when she testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Ford did not know about Brett's calendar. However, many people say, Brett, left the evidence for all to see. In his writing.

It is common for us to remember specific incidences in our lives, but not surrounding details, and that can even happen with joyous events. When you found out you were having a baby for the first time, you can remember the joy, panicky feelings; or the first time you lost your virginity; events of consequence. Now if you think about happy memories, you might have locked in your brain, imagine a dramatic, horrible, life-altering event, which changes the course of your life. Healthy relationships with severe trust issues, sexual inadequacies, low-self image, mood swings relating to the event.
The interaction then triggers production of a protein called Arc in neurons in the hippocampus, a brain region involved in processing long-term memory. The scientists think the Arc protein helps store certain memories by strengthening synapses, the connections between neurons in the brain.Jul 26, 2005
Republicans claim too much time has been wasted on checking into this attempted rape, and other allegations, against Kavanaugh because of his family's pain. What the fuck about Dr. Ford's family? If her accusation is true, which I happen to believe it is, then he should not sit on the highest court in the land.

People need to remember, the supreme court has more power than the president. So, for decades to come regardless of a Democratic or Republican president, the supreme court can rule in favor of conservative positions, and that's the goal of the ultra wealthy, not to serve the people.
Remember what Trump said about women?