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03 August 2008 @ 09:30 pm
Such an original sin.  
I'd like to request that someone explain something to me.

In Catholic theology, humankind is born with "original sin," sharing in the guilt of Adam and Eve for eating fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. We suffer for a crime we did not commit because, supposedly, we have inherited the knowledge of good and evil.

Elsewhere in the Bible, we are told that evil can appear good to tempt us through trickery. In other words, we can be fooled into thinking evil to be good. Human history seems rife with examples of people being convinced to do horrible things, all because a powerful personality convinced them that these terrible acts of inhumanity were right and good, even necessary to prevent evil from flourishing.

If we cannot tell the difference between good and evil, what have we that we should be punished for stealing? Was the gift removed from us so that we should not profit from the crime? If the stolen knowledge could be taken away, why not just do that? Why condemn billions to eternal torment for something we neither seem to have nor apparently need to keep?
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ravenskye8: Judaicaravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 02:52 am (UTC)
I don't know about anyone else - but there are Jewish traditions that interpret the tree of knowledge as bestowing the ability to have free will... to choose...

But - we also don't have a concept of original sin - so...

IMO, the whole apple scene has a lot of logical holes if you're going to abide by the original sin concept - because Adam and Eve are being held accountable for knowing that eating the apple was wrong, before they ate the apple to know what right and wrong are... so - how could you punish them for doing something they didn't know was wrong?
Ace Lightning: Priestessacelightning on August 4th, 2008 07:32 am (UTC)
Adam and Eve were told specifically that they were free to eat anything in the Garden except the fruit of that one tree, and they were expressly forbidden to eat that. they were told that if they ate that fruit they would die. they didn't have to know right from wrong, they just had to have an instinct for self-preservation.

Traveler Farlandertwfarlan on August 4th, 2008 12:10 pm (UTC)
Except they didn't die, not immediately. Further, it can still be taken from the reading that they would have eventually died anyway; reference Yahweh's fear that they could have gone on to eat from the Tree of Life, which he protected with an angel with a flaming sword and the exile of Adam and Eve from the Garden.

Why were they barred only from the Tree of Knowledge previously? Was Yahweh not afraid that they'd eat from the Tree of Life prior to that? Knowing what the Tree of Knowledge could supposedly teach us and then combining that with the gift from the Tree of Life was the dangerous combination? Clearly they hadn't ever eaten from the Tree of Life; it would make us immortal, supposedly, but do you have to go on eating from it again and again?

Too many holes.
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 12:45 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 01:04 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 01:07 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - acelightning on August 5th, 2008 08:09 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 12:43 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 12:53 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 01:05 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - acelightning on August 5th, 2008 08:13 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 5th, 2008 01:45 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - acelightning on August 5th, 2008 02:16 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Traveler Farlandertwfarlan on August 4th, 2008 12:14 pm (UTC)
That doesn't make any sense, either. Jewish tradition is saying that they had to eat the fruit to gain free will, but defying Yahweh's instruction and choosing to believe the serpent was an act of choice, of free will. If they already had it, why would they need to eat from the Tree to get it? All I can tell that they gained from the story was knowledge of nudity, and if that was considered wrong to those who had eaten from the Tree of Knowledge, then why was Yahweh keeping them nude in the first place? If nudity is bad, why didn't Yahweh tell them to cover up prior to that? Nudity is okay for innocents to perform but not if you know better? Okay, Yahweh knew better, didn't he? What was he, a pervert? Adam was supposedly made in Yahweh's image, right? Nudity is wrong, as the Tree taught Adam, but Yahweh didn't tell Adam and apparently walked around the Garden and dwelt with Adam. Yahweh was what, looking at his image in the nude?

Too many holes.
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 12:52 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 12:59 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 01:10 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 01:41 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 01:55 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 02:02 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 02:16 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 02:25 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 02:42 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 03:03 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 04:42 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 04:48 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 02:02 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 05:16 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Ace Lightning: Priestessacelightning on August 4th, 2008 07:56 am (UTC)
Yahweh could have made human beings perfectly obedient, but he didn't. he gave Adam and Eve the power to choose, to have free will. then he ordered them not to eat from that one specific tree, lying to them by telling them they would die if they did. (gods are allowed to lie, and Yahweh seems to do so fairly often.) Influenced by the snake's arguments, Eve chose to disobey, and discovered that the fruit didn't kill her. then she in turn influenced Adam, who chose to also eat the fruit. ultimately, "original sin" is nothing more nor less than disobedience.

in the cases of evil disguising itself as good, there is usually the same theme of disobedience. Yahweh or one of his mouthpieces pronounces a thou-shalt-not. An evil trickster then convinces some human that it's okay to violate that rule, and the human chooses to believe the trickster rather than just shut up and obey.

it's very similar to the rationale for the creationist argument - which are we supposed to believe, the evidence of our senses, or Yahweh's infallible word? he always seems to value his own self-importance over logic, empiricism, or any other form of reasoning.


Traveler Farlandertwfarlan on August 4th, 2008 12:22 pm (UTC)
I've said it before and I'll say it again: punishing them for using their will when he could have stopped the serpent or moved the Tree is <a href="http://twfarlan.livejournal.com/53414.html#cutid1an act of cruelty and stems from bad parenting</a>.
ravenskye8ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 12:58 pm (UTC)
Yup...

This is why I love reading the commentary on Genesis... it's got very poor internal logic - and the Rabbis spend so much time trying to force it to make sense...

There's a wonderful commentary that the whole Adam/Eve/Serpent/Apple thing was totally set up by God... that he intended for them to eat from the tree, and then to kick them out of the Garden of Eden - just as a bird will eventually push its offspring out of the nest...

And yes - God is totally a bad parent here - he's over the top in punishing Adam & Eve for doing something he set them up for... which several Rabbis explain by talking about God needing to learn and adjust to us people being in the world with him...
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 01:01 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 01:12 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Ace Lightning: Pleiadesacelightning on August 5th, 2008 08:22 am (UTC)
i agree. Yahweh is a paranoid, self-centered, spoiled yet cripplingly insecure psychopath who gets his kicks torturing humans. his main activity seems to be setting up impossible standards and conflicting rules, and then punishing people when they inevitably fail to live up to Yahweh's capricious orders. he wants us to fail, so he'll have an excuse to have a hissy fit and do some smiting.

personally, i refuse to believe in, let alone worship, a god like that.


ravenskye8ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 01:19 pm (UTC)
Oh - and just a note here because I want to make sure you know I'm not trying to convince you that you're wrong or anything... I just like the debate... (I need to find a "I'm a Geek" icon :)

I'm something of clergy-in-training, and I enjoy the challenge of finding (sometimes obscure) Rabbinical commentary that deal with logical loopholes... and Genesis is something I've studied in more detail than other biblical areas because of disagreements I've had with my early teachers over similar issues to what you bring up...
Traveler Farlandertwfarlan on August 4th, 2008 01:43 pm (UTC)
If the earliest treatment of morality in the religion cannot be saved from obvious flaws, it makes me question the entirety of the moral system in question.
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 01:46 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 01:56 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 02:20 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 02:58 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 04:26 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 04:54 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ravenskye8 on August 4th, 2008 06:50 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 10:33 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Katkatmoonshaker on August 4th, 2008 03:05 pm (UTC)
Catholic theology is an interpretation by man, not God.
The Bible is an interpretation by man, while inspired by God, it is not perfect.
God can often use certain acts to move us in the direction in which He feels we should go, although we don't understand it (as with standing back and letting Adam and Eve eat from the Tree).
How do you know it was a punishment? Just because it was interpreted that way in the Bible, doesn't make it that. Yes, they were thrown out from Eden, but they were also let out into God's World, to take care of and cherish. Just because they (and their descendants) may have done a shitty job of it, isn't God's fault. He gave free will as part of eating the fruit of the Tree.

but this is JMHO... other people have other opinions... which is the entire point.
Traveler Farlandertwfarlan on August 4th, 2008 03:17 pm (UTC)
Yahweh presents it as a punishment in the only text we supposedly have to go by, the Bible. Cursed is the earth for our sakes, cursed to sorrowful childbirth is Eve, cursed to rule by man is woman, cursed to eat of the earth from the sweat of our brows, cursed and cursed again.

If the book is not the unquestionable and perfect word, then how are we at fault for anything we do based on it?

Yahweh can use certain acts? Does he lack the ability to simply make things happen? Or to make a being intelligent enough to discourse with and understand his reasoning? It is Yahweh's intention that we disobey, yet we suffer by his decree for disobedience? Horseshit and bull feathers. People have lost kids to the state for this type of fuckmuppetry.
(no subject) - katmoonshaker on August 4th, 2008 03:41 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 04:00 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - katmoonshaker on August 4th, 2008 04:16 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 4th, 2008 05:07 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
Traveler Farlandertwfarlan on August 4th, 2008 10:49 pm (UTC)
Just trying to muddle through life, you know?
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - twfarlan on August 5th, 2008 12:19 am (UTC) (Expand)