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Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?
Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?

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http://dish.andrewsullivan.com/2013/10/20/comparative-theodicy/
"Judaism preaches the Rise of man: and instead of Original Sin, it stresses Original Virtue, the beneficent hereditary influence of righteous ancestors upon their descendants'."
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http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/original_sin.html
From John Galt's speech, in Atlas Shrugged.
"What is the nature of the guilt that your teachers call his Original Sin? What are the evils man acquired when he fell from a state they consider perfection? Their myth declares that he ate the fruit of the tree of knowledge--he acquired a mind and became a rational being. It was the knowledge of good and evil--he became a moral being. He was sentenced to earn his bread by his labor--he became a productive being. He was sentenced to experience desire--he acquired the capacity of sexual enjoyment. The evils for which they damn him are reason, morality, creativeness, joy--all the cardinal values of his existence. It is not his vices that their myth of man's fall is designed to explain and condemn, it is not his errors that they hold as his guilt, but the essence of his nature as man. Whatever he was--that robot in the Garden of Eden, who existed without mind, without values, without labor, without love--he was not man.
Man's fall, according to your teachers, was that he gained the virtues required to live. These virtues, by their standard, are his Sin. His evil, they charge, is that he's man. His guilt, they charge, is that he lives."

Matthew 5:48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
Gen 3;22 And the LORD God said: 'Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil;

Do you see Eden as our Original Sin or as our Original Virtue?

Regards
DL

  • RexT
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Re: Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?
Reply #1
Neither. The fact of evolution precludes the possibility of there ever being a first man. No first man, no fall, no garden of Eden, no god. Just old stories that no longer make any sense in the light of science.

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Re: Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?
Reply #2
Neither. The fact of evolution precludes the possibility of there ever being a first man. No first man, no fall, no garden of Eden, no god. Just old stories that no longer make any sense in the light of science.

I agree but this myth has been used to vilify, denigrate and subjugate women forever and that is why I was looking for opinions.

Regards
DL
 

  • RexT
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Re: Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?
Reply #3
I agree but this myth has been used to vilify, denigrate and subjugate women forever and that is why I was looking for opinions.

Regards
DL
 
Okay, so in my opinion, John Galt's approach isn't bad, but isn't going to do much to combat misogyny. I mean in this approach you are up against religion, and religious folk are not very open to anything that seems to attack their sacred texts.

Anyone or anything claiming that women are inferior to men is wrong. The bible is wrong about women, and of course it is wrong about many other things as well. In spite of this fact people remain loyal to their beliefs.

Social pressure is usually the best treatment for bad social ideas. It took a large relentless women's rights movement to get society to shift its views on women. If you are part of a misogynistic church, I would suggest you might find a more tolerant church. I never understood how some women can support a club for men institution like churches tend to be. If all or most of the women got up and left, it would do far more than all the clever reinterpretations of scripture. If you can't talk sense into men, take their women away from them and they will quickly come to their senses.

ETA: I get the impression you are a christian. Am I wrong?

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Re: Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?
Reply #4
I agree but this myth has been used to vilify, denigrate and subjugate women forever and that is why I was looking for opinions.

Regards
DL
 
Okay, so in my opinion, John Galt's approach isn't bad, but isn't going to do much to combat misogyny. I mean in this approach you are up against religion, and religious folk are not very open to anything that seems to attack their sacred texts.

Anyone or anything claiming that women are inferior to men is wrong. The bible is wrong about women, and of course it is wrong about many other things as well. In spite of this fact people remain loyal to their beliefs.

Social pressure is usually the best treatment for bad social ideas. It took a large relentless women's rights movement to get society to shift its views on women. If you are part of a misogynistic church, I would suggest you might find a more tolerant church. I never understood how some women can support a club for men institution like churches tend to be. If all or most of the women got up and left, it would do far more than all the clever reinterpretations of scripture. If you can't talk sense into men, take their women away from them and they will quickly come to their senses.

ETA: I get the impression you are a christian. Am I wrong?

Yes.

I am a Gnostic Christian. Christians tend to dislike us.

Men in Christianity are sheeple. It is not surprising that their women would also be sheeple. Even worse sheeple as you point out as they should be fighting against the creed that is making them into second class citizens.

You are correct about Christians and misogyny. It will not end until women do not tolerate it.

You have to fight and kill evil or it will live forever.

Regards
DL


  • RexT
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Re: Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?
Reply #5
I'm atheist. I was once drawn into the Gnostic myths. I know that Gnostics have a maternal rather than a paternal hierarchy. I really liked that. But alas they are all just myths and as long as they are understood to be such I have no problem keeping them around. When someone takes these myths literally as an historical fact the allegorical use they serve stops and all sorts of problems begin to show up.

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Re: Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?
Reply #6
I'm atheist. I was once drawn into the Gnostic myths. I know that Gnostics have a maternal rather than a paternal hierarchy. I really liked that. But alas they are all just myths and as long as they are understood to be such I have no problem keeping them around. When someone takes these myths literally as an historical fact the allegorical use they serve stops and all sorts of problems begin to show up.

When starting to study Gnostic Christianity, and knowing they were free thinkers that used logic and reason and had just written their myths to counter the usual Christian one, I had to divest myself of the notion that they/we have no supernatural beliefs.

Here is an old O.P. that I ended up with.

I am a Gnostic Christian, Our beliefs are not what Christianity says they are. We lost the God wars and they distorted our belief system. The lies have been known since the findings of our scriptures and myths at Nag Hammadi.

http://www.gnosis.org/naghamm/nhl.html

Gnostic Christianity is a teaching system from Jesus but not the one the church ever dares to teach. It frees us from religion and that is of course not what religions want. They never want the student to graduate as they might lose revenue and people.

Here is a bit of history as well as a nutshell version of how that freedom is gained.

Gnostic Christians are perpetual seekers after God. God here I define as the best laws and rules to live life with.

We believe that those laws and rules, as Jesus said, are found in our minds/hearts. I use the following to try to illustrate this notion. A bit of history and then a mindset and method to do what I promote.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oR02ciandvg&feature=BFa&list=PLCBF574D

The thinking shown below is the Gnostic Christian's goal as taught by Jesus but know that any belief can be internalized to activate your higher mind.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alRNbesfXXw&feature=player_embedded
   
This method and mind set is how you become I am and brethren to Jesus, in the esoteric sense.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FdSVl_HOo8Y

When you can name your God, I am, and mean yourself, you will begin to know the only God you will ever find. Becoming a God is to become more fully human and a brethren to Jesus.

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You indicated that Gnostic Christians used a matriarchal system. I have not seen anything on that. Can you link me up?

I like that idea and promote putting women and children above us men as a matter of duty but did not know that Gnostic Christianity leaned towards matriarchy.

Regards
DL

  • RexT
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Re: Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?
Reply #7

You indicated that Gnostic Christians used a matriarchal system. I have not seen anything on that. Can you link me up?

I like that idea and promote putting women and children above us men as a matter of duty but did not know that Gnostic Christianity leaned towards matriarchy.

Regards
DL
It's been maybe a decade since I studied anything on the subject, so I'd have to do some digging. If I run across something I'll link it for you.
But from memory (which isn't so great these days) I seem to recall that Gnostics had a system of gods where the highest most wise was feminine and the lesser more crude was male. The feminine represented the spiritual aspect of our nature (our higher self, as you say), while the male represented the physical. The male was considered the blind god, was very powerful and cruel but had no awareness. Sorry I can't help more. Anyway, good luck in your search.

  • Monad
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Re: Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?
Reply #8
Neither. The fact of evolution precludes the possibility of there ever being a first man. No first man, no fall, no garden of Eden, no god. Just old stories that no longer make any sense in the light of science.

I agree but this myth has been used to vilify, denigrate and subjugate women forever and that is why I was looking for opinions.

Regards
DL
 

Well you know my view, Eve is the Abrahamic version of Prometheus, she brought knowledge and free will to humanity. Of course the fact that she is portrayed as 'disobedient' and 'vain' reflects the misogyny of the bible and traditions that it is based on. To me she is the real heroine of the myth (and yes it is still a myth but it doesn't hurt to reframe and deconstruct myths that are powerful cultural archetypes).

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Re: Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?
Reply #9

You indicated that Gnostic Christians used a matriarchal system. I have not seen anything on that. Can you link me up?

I like that idea and promote putting women and children above us men as a matter of duty but did not know that Gnostic Christianity leaned towards matriarchy.

Regards
DL
It's been maybe a decade since I studied anything on the subject, so I'd have to do some digging. If I run across something I'll link it for you.
But from memory (which isn't so great these days) I seem to recall that Gnostics had a system of gods where the highest most wise was feminine and the lesser more crude was male. The feminine represented the spiritual aspect of our nature (our higher self, as you say), while the male represented the physical. The male was considered the blind god, was very powerful and cruel but had no awareness. Sorry I can't help more. Anyway, good luck in your search.


Thanks. It is a never ending one to a Gnostic Christian because when we do find God, we set him aside, raise the bar of excellence and try to improve on him. We see God as just signifying the best rules and laws to live life by.

You basically have our myth down correctly but please remember that we do not take our own myths literally.

They are just a tool to enhance discussions and dialogs as we try to dither out what a real God might think like.

If you Google Michelangelo's creation painting, you will see that he has God sitting in the right hemisphere of our brains and that bright eyes woman behind God is Sophia who to Gnostic Christians represents wisdom.

Seems Michelangelo was more of a Gnostic Christian than a Christian.

Regards
DL

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Re: Eden. Original Sin or Original Virtue?
Reply #10
Neither. The fact of evolution precludes the possibility of there ever being a first man. No first man, no fall, no garden of Eden, no god. Just old stories that no longer make any sense in the light of science.

I agree but this myth has been used to vilify, denigrate and subjugate women forever and that is why I was looking for opinions.

Regards
DL
 

Well you know my view, Eve is the Abrahamic version of Prometheus, she brought knowledge and free will to humanity. Of course the fact that she is portrayed as 'disobedient' and 'vain' reflects the misogyny of the bible and traditions that it is based on. To me she is the real heroine of the myth (and yes it is still a myth but it doesn't hurt to reframe and deconstruct myths that are powerful cultural archetypes).

Well put truth my friend.

Regards
DL