Mythology and Religion: In The News

What needs do mythology and religion serve in today's world and in ancient times? Here we discuss the relationship between mythology, religion and science from mythological, religious and philosophical viewpoints.

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MasterYoda
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Post by MasterYoda » Tue Jun 24, 2008 3:36 pm

No I am not satisfied with your personal attacks. I notice how you are off topic and attacking me personally rather than dealing with the subject that Moses is not a historical character.

Secondly, you are not polite.

Thirdly, you have done a poor job trying to identify with me.

Please stick to the topic. The issue is:

Moses is not a historical character.
There is no independent historical data indicating Moses ever existed.

The 1863 book takes the bible and assumes it is history. The book provides no independent confirmation of a historical Moses.

No paleographical data.
No archeological data (like Moses’ shaving kit or underpants)
No Egyptian biographical data.

I will reiterate:

You cannot find even one piece of cloth from Hebrew clothing in Egypt from 1300 BC.
There is not even one broken piece of Hebrew pottery in Egypt from 1300 BC.
There is abundant pottery, paleographic and other archeological data from the Hyksos which pre-date entry into Egypt from 1300 BC.

My proof is: there is no anthropological, archeological or other scientific data placing the Hebrews in Egypt around 1300 BC. No Hebrews in Egypt means no Moses.

Also Egypt did not have slavery in the conventional sense. They had conscription, but not slavery. Therefore, no Hebrew slaves.

Furthermore, the first appearance of the name ‘Israel’ appears in the Merneptah stele around 1220 BC as a conquered people of Palestine.

Furthermore, the name H’brieau or Habrieu which becomes known as Hebrew first appears in the Armana Letters as a Bedouin people.

Please read: “What are they Saying about the Formation of Israel?” from Paulist Press before you continue your array of personal attacks against me.

The reference to Moses in the Talmud is fiction. It states that Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible. It is a fact that the first five books of the Bible contain four distinct writing styles.

There is the Yahwish dated around 800 BC, the Elohist around 600 BC, the Priestly around 300 BC and the Deuterist around 500 BC. These dates are all significantly later than a historical Moses would have lived.
The Bible states Moses lived to 120 years. Impossible for a person in 1300 BC. Archeological data indicates people died very young back then. Read some books about mummies to learn the biological conditions of people in Egypt in the time of Ramses.

Finally, logically proving that Moses DIDN’T exist is tantamount to proving there does not exist an invisible space ship flying around the Earth today.

If it doesn't exist, then there's no evidence for it. There is no scientific evidence to prove Moses ever existed. Just like Abraham, King David and Adam.

You’re so smart. Produce his driver’s license!
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Post by nandu » Tue Jun 24, 2008 5:23 pm

The argument going on at present is whether Moses was a historical person or not. It is the consensus among serious historians today that the Bible is more of myth than history: so I'd ay Moses is a mythic character. However, there have always been apologists in all religions who are bent on proving that their religion is recorded history-Christianity is no exception. So the argument goes on...

MasterYoda, you seem to have some serious things to say. Why don't you present them in a series of coherent arguments? The mood of the present conversation has been spoilt by unnecessary belligerence, I feel.

As a fellow associate, I suggest you start a fresh thread on the historical validity of the Bible. I think we can have a healthy, if heated, debate.

Nandu.
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MasterYoda
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Post by MasterYoda » Tue Jun 24, 2008 5:49 pm

Thank you.
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Post by jufa » Wed Jun 25, 2008 12:20 am

What seem to be the obstacle in this conversation is there is no evidence whether Moses existed or not. There are those who say Moses is a myth because evidence has not been unearthed to prove whether or not the Hebrew, or Jewish people were in Egypt.

Scholars have based their conclusion on this fact. Yet we know that scholars have for years denied certain cultures mentioned in the Bible were non-existent, and later found evidence to the contrary.

But this is not the gist of the problem here. What is is that no one has presented evidence of what they actually know. Assumption has been the gage here. Personally, I do not know whether Moses existed or not. And by the same token, no one else knows personally.

Until one can speak from personal knowledge of this matter, the knowledge of Moses existence or non-existence is based on heresay beliefs based on what someone else has investigated and found no evidence either way.

To put forth a belief is no different than putting forth an opinion, concept, theory, and it is a proven truth these attitudes will change the very moment there is a change of mind.

Until personal knowledge of this subject matter is presented, then all else is spectulation, no more, no less.
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Clemsy
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Post by Clemsy » Wed Jun 25, 2008 12:53 am

What is of interest at this point is that the original article, Researcher: Moses was tripping at Mount Sinai, was about the possible use of psychotropic drugs by the ancient Hebrews, not Moses.
Shanon presents a provocative theory in an article published this week in the philosophy journal Time and Mind. The religious ceremonies of the Israelites included the use of psychotropic materials that can found in the Negev and Sinai, he says. "I have no direct proof of this interpretation," and such proof cannot be expected, he says. However, "it seems logical that something was altered in people's consciousness. There are other stories in the Bible that mention the use of plants: for example, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the Garden of Eden."
The author examined the language in the Old Testament and saw the use of hallucinogenic plants as a possible interpretation. The article ends thusly:
Shanon also sees signs of a hallucinogenic vision in the story of the burning bush.

"Moses 'looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed,'" Shanon quotes from Exodus 3:2. Time passes differently when under the influence of the plant, he notes. "That's why Moses thought the bush was not consumed. It should have been burned in the time he thought had passed. And in that time, he heard God speaking to him."

"But not everyone who uses a plant like this brings the Torah," Shanon concedes. "For that, you have to be Moses."
Given that this person is a professor of cognitive psychology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, one may easily assume him to take the Old Testament as history, but we can't know this for sure.

Whether Moses existed or not isn't the theme of the article, though, and, to be frank, not the topic of this thread, which has spent the last page and a half either on this or on personal remarks.

This moderator is now making a command decision: As Nandu was wise to suggest, anyone may start a new topic on this side issue. No more posts of a personal nature, or on whether or not Moses was a historical character are allowed here.

Any further posts of either kind will be moved to the Library of Moved Posts over in 1K Faces.


In the meantime... (see next post)

Edit: I bolded the ceasefire for emphasis the following day.
Last edited by Clemsy on Wed Jun 25, 2008 10:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Clemsy » Wed Jun 25, 2008 12:56 am

Obama Clashes with Christian Conservative Leader

Yahoo! It's about time somebody did!
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Post by Evinnra » Wed Jun 25, 2008 3:24 am

This post has been moved to the Library of Moved Posts by Clemsy.
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Post by jufa » Wed Jun 25, 2008 3:38 am

Personally, I never thought much of christian concervatives. To me they are attempting to circumvent people to believe their interpretations.

Obama, I give him no thought one way or the other.

I will say a change of direction is needed for America. Whether he can provide it or not remains to be seen.


And Clemsy, you are right, this thread originally was about
Moses was tripping at Mount Sinai
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Post by MasterYoda » Wed Jun 25, 2008 5:33 am

You can easily assume him to take the Old Testament as history, but that would be a wrong assumption. You can just as easily assume he doesn’t take the Old Testament as history. Examine Joseph Campbell’s Transformation of Myth Through Time, page 193. He discusses the use of ergot in the Greek Eleusinian Mysteries.

You may assume the Greek gods are historical, but you’d be the only one. Furthermore, even if he did assume the Old Testament is history, it doesn’t make him right. Just because a professor has a hypothesis, doesn’t make it right. Take Lovejoy’s hypothesis for an example.

Finally, I never said Moses being historical or not was the theme of the article; I brought it up as an expository comment to interject into the discussion of the hypothesis.

If you read completely, you’ll notice I reference the program “From Peyote to LSD,” which is supplementary to the discussion.

If you integrate Campbell's discussion on ergot, with his lectures on LSD, combined with the program “From Peyote to LSD,” it is light years ahead of the professor’s hypothesis.
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Post by Clemsy » Wed Jun 25, 2008 10:03 am

Well, MasterYoda, I guess this is more somehwat to the topic, as now we're at least discussing the article.
You can easily assume him to take the Old Testament as history, but that would be a wrong assumption. You can just as easily assume he doesn’t take the Old Testament as history.
As I said, one can't be sure. The basis of the former assumption would be that the professor, working where he does may be Jewish. (Can't say for sure.) May very well be very Jewish. (Can't say for sure.) As such, may very well take the Old Testament as history, (Can't say for sure.) which is fundamental to the Jewish faith and the foundation for their justification for the existence of the state of Israel. (Pretty sure about that one.)
You may assume the Greek gods are historical, but you’d be the only one.
:?

Don't quite know where that one came from.
Furthermore, even if he did assume the Old Testament is history, it doesn’t make him right. Just because a professor has a hypothesis, doesn’t make it right. .
Well, yes. Professor Shanon is making a hypothesis. He might be wrong. In fact he says, as I quoted above and will quote again:
"I have no direct proof of this interpretation,"
If he assumes that the Old Testament is history, it doesn't make him right. Good! We are in agreement! I am quite certain he isn't, although, as Prof. Campbell points out the Bible moves from the purely mythic to more of a mixture of myth and history as the narrative moves forward towards the present. It is these little tidbits of history that literalists use to justify their literalism, and their condemnation of Campbell, no?
Finally, I never said Moses being historical or not was the theme of the article;
Didn't say you did. Said that's what happened. I studiously avoided pointing any fingers, so you're off the hook, as is everyone else. 8)
If you integrate Campbell's discussion on ergot, with his lectures on LSD, combined with the program “From Peyote to LSD,” it is light years ahead of the professor’s hypothesis.
Sounds like a great topic for another thread, or, if you wish, you can add to THIS ONE.
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Post by Clemsy » Wed Jun 25, 2008 10:11 am

Personally, I never thought much of christian concervatives. To me they are attempting to circumvent people to believe their interpretations.
Well, Jufa, if all you hear are the loud ones pontificating on the radio dial, one may be very well tempted to lump them all togetherin such a basket.

However, I've learned that many Christians, of all varieties, take their faith personally and don't project it outwards in such an ethnic, tribal manner. These keep their beliefs to themselves while acting according to their faith's directives. You know, compassion, peace, love, that sort of radical stuff.

How can someone who actually practices the Beatitudes not be a Democratic Socialist? :shock:
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Post by jufa » Wed Jun 25, 2008 2:53 pm

I put for my opinion based entirely upon what you presented
Obama Clashes with Christian Conservative Leader


Did not lump any group together. It is those Christian Conservatives within the range of the above quote I was addressing.

And as you have
learned that many Christians, of all varieties, take their faith personally and don't project it outwards in such an ethnic, tribal manner.
I also find this to be true.

Is not this topic you and I are addrssing here about what the Christian Conservitive J. Dobson has presented?
Obama Reaches Out to Evanelical; Dobson Slams 2006 Speech on Religion
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Post by Clemsy » Wed Jun 25, 2008 3:04 pm

Yep, but I read your response:
Personally, I never thought much of christian concervatives. To me they are attempting to circumvent people to believe their interpretations.
...as more general than you meant it. Thanks for the clarification.

In terms of Dobson and Co., your statement rings true.

It will be interesting to watch Obama's balancing act as he attempts to cast his net to the right of center to grab evangelicals who are really kind of sick of the obsession with abortion, gay marriage, creationism, etc.
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Post by jufa » Wed Jun 25, 2008 6:03 pm

Ha, ha, he is a juggler - speaking of Obama - with no disrespect to him.

But had to laugh out loud from what you said below.
It will be interesting to watch Obama's balancing act as he attempts to cast his net to the right of center to grab evangelicals who are really kind of sick of the obsession with abortion, gay marriage, creationism, etc.
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Post by CarmelaBear » Tue Jul 08, 2008 11:40 pm

Here's the text of the Obama piece:

Obama Clashes With Christian Conservative Leader
Obama Reaches Out to Evangelicals; Dobson Slams 2006 Speech on Religion

By JAKE TAPPER and JENNIFER DUCK
June 24, 2008

Barack Obama says his Christian faith will help him reach white evangelicals who traditionally vote Republican, but some religious leaders are resisting the call.

A conservative religious group criticizes Obama's 2006 comments on morality."I think he's deliberately distorting the traditional understanding of the Bible to fit his own world view, his own confused ideology," James Dobson, leader of the Christian group Focus on the Family, said Tuesday in his daily radio show.

Dobson spent much of his show picking apart a 2006 speech from Obama, D-Ill., on why liberals and conservatives need to be more tolerant about faith.

"I can't simply point to the teachings of my church, or evoke God's will. I have to explain why abortion violates some principle that is accessible to people of all faiths, including those with no faith at all," Obama said in that speech.

Related

McCain 3.0: A Comeback Story? WATCH: Obama's FaithWATCH: McCain Aide Regrets Terror Remark Dobson called that a "fruitcake interpretation of the Constitution," but Obama, in exclusive comments to ABC News on Tuesday, insisted Dobson is misrepresenting his words.

"I have no idea what he's referring to. Anybody who's read that speech will tell you that I extol the need for people with religious faith to express their views in the public square, and I don't interpret the Bible in the ways he's referring to," Obama said.

"Either he didn't read the speech or he's just trying to score political points, and either way, I don't think it's a particularly useful way to talk about these issues," Obama told ABC News.

Reaching Out, Drawing Fire

Obama is not polling any better with white evangelical Protestants now than Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., did in 2004.

In a recent ABC News/Washington Post poll, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., led in the group 68-22 percent; in 2004 election exit polls, President George W. Bush won that group 78-21 over Kerry.

Despite those numbers, Obama has said he is trying to reach out.

"Even if they may not end up supporting my candidacy, I want to make sure people know I'm listening to them and I'm a person of faith," Obama said in an interview.
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