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The Bible, the old and new testament. I think of the bible as a very important historical book documenting the evolution of thought, culture and morals of the western world. Mostly done through allegorical stories that are not technically true but stories that carry a moral meaning. In the bible Moses, after seeing God, is full of rays of light radiating off of his body and particularly off of his face and head. In the King James version is is translated at horns of light. If you go to the Sistine Chapel in Rome there is a large bronze statue of Moses with huge horns on his head like a bull or the Devil i.e. the rays of light. If they cannot translate that accurately how are we suppose to believe that this document is the EXACT voice of God?

Aquaeyes 6 Sep 1
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I knew I would get some very vocal replies. I am sure so many people are in pain and suffering from abuse by people who have misused this simple book. But the bible is only a simple book with simple stores, at least the old testament, but even the new testament has some interesting stories. The important thing is not to lose your mind over a simple book of fairy tales. The old adage applies "don't throw the baby out with the bath water".

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Uuuummmm, "how are we supposed to believe this document is the exact voice of god?"
STRANGE post for this site, indeed!

Please read the post. I have not ever said that it is the voice of god. The bible is only a collection of interesting stories.

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I see it as a book that has imprisoned people for centuries ,caused great harm and death to millions and those stories are the cause of these hardships.

It is important to separate the bible from what it is and what people think it is. I am saying it is simply a book of fairy tale stories that have a moral to them like sleeping beauty or Grimm's stories or Aesop's tales. People in power have used it to do bad things but that does make the stories bad.

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I think many people who have responded on here read past the part about the evolution of thought. They focused instead on the history of morality and culture. I think the history of morality or the evolution of morality is an important feature along with the evolution of human thought. After the Sermon On The Mount the Disciples ask Jesus why he taught in parables to the crowds instead of speaking clearly as he does to his disciples and he answers with the famous reference to giving that which is Holy to dogs and the pearls before swine analogy. The entire bible uses allegory for the same reason. Those who refuse to see beyond the literal meanings are clearly not worthy of understanding its true meaning. We see this truth born out throughout Traditional Christian Churches today.

How far do we go with the allegories, I wonder. And would Jesus (theoretically) be pissed that we secular people might guess the true meaning of what he said. Definitely, people thought both the Old and New Testaments must mean more than what they said at face value. Hence the likes of the Kabbalah and the Gnostic gospels. And we can add to all that the opinion of Sam Harris that it's all Bronze Age ignorance anyway so let's just get on with our modern understandings of life and morals.

@brentan Well to each his own as far as the bible goes. Personally though, I believe Jesus (Yeshua) was named after the last High Priest of the line of Aaron (Yeshua). This guy changed his name to Jason to reflect his Greek influenced progressive nature. So no, I don't believe that he would have minded that secular folks understood the meaning of his message. I think he rejected the Pharisee dedication to strict literal religious observance just as his namesake did when he purchased the High Priest position from the Greek Seleucid king and overthrew his conservative high priest older brother.

@Seminarian I hadn't heard that before. I guess you're talking about the guys the Maccabees fought against. Is this an idea from Atwell's book about the gospels written by Romans to try to pacify the Jews?

@brentan It could be. I got this notion by comparing what Jewish Rabbi's teach about their own history and what Israel Finkelstein and other secular Hebrew scholars say actually occurred. Traditional Rabbis teach that the entire line of Aaron was wiped out before the Rebellion. That's the only way the Hasmonian (Maccabean) line would have been legitimate. The first century Jesus followers refuted this and that made Jesus an actual threat to his contemporary Herodian rulers. They weren't worried about his teachings, which were actually just a Mystic (Gnostic) interpretation of O.T. lessons,it was his bloodline claim that was the problem.

Thank you for understanding. I find it very interesting indeed that people on this site jump to the wrong conclusion. Perhaps most of the people here have been so traumatized by the wrong use and interpretation that it is a knee jerk reaction.

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I see the Bible that way too. For me, the history of thought, culture and morals comes first with myth, then religion, then philosophy. One thing that needs to be kept in mind is that although it covers everything from the beginning of time in its own way, supposedly written by Moses around the 13th century BC, it was probably started around the 6th century BC.

Thank you also for a reasonable reaction.

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The Bible used by Judaic Christian groups is a heavily edited paternalistic, compendium of Hebrew law, history, mythology, moral instruction and culturally specific record. Because the Hebrew people were often enslaved, oppressed and cohabitant minority group, there history is entwined with many other major civilizations of the early times for human habitation of our planet. It is not divinely inspired but subject to all kinds of ungodly mischief. Asiatic religious works are far more complete and not overly edited. Trust these treatises more than the Bible when searching for spiritual guidance and humanist enlightenment.

Just wanted to make the point that the bible is full of stories that show how people thought about lived. It is like reading history, certainly not the word of god, just stories. It is what you describe above and certainly over time has been edited to represent the people who want to use it to enslave us all.

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I always referred to this as a book of stories. My ex studied christian philosophy(insert yawn!) and historical criticism. It’s inspired by god. I happen to find very little of moral value that I would ever want to follow in my life in that book... rape, the murder of children, polygamy. It maybe should be in a museum alongside the confederate statues as something shameful from our past.

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The answer is we aren't supposed to believe it's the it's the exact voice of Gawd.
That job is held by the weak-minded and brainwashed.
Even so-called believers generally don't believe that shit....they sure don't make any real attempt to follow it.

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That the bible as a very important historical book documenting the evolution of thought, culture and morals is also the main thesis of (evolutionary biologist) Carel van Schaik and (historian) Kai Michel in their wonderful book "The Good Book of Human Nature: An Evolutionary Reading of the Bible". If you have not read it yet... you'd like it!

Thanks! I will try to find it and read it.

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The Bible is no more important historically than Mein Kampf, it has no intrinsic value other than as a window in the mindset of idiots and dangerous lunatics and what garbage can be used to motivate and steer them in the direction an insane demagogue desires for political, religious or theocratic reasons.

The fact this filth has been idolised for millennia, imbued with mythological power and given credence in no way makes it right, true, important or admirable.
The same goes for all other so called "holy books"

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There is no "exact voice of god" and the bible is not an "important historical book." This Frankenstein of scripture that we call the bible is actually made up of 66 independent books if you are Protestant. If you are Catholic there are 73 of them. Some 300 years after the time of Jesus there were so many books floating around that it was not funny. Churches had their favorite books and some churches were not aware of the books the others had. Some of the books told stories of Jesus as a child making birds out of clay or killing enemies. One book had a talking cross after crucifixion. Some had miracles just a bit beyond belief. By the time Constantine got involved the idea was to get rid of ridiculous books and put the accepted ones in a big volume. Over the years there were so many religious books. Were the stories real or allegorical? This took some time and many councils because of differing belief but the big volume had a beginning and an end just like a big storybook. Revelation was the last book accepted and is still not accepted by everyone even today.

Understanding of the above is why you see contradictions in what is called the bible. All these individual books were floating around from the beginning and were not meant to be bound together as one story. This is the main reason I reject the Abrahamic god. Seeing a similar pattern in all scriptures it is a main reason to reject god belief in general. There is no record written by an invisible being. Gods are not trying to talk to you.

well put

I can’t agree that the books were not meant to be bound together as one story when the combined books tell the story of a people from when time began. Although they were written on scrolls, the scrolls were kept together before the technology to bind them was invented.

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Agree Re: Evolution of thought

Thanks for actually reading what I wrote. I think the subject is an open wound that needs healing. I have found many people who are so sad about life after having been abused by the misuse of power.

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