Posted by pancho (220.127.116.11) on February 15, 2002 at 09:18:55:
The famous story of the baby that was about to be cut in half so's two mothers who claimed it could each get a share...with the real mother relenting at the last moment because she would rather her baby remained alive in someone else's family, than get half of what really belonged to her...is a a good alligator or something for us and this "Christianity Saved Us" claim.
How's THAT for a sentence and chapter all at once?
I have nothing against Christianity per se...it makes about as much sense as the rest of them. I just don't like screaming illogic...like the statement that Assyrians were saved by remaining true to Christianity, even at the point of a sword. It raises all sorts of questions such as what being "saved" means...and what the point of the claim is...were we really saved and saved as what?
In the Solomon story the real mother, being really in love with her child, prefers it to go to someone else if it can be spared, even though it will grow up and become a total stranger to its own family etc. I can't help but think that if the real mother had been a Christian Assyrian, she would have demanded her fair portion and had the kid cut in half, just to remain "true" to her claim that the child belonged to her.
Is a child who changes families, or names, still "your" child? Some would say "no"...because it seems to me they measure what is "theirs" by externals. If the child keeps the family name, or religion, or identity, then it is theirs and remains dear and precious etc. But if it changes any of those, say its religion or name or identity...then it not only isn't theirs any longer, but it doesn't matter if it lives. It ceases to have any intrinsic value...and can be led off to slaughter as far as the recently greiving family is concerned.
I always found that story of the Christian Assyrian mother who allowed her seven sones to be killed in her lap rather than deny Christ, to be a frightening and primitive example of "love gone wrong". I can't imagine how I, or any sane parent, would rather their child be killed than allow them to change religions. Especially as we did it once already...I mean why become fanantical about it NOW...now that your children's lives are at stake...when we switched before with no sword at our throats?
I would want to be more important to my parents, than their religion. But maybe I'm funny that way. If someone gave me the choice to have my baby killed, or taken off and raised by others whose worst quality was their different religion and culture...I would rather the child lived and grew up and never knew about me or the "truth". If suicide is frowned upon then why isn't being complicit in the murder of your own children? Shouldn't a parent do all that is needed to insure a childs health and life? Can you use as a defense in any court that you allowed your kid to be beaten, or have its throat slit...for Christ? When you could have prevented it? Certainly the person doing such a thing is at fault...but who had the last chance to avoid the tragedy?
Besides which, if you take a half million people and threaten to kill them all unless some of them become Moslem or Christian or start wearing ashtrays on their heads, or for whatever reason...and they all refuse except for three of them, or three hundred or three thousand or thirty thousand....have you "saved" that number, or "lost" the rest? Was it worth it if you save a tenth of them and kill off ninety percent?
How would you feel knowing that all of them were spared, even though they are no longer conforming to the standards or practices they had before? What is more important, Life?...or affiliation?
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