Posted by panch from customer-148-233-93-71.uninet.net.mx (126.96.36.199) on Friday, March 07, 2003 at 12:59PM :
I'm going to criticize Christianity at its core...not as the embodiment of kindness or decency and all that is good on this earth. The good in it it shares with many religions, it's Tomfoolery is all its own. I'm not even interested in its ritual or "fine points"...who cares, but rather at what it is that supposedly makes it indispensible to so many people...even our own.
I don't see Christianity as very far removed from Judaism...in fact the very core beliefs are all Jewish. Nothing wrong with that...except for Assyrians. I maintain that them Hebrews had nothing to teach us, or anyone else from an advanced civilization back then...that on the contrary they got everything of value and benefit from us, the Persians, Egyptians and Greeks. What they provided, what was unmistably Hebrew, turns out to also be at the very heart and core of Christian belief...that a favored and special firstborn child was sacrificed, for all Mankind's sake (the "resurrection" part was a new touch)...that the shedding of that most innocent blood "bought" the rest of us something valuable..."victory" or "eternal peace"...or "eternal life"...it got us some goody we could not have attained in any other way.
That is pure Hebrew and the exact antithesis of everything we know about the Assyrians. Ritual child sacrifice wasn't a part of our culture. We had no use for a Messiah or Deliverer...there was nowhere else sweeter to be than in Nineveh or Babylon. What need did we have to believe in Armageddon...that someday all those who opposed us would get theirs and we would rise triumphant, finally get to tell someone else what to do and have some good times for a change...the Assyrians already had that...on earth, right THEN. It was the Hebrews who woke up, looked around Jerusalem, smelled the turds, choked on the dust and, while waiting to be transported somewhere else, said, "Ah shit! There HAS to be something better than THIS!".
Ancient people used to believe that the god of a place stayed in the place...that he had no power anywhere else. When an invading force came against a Jew city, their own god didn't make the trip. He had no influence where another god was supreme. The idea of indicating desperation to your god...of getting his attention, by sacrificing the dearest thing you possessed, served a double purpose. For one thing it got his attention...got him to put down the heifer he was humping and see if there was something he ought to do for you. The other benefit was that it struck terror into the hearts of the invaders...they became witnesses to this awful spectacle, brought on because of their invasion...and they worried about the power of the offended god of the place who might send a terrible defeat or disease to plague them. Hopefully, they would give up and go home.
When all else failed, "victory" could be best ensured by sacrifing what was dearest...and what is dearer to a MidEastern man than his firstborn son? So imagine...the enemy are approaching...you set about sharpening your swords, setting up stores for the long seige to come...and, eyeing your firstborn. Should you screw up...his neck gets slit, in the best tradition of Yahwe, who when he didn't like the way his handiwork turned out, took it out on them.
"For God so loved his son that he sacrificed him that we may live"...or something like that. That idea always gave me the willies...I mean I couldn't imagine accepting any benefit on that basis...and before I'd slit my own son's neck I'd try my damndest to die in the war and take as many with me as I could. What does it say about people that they are willing to have a totally innocent person put to that kind of torture for their sake? How can you accept anything on that basis.
The sop that gets thrown our way is that the son was resurrected...brought back to life, so where was the harm? Great...I tell the police I broke my five year old's arms but not to worry...I'll just take him round to the hospital where they'll "resurrect" his broken bones. A crime is a crime...it doesn't lessen the pain and humiliation Jesus had to endure on his way to dying...which was pre-requisite for "eternal life". Something is very screwy here. And it isn't a "mystery" at all...it isn't a "profound paradox" and it sure as shit ain't "Divine"...it's simply old-fashioned Jew behavior for getting some goody out of their friggin lord when they couldn't manage it any other way...like decent Human Beans, without reverting to killing an innocent child.
Kindness, generosity, fillial respect, trustworthiness, honor...these are not "Christian" things...they are shared by all humans regardless of religious beliefs or ritual. But what IS specifically Christian, also happens to be typically Jewish, and that is the business of committing or accepting, child ritual sacrifice...when it does you some good...AND as a bonus, being able not to mind it too much because the damage and gore will be "resurrected"..."so what's the big deal"?
THIS is Barbarism...and if one jealous, envious, insane tribal god who wants his ways shoved down everyone's throat in the universe...thereby becomming a "Universal" Thug...is an improvement...then give me Paganism any day.
Assyrians who bought this awful bargain were certainly free to do so...but the idea that Christianity is "very close to Ashur", is absurd and a lie. There is nothing further from believing in Ashur than this Jew propensity to rejoice at the murder, even if followed by the resurrection, of a loving son by a "loving" parent...nothing.
For a Hottentot or Cannibal, or an Un-Orthodox Jew, maybe this is an improvement...for an Assyrian it is pure infamy heaped atop of degradation.
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