Who were the ancient Greeks? Historians have been quite embarrassed about this. As a result they have been a little vague about pedastry in particular, an aspect of the Greeks you haven’t heard about it. in fact you probably need to look up the word itself.
What’s shocking of course is how effectively scholars can distort or hide history from us…and why do they do so? Because they believe it will sit uncomfortably with us, and the true state of affairs distorts the hero-message they could otherwise convey about an earlier people who were noble, champions of democracy, sophisticated politicians, the nation that set Christianity on its course through Europe…and happened to be a nation of paedophiles.
If this is true on this scale with history, why wouldn’t it be true – even more so – with a narrative that calls itself ‘the Word of God’. Surely embarrassingly primitive admonitions would be removed, softened or manipulated to ‘sit better’ with modern audiences. Yung women would be made into virgins, slaves into servants, warlords into good shepherds and so on. That is exactly what we find with the bible, an all too human construct and tampered with in an all-too human series of corrupt and secretive alterations to make it seem as genuine as possible. How sad, but how predictable. Even sadder is how few know or even acknowledge this, hence the myth’s stubborn persistence as ‘truth’.
Educated, civilised and paedophiles... And child killers. In fact the Greeks would simply take a child that appeared weak and leave it to die in the elements beyond the city limits - this convention was done to assure the strength of the Greek 'nation'. It's the sort of tribal taboo we associate with the most primitivee people in the world, the most impoverished of the mind and body.
If a child was obviously deformed, say with a cleft palate, or deformed limbs, they were cast into a pit and a dog thrown in for good measure, perhaps to serve as a companion in the afterlife.
The Greeks also consulted Oracles. Usually these were women who were constantly high on fumes or substances, imprisoned in caves. The oracles who did a good job were kept, those who didn't accurately predict the future were disposed of.
These are the people who received the bible and rewrote it so that 2000 years later, we follow those writings as gospel. We think the people who wrote the bible were civilised, educated and moral. But even though the Greeks started us towards democracy, the regularly practised infanticide (which seems to be popular in the scriptures too, and after all, God 'sacrifies' his only son too - an act we are supposed to appalud as heroic and noble). Beside infanticide, pederasty. Greeks went to gym nude, performed the Olympics nude, and men idealised young nude men and tried to make them their lovers before getting married. Really?
If you think I am exaggerating about the Greeks – the authors of the New Testament - being openly homosexual, and that their paedophilia was a normal part of society, please don’t take my work for it.
If you don’t believe me, read this:
and here’s some more.
Go and get your own sources and find out for yourself.
Faith in the Bible versus faith in Geography
It's the year 2013. Somehow we think of the folks who lived in the bible era as a lot like us; they looked like us, spoke like us (in English nogal), and thought like us. Actually, their culture would be an abomination to us in almost all respects, and anyone alive today would hate to live in those times, with the possible exception of some still-in-the-closet homosexuals.
So doesn't the bible resemble a fairly backward culture; ie the sort of thoughts and habits of people far more primitive in their culture and morals than ourselves? Of course; that is precisely true. Slavery is just one symptom. Stoning to death and public beatings another.
Of course, the bible has been reinterpretted and updated and made into vanilla to purge itself of its rough edges (aka defects) a bunch of times, much as comic book heroes are.
The Bible versus the changing face of James Bond
You may think this is harmless. Well, once upon a time Sean Connery, as one of the first James Bonds, said that it was okay to hit a woman (as he did in the movies) if she was a pain, if she deserved it and as long as it wasn't done in anger. Connery also qualified his statement saying:"and you wouldn't hit a woman the same way you would hit a man."
If you had to ask Connery about this today he would be cringe, he’d be scornful, probably deny having said it, and probably say he was speaking metaphorically, that one can verbally attack members of both sexes with equal fervour. Ja right, sure that’s what you meant. Or he’d say he was misquoted, misinterpreted, mistranslated. He’d say that today…oddly enough everyone was fine with what he said when he said it…because it was a different world then, a far more a man’s world then than today. Actually, as we know, with feminism times have changed and women have rightly achieved parity with men, and that means equal respect, including of their bodies. What Connery says and how inappropriate it is shows how radically a culture can shift in 1 generation. And yet we think the culture of the bible (condoning slavery, equating adultery with murder etc), is timelessly relevant dozens of generations later? Really? That says perhaps a lot about how primitive our own concept of culture is. And how little we value human rights, both for ourselves and others.
If you really think human rights haven’t evolved a lot since one hundred, 1000 years ago and more…I wonder… would you like to live 2000 years ago, a time of animal and human sacrifices, punishment via crucifixion and stoning? Where certain foods were forbidden to be eating, and dress codes were rigorously enforced.
Rebooting the Bible
Like comics and other legacy stories, bible reboots often have a few core ingredients that stay the same, but the overall ethos is adapted to suit modern society. That says more about us than the story, incidentally. Is the story credible? Who cares - is it useful? Must be if we're arguing about it. It must have SOME use, but what is it (other than an insurance policy not for this life, but after we are dead).
Now imagine if we took the word of, say a geographer, from 200 odd years ago as gospel. We basically considered the ideas of mapmakers from 1813 as the word of God, and ignored google earth, satellite photos etc. Most thinking people would recognise the absurdity of this, surely modern knowledge should trump ancient, hand-me-down, traditional views?
Yet the bible and those who follow it would have us believe that they know more about the world, and society, democracy, and morals, than we do today? Really?
If one does a cursory study of history one finds out that while the Greeks gave us museums, gymnasiums, the Olympics, democracy, poetry, politicals, discourse etc, they also practised pedastry as a lifestyle. Basically the scenario was that girls were removed from society to be trained as wives and mothers, and so men were left with very little to amuse themselves and satiate their desires. They did what comes naturally to men in prisons, they engaged in temporary homosexuality.
How it worked was a man, usually younger than 35, would ply a noble youngster, usually between 12 and 18, with gifts. It was a sort of romantic, idealised love, almost the same way an artist treats a muse. Once the object of the older man's affections consents, they engage in a relationship. This was not frowned on by society, it was very much part of it. What was frowned on was when these relationships went on and on. The older man was expected to get married and then continue on as per normal with his wife.
Of course slaves, men and women, were always up for grabs, depending on the prevations of their owners. Interestingly, due to status, you never saw a man of one age with a man of similar age. A younger man was not yet a free man, and so the older man could provide material and other benefits in exchange for...the satiation of his carnal feelings.
It is interesting though that the word sodomy, anal sex, comes from the biblical account of sodom, but God's unhappiness with Sodom stems not from being homosexual and bisexual (as they clearly were, much as the Greeks were), but from being inhospitable to the visiting Jews.
Honor thy father and they mother and keep the Sabbath holy… – slaves and paedophilia no problem
One wonders too why nowhere in the bible, not even in the 10 commandments, God doesn't simply say:
- thy shalt not have sex with anyone of the same sex
- thy shalt not keep slaves, all people should be considered equals.
Can I hazard a guess? You don’t criticise the culture of a people if you want your religion to take root in it, thus the bible writers were very careful not to oppose slavery and to leave sexual sin fairly un-opposed.
In fact the bible gives tips on how slaves should obey their masters. Great news if you're a slave owner, awful news if you're a slave.
Prosperity Doctrine is biblical…?
Which brings us to the quip about it being harder for a rich man to go to heaven than for a camel to go through the eye of the needle. Yet we see so many christians today who subscribe to 'wealth doctrine'. That god wants us to follow him so that he can bless us with abundance.
I'm sure god wants exactly the same thing we want for ourselves. And these days it's just one thing: Money. Yet it is obvious when we look to Jesus for an example Jesus wasn't wealthy. In fact he is the first 'poor-man's god'. He rides on a donkey, he has no earthly kingdom, and he tells his followers if they love him, to sell their house and possessions and follow him. He sacrifices himself rather than have someone else represent him. He says reward in heaven is worth far more than all the profits of the world. One’s soul is therefore more precious than money.
But show me a Christian who follows that to the letter? Of course the bible is not meant to be taken literally (especially when it doesn't suit you).
And when Jesus says it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to go to heaven, it's a metaphor. A harmless metaphor. It doesn’t mean you should not try to be wealthy…does it?
Really? The meaning behind the metaphor is obvious. Get rid of your earthly possessions or you will not go to heaven. Don't be rich or wealthy in a material sense, instead seek spiritual riches. Well, I wonder, do Christians take this message to heart? If you want to leave atheists behind in hell and progress to heaven, you’re going to have to give away your loot. Shall I provide my bank details, I’ll be happy to assist you in realising your god given mandate. You don’t want my account details? You still think you’re poor enough and generous enough to make it through the eye of the needle. Wow, such certainty might be described as hubris. Even arrogance. Even self deceit. And you call yourself a Christian. Quite selfish and greedy about what’s yours and what you think you deserve and why you’re entitled to being saved.
If Christians are so convinced of their doctrine, that it is infallibly the word of God, why don’t they obey it to the letter? Why don't middle class Christians give their wealth to the poor?
Shall I tell you? Because for them they are in it for themselves. They are in it to get out of the bible what elevates them. It's about individual salvation, private salvation. And whatever works for you...you ignore the rest. That doesn't make a lot of sense to the rest of us. In fact, it sounds like Greek to me. And your attitudes to salvation aren’t about loving anyone besides yourself.
Note: this is my 49th article and the 50th – to the relief of some Christians – will be my last. I will dedicate the 50th article to a topic that I hope will confound Christians who have typecast me as a ‘angry, hate-filled’ atheist. I will begin it with a startling assertion – that if I had the power to wipe Christianity from the face of the Earth – like Christopher Hitchens – I wouldn’t do it. That 50th article will explore why and what I and other atheists want to see changing on the cultural landscape, and in the vacuum that is the believer’s headspace.
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