Hebrew vs Hellenist

Discussion in 'Abrahamic Religions' started by Thomas, Oct 29, 2003.

  1. Thomas

    Thomas Super Moderator Staff Member

    Sep 25, 2003
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    I suspect I should address this post to bananabrain directly, but all are welcome to comment.

    Christianity should - in my view at least - have developed a 'theology of the body' and by extension a 'theology of the world' which would have served to prevent, or at least limit, the environmental and ecological disasters and deprivations that face us today.

    Christianity also professed a profound mistrust of 'profane philosophy' and yet, it seems to me (woefully ignorant of Hebraic philosophy) that had we stuck a little closer to our Judaic roots and not embraced the Hellenic (for all that we decried it) we might not have inherited a view of the flesh that often seems more founded in 'gnostic' philosophical systems than the meaning of Incarnation.

    Not to get too involved in discussions of duality or the soul vs body debate - which might spread the debate too thin - do we think that Christianity, informed by Judiac philosophy, might have arrived at a more wholistic view of the human being?

    Corollary - I have read that the Hebrew 'basar' means body and soul as a unity, whereas neither the Greek nor the Latin has an equivalent phrase that carries quite the same meaning (or does anthropos suit?)

  2. mikie8

    mikie8 New Member

    Oct 28, 2003
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    the body is a temple : and as a creation of god should be maintained as a temple i.e to be worshipped in as with our surroundings .i to find it supprising that the presevation of our envirment is not put high on gods list but then again not much is . it depends on what bible you believe in as but having read 4 different versions i did not get the sense that our place of living or enviroment should be protected in any way .maybe this explains the systematic destruction of our planet by god fearing ppl where pagan tribes live in harmony with there surroundings .
  3. bananabrain

    bananabrain awkward squadnik

    Sep 4, 2003
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    actually, i don't believe that christianity deserves particularly to be singled out for this compared to, say, the environmental record of the various communist regimes. on the other hand, the "protestant work ethic" driving the industrial revolution was based on the biblical literalism that has been so woefully prevalent since the reformation. the most particular culprit has been a) the calvinist tendency to believe that "only G!D can save us", which has manifested itself in a profoundly apathetic attitude to humanity's stewardship of the earth, because obviously G!D will fix what we have done wrong, leading to abrogation of this responsibility and b) the misleading translation of genesis 1:28 as apparently giving humanity carte blanche to do what it likes with the earth. needless to say, that is not the jewish approach at all.

    this is pretty much the jewish view - we don't "own" our bodies, we just have them on a 'long lease' and should return them (subject to normal dilapidations, wear and tear etc) in as best a state as possible. we are responsible for 'making good' if we mistreat them. for the same reason, suicide is prohibited.

    er... this is pretty simplistic, tendentious and ignorant, if you don't mind me saying so. you may not have got the sense, but perhaps you missed the institution of the "shemitta" year or the "yovel", or jubilee, when the land is left fallow, or the oft-quoted not muzzling an ox when it's treading the corn, or "peah", leaving the corners of the field unharvested, or 'bal taschit', the prohibition against wanton destruction. as you're obviously not familiar with the basics of humanity's responsibility for and stewardshop of the environment and biosphere, i suggest you go and have a look at this page, http://www.hazon.org/rides/rides_common/judaism_enviro_101.htm which provides an overview of "judaism and the environment 101".

    quite apart from this, the mayas were "pagans" and they turned the whole of central america into a dustbowl by their way of "living in harmony with their surroundings". sheesh.


  4. Thresher

    Thresher New Member

    Nov 20, 2003
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    I have to say also that if we had followed the laws concerning Sabbatical years and others, also if weren't so driven by money and material gain. We wouldn't be damaging the environment like we are.

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