Disobedience, Bad, Evil – Links Roundup

The Burghers of Calais by Auguste Rodin

I live in the grey places.  The more certain someone is, the more I question their assertions.  I have concepts and codes that work for me, most of the time, but I have never been able to project anything on anyone else.   I find even perceptions of reality difficult to assume are common experiences of seemingly identical occurences.  This stems from Immanuel Kant who questioned things we can know and things we can’t know.  I’m not a sceptic, but I do go through a process of acknowledging that we are both having the same experience when we look at a tree together, or similar enough that we can discuss the tree on similar grounds.

TMI?  Sorry, but it lays the groundwork for talking about concepts from the Hebrew Bible.  I did not see evil in the Garden of Eden or in Job.  The children in Eden were disobedient, but not evil.  Job had some bad stuff happen to him, but it wasn’t evil.  It should be noted that the English word “evil” has no Ancient Hebrew equivalent, while most English translations will use the word “evil” it is usually the Hebrew word “ra” which simply means “bad”.

Les Bourgoises de Calais may be a more appropriate way to remember who these Burghers were.

This is a prospective of a Catholic ProChoicer from On Being ProChoice or Right To Life – need some harmony.  This is a woman who has given much thought to both sides, and the sides in between in an attempt to find balance.

Is torture ever okay?  PBS’s newsweekly on Religion and Ethics.

Doctor assisted suicide and Dr. Kevorkian was considered by Kurt Vonnegut in an essay as appears in Studs Terkel’s book Will the Circle Be Unbroken? Reflections on Death, Rebirth, and Hunger for a Faith

“We can open up the question of financial incentives” for organ donations “without worrying about undue coercive pressures,” says Robert Veatch, professor of medical ethics and former director of the Kennedy Institute of Ethics at Georgetown University.  Watch the full episode. See more Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly.

Love and strife keeps the cosmos in harmony.  Empedocles is an ancient-Ancient Greek philosopher preceding even Plato.  He believed that the two principles of love and strife maintain harmony.  Paradise could only exist in Eden where there was no strife, no troubles.  Since love couldn’t last long with strife, this first Exodus was inevitable.

Martin Buber a twentieth century philosopher/theologian  had a similar idea to Empedocles that can be summed up by Robert Wood in his book, Martin Buber’s Ontology.  “He explained and apparently accepted the Renaissance notion of the microcosm, where God is present in His totality within each creature and comes to light in man.  The cosmos itself is composed of two movements: the movement of conflict, through which individuals emerge as distinct, and the movement of love, which leads back to unity.  The two movements complement each other; through conflict the Other is set over against us, and through love, which culminates in a world feeling, we unite with the Other – with the stone, the tree, the animal, and with our fellow men.  And in this union of the I with the Thou, God comes to birth in the soul. (p 7).

My point by making this collage of links is to encourage the exploration of the other side.  I can only come to understand what I believe and stand for, by understanding the perspective.  Reading the Hebrew Bible has broadened my understanding of the difference between evil and bad, and being disobedient because I’m human and it is inevitable given my nature.  I cannot know spring without Kentucky winter, and I cannot know love without strife.  Eve did not know the concept of death when she ate of the tree.

There are many similarities between Buddhism and Christianity.  Admittedly, I don’t find that complement in the Hebrew Bible, but the it’s always good karma to give Buddhism a plug!   Here’s a cool interactive opportunity to explore your future life (or lives depending on how prepared you are), has Tibetan chanting too!Buddha’s Wheel of Life

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About Pam

I'm a senior at UK, majoring in Philosophy.
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