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Similarity, Community, Values and Human Nature - Part VIII

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Religion Becomes An Ideology?

To understand 'Values' and where they fit into this relationship with 'Nature' and 'Civilization', we must examine the development and broad assimilation of them into all cultures, societies and governments. In this sense, 'Value's can be looked upon as conduct that is deemed acceptable in a given social context. But what is the historic background for this attempt to set standards? Most attribute one of the first efforts to set down appropriate behavior to the Hammurabi's Code of Laws. A general reading will demonstrate that the precepts and prohibitions, are punitive and can be extremely severe. This list defines conduct that is NOT acceptable, and puts into the form of 'Laws', what the consequences are for disobedience of those codes.

Civil societies have followed this pattern ever since. The significance of the Ten Commandments, especially from the forth through the tenth, is that prohibitions are defined, without assigning a specific civil penalty for their commission. The punishment is reserved for the Almighty to dispense. The identification of 'wrong conduct' in these last commandments are defined in the Hammurabi Codes, as well. A 'Similarity', surely? An acceptable 'Value', (a behavior to avoid) without a doubt.

The Sermon on the Mount, or the eight Beattitudes, depart from this prohibition dictates and provides a guide for CORRECT behavior. Civil society has yet to understand this principle of promoting behavior that is in harmony with 'Nature' and truly defines the meaning of 'Civilization'. Governments pass laws that place boundaries and limits on behavior, (that certainly can be appropriate), but seldom, if ever; codifies and acknowledges, behavior that encourages the 'Values' that cultivate and advance 'Community'. I submit, that a sound 'Ideology', in harmony with 'Nature' and founded upon a true understanding of 'Human Nature', advocating and internalizing the correct principles of 'Values', within the orderly structure of 'Civilization' can achieve meaning through 'Community' life. But with the incorrect 'Ideology', only the punishment of impalement at the hands of Hammurabi power and force, will result.

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven (Matt 5:3) Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted (Matt 5:4) Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth (Matt 5:5) Blessed are they who hunger for and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled (Matt 5:6) Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy (Matt 5:7) Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. (Matt 5:8) Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God. (Matt 5:9) Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for My sake. Rejoice and be exceeding glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so persecuted they the prophets which came before you. (Matt 5:10-12)

Islam shares in the monotheism belief of the Jewish and Christian faiths. But this religion has an elastic clause in its doctrine, much like the Tenth Amendment to the US Constitution. The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people. The following is from, THE ISLAMIC PRINCIPLES PERTAINING TO HALAL AND HARAM:

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The first asl (Asl, plural usual, denotes origin, source, foundation, basis, fundamental or principle. (Trans.), or principle, established by Islam is that the things which Allah has created and the benefits derived from them are essentially for man's use, and hence are permissible. Nothing is haram except what is prohibited by a sound and explicit nas (Nas denotes either a verse of the Qur'an or a clear, authentic, and explicit sunnah (practice or saying) of Prophet Muhammad. These are the two main sources of Islamic law, i.e., its Shari'ah. (Trans.) from the Law-Giver, Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala. If the nas is not sound, as for example in the case of a weak hadith, or if it is not explicit in stating the prohibition, the original principle of permissibility applies.

From Introduction to the Koran by H J Dawood:

Mohammed, who disclaimed power to perform miracles, firmly believed that he was a messenger of God, sent forth to confirm previous scriptures. God had revealed His will to the Jews and the Christians through chosen apostles, but they disobeyed God's commandments and divided themselves into schismatic sects. The Koran accuses the Jews of corrupting the Scriptures and the Christians of worshipping Jesus as the son of God, although He had expressly commanded them to worship none but Him. Having thus gone astray, they must be brought back to the right path, to the true religion preached by Abraham. This was Islam - absolute submission or resignation to the will of Allah.

Islam clearly states behavior that is inappropriate. Harsh penalties can be applied when civil laws are broken, that reflect a disregard for haramian prohibitions. So what we have is a 'Similarity' throughout history and the three monotheistic religions to establish, define and identify what 'wrong behavior' is, and its relationship to society. When civil governments codify and assign penalties for killing, stealing and lying; these institutions attempt to confer accountability, upon her citizens, for violating commonly held 'Values' of their 'Civilization'.

Now we will examine a radically different approach to establish what proper human behavior should be. The 'Secular Humanist' departs from the traditions of virtually all of human history and the accepted 'Values' of the varied cultures that aspire and contribute, to achieve 'Civilization'. PLEASE read their creed well. I cite from number five:

Humanism asserts that the nature of the universe depicted by modern science makes unacceptable any supernatural or cosmic guarantees of human values.

Is this not an 'Ideology'? Does this not separate its belief from all of the cumulative wisdom of the world's "Civilizations'? No role or acceptance of 'Mystic' revelation and its understanding? The advocacy of 'Situation Ethics', 'Moral Relativism'; remember: 'All Things are Now Possible'?

Again from number eight:

Religious Humanism considers the complete realization of human personality to be the end of man's life and seeks its development and fulfillment in the here and now.

A belief that is founded upon the ability of 'Man' to perfect himself, and solely through his own efforts? Isn't that truly RADICAL ?

The humanists are firmly convinced that existing acquisitive and profit-motivated society has shown itself to be inadequate and that a radical change in methods, controls, and motives must be established to the end that the equitable distribution of the means of life are possible.

The very definition of 'Collectivist' World Government.

The 'Humanist Manifesto' is a total abandonment of all the principles and 'Values' from our history of 'Civilization'. Once the line is crossed into the moral abyss of relativism; only raw power will determined, all human interaction. Is 'Community' possible in this world? I say; it is impossible to attain the cherished goal you want, when the rules for human behavior denies our 'Similarity' of a common 'Human Nature'. If anyone can decide what a correct 'Value' will be, only chaos, of the absurd, among the insane; will reign.

When the 'Humanist' bases their entire belief upon the premise of: The universe as self-existing and not created. Just who is in denial with 'Nature'? Just who is the one that abandons 'Rational' thought? And, just who has condemned mankind to continuous tyranny? Only those who control the 'big stick' will rule this sick attempt for an earthly paradise. A world made up of compliant 'true believers' in a heretic system of cosmology, based upon the most egregious of all Sins. The Sin of False Pride was the very act that caused that certain archangel, Lucifer, to rebel. There is no need for the 'Humanist' to dismiss this account as a myth, since they have just met that former light of the 'morning star'; and 'he has become them'.

The only 'Community' that can come from this 'Ideology' is one of chains and suffering, that the oppressed, would eagerly seek the 'impalement' of Hammurabi, as welcome relief from the horror of man's attempt to create himself, as his own god . . .

We will turn next, to a look at the 'individual', and his 'Human Nature'.

SARTRE

The question before the human race is, whether the God of nature shall govern the world by his own laws, or whether priests and kings shall rule it by fictitious miracles.

John Adams

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