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Extraordinary Claims => Religion General Discussion => Judaism => Topic started by: Sleeper on February 17, 2013, 06:07:41 PM

Title: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic...
Post by: Sleeper on February 17, 2013, 06:07:41 PM
Umm... Let's see, Judaism... umm... Oh:

What's to make of this claim that the ancient Jews were actually polytheists?

[youtube:rmnxc39f]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0Yy_F34TGg[/youtube:rmnxc39f]
Title:
Post by: Sleeper on February 17, 2013, 07:12:49 PM
"Well, that's the story the Bible tells us, but I disagree. When subjected to rigorous analysis...."

I'm in love with her.
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: aitm on February 17, 2013, 07:18:54 PM
I am not a historian but the babble mentions other gods many times. The whole of the hatred twixt god and hebrews were their worshipping other gods. And there has been much about the whole Elohim being part of a polythiestic god set. I am not surprised
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Post by: stromboli on February 17, 2013, 07:20:07 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Origins_of_Judaism (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Origins_of_Judaism)

Quote
The ancient roots of Judaism lie in the Bronze Age polytheistic Ancient Semitic religions, specifically Canaanite religion, a syncretization with elements of Babylonian religion and of the worship of Yahweh reflected in the early prophetic books of the Hebrew Bible. During the Babylonian captivity of the 6th and 5th centuries BCE, certain circles within the exiled Judahites in Babylon redefined pre-existing ideas about monotheism, election, divine law and Covenant into a theology which came to dominate the former Judah in the following centuries.
From the 5th century BCE until 70 CE, Israelite religion developed into the various theological schools of Second Temple Judaism, besides Hellenistic Judaism in the diaspora. The text of the Hebrew Bible was redacted into its extant form in this period and possibly also canonized as well. The Rabbinic form of Judaism developed during Late Antiquity, during the 3rd to 6th centuries CE; the Masoretic Text of the Hebrew Bible (the addition of vowels to the consonant text) and the Talmud were compiled in this period. The oldest manuscripts of the Masoretic Biblical tradition however come from the 10th and 11th centuries CE; in the form of the Aleppo Codex of the later portions of the 10th century CE and the Leningrad Codex dated to either 1008 CE or 1009 CE. Regarding Rabbinical works, due largely to censoring and burning of manuscripts in medieval Europe, the oldest manuscripts in existence of various Rabbinical works are quite late. For example the oldest complete manuscript copy of the Babylonian Talmud to survive is dated to 1342 CE.[1]

This is known. Also it is known that there is no historical record of the Exodus, and all the archaeological evidence indicates the religion grew and evolved in what was ancient Canaan.
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: Bobby_Ouroborus on February 17, 2013, 07:21:11 PM
Quote from: "Sleeper"
Umm... Let's see, Judaism... umm... Oh:

What's to make of this claim that the ancient Jews were actually polytheists?


It be true...there is so much evidence for it. The Hebrews mostly henotheist, it wasn't until after they were influenced by Cyrus (of 300 fame) and the Persians did they become strict dualists and monotheists. In fact Jehovah was not only the sky god imposing order he also functions as the ocean god who created chaos and his wife Asherah was a forest deity and they had a pet demi-god creature name Lothan or Leviathan.
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Post by: stromboli on February 17, 2013, 07:28:12 PM
Quote
the oldest manuscripts in existence of various Rabbinical works are quite late. For example the oldest complete manuscript copy of the Babylonian Talmud to survive is dated to 1342 CE.[1]

All of the claims based on legitimacy of scripture and ancient records are highly problematic for this reason. Just as with New Testament sources, the time gap involved between actual events and the so-called written account throws some serious cold water on the authenticity of the records. In addition, there is no way to know how much change has been made over time; records are copies of copies of copies.

The archaeological record does not tell the same story as scripture.
Title: Re:
Post by: Sleeper on February 17, 2013, 07:43:12 PM
Quote from: "stromboli"
This is known. Also it is known that there is no historical record of the Exodus, and all the archaeological evidence indicates the religion grew and evolved in what was ancient Canaan.
I also found the history of David quite interesting - that his historicity is quite scant, he had no empire whatsoever, they occupied NONE of the lands they claimed to, and that the Philistines were peaceful, progressive people. The question is, how do we square this with the fact that the Bible is the infallible word of God?
Title: Re:
Post by: GodvReligion on February 17, 2013, 07:46:33 PM
Quote from: "stromboli"
Quote
the oldest manuscripts in existence of various Rabbinical works are quite late. For example the oldest complete manuscript copy of the Babylonian Talmud to survive is dated to 1342 CE.[1]

All of the claims based on legitimacy of scripture and ancient records are highly problematic for this reason. Just as with New Testament sources, the time gap involved between actual events and the so-called written account throws some serious cold water on the authenticity of the records. In addition, there is no way to know how much change has been made over time; records are copies of copies of copies.

The archaeological record does not tell the same story as scripture.

The same way that we square that Alice in Wonderland is historical record.  It is historical record of a drug induced writing session.  Don't know for sure, but it seems to me that it's political propoganda.
Title: Re: Re:
Post by: Brian37 on February 17, 2013, 07:54:06 PM
Quote from: "GodvReligion"
Quote from: "stromboli"
Quote
the oldest manuscripts in existence of various Rabbinical works are quite late. For example the oldest complete manuscript copy of the Babylonian Talmud to survive is dated to 1342 CE.[1]

All of the claims based on legitimacy of scripture and ancient records are highly problematic for this reason. Just as with New Testament sources, the time gap involved between actual events and the so-called written account throws some serious cold water on the authenticity of the records. In addition, there is no way to know how much change has been made over time; records are copies of copies of copies.

The archaeological record does not tell the same story as scripture.

The same way that we square that Alice in Wonderland is historical record.  It is historical record of a drug induced writing session.  Don't know for sure, but it seems to me that it's political propoganda.

No, if you want to say that religion and god belief can be equated to Alice and Wonder Land, yes, drug induced.

BUT the writer of Alice and Wonderland was not selling a truth, but a story. It does not matter if the writer of Alice and Wonderland was on something. At least the writer was not trying to sell it as a religion or political party.

Alice and Wonderland is a truth, only in that someone wrote a story, nothing more, no matter what the writer was on at the time of writing the story.

The only thing I wish religion could do is leave their bullshit at the same level.
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: Brian37 on February 17, 2013, 08:02:46 PM
Quote from: "Sleeper"
Umm... Let's see, Judaism... umm... Oh:

What's to make of this claim that the ancient Jews were actually polytheists?

Writer posted a YouTube video (http://http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0Yy_F34TGg)

When you are a baby, you are a spounge. Someone feeds you bullshit and while you grow up your buy it. The lucky ones catch on quickly and reject the crap their parents sell them.

YES, the Jews were a ripoff of prior Canaanite religions, just as Islam is a rip off of those prior.

Just like Joseph Smith ripped off Christianity. Just like Tom Cruise falsely sucks the dick of a dead Si Fi writer.

Posting an hour long refutation to social norms is bullshit because the explanation is simple. PEOPLE MAKE UP GODS! It is that fucking simple. Allah is made up, Jesus is made up, Vishnu is made up, Thor is made up and so are pink unicorns.
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Post by: Weltfrieden on February 17, 2013, 08:13:43 PM
The first commandment alone is proof enough that the Jews were originally polytheists.
Title: Re:
Post by: aitm on February 17, 2013, 08:17:25 PM
Quote from: "Rasputin"
The first commandment alone is proof enough that the Jews were originally polytheists.

that is true, but so very often ignored when I mention it to the believers.
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: Sleeper on February 17, 2013, 08:25:16 PM
Quote from: "Brian37"
Quote from: "Sleeper"
Umm... Let's see, Judaism... umm... Oh:

What's to make of this claim that the ancient Jews were actually polytheists?

Writer posted a YouTube video (http://http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0Yy_F34TGg)

When you are a baby, you are a spounge. Someone feeds you bullshit and while you grow up your buy it. The lucky ones catch on quickly and reject the crap their parents sell them.

YES, the Jews were a ripoff of prior Canaanite religions, just as Islam is a rip off of those prior.

Just like Joseph Smith ripped off Christianity. Just like Tom Cruise falsely sucks the dick of a dead Si Fi writer.

Posting an hour long refutation to social norms is bullshit because the explanation is simple. PEOPLE MAKE UP GODS! It is that fucking simple. Allah is made up, Jesus is made up, Vishnu is made up, Thor is made up and so are pink unicorns.
K. Watch it or don't -  I was just starting a topic in this topicless forum. To me, it's a pretty interesting topic. The foundation of 3 major, anti-polytheistic religions is grounded in the POLY aspect of theism. This isn't really new to me, but I haven't yet seen it here. What's to complain about? Just don't have the time? Got too many RGIII highlights to masturbate over? She's a Biblical scholar dealing with the earliest evidence, she's demolishing Biblical claims, and she's fucking hot.

Just enjoy, man.
Title: Re: Re:
Post by: Weltfrieden on February 17, 2013, 08:33:08 PM
Quote from: "aitm"
Quote from: "Rasputin"
The first commandment alone is proof enough that the Jews were originally polytheists.
that is true, but so very often ignored when I mention it to the believers.
If only more religious people actually took the time to think about their beliefs they would when presented with obvious red flags not so easily ignore it or come up with something to "refute" it with. And nothing is more frustrating than asking a question and having it dodged by be given an answer completely unrelated. >_>

Anyway, back to the Jews.
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Post by: NitzWalsh on February 18, 2013, 01:51:02 AM
It was a study of the origins of various religions which eventually got me out of them. I never saw this video before, but I liked it very much. I agree with much of the evidence that she is presenting, which also agrees with much of what I remember from my own studies. I also think she looks good doing it.

If you know anything about Mormonism, they have taken a step back towards polytheism. Many of the beliefs currently held by the Mormons are closer to the polytheistic origins of Judaism. Specifically they believe in a mother goddess who is a consort of the Father, though they don't typically name her or worship her in any way. I was Mormon for some time so it may come out in comments.

It's an interesting topic of discussion that has given me a desire to study further into Anthropology, Philosophy, and Religion.
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Post by: the_antithesis on February 18, 2013, 02:11:56 AM
[youtube:23dvn9sk]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MlnnWbkMlbg[/youtube:23dvn9sk]
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: Shiranu on February 18, 2013, 03:33:00 AM
I very much want to watch this when I am not on my phone...
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: Shiranu on February 18, 2013, 08:12:58 AM
The bit near the end about (king?) Omari and Samaria has been really cool. Its the same story we hear in all other parts of the world... history is always favourable to the guy with the bigger gun.

edit - fuck. Watched wrong episode. Fail.

Very, very good series, then :p. Thanks for link.
Title: Re: Re:
Post by: SGOS on February 18, 2013, 08:42:40 AM
Quote from: "aitm"
Quote from: "Rasputin"
The first commandment alone is proof enough that the Jews were originally polytheists.

that is true, but so very often ignored when I mention it to the believers.
Yes, it can be parphrased, "I am YOUR god.  Those other gods are not your gods," and from that can be extrapolated, "I am the god that will represent you.  Those other gods are already committed to your enemies."

At least the that's the way I can spin it.
Title: Re:
Post by: SGOS on February 18, 2013, 08:59:28 AM
Quote from: "the_antithesis"
Writer posted a YouTube video (http://http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MlnnWbkMlbg)
Good video.  I just learned something.
Title: Re: Re:
Post by: the_antithesis on February 18, 2013, 11:28:25 AM
Quote from: "SGOS"
Good video.  I just learned something.

Yes. You can now chide christians for worshiping a war god.
Title: Re: Re:
Post by: SGOS on February 18, 2013, 11:39:36 AM
Quote from: "the_antithesis"
Quote from: "SGOS"
Good video.  I just learned something.

Yes. You can now chide christians for worshiping a war god.
While I haven't actually chided any Christians about this issue, I've always thought the god of the Old Testament was a war god in addition to all the other things he was supposed to be.  It seems pretty obvious.
Title: Re: Re:
Post by: WitchSabrina on February 18, 2013, 11:56:35 AM
Quote from: "SGOS"
Quote from: "the_antithesis"
Writer posted a YouTube video (http://http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MlnnWbkMlbg)
Good video.  I just learned something.


Been awhile since I watched that.  Thanks SGOS.  Excellent video.
Title: Re: Re:
Post by: SGOS on February 18, 2013, 11:59:50 AM
Quote from: "WitchSabrina"
Been awhile since I watched that.  Thanks SGOS.  Excellent video.
That was from The Antithesis, but you're welcome.
Title: Re: Re:
Post by: WitchSabrina on February 18, 2013, 12:16:07 PM
Quote from: "SGOS"
Quote from: "WitchSabrina"
Been awhile since I watched that.  Thanks SGOS.  Excellent video.
That was from The Antithesis, but you're welcome.

Whooops - too many tabs open - too much going on for me.  Sorry.   Thank YOU, Antitness.
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: Shiranu on February 18, 2013, 09:38:50 PM
Sorry to be spamming this thread, but I am watching the posted episode now and it is excellent. Thanks again for link :D.

edit - Mom's response to issues raised in this? "You realize this is just a movie, right? That doesn't make it true.".

...fuck me. Fuck me sideways.
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: Davka on February 19, 2013, 10:26:49 AM
Quote from: "Sleeper"

What's to make of this claim that the ancient Jews were actually polytheists?
I think it's more accurate to say that the forebears of the ancient Jews were polytheists. The Hebrew-speaking people's self-identity as a group separate from the surrounding tribes appears to have emerged alongside their monotheism. Or possibly because of their monotheism.

The Babylonian exile seems to have solidified the idea that YHWH is the only "real" god, and that the Hebrews were conquered and captured because they were not exclusively faithful to YHWH. The take-away was "don't screw around on YHWH, he'll fuck you up!"
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Post by: GurrenLagann on February 22, 2013, 12:41:39 PM
Can't watch it from my phone, but does she say anything about changes to the texts themselves over time? For example, IIRC some passages in the OT that said things like "....and so the SONS of the Lord..." were changed later to "....and so the ANGELS of the Lord..."

Hellm it's apparent even with all the tomfoolery. The Pharoah's magicians could perform legitamite miracles according to the OT, it was simply that Aaron' were greater, implying they were assisted by their own god(s). Even Yahweh's "I am who I am" reply to Moses in the bush indicates this.


...But no Christian is likely to accept any of this. :/
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Post by: Sleeper on February 22, 2013, 07:50:45 PM
I don't think the video mentions the changes, but it does mention the "Who among the gods..." "The lord's throne is in the midst of the gods (or something similar)...," "Let us make man in our image..." - Things like that.
Title: Re: Re:
Post by: Dena on March 09, 2013, 01:43:26 AM
Quote from: "aitm"
Quote from: "Rasputin"
The first commandment alone is proof enough that the Jews were originally polytheists.

that is true, but so very often ignored when I mention it to the believers.

Christians seem to largely be unaware of the fact or want to pretend it's not known. I'm not sure why it's so bothersome.
Title: Re: Re:
Post by: Davka on March 11, 2013, 06:47:02 PM
Quote from: "Dena"
Quote from: "aitm"
Quote from: "Rasputin"
The first commandment alone is proof enough that the Jews were originally polytheists.

that is true, but so very often ignored when I mention it to the believers.

Christians seem to largely be unaware of the fact or want to pretend it's not known. I'm not sure why it's so bothersome.
The Christian myth sez that people always knew there was only one god, cuz he done created adam and watsis in that there garden thingie, and they tolded their kids about it and people always talked to god for ever and ever and he talked back and everyone who was anyone knew there was only one god, except the pagans who were just trying to piss off yahweh.

If the early Hebrews were polytheistic, then the entire story breaks down.
Title: Re: Re:
Post by: Colanth on March 13, 2013, 01:22:23 PM
Quote from: "Davka"
The Christian myth sez that people always knew there was only one god, cuz he done created adam and watsis in that there garden thingie, and they tolded their kids about it and people always talked to god for ever and ever and he talked back and everyone who was anyone knew there was only one god, except the pagans who were just trying to piss off yahweh.

If the early Hebrews were polytheistic, then the entire story breaks down.
It breaks down even further if they accept that Yahweh was just El's war chief.  Yahweh didn't become the only god until almost Christian times.
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: FrankDK on March 13, 2013, 07:42:24 PM
> BUT the writer of Alice and Wonderland was not selling a truth, but a story.

I suspect the people who made up the stories later documented in the Bible didn't intend for them to be taken as anything but stories.  They were allegories, intended to give people power over events by naming them, and to provide entertainment and cultural cement.  The idea of taking them literally probably came much later.

Frank
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: Sleeper on March 13, 2013, 09:06:29 PM
Quote from: "FrankDK"
> BUT the writer of Alice and Wonderland was not selling a truth, but a story.

I suspect the people who made up the stories later documented in the Bible didn't intend for them to be taken as anything but stories.  They were allegories, intended to give people power over events by naming them, and to provide entertainment and cultural cement.  The idea of taking them literally probably came much later.

Frank
The law seems pretty drawn out and tedious for it all to have been allegorical. And the divine right to give the law was based on what Yahweh did for (to?) the Israelites.
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: FrankDK on March 14, 2013, 08:23:16 AM
> The law seems pretty drawn out and tedious for it all to have been allegorical. And the divine right to give the law was based on what Yahweh did for (to?) the Israelites.

I could be wrong, but I think the stories long predate the law.  The stories go way back to the period of oral tradition.  The law developed after that, and was incorporated into Jewish tradition and religion.  They used the stories, which were by then well-accepted, as justification for enforcement of the laws.  You notice there is no direct or logical link between most of the laws and the stories.  Other than the First Commandment, you can't get there from here.

Of course, some of the parts of the stories were probably added later, "merely corroborative detail, intended to give artistic verisimilitude to an otherwise bald and unconvincing narrative."

Frank
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Post by: Davka on March 17, 2013, 11:03:22 PM
One thing that helps shed light on the Torah, or 5 "books of moses," is the fact that it was common practice for thousands of years to attribute your writing to an earlier, famous writer, as a way of "honoring" that writer (and stealing some glory while you were at it). The first 12 chapters of Genesis is clearly a hodgepodge of oral stories passed down for generations. The comes the whole thing with Abraham, Isaac, and Isaac's 12 sons - the fictional years of slavery in Egypt which made those sons' descendants into different tribes - and finally the whole Moses-in-the-desert story. It seems pretty clear that the entire Torah was assembled piecemeal over time, and as new stories entered the scene, they were always attributed to "moses."

So the garden story, tower of babel, the flood and all the rest probably pre-dates all the law stuff by many generations.

Another interesting factoid: Although the Torah is supposedly the earliest written part of the Bible, the language in Job is far more archaic than anything else in the OT. Job was the first book of the Bible to be written down. The rest came hundreds of years later.
Title: Re: Just So This Extraordinary Claim Has A Non-Admin Topic..
Post by: FrankDK on March 18, 2013, 12:27:41 PM
> One thing that helps shed light on the Torah, or 5 "books of moses," is the fact that it was common practice for thousands of years to attribute your writing to an earlier, famous writer, as a way of "honoring" that writer (and stealing some glory while you were at it).

In 2 Kings 22:8, the claim is made that they "found" the books of Moses lying around in the temple.  Makes one suspicious.

Frank