Vexen Crabtree 2015

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Sociology, Theology, Anti-Religion and Exploration: Forcing Humanity Forwards


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Vexen Crabtree 2015
vexen

The Sinister Left and fear of the Moon

The Sinister Left and fear of the Moon


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The historicity of the concept of sin is materialistic.

The most ancient and primitive tribal religions, which are the forerunners to all religious thought, are almost entirely spirit based. Within animism the material world itself is often the unreal world and the spirit world is considered the only true/real world. Appropriate actions towards or against a ruling spirit(s) were/are some of the most important codes of conduct within animism and all ancient/primitive religions and cultures. The ancient Romans themselves had a pantheon of deities and the Lex Talionis is not unique to them: it is used as an ethical code in essentially every culture and religion in some form.

The use and understanding of the Lex Talionis and social justice in this essay, which is purely materialistic, modern, and informed by Satanism, is not the appropriate lens by which to understand its use in ancient times. The statements in this essay are classic examples of anachronism. (Such as: "Sin, social guilt or criminal behavior, was a failure of the individual to fully take into account the results of hir own actions.")

Also, social ethics/criminal behavior and "sin" are not the same thing and are not interchangeable concepts in civilized cultures (from ancient Rome to modern Europe).

Materialism -> Animism -> Polytheism -> Monotheism

I say "Sin, social guilt or criminal behavior, was a failure of the individual to fully take into account the results of hir own actions" because of the word (as far as I could tell from the sources given) came from sons, which meant guilty or criminal.

If from the Northern Tribes (more German than Roman), the word would have meant "guilty" and criminal leading to the Northern doctrine of "crime and compensation" rather than "crime and punishment", which has a basis in a will for justice, etc, on materialism. If not Nordic, then it must have been Middle in origin (sanskrit culture and area). One source (which I didn't include because it was 'neutral' was an author writing on Zoroastrianism who said something like:

"Zoroastrianism doesn't have a concept of sin. [...] God has already set up the chain of cause and affect of our actions"[1], which could be used as an example of how the oldest religion didn't consider the negative affects of our actions to be inherently involved with the divine. Such a combination (between cause and affect, animistic gods and a general divine will for good) would be very natural though once Gods became more universal as religion evolved. I think! That would explain why Zoroastrianism may not contain this concept but later "versions" of it's monotheism did.

If the Northern tribes informed our usage of the word "sin", the combination of criminal justice and divine justice resulted in the word 'sin' as presently used, and if the Latin world influenced the word more heavily then the combination of 'cause and affect' and divine will would have resulted in the usage, too. I think (as the sources always said it 'may' have been Latin) that the basis of the concept of cosmic sin is, in either case, tied down to cause and effect, crime and compensation, which are materialistic.

I think the general trend of religion has been that we have built animistic interpretations, projections of our own emotions into abstract systems and forces, and that over time these became increasingly grander concepts until we eventually arrived at the Greek 3-omni God. So that the same cause-and-effect issues became attached to increasingly grander cosmic schemes. Tribal Gods (spiritualism, animism) became gods of nations (Abrahamic, Nordic, Egyptian), then finally large scale international gods (Islam, Christianity) until even the gods of religion begin to merge (Bahai, Islam, liberal Christianity): "many paths, one god" religions.

[1] I typed "Zoroastrianism sin" into a search engine and I think it was one of the first pages to come up.

Re: Materialism -> Animism -> Polytheism -> Monotheism

I just found some notes... these are from when we discussed this originally, I adapted text from then and used it in the essay you are commenting on now (you probably noticed the similarity, hence the similarity of the responses we've given). I cut this text because I had wrote too much already!:

Comparison to "responsibility to the responsible", sin, and cause and affect and stupidity and Zoroastrianism:

I was looking up "sin" in Zoroastrianism. The author on http://www.zoroastrian.net/sins.htm says "Mazda has already set up the Principle of Consequences, which establishes that you will receive the consequences of your choices in kind and automatically" which agrees more strongly with Satanism's view of sin. I think there is some general agreements between religions about their terminology. The specifics change from religion to religion. I'm not sure what "sin" is in Buddhism but I would assume that it is a self-harming concept.

Re: Materialism -> Animism -> Polytheism -> Monotheism

Sin in nearly all religions is that which harmful either to oneself or others. Sin is not only that which harms oneself, it is that which violates the other (rape, murder, theft, etc.). The reason sin is also a violation against God in western religious tradition is because all people, including oneself, are made in God's image and are therefore sacred as a part of God's self/creation. Zoroastrianism has a well developed sense of sin and many of their holy texts are filled with descriptions of such sin which are compatible with western religious notions of sin. I'm not clear what point you're trying to make.

Re: Materialism -> Animism -> Polytheism -> Monotheism

I agree with you here except on one bit, which is (predictably) a big bit. I agree that the source you outline for Western religious use of the word 'sin' is as you say. What I am saying is that the word has a more ancient history and the concept it embodies was not initially spiritual; the very fact that we believe in cause-and-affect guilt-crime-sin is a result of the older traditions of crime, social crime, guilt and cause and affect: normal aspects of all society regardless of religious belief.

This cause and affect, the Principle Of Consequences (I like that term! The author on the webpage on Zoroastrianism who used it is called Delavega), is the basis of the very notion that we can interact positively or negatively with spirits. I think there is general agreements between religions about their terminology, and my essay says Satanism too has it's own take on what Sin is. In the case of Satanism, sin is nearly always caused by stupidity/lack of thought.

The Principle Of Consequences is the basis of the word 'sin' in Satanism and other religions (Buddhism, secular usage and animism): Errornous choices lead to results that are bad for the self and/or the local community. In some religions you do not need to directly seek forgiveness for sins. The same in Satanism. Instead the simple logic is that, in Delavega's words: "You change your mind about your choice! Interestingly, the word used in the New Testament for this is repentance, which in the original means metanoia: that is meta=change and noia=mind". In Satanism where stupidity is the primary sin, once you have learned the effects of your own stupidity all you need to is change your actions.

(Note: I haven't verified his NT comment)

social ethics/criminal behavior and "sin" are not the same thing and are not interchangeable concepts in civilized cultures (from ancient Rome to modern Europe)

I think as the concept of cause and effect became sin it's usage became non-interchangable, which is similar to the modern secular usage of the word which is probably not interchangable with the religious usage of the word.

Satanism uses the term to mean something that is wrong in the eyes of a particular religion (the precise 'wrongs' vary from religion to religion). People expect religions to have commandments and sins because of the influence of the major and popular monotheistic religions. If we go back one (or half) a step it means "something which is against god" (Christian, late Roman 'sin'), if we go back 2 steps it is "something which is against local spirit" (animism: 'sons', 'guilt') and if we go back 3 steps it is materialistic cause and effect including reprimandible social behavior (root of the word as both 'guilt' and 'criminal'). Depending on how far back you look the concept of sin is 'based' on different things.

The same progression occurs naturally most the time. For example the Egyptians named the stars, then as one constellation changed position over time they created cosmic myths to describe why, but over time these became seen as increasingly real and literal events. We become more literal as time goes on and interpret previous religious teachings more literally as time goes on, but before and during animism religious thought was mostly (like easly Egyptian mythology and animism) concerned with materialistic cause and effect interpreted in terms of spirits and personified forces.

My underlying belief is that religion is derived from us attempting to describe materialistic reality, whereas your underlying belief is that it is us attempting to describe a spiritual reality. Therefore I interpret animism and being based on materialistic cause and affect (coupled with our non-understanding of the seasons, the sun, etc), and you interpret it as reflecting our actual relationship with spirits. Given our biases and compassion towards religion we're bound to keep disagreeing over the causes of such beliefs... I think!

Simplified: When you say something religious is based on spiritual reality, I disagree, and when I say it's based originally on materialism, you disagree. Because I assume that spiritual belief is Human projection of emotions onto concepts, and you believe that amongst religious and spiritual belief there is some truth. I think that's generally how it works...

Re: Change over time

I don't seem to track with your logic and can't determine what your arguments are for the most part, so here's a few responses from what I could pick out.

If we go back one (or half) a step it means "something which is against god" (Christian, late Roman 'sin'), if we go back 2 steps it is "something which is against local spirit" (animism: 'sons', 'guilt') and if we go back 3 steps it is materialistic cause and effect including reprimandible social behavior (root of the word as both 'guilt' and 'criminal'). Depending on how far back you look the concept of sin is 'based' on different things.

The oldest and most primitive religious and cultural systems known to humankind are based on animism. The earliest writings humankind has are animistic texts of spiritual worship. Animism and its spiritualism date to pre-history. What are you proposing is the "step" behind animism? What religion, culture, philosophy or social structure are you claiming came before animism? If you are proposing any kind of materialistic society that was structured around materialism and used materialistic concepts, please name and site your sources.

We become more literal as time goes on and interpret previous religious teachings more literally as time goes on, but before and during animism religious thought was mostly (like easly Egyptian mythology and animism) concerned with materialistic cause and effect interpreted in terms of spirits and personified forces.

This does not follow. Christians too are concerned with materialistic causes (why did the tornado hit my house? why did my dad die? what happens after death? etc.) That does not make them materialists nor does it make their laws and social structures and concerns devoid of spiritual conotations or materialistic.

My underlying belief is that religion is derived from us attempting to describe materialistic reality, whereas your underlying belief is that it is us attempting to describe a spiritual reality.

Religion and spirituality are attempting to describe material reality, and they do it using spiritual terms with a belief in forces beyond material reality. The most ancient civilizations believed in both a material and spiritual realm and believed the two interacted; so do modern day religious cultures including Christians. You seem to be making a false distinction unknown to religious tradition.

Simplified: When you say something religious is based on spiritual reality, I disagree, and when I say it's based originally on materialism, you disagree. Because I assume that spiritual belief is Human projection of emotions onto concepts, and you believe that amongst religious and spiritual belief there is some truth. I think that's generally how it works...

The point we are arguing is not about what I believe or what you believe; that doesn't even enter into this conversation and is irrelevant. The point we are arguing is whether the civilizations who developed the concepts of guilt and sin, etc. were doing so divorced of spiritulism, eg on a materialistic basis as you claim. My statement: "Appropriate actions towards or against a ruling spirit(s) were/are some of the most important codes of conduct within animism and all ancient/primitive religions and cultures" is not about what I believe, it is a statement of historical fact that entirely contradicts your essay. It is simply erroneous to claim that materialism is either the basis for or precursor to animism. Again, animimstic societies are the most ancient cultures known to humankind; they predate all other religious traditions and known cultures.

My main response is that I'm not saying animism was materialistic. I am merely saying that the development of social justice, guilt and crime, were secular and not religious because they were necessary to society and would have developed with or without spiritual beliefs. I couldn't claim that animistic was materialistic as the ritualistic and spiritual elements were far too dominant.

I believe that animism is a result of our consciousness and empathy and as such expect it to be similar to the oldest beliefs possible.

why is there always the common conception as well that the left handed person is gay?
I think the left hander is as big or even as less a minority as homosexuals

No eternal life because Sun dies?

(Anonymous)
"Like many sparks from a single fire" is a metaphor employed by the Upanishads to explain biologic existence as the extension of a single consciousness. It is the True Nature of the Sun and of the entire Universe, a Naturally Intelligent way of acting, that is Eternal. Symbols created by the actions of Sun and Moon are meaningless without interpretation. Allowing them to mesh with our consciousness, we also become Intelligent.

Comments? Write: rodriguezmigliano@hotmail.com


Query and Typo

(Anonymous)
"Early Native Americans mothers would tie their babies left arms to make them righthanded" I would LOVE the source of this information. Also, I don't think you need an "s" at the end of "American" there.

Other typo: "Although we know understand biology and the causes of such things..." I believe you meant, "Although we NOW understand biology..."

--Rayme

Re: Query and Typo

Corrected both those typos. I have a few books that mention left-handedness, I'll have a look. http://www.librarything.com/profile/Vexen lists all the books I own and therefore might have quoted from. Excuse the third person text: There are at least two books on Native American spirituality that Vexen owns that might have been sources.

I am very busy at the moment, prompt me in a week or two if I haven't got back to you yet.

Re: Query and Typo

I have found a new source containing similar information and have added relevent quotes to www.dpjs.co.uk/lefthandpath.html from Stan Gooch, including listing his own sources.

Re: Thanks, and more typos

(Anonymous)
Wicked additions, man! Thanks. I learned a lot! When are you gonna write a book, Vex?

Now look: "North American Indians the right represents bravery and virility, but the left signifies death and burial."
I think you need a "FOR" at the beginning of that sentence, don't you?

And also at that link you forgot to remove the unneeded "s" after "American."
"Early Native Americans mothers would tie their..."

Re: Thanks, and more typos

Corrected them too, thanks for pointing them out and being patient with my over-keen under-checked English!

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