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PAPER 89 - SIN, SACRIFICE, AND ATONEMENT

Pages 974 - 985

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#1 Rick Warren

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Posted 05 April 2012 - 03:57 AM



Welcome to UAI Forum's One-Page-A-Day Online Study Session

Today's Presentation Is From:


PAPER 89 - SIN, SACRIFICE, AND ATONEMENT


[Introduction]


P.974 - §1 Primitive man regarded himself as being in debt to the spirits, as standing in need of redemption. As the savages looked at it, in justice the spirits might have visited much more bad luck upon them. As time passed, this concept developed into the doctrine of sin and salvation. The soul was looked upon as coming into the world under forfeit--original sin. The soul must be ransomed; a scapegoat must be provided. The head-hunter, in addition to practicing the cult of skull worship, was able to provide a substitute for his own life, a scapeman.

P.974 - §2 The savage was early possessed with the notion that spirits derive supreme satisfaction from the sight of human misery, suffering, and humiliation. At first, man was only concerned with sins of commission, but later he became exercised over sins of omission. And the whole subsequent sacrificial system grew up around these two ideas. This new ritual had to do with the observance of the propitiation ceremonies of sacrifice. Primitive man believed that something special must be done to win the favor of the gods; only advanced civilization recognizes a consistently even-tempered and benevolent God. Propitiation was insurance against immediate ill luck rather than investment in future bliss. And the rituals of avoidance, exorcism, coercion, and propitiation all merge into one another.



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[Each OPAD presentation is copied from The Urantia Book published by Urantia Foundation. Questions and comments related to the Paper under discussion are welcome. In-depth questions and related topics may be studied in branch threads in the OPAD, or other subforums, as you require. Thank you for studying with us!]


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#2 Rick Warren

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Posted 05 April 2012 - 05:21 AM

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Greetings Fellow Students, Forum Members and Guests :D

Welcome to the opening presentation of Paper 89, the last of five consecutive Papers on the origins and practices of primitive religionists. All five are authored by a Brilliant Evening Star, a sibling of Gabriel--first born of Nebadon, our "local universe" of millions of inhabited planets.

Paper 89 is the final essay in this series about the foundations of beliefs in spirits (ghosts) on Urantia. This Paper addresses our ever advancing comprehension of the spirit world and the rituals that our ancestors created, not just to assuage the innate enmity of evil spirits against humans, but to preempt it!

Apparently primitive humans decided the gods were angry, hostile and cruel. Not surprising when loved ones were repeatedly swept away by floods, killed by earthquakes, punished by inexplicable pain, periodic famines, persistent plagues and merciless droughts.

About propitiation and expiation:

...The Greek word hilasterion is the Greek rendering of the Hebrew kapporeth which refers to the Mercy Seat of the Ark. Hilasterion can be translated as either "propitiation" or "expiation" which then imply different functions of the Mercy Seat. The English dictionary definition of "propitiation" literally means to make favorable and specifically includes the idea of dealing with God’s wrath against sinners. Expiation literally means to make pious and implies either the removal or cleansing of sin.

The idea of propitiation includes that of expiation as its means, but the word "expiation" has no reference to quenching God’s righteous anger. The difference is that linguistically the object of expiation is sin, not God (that is, sin is removed, not God). Linguistically, one propitiates a person (makes them favorable), and one expiates a problem (removes it). Christ's death was therefore both an expiation and a propitiation. By expiating (removing the problem of) sin God was made propitious (favorable) to us.


Overview of: Paper 89 Sin, Sacrifice, and Atonement


1. The Taboo
2. The Concept of Sin
3. Renunciation and Humiliation

4. Origins of Sacrifice
5. Sacrifices and Cannibalism
6. Evolution of Human Sacrifice
7. Modifications of Human Sacrifice

8. Redemption and Covenants
9. Sacrifices and Sacraments
10. Forgiveness of Sin


[Presented by a Brilliant Evening Star of Nebadon.]


***

Synopsis of Paper 89:

Primitive people believed that spirits enjoyed human misery, and that staying in favor with the gods depended on either doing or avoiding specific things. This belief led to the birth of taboos. Later, religion made taboos into sins; confession, renunciation, and sacrifices developed. People bargained for the favor of God by fasting, chastity, voluntary poverty, and self‑torture.


Early sacrifices included plucking hair, knocking out teeth, cutting off fingers and other mutilations. People offered sacrifices to the gods as thanksgiving and for the redemption of debts. Later, the idea of sacrificial substitution evolved into the atonement concept-an insurance policy against the displeasure of deity.


Cannibalism at one time was nearly universal, serving social, economic, religious, and military purposes. The Sangik races were cannibalistic; the pure-line Andonites, Nodites and Adamites were not. The Dalamatia taboo against cannibalism spread throughout the world, and cannibalism fell greatly out of common practice once human sacrifice made human flesh the food of the gods. Human sacrifice endured various modifications, including animal sacrifice, enforced exile, temple prostitution, temple virgins, bloodletting, physical mutilation, circumcision, castration, piercing, tattooing, and scarring. Moses tried to put an end to human sacrifice among the Hebrews by inventing a system of ransoms to priests as a substitute.


The practices of ransom, redemption, and covenants have evolved into the modern-day sacraments. Early prayers were crude bartering agreements with the spirit world, but they demonstrated human progress in that people had evolved to the point that they dared to make deals with God.




Source: http://urantiabook.o...s/a_soe_89.html


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Tomorrow's reading, Section 1: THE TABOO reveals the terrible cost and unbelievable tribulation involved in the creation of the foundations of modern religious worship.

Thanks for reading. Forum Member's thoughts, reflections, insights, observations, comments, corrections and questions about today's OPAD presentation are invited. Join the Forum

Much love, Rick/OPAD host



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#3 Rick Warren

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Posted 05 April 2012 - 05:30 AM

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Previous OPAD Presentations and Discussions:

Pages 1-17 ~
The Foreword
Paper 1 ~ The Universal Father
Paper 2 ~ The Nature of God
Paper 3 ~ The Attributes of God
Paper 4 ~ God's Relation To The Universe
Paper 5 ~ God's Relation To The Individual
Paper 6 ~ The Eternal Son
Paper 7 ~ Relation of the Eternal Son to the Universe
Paper 8 ~ The Infinite Spirit
Paper 9 ~ Relation of the Infinite Spirit to the Universe
Paper 10 ~ The Paradise Trinity
Paper 11 ~ The Eternal Isle of Paradise
Paper 12 ~ The Universes of Universes
Paper 13 ~ The Sacred Spheres of Paradise
Paper 14 ~ The Central and Divine Universe
Paper 15 ~ The Seven Superuniverses
Paper 16 ~ The Seven Master Spirits
Paper 17 ~ The Seven Supreme Spirit Groups
Paper 18 ~ The Supreme Trinity Personalities
Paper 19 ~ The Co-Ordinate Trinity-Origin Beings
Paper 20 ~ The Paradise Sons of God
Paper 21 ~ The Paradise Creator Sons
Paper 22 ~ The Trinitized Sons of God
Paper 23 ~ The Solitary Messengers
Paper 24 ~ Higher Personalities of The Infinite Spirit
Paper 25 ~ The Messenger Hosts of Space
Paper 26 ~ Ministering Spirits of the Central Universe
Paper 27 ~ Ministry of the Primary Supernaphim
Paper 28 ~ Ministering Spirits of the Superuniverses
Paper 30 ~ Personalities of the Grand Universe
Paper 31 ~ The Corps Of The Finality
Paper 32 ~ The Evolution of Local Universes
Paper 33 ~ Administration Of The Local Universe
Paper 34 ~ The Local Universe Mother Spirit
Paper 35 ~ The Local Universe Sons of God
Paper 36 ~ The Life Carriers
Paper 37 ~ Personalities Of The Local Universe
Paper 38 ~ Ministering Spirits of the Local Universe
Paper 39 ~ The Seraphic Hosts
Paper 40 ~ The Ascending Sons of God
Paper 41 ~ Physical Aspects of the Local Universe
Paper 42 ~ Energy--Mind and Matter
Paper 43 ~ The Constellation Headquarters
Paper 44 ~ The Celestial Artisans
Paper 45 ~ The Local System Administration
Paper 46 ~ The Local System Headquarters
Paper 47 ~ The Seven Mansion Worlds
Paper 48 ~ The Morontia Life
Paper 49 ~ The Inhabited Worlds
Paper 50 ~ The Planetary Princes
Paper 51 ~ The Planetary Adams
Paper 52 ~ Planetary Mortal Epochs
Paper 53 ~ The Lucifer Rebellion
Paper 54 ~ Problems Of The Lucifer Rebellion
Paper 55 ~ The Spheres Of Light And Life
Paper 56 ~ Universal Unity
Paper 57 ~ The Origin Of Urantia
Paper 58 ~ Life Establishment On Urantia
Paper 59 ~ The Marine-Life Era On Urantia
Paper 60 ~ Urantia During The Early Land-Life Era
Paper 61 ~ The Mammalian Era On Urantia
Paper 62 ~ The Dawn Races Of Early Man
Paper 63 ~ The First Human Family
Paper 64 ~ The Evolutionary Races Of Color
Paper 65 ~ The Overcontrol Of Evolution
Paper 66 ~ The Planetary Prince Of Urantia
Paper 67 ~ The Planetary Rebellion
Paper 68 ~ The Dawn Of Civilization
Paper 69 ~ Primitive Human Institutions
Paper 70 ~ The Evolution Of Human Government
Paper 71 ~ Development Of The State
Paper 72 ~ Government On A Neighboring Planet
Paper 73 ~ The Garden Of Eden
Paper 74 ~ Adam And Eve
Paper 75 ~ The Default Of Adam And Eve
Paper 76 ~ The Second Garden
Paper 77 ~ The Midway Creatures
Paper 78 ~ The Violet Race After The Days Of Adam
Paper 79 ~ Andite Expansion In The Orient
Paper 80 ~ Andite Expansion In The Occident

Paper 81 ~ Development Of Modern Civilization
Paper 82 ~ The Evolution Of Marriage

Paper 83 ~ The Marriage Institution
Paper 84 ~ Marriage And Family Life

Paper 85 ~ The Origins of Worship
Paper 86 ~ Early Evolution Of Religion
Paper 87 ~ The Ghost Cults
Paper 88 ~ Fetishes, Charms and Magic
Paper 89 ~ Sin, Sacrifice And Atonement



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#4 Rick Warren

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 05:19 AM



Welcome to UAI Forum's One-Page-A-Day Online Study Session

Today's Presentation:


PAPER 89 - SIN, SACRIFICE, AND ATONEMENT



1. THE TABOO


P.974 - §3 Observance of a taboo was man's effort to dodge ill luck, to keep from offending the spirit ghosts by the avoidance of something. The taboos were at first nonreligious, but they early acquired ghost or spirit sanction, and when thus reinforced, they became lawmakers and institution builders. The taboo is the source of ceremonial standards and the ancestor of primitive self-control. It was the earliest form of societal regulation and for a long time the only one; it is still a basic unit of the social regulative structure.

P.974 - §4 The respect which these prohibitions commanded in the mind of the savage exactly equaled his fear of the powers who were supposed to enforce them. Taboos first arose because of chance experience with ill luck; later they were proposed by chiefs and shamans--fetish men who were thought to be directed by a spirit ghost, even by a god. The fear of spirit retribution is so great in the mind of a primitive that he sometimes dies of fright when he has violated a taboo, and this dramatic episode enormously strengthens the hold of the taboo on the minds of the survivors.

P.974 - §5 Among the earliest prohibitions were restrictions on the appropriation of women and other property. As religion began to play a larger part in the evolution
P.975 - §0 of the taboo, the article resting under ban was regarded as unclean, subsequently as unholy. The records of the Hebrews are full of the mention of things clean and unclean, holy and unholy, but their beliefs along these lines were far less cumbersome and extensive than were those of many other peoples.


P.975 - §1 The seven commandments of Dalamatia and Eden, as well as the ten injunctions of the Hebrews, were definite taboos, all expressed in the same negative form as were the most ancient prohibitions. But these newer codes were truly emancipating in that they took the place of thousands of pre-existent taboos. And more than this, these later commandments definitely promised something in return for obedience.

P.975 - §2 The early food taboos originated in fetishism and totemism. The swine was sacred to the Phoenicians, the cow to the Hindus. The Egyptian taboo on pork has been perpetuated by the Hebraic and Islamic faiths. A variant of the food taboo was the belief that a pregnant woman could think so much about a certain food that the child, when born, would be the echo of that food. Such viands would be taboo to the child.

P.975 - §3 Methods of eating soon became taboo, and so originated ancient and modern table etiquette. Caste systems and social levels are vestigial remnants of olden prohibitions. The taboos were highly effective in organizing society, but they were terribly burdensome; the negative-ban system not only maintained useful and constructive regulations but also obsolete, outworn, and useless taboos.

P.975 - §4 There would, however, be no civilized society to sit in criticism upon primitive man except for these far-flung and multifarious taboos, and the taboo would never have endured but for the upholding sanctions of primitive religion. Many of the essential factors in man's evolution have been highly expensive, have cost vast treasure in effort, sacrifice, and self-denial, but these achievements of self-control were the real rungs on which man climbed civilization's ascending ladder.




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[Each OPAD presentation is copied from The Urantia Book published by Urantia Foundation. Questions and comments related to the Paper under discussion are welcome. In-depth questions and related topics may be studied in branch threads in the OPAD, or other subforums, as you require. Thank you for studying with us!]


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#5 Rick Warren

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 07:14 AM

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Greetings Fellow Students, Forum Members and Guests,

The teachings of the UB repeatedly indicate that self control and more self control is the trend of progressing civilization. What could have been better devised than taboos to control people?!

...A taboo is a vehement prohibition of an action based on the belief that such behavior is either too sacred or too accursed for ordinary individuals to undertake, under threat of supernatural punishment.[1][2] Such prohibitions are present in virtually all societies.[1] The word has been somewhat expanded in the social sciences to include strong prohibitions relating to any area of human activity or custom that is sacred or forbidden based on moral judgment and religious beliefs.[citation needed] "Breaking a taboo" is usually considered objectionable by society in general, not merely a subset of a culture.


...The term "taboo" comes from the Tongan tabu, related to the Maori tapu. Its English use dates to 1777 when the British explorer James Cook visited Tonga.


...Sigmund Freud posited that incest and patricide were the only two universal taboos and formed the basis of civilization.[9] However, although cannibalism, in-group murder, and incest are taboo in the majority of societies, modern research has found exceptions for each and no taboo is presently known to be universal.

Common taboos include restrictions or ritual regulation of killing and hunting; sex and sexual relationships (primarily incest, pedophilia, necrophilia, intermarriage, miscegenation, adultery, homosexuality, fornication, and bestiality); reproduction (abortion, infanticide); the deceased and their graves; food and dining (primarily cannibalism and dietary laws such as vegetarianism, kashrut, and halal); and bodily functions (primarily menstrual cycles, but also defecation and urination).

Taboos often extend to cover discussion of taboo topics, resulting in euphemisms and replacement of taboo words.


...Taboos may serve many functions and often remain in effect after their original reason has disappeared.

Communist and materialist theorists have argued that taboos can be used to reveal the histories of societies when other records are lacking.[10] Marvin Harris particularly endeavored to explain taboos as a consequence of ecologic and economic conditions.


...The rise of rationalism and science has reduced the potency of many former taboos in modern cultures.[citation needed] In the United States and Europe, people openly discuss and explore previously taboo subjects such as sexuality and abortion. Increasing understanding has led medical disorders such as epilepsy, birth defects, and sexually transmitted diseases to be treated more analytically and less judgmentally than in the past.

However, changing social customs and standards also create new taboos, such as bans on slavery; conflation of ephebophilia with pedophilia;[11] prohibitions on alcohol, tobacco, or psychopharmaceutical consumption (particularly among pregnant women); and the employment of politically correct euphemisms to – at times quite unsuccessfully – mitigate various forms of discrimination.

Incest itself has been pulled both ways, with some seeking to normalize consensual adult relationships regardless of the degree of kinship[12] (notably in Europe[13][14]) and others expanding the degrees of prohibited contact (notably in the United States[15]).

Contemporary multicultural societies have established a number of taboos rooted in the perceived injustice and deleterious effects of modern history, particularly neocolonialism. Tribalisms (for example, ethnocentrism and nationalism) and prejudices (racism, sexism, religious extremism) are opposed at times reflexively despite the potentially high cost of diverse societies in terms of trust and solidarity.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taboo

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"Unclean" references from the Christian Bible:

Leviticus 5:2 "'Or if a person touches anything ceremonially ...
..... Or if a person touches anything ceremonially unclean--whether the carcasses ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/5-2.htm - 17k
Romans 14:14 As one who is in the Lord Jesus, I am fully convinced ...
As one who is in the Lord Jesus, I am fully convinced that no food is unclean
in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean ...
//bible.cc/romans/14-14.htm - 17k
Numbers 19:22 Anything that an unclean person touches becomes ...
Anything that an unclean person touches becomes unclean, and
anyone who touches it becomes unclean till evening ...
//bible.cc/numbers/19-22.htm - 16k
Leviticus 11:35 Anything that one of their carcasses falls on ...
Anything that one of their carcasses falls on becomes unclean; an oven or
cooking pot must be broken up. They are unclean, and you ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/11-35.htm - 17k
Leviticus 20:25 "'You must therefore make a distinction between ...
"'You must therefore make a distinction between clean and unclean animals and
between unclean and clean birds. Do not defile yourselves ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/20-25.htm - 18k
Leviticus 7:21 If anyone touches something unclean--whether human ...
If anyone touches something unclean--whether human uncleanness or an unclean animal
or any unclean, detestable thing--and then eats any of the meat of the ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/7-21.htm - 18k
Leviticus 12:2 "Say to the Israelites: 'A woman who becomes ...
"Say to the Israelites: 'A woman who becomes pregnant and gives birth to a son will
be ceremonially unclean for seven days, just as she is unclean during her ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/12-2.htm - 17k
Leviticus 15:10 and whoever touches any of the things that were ...
and whoever touches any of the things that were under him will be unclean till evening;
whoever picks up those things must wash his clothes and bathe with water ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/15-10.htm - 17k
Leviticus 11:31 Of all those that move along the ground, these are ...
Of all those that move along the ground, these are unclean for you. Whoever
touches them when they are dead will be unclean till evening. ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/11-31.htm - 16k
Leviticus 13:11 it is a chronic skin disease and the priest shall ...
it is a chronic skin disease and the priest shall pronounce him unclean. He
is not to put him in isolation, because he is already unclean. ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/13-11.htm - 16k
Leviticus 15:24 "'If a man lies with her and her monthly flow ...
"'If a man lies with her and her monthly flow touches him, he will be unclean
for seven days; any bed he lies on will be unclean. ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/15-24.htm - 16k
Leviticus 11:34 Any food that could be eaten but has water on it ...
Any food that could be eaten but has water on it from such a pot is unclean,
and any liquid that could be drunk from it is unclean. ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/11-34.htm - 16k
Leviticus 11:27 Of all the animals that walk on all fours, those ...
Of all the animals that walk on all fours, those that walk on their paws are unclean
for you; whoever touches their carcasses will be unclean till evening. ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/11-27.htm - 16k
Leviticus 11:26 "'Every animal that has a split hoof not ...
"'Every animal that has a split hoof not completely divided or that does not chew
the cud is unclean for you; whoever touches [the carcass of] any of them will ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/11-26.htm - 16k
Leviticus 15:27 Whoever touches them will be unclean; he must wash ...
Whoever touches them will be unclean; he must wash his clothes and
bathe with water, and he will be unclean till evening. ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/15-27.htm - 16k
Numbers 19:20 But if a person who is unclean does not purify ...
But if a person who is unclean does not purify himself, he must be cut off from
the community, because he has defiled the sanctuary of the LORD. ...
//bible.cc/numbers/19-20.htm - 17k
Leviticus 11:28 Anyone who picks up their carcasses must wash his ...
Anyone who picks up their carcasses must wash his clothes, and he will be unclean
till evening. They are unclean for you. ... These animals are unclean for you. ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/11-28.htm - 16k
Leviticus 13:44 the man is diseased and is unclean. The priest ...
the man is diseased and is unclean. The priest shall pronounce
him unclean because of the sore on his head. ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/13-44.htm - 16k
Leviticus 11:40 Anyone who eats some of the carcass must wash his ...
Anyone who eats some of the carcass must wash his clothes, and he will
be unclean till evening. Anyone who picks up the carcass ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/11-40.htm - 17k
Leviticus 13:15 When the priest sees the raw flesh, he shall ...
When the priest sees the raw flesh, he shall pronounce him unclean.
The raw flesh is unclean; he has an infectious disease. ...
//bible.cc/leviticus/13-15.htm - 16k

Source: http://bible.cc/search.php?q=unclean

***

The seven commandments (nots) of Dalamatia from Page 751, Paper 66:7:


1. You shall not fear nor serve any God but the Father of all.
2. You shall not disobey the Father's Son, the world's ruler, nor show disrespect to his superhuman associates.
3. You shall not speak a lie when called before the judges of the people.
4. You shall not kill men, women, or children.
5. You shall not steal your neighbor's goods or cattle.
6. You shall not touch your friend's wife.
7. You shall not show disrespect to your parents or to the elders of the tribe.


***

As you can see, of the "ten commandments" only two are positive, the others are things forbidden. From Exodus 20:1-17:
  • You shall have no other gods before me.
  • You shall not make for yourself any carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
  • You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.
  • Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your manservant, nor your maidservant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
  • Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
  • You shall not murder.
  • You shall not commit adultery.
  • You shall not steal.
  • You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
  • You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.”
Source/more: http://www.bible-kno...0-commandments/

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About taboo food and drink:

Amphibians and reptiles

...Judaism strictly forbids the consumption of amphibians, such as frogs. Consumption of reptiles, such as crocodiles and snakes, is also forbidden. In other cultures, foods such as frog legs and alligator are treasured as delicacies, and the animals are raised commercially.

Bats

In Judaism, the Deuteronomic Code and Priestly Code explicitly prohibit the bat.[4] Likewise, Islamic Sharia forbids their consumption.
In the predominantly-Muslim nation of Indonesia, however, bat meat is known to be a prized delicacy, especially within the Batak and Minahasa minority communities, but also in Java.

Bears

Bears are not considered kosher animals in Judaism while all predatory terrestrial animals are forbidden in Islam. Observant Jews therefore abstain from eating bear meat.[5]

Birds

The Torah (Leviticus 11:13[6]) explicitly states that the eagle, vulture, and osprey are not to be eaten. A bird now commonly raised for meat in some areas, the ostrich, is explicitly banned as food in Leviticus 11:16.[7]

In North America, while pigeons (as doves), sometimes known as squab, are a hunted game bird,[8][9][10][11] urban pigeons are avoided due to the presumption of uncleanness and the parasites which they may carry. Swan was at one time a dish reserved for royalty. The English custom of Swan Upping derives from this period.[12] In more modern times, swans have been protected in parts of Europe and the United States, making swan unavailable. Reports about the eating of swans are seen from time to time.[13][14]

Scavengers and carrion-eaters such as vultures and crows are avoided as food in many cultures because they are perceived as carriers of disease and unclean, and associated with death. An exception is the rook which was a recognised country dish, and which has in more recent times been served in a Scottish restaurant in London.[15] In Western cultures today, most people regard songbirds as backyard wildlife rather than as food. In addition, some migratory birds are protected internationally by the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds.

Camels

...The eating of a camel is strictly prohibited by the Torah in Deuteronomy 14:6-7.[16] Although the camel is a cud-chewer, the Torah still considered it "unclean". While the foot of a camel is split into two toe-like structures, this passage explicitly states that the camel does not meet the cloven hoof criterion.

The eating of camel is allowed in Islam, and indeed is traditional in the Islamic heartland in Saudi Arabia and the Arabian Peninsula more generally. The hump in particular is considered a delicacy and eaten on special occasions.


Posted Image
Swine are considered treif (unfit or unclean) in Judaism and haraam (forbidden) in Islam. They are also considered unclean in some Christian denominations.

Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....iki/Taboo_foods

One more about pig meat from the Old Testament:

...Leviticus 11:7-8 "And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be clovenfooted, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you. Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcase shall ye not touch; they are unclean to you."


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The Evening Star seems to be stressing the point that even if they were "terribly burdensome", taboos are just another necessary, painful and costly foundation stone of social progress, of primitive religion.

Tomorrow's reading is about our ancestor's next step toward an understanding of supernatural values, the very beginnings of belief in gods who command, punish and torment humans. Love was not an attribute of the early gods apparently. Section 2 is titled: THE CONCEPT OF SIN.


Thanks for reading. Forum Member's thoughts, reflections, insights, observations, comments, corrections and questions about today's OPAD presentation are invited. Join the Forum

Much love, Rick/OPAD host

Overview of: Paper 89 Sin, Sacrifice, and Atonement


1. The Taboo
2. The Concept of Sin
3. Renunciation and Humiliation

4. Origins of Sacrifice
5. Sacrifices and Cannibalism
6. Evolution of Human Sacrifice
7. Modifications of Human Sacrifice

8. Redemption and Covenants
9. Sacrifices and Sacraments
10. Forgiveness of Sin


[Presented by a Brilliant Evening Star of Nebadon.]


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#6 Rick Warren

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 03:27 AM



Welcome to UAI Forum's One-Page-A-Day Online Study Session

Today's Presentation:


PAPER 89 - SIN, SACRIFICE, AND ATONEMENT


2. THE CONCEPT OF SIN


P.975 - §5 The fear of chance and the dread of bad luck literally drove man into the invention of primitive religion as supposed insurance against these calamities. From magic and ghosts, religion evolved through spirits and fetishes to taboos. Every primitive tribe had its tree of forbidden fruit, literally the apple but figuratively consisting of a thousand branches hanging heavy with all sorts of taboos. And the forbidden tree always said, "Thou shalt not."

P.975 - §6 As the savage mind evolved to that point where it envisaged both good and bad spirits, and when the taboo received the solemn sanction of evolving religion, the stage was all set for the appearance of the new conception of sin. The idea of sin was universally established in the world before revealed religion ever made its entry. It was only by the concept of sin that natural death became logical to the primitive mind. Sin was the transgression of taboo, and death was the penalty of sin.

P.975 - §7 Sin was ritual, not rational; an act, not a thought. And this entire concept of sin was fostered by the lingering traditions of Dilmun and the days of a little paradise on earth. The tradition of Adam and the Garden of Eden also lent substance to the dream of a onetime "golden age" of the dawn of the races. And all this confirmed the ideas later expressed in the belief that man had his origin in a special creation, that he started his career in perfection, and that transgression of the taboos--sin--brought him down to his later sorry plight.

P.976 - §1 The habitual violation of a taboo became a vice; primitive law made vice a crime; religion made it a sin. Among the early tribes the violation of a taboo was a combined crime and sin. Community calamity was always regarded as punishment for tribal sin. To those who believed that prosperity and righteousness went together, the apparent prosperity of the wicked occasioned so much worry that it was necessary to invent hells for the punishment of taboo violators; the numbers of these places of future punishment have varied from one to five.

P.976 - §2 The idea of confession and forgiveness early appeared in primitive religion. Men would ask forgiveness at a public meeting for sins they intended to commit the following week. Confession was merely a rite of remission, also a public notification of defilement, a ritual of crying "unclean, unclean!" Then followed all the ritualistic schemes of purification. All ancient peoples practiced these meaningless ceremonies. Many apparently hygienic customs of the early tribes were largely ceremonial.






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#7 Rick Warren

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 06:26 AM

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Good Day Fellow Students, Forum Members and Guests,

Reading the UB makes it clear religious evolution is both inevitable and predictable, that humanity is designed to eventually discover and embrace the God who made us. We are literally herded into it by our innate negative animal emotions over a very long and winding road strewn with pain and blood, injury and death:


...The fear of chance and the dread of bad luck literally drove man into the invention of primitive religion as supposed insurance against these calamities.... P.975 - 5


***

Primitive people somehow got this part right at least:


...Sin was the transgression of taboo, and death was the penalty of sin.... P.975 - 6


From 46:8:

...The Supreme Rulers are merciful and patient, but the law of deliberately nourished evil is universally and unerringly executed. "The wages of sin is death"--eternal obliteration.... P.529 - 3

From 53:9:


...But for ages the seven prison worlds of spiritual darkness in Satania have constituted a solemn warning to all Nebadon, eloquently and effectively proclaiming the great truth "that the way of the transgressor is hard"; "that within every sin is concealed the seed of its own destruction"; that "the wages of sin is death...." P.611 - §7


Sin is a common concept apparently, and not tied to one religion or another:

...A sin is an act that violates a known moral rule. The term sin may also refer to the state of having committed such a violation. Sin can refer not only to physical actions taken, but also to thoughts and internalized motivations and feelings. Colloquially, any thought, word, or act considered immoral, selfish, shameful, harmful, or alienating might be termed "sinful".
Common ideas surrounding sin in various religions include:

  • Punishment for sins, from other people, from God either in life or in afterlife, or from the Universe in general.
  • The question of whether an act must be intentional to be sinful.
  • The idea that one's conscience should produce guilt for a conscious act of sin.
  • A scheme for determining the seriousness of the sin and the importance of responsibility.
  • Repentance from (expressing regret for and determining not to commit) sin, and atonement (repayment) for past deeds.
  • The possibility of forgiveness of sins, often through communication with a deity or intermediary; in Christianity often referred to as salvation. Crime and justice are related secular concepts.

But sin is found more in religions originating in the West:

...Bahá'í faith

In the Bahá'í Faith, humans are considered to be naturally good (perfect), fundamentally spiritual beings. Human beings were created because of God's immeasurable love. However, the Bahá'í teachings compare the human heart to a mirror, which, if turned away from the light of the sun (i.e. God), is incapable of receiving God's love.

Buddhism

Buddhism does not recognize the idea behind sin, but believes in the principle of karma, whereby suffering is the inevitable consequence of greed, anger, and delusion (known as the Three Poisons).[1] While there is no Buddhist equivalent of the Abrahamic concept of sin, wrongdoing is recognized in Buddhism. The concept of Buddhist ethics is consequentialist in nature and is not based upon duty towards God.


Christianity

...In the Christian Bible, "sin is lawlessness" (1John 3:4), and so in Western Christianity, salvation tends to be understood in legal terms. Sin alienates the sinner from God. It has damaged, and completely severed, the relationship of humanity to God. That relationship can only be restored through repentance unto Christ and acceptance of Jesus Christ and his death on the cross as a sacrifice for mankind's sin. According to some interpreters[who?], Jesus Christ states in Matthew 22:35-40 what "Christian Law" is:


"Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets." -KJV


In Eastern Christianity, sin is viewed in terms of its effects on relationships, both among people and between people and God. Sin is seen as the refusal to follow God's plan, and the desire to be "like God" (Genesis 3:5) and thus in direct opposition to God's will (see the account of Adam and Eve in the Book of Genesis).

In the Russian variant of Eastern Christianity, sin sometimes is regarded as any mistake made by people in their life. From this point of view every person is sinful because every person makes mistakes during their life. When a person accuses others of sins they always must remember that they are also sinners and so they must have mercy for others remembering that God is also merciful to them and to all of humanity.

Islam

Muslims see sin (dhanb, thanb ذنب) as anything that goes against the commands of Allah (God). Islam teaches that sin is an act and not a state of being. The Qur'an teaches that "the (human) soul is certainly prone to evil, unless the Lord does bestow His Mercy" and that even the prophets do not absolve themselves of the blame.[Quran 12:53] It is believed that Iblis (Satan) has a significant role in tempting humankind towards sin.

In Islam, there are several gradations of sin:
  • sayyia, khatia: mistakes (Suras 7:168; 17:31; 40:45; 47:19 48:2)
  • itada, junah, dhanb: immorality (Suras 2:190,229; 17:17 33:55)
  • haram: transgressions (Suras 5:4; 6:146)
  • ithm, dhulam, fujur, su, fasad, fisk, kufr: wickedness and depravity (Suras 2:99, 205; 4:50, 112, 123, 136; 12:79; 38:62; 82:14)
  • shirk: ascribing a partner to God (Sura 4:48)
One may sincerely repent to God for the wrongs committed and seek forgiveness, as stated in the sacred Quran: “Our Lord! Forgive us our sins, remove from us our iniquities, and take to Yourself our souls in the company of the righteous.” (Al-Imran.193/ 3.193).

Judaism

Judaism regards the violation of any of the 613 commandments to be a sin. Judaism teaches that sin is an act, and not a state of being. Humankind was not created with an inclination to do evil, but has that inclination "from his youth".(Genesis 8:21)

Shinto

Within Shinto there is no doctrine of sin, rather good and evil are conceived of in "aesthetic terms, likening them to straight and curved lines".[citation needed] Matagatsubi, the curved spirit, causes "evil deeds and any misfortune or disasters" by creating imbalance, distorting the "straight and clear".[citation needed] Evil deeds fall into two categories in Shinto: amatsu tsumi, "the most pernicious crimes of all", and kunitsu tsumi, "more commonly called misdemeanors".[2]


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sin

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Dilmun is mentioned ten times in the UB, from Paper 77:4:


...And already have archaeologists found these ancient Sumerian clay tablets which tell of this earthly paradise "where the Gods first blessed mankind with the example of civilized and cultured life." And these tablets, descriptive of Dilmun, the paradise of men and God, are now silently resting on the dusty shelves of many museums.... P.860 - 3


And Dilmun is known to archeologists, from Wikepedia:

...Dilmun or Telmun[1] is a land mentioned by Mesopotamian civilizations as a trade partner, a source of the metal copper, and an entrepôt of the Mesopotamia-to-Indus Valley Civilization trade route. Although the exact location of Dilmun is unclear, it might be associated with the islands of Bahrain, the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman and nearby Iranian coast in the Persian Gulf.


...Dilmun appears first in Sumerian cuneiform clay tablets dated to the end of fourth millennium BC, found in the temple of goddess Inanna, in the city of Uruk. The adjective Dilmun is used to describe a type of axe and one specific official; in addition there are lists of rations of wool issued to people connected with Dilmun.

Dilmun is also described in the epic story of Enki and Ninhursag as the site at which the Creation occurred. Ninlil, the Sumerian goddess of air and south wind had her home in Dilmun. It is also featured in the Epic of Gilgamesh.


...Dilmun, sometimes described as "the place where the sun rises" and "the Land of the Living", is the scene of some versions of the Sumerian creation myth, and the place where the deified Sumerian hero of the flood, Utnapishtim (Ziusudra), was taken by the gods to live forever. Thorkild Jacobsen's translation of the Eridu Genesis calls it "Mount Dilmun" which he locates as a "faraway, half-mythical place".


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dilmun

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The so called "golden ages" are an interesting study:

...The term Golden Age (Χρυσόν Γένος) comes from Greek mythology and legend and refers to the first in a sequence of four or five (or more) Ages of Man, in which the Golden Age is first, followed in sequence, by the Silver, Bronze, and Iron Ages, and then the present, a period of decline. By extension "Golden Age" denotes a period of primordial peace, harmony, stability, and prosperity.

There are analogous concepts in the religious and philosophical traditions of the South Asian subcontinent. For example, the Vedic or ancient Hindu culture saw history as cyclical, composed of yugas with alternating Dark and Golden Ages. The Kali yuga (Iron Age), Dwapara (Bronze Age), Treta yuga (Silver Age) and Satya yuga (Golden Age) correspond to the four Greek ages. Similar beliefs occur in the ancient Middle East and throughout the ancient world, as well.[1]

In classical mythology the Golden Age was presided over by the deity Astraea, who was identified with Justice. She lived with men until the end of the Silver Age, but in the Brazen Age, when men became violent and greedy, fled to the stars, where she appears as the constellation Virgo, holding the scales of Justice, or Libra.[2]

European Pastoral literary and iconographic tradition often depicted nymphs and shepherds as living a life of rustic innocence and simplicity, untainted by the corruptions of civilization — a continuation of the Golden Age — set in an idealized Arcadia, a region of Greece that was the abode and center of worship of their tutelary deity, goat-footed Pan, who dwelt among them.[3]

This idealized and nostalgic vision of the simple life, however, was sometimes contested and even ridiculed, both in antiquity and later on.


Golden ages are not confined to Greek mythology:

...Hindu

The Indian teachings differentiate the four world ages (Yugas) not according to metals, but according to quality depicted as colors, whereby the white color is the purest quality and belongs to the first, ideal age. These colors were originally assigned to the planet Jupiter, Saturn, Mercury and Mars just like the metals. After the world fall at the end of the fourth, worst age (the Kali yuga) the cycle should be continued, eventually culminating in a new golden age.

The Krita Yuga also known as the Satya yuga, the First and Perfect Age, as described in the Mahabharata, a Hindu epic:


Men neither bought nor sold; there were no poor and no rich; there was no need to labour, because all that men required was obtained by the power of will; the chief virtue was the abandonment of all worldly desires. The Krita Yuga was without disease; there was no lessening with the years; there was no hatred or vanity, or evil thought whatsoever; no sorrow, no fear. All mankind could attain to supreme blessedness.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....wiki/Golden_Age

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Tomorrow's reading is about the next step in the evolution of religion on Urantia--self denial. Section 3 is titled: RENUNCIATION AND HUMILIATION .

Thanks for reading. Forum Member's thoughts, reflections, insights, observations, comments, corrections and questions about today's OPAD presentation are invited. Join the Forum

Much love, Rick/OPAD host


Overview of: Paper 89 Sin, Sacrifice, and Atonement


1. The Taboo
2. The Concept of Sin
3. Renunciation and Humiliation

4. Origins of Sacrifice
5. Sacrifices and Cannibalism
6. Evolution of Human Sacrifice
7. Modifications of Human Sacrifice

8. Redemption and Covenants
9. Sacrifices and Sacraments
10. Forgiveness of Sin


[Presented by a Brilliant Evening Star of Nebadon.]


Reader Tools, References & Links


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#8 Rick Warren

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 06:29 AM

[More background on today's reading.]

About the legends of hell:

...In many religious traditions, hell is a place of suffering and punishment in the afterlife. Religions with a linear divine history often depict hells as endless. Religions with a cyclic history often depict a hell as an intermediary period between incarnations. Typically these traditions locate hell under the Earth's external surface and often include entrances to Hell from the land of the living. Other afterlife destinations include Heaven, Purgatory, Paradise, and Limbo.

Other traditions, which do not conceive of the afterlife as a place of punishment or reward, merely describe hell as an abode of the dead, a neutral place located under the surface of Earth (for example, see sheol and Hades). Modern understandings of hells often depict them abstractly, as a state of loss rather than as fiery torture literally underground, but this view of the concept of a hell can, in fact, be traced back into the ancient and medieval periods as well.[citation needed] Hell is sometimes portrayed as populated with demons who torment those dwelling there. Many are ruled by a death god such as Nergal, Hades, Enma or the Christian and Islamic Devil (Satan or Lucifer). In Islam, the Devil does not actually reside in Hell.


...Punishment in Hell typically corresponds to sins committed during life. Sometimes these distinctions are specific, with damned souls suffering for each sin committed (see for example Plato's myth of Er or Dante's The Divine Comedy), but sometimes they are general, with condemned sinners relegated to one or more chamber of Hell or to a level of suffering.

In many religious cultures, including Christianity and Islam, Hell is traditionally depicted as fiery and painful, inflicting guilt and suffering.[3][specify] Despite these common depictions of Hell as a place of fire, some other traditions portray Hell as cold.

Buddhist - and particularly Tibetan Buddhist - descriptions of hell feature an equal number of hot and cold hells. Among Christian descriptions Dante's Inferno portrays the innermost (9th) circle of Hell as a frozen lake of blood and guilt.[4] But cold also played a part in earlier Christian depictions of hell, beginning with the Apocalypse of Paul, originally from the early third century;[5] the "Vision of Dryhthelm" by the Venerable Bede from the seventh century;[6] "St Patrick's Purgatory", "The Vision of Tundale" or "Visio Tnugdali", and the "Vision of the Monk of Enysham", all from the twelfth century;[7] and the "Vision of Thurkill" from the early thirteenth century.[8]


Each tradition seems to have its own levels of hell:

...Native American
The hells of the Americas include Aztec Mythology's “Mictlan”, Inuit mythology's “Adlivun” and Yanomamo Mythology's “Shobari Waka”. In Maya mythology, Xibalbá is the dangerous underworld of nine levels ruled by the demons Vucub Caquix and Hun Came. The road into and out of it is said to be steep, thorny and very forbidding. Metnal is the lowest and most horrible of the nine Hells of the underworld, ruled by Ah Puch. Ritual healers would intone healing prayers banishing diseases to Metnal. Much of the Popol Vuh describes the adventures of the Maya Hero Twins in their cunning struggle with the evil lords of Xibalbá.


...Muslims believe in jahannam (in Arabic: جهنم) (which is related to the Hebrew word gehinnom and resembles the versions of Hell in Christianity). In the Qur'an, the holy book of Islam, there are literal descriptions of the condemned in a fiery Hell, as contrasted to the garden-like Paradise (jannah) enjoyed by righteous believers.


...In addition, Heaven and Hell are split into many different levels depending on the actions perpetrated in life, where punishment is given depending on the level of evil done in life, and good is separated into other levels depending on how well one followed God while alive. The gate of Hell is guarded by Maalik who is the leader of the angels assigned as the guards of hell also known as Zabaaniyah.


...Although generally Hell is often portrayed as a hot steaming and tormenting place for sinners, there is one Hell pit which is characterized differently from the other Hell in Islamic tradition. Zamhareer is the Hell of extreme coldness, of unbearable blizzards, ice, and snow.

The lowest pit of Hell is Hawiyah, meant for those hypocrites who claimed aloud to believe in Allah and His messenger but denounced both in their hearts. Hypocrisy is considered to be one of the most dangerous sins, along with shirk.


...The exact number of levels in Chinese Hell - and their associated deities - differs according to the Buddhist or Taoist perception. Some speak of three to four 'Courts', other as many as ten. The ten judges are also known as the 10 Kings of Yama. Each Court deals with a different aspect of atonement. For example, murder is punished in one Court, adultery in another. According to some Chinese legends, there are eighteen levels in Hell. Punishment also varies according to belief, but most legends speak of highly imaginative chambers where wrong-doers are sawn in half, beheaded, thrown into pits of filth or forced to climb trees adorned with sharp blades.

Posted Image
17th century cloth painting depicting seven levels of Jain hell and various tortures suffered in them. Left panel depicts the demi-god and his animal vehicle presiding over the each hell.

Source/more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hell

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#9 Rick Warren

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 06:31 AM

[A bit more about confession, clean and unclean spirits.]

Confession is probably best known as a ritual in Catholicism, but most other faith traditions employ it:

...In Buddhism, confessing one's faults to a superior is an important part of Buddhist practice. In the various sutras, followers of the Buddha confessed their wrongdoing to the Buddha.[19] Other sections of the earliest Buddhist writings (i.e., the Vinaya) required that monks confess their individual sins before their bi-weekly convening for the recitation of the Patimokkha .


...Mormonism

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teaches that "Confession is a necessary requirement for complete forgiveness." The sinner must confess both to those persons wronged by his sin and to God. Confession may also be required to an authorized Priesthood leader: "Those transgressions requiring confession to a bishop are adultery, fornication, other sexual transgressions and deviancies, and sins of a comparable seriousness." The priesthood leader may counsel the sinner to submit to the authority of a disciplinary council, but does not have the authority to forgive sin. However, the confession must be held in strict confidence unless the sinner grants permission to disclose it to the disciplinary council.


Posted Image
Modern confessional in the Church of the Holy Name, Dunedin, New Zealand. The penitent may kneel on the kneeler or sit in a chair facing the priest.

Source/much more: http://en.wikipedia....wiki/Confession

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The clean and unclean concept permeated western religious thinking for a long time. Jesus was able to remove "unclean" spirits.

...Jesus is said to have directly granted his 12 disciples the power to cast out unclean spirits and to heal.[43] At Luke 9:49–50, John the Apostle reports that he and his fellow disciples have asked a man to stop casting out demons in the name of Jesus "because he isn't one of us," but Jesus replies that the man should be allowed to continue, since "anyone who is not against you is for you."[44] Elsewhere, Jesus appoints 72[45] missionaries who also have the power to cast out demons.[46]


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia..../Unclean_spirit

From the Christian Bible's old testament:

...Leviticus 13:45 "And the leper in whom the plague is, his clothes shall be rent, and his head bare, and he shall put a covering upon his upper lip, and shall cry, Unclean, unclean."


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#10 Rick Warren

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Posted 08 April 2012 - 06:04 AM



Welcome to UAI Forum's One-Page-A-Day Online Study Session

Today's Presentation:


PAPER 89 - SIN, SACRIFICE, AND ATONEMENT


3. RENUNCIATION AND HUMILIATION


P.976 - 3 Renunciation came as the next step in religious evolution; fasting was a common practice. Soon it became the custom to forego many forms of physical pleasure, especially of a sexual nature. The ritual of the fast was deeply rooted in many ancient religions and has been handed down to practically all modern theologic systems of thought.

P.976 - 4 Just about the time barbarian man was recovering from the wasteful practice of burning and burying property with the dead, just as the economic structure of the races was beginning to take shape, this new religious doctrine of renunciation appeared, and tens of thousands of earnest souls began to court poverty. Property was regarded as a spiritual handicap. These notions of the spiritual dangers of material possession were widespreadly entertained in the times of Philo and Paul, and they have markedly influenced European philosophy ever since.

P.976 - 5 Poverty was just a part of the ritual of the mortification of the flesh which, unfortunately, became incorporated into the writings and teachings of many religions, notably Christianity. Penance is the negative form of this ofttimes foolish ritual of renunciation. But all this taught the savage self-control, and that was a worth-while advancement in social evolution. Self-denial and self-control were two of the greatest social gains from early evolutionary religion. Self-control gave man a new philosophy of life; it taught him the art of augmenting life's fraction by lowering the denominator of personal demands instead of always attempting to increase the numerator of selfish gratification.

P.976 - 6 These olden ideas of self-discipline embraced flogging and all sorts of physical torture. The priests of the mother cult were especially active in teaching the virtue of physical suffering, setting the example by submitting themselves to castration. The Hebrews, Hindus, and Buddhists were earnest devotees of this doctrine of physical humiliation.

P.976 - §7 All through the olden times men sought in these ways for extra credits on the self-denial ledgers of their gods. It was once customary, when under some emotional stress, to make vows of self-denial and self-torture. In time these vows assumed the form of contracts with the gods and, in that sense, represented true evolutionary progress in that the gods were supposed to do something definite in return for this self-torture and mortification of the flesh. Vows were both negative and positive. Pledges of this harmful and extreme nature are best observed today among certain groups in India.


P.977 - 1 It was only natural that the cult of renunciation and humiliation should have paid attention to sexual gratification. The continence cult originated as a ritual among soldiers prior to engaging in battle; in later days it became the practice of "saints." This cult tolerated marriage only as an evil lesser than fornication. Many of the world's great religions have been adversely influenced by this ancient cult, but none more markedly than Christianity. The Apostle Paul was a devotee of this cult, and his personal views are reflected in the teachings which he fastened onto Christian theology: "It is good for a man not to touch a woman." "I would that all men were even as I myself." "I say, therefore, to the unmarried and widows, it is good for them to abide even as I." Paul well knew that such teachings were not a part of Jesus' gospel, and his acknowledgment of this is illustrated by his statement, "I speak this by permission and not by commandment." But this cult led Paul to look down upon women. And the pity of it all is that his personal opinions have long influenced the teachings of a great world religion. If the advice of the tentmaker-teacher were to be literally and universally obeyed, then would the human race come to a sudden and inglorious end. Furthermore, the involvement of a religion with the ancient continence cult leads directly to a war against marriage and the home, society's veritable foundation and the basic institution of human progress. And it is not to be wondered at that all such beliefs fostered the formation of celibate priesthoods in the many religions of various peoples.


P.977 - 2 Someday man should learn how to enjoy liberty without license, nourishment without gluttony, and pleasure without debauchery. Self-control is a better human policy of behavior regulation than is extreme self-denial. Nor did Jesus ever teach these unreasonable views to his followers.








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[Each OPAD presentation is copied from The Urantia Book published by Urantia Foundation. Questions and comments related to the Paper under discussion are welcome. In-depth questions and related topics may be studied in branch threads in the OPAD, or other subforums, as you require. Thank you for studying with us!]


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#11 Rick Warren

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Posted 08 April 2012 - 08:08 AM

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Good Day Fellow Students, Forum Members and Guests,

Today's reading is one of the more ghastly historical essays we have in the UB. But these practices bore some good fruit. At least for a season, like the other torturous stepping stones from ghosts to God. The fruit is one of self discipline and self control.

Renunciation is still very common. Catholics and many other Christian denominations have monks and nuns, but so do Buddhists:


Nekkhamma is a Pali word generally translated as "renunciation" or "the pleasure of renunciation" while also conveying more specifically "giving up the world and leading a holy life" or "freedom from lust, craving and desires."[1] In Buddhism's Noble Eightfold Path, nekkhamma is the first practice associated with "Right Intention."

Source/more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nekkhamma


Renunciation in Hinduism:


Sannyasa (Devanagari: sannyāsa) is the order of life of the renouncer within the Hindu scheme of āśramas, or life stages. It is considered the topmost and final stage of the ashram systems and is traditionally taken by men or women at or beyond the age of fifty years old or by young monks who wish to renounce worldly and materialistic pursuits and instead dedicate their entire life towards spiritual pursuits. In this phase of life, the person develops vairāgya, or a state of dispassion and detachment from material life. He renounces all worldly thoughts and desires, and spends the rest of his life in spiritual contemplation.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sannyasa

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Even today ritual fasting is prevalent in all religions. A long list of their many and varied requirements are here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fasting


...Fasting is primarily the act of willingly abstaining from some or all food, drink, or both, for a period of time. An absolute fast is normally defined as abstinence from all food and liquid for a defined period, usually a single day (24 hours), or several days. Juice fasting involves abstaining from food while deriving nutritional intake through freshly-juiced vegetables and fruits such that the body may detoxify.[1] Other fasts may be only partially restrictive, limiting particular foods or substance. The fast may also be intermittent in nature. Fasting practices may preclude sexual intercourse and other activities as well as food.



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...Property was regarded as a spiritual handicap.... P.976 - 4


Every religion has a form of self denial. Islam has Ramadan, the Catholics have celibacy. Christianity has it codified in its Bible:

1 Timothy 6:8-11 "And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness."
Acts 2:44-45 "And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need."

1 Kings 21:27 "And it came to pass, when Ahab heard those words, that he rent his clothes, and put sackcloth upon his flesh, and fasted, and lay in sackcloth, and went softly."
Genesis 37:34 "And Jacob rent his clothes, and put sackcloth upon his loins, and mourned for his son many days."

Isaiah 37:1-2 "And it came to pass, when king Hezekiah heard it, that he rent his clothes, and covered himself with sackcloth, and went into the house of the Lord.

And he sent Eliakim, who was over the household, and Shebna the scribe, and the elders of the priests covered with sackcloth, unto Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz."
Isaiah 58:3-5 "Wherefore have we fasted, say they, and thou seest not? wherefore have we afflicted our soul, and thou takest no knowledge?

Behold, in the day of your fast ye find pleasure, and exact all your labours.

Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high.

Is it such a fast that I have chosen? a day for a man to afflict his soul? is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the Lord?"
Jonah 3:5-6 "So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.


Source: http://urantiabook.o.../pmny089_3.html

***

Paul of Tarsus and Philo of Alexandria are mentioned many times in the UB. Terrestrial history knows them too. Paul is better known as Peter's contemporary in the early build up of Christianity.

...Philo (20 BCE – 50 CE), known also as Philo of Alexandria, Philo Judaeus, Philo Judaeus of Alexandria, Yedidia, "Philon", and Philo the Jew, was a Hellenistic Jewish Biblical philosopher born in Alexandria.

Philo used philosophical allegory to attempt to fuse and harmonize Greek philosophy with Jewish philosophy. His method followed the practices of both Jewish exegesis and Stoic philosophy. His allegorical exegesis was important for several Christian Church Fathers, but he has barely any reception history within Judaism. "The sophists of literalness," as he calls the literalist Jews,[1] "opened their eyes superciliously" when he explained to them the marvels of his exegesis. He believed that literal interpretations of the Hebrew Bible would stifle mankind's view and perception of a God too complex and marvelous to be understood in literal human terms.

Some scholars hold that his concept of the Logos as God's creative principle influenced early Christology. Other scholars, however, deny direct influence but say both Philo and Early Christianity borrow from a common source.[2] For Philo, the Logos was God's "blueprint for the world", a governing plan.

The few biographical details concerning Philo are found in his own works, especially in Legatio ad Gaium ("embassy to Gaius"), and in Josephus.[3] The only event in his life that can be determined chronologically is his participation in the embassy in which the Alexandrian Jews were sent to the emperor Caligula at Rome as the result of civil strife between the Alexandrian Jewish and Hellenized communities. This occurred in the year 40 CE.



***

The Brilliant Evening Star included two sentences in today's reading that declare there were some gains made by renunciation and humiliation, this one he cleverly presented as a mathematical formula:


...Self-control gave man a new philosophy of life; it taught him the art of augmenting life's fraction by lowering the denominator of personal demands instead of always attempting to increase the numerator of selfish gratification.... P.976 - 5


Humiliation is recognized as more than a descriptive word, it is a tradition. From Wikipedia:

...Humiliation (also called stultification) is the abasement of pride, which creates mortification or leads to a state of being humbled or reduced to lowliness or submission. It can be brought about through bullying, intimidation, physical or mental mistreatment or trickery, or by embarrassment if a person is revealed to have committed a socially or legally unacceptable act. Whereas humility can be sought alone as a means to de-emphasise the ego, humiliation must involve other person(s), though not necessarily directly or willingly. Acting to humiliate yourself may be linked to a personal belief (as with mortification of the flesh, with some religions), or it can be part of erotic humiliation where the belittling activity provides emotional and/or sexual arousal or heightened sensation.

Humiliation is currently an active research topic, and is now seen as an important - and complex - core dynamic in human relationships, having implications at intrapersonal, interpersonal, institutional and international levels.[1]


Posted Image
The Humiliation of Emperor Valerian by Shapur, King of Persia by Hans Holbein the Younger.

Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....iki/Humiliation

***

It's a strange form of progress on Urantia, none the less, it is progress:


...In time these vows assumed the form of contracts with the gods and, in that sense, represented true evolutionary progress in that the gods were supposed to do something definite in return for this self-torture and mortification of the flesh.... P.976 - 7


***


...Pledges of this harmful and extreme nature are best observed today among certain groups in India.... P.976 - 7


It is sad that self torture continues to permeate religious thinking in this enlightened age. But Buddhist philosophy is BUILT around suffering and how to avoid it. Catholic piety asks its monks and nuns to forgo sex, family and self. Some Catholic sects still use self torture devices to better feel what the sick and injured might feel. Shiite Islamists make a ritual of bloody self flagellation with chains to backs on certain days of the year.

Religious philosophy and practice has far to go, notwithstanding how far it has come.

***

About the current state of celibacy in religion:


...Many of the world's great religions have been adversely influenced by this ancient cult, but none more markedly than Christianity.... P.977 - 1


And it is still happening. Just yesterday there was news report about the Pope chastising the leaders of his global flock of 2 billion, for suggesting the church retire celibacy and permit women to serve as priests. It is lamentable but true, entrenched religions change their ways under only one circumstance, when members stop contributing and begin leaving. They have no reason to change otherwise.

***

There is more about Paul teachings, good and bad, in Papers ahead. He is a great lesson on how prejudice can live on, even contaminate the river of religion, even in one who leads religious thinking, acting and worship.



Role of women

Main article: Paul the Apostle and women
A verse in the first letter to Timothy, 1 Timothy 2:12 ("I suffer not a woman"), traditionally attributed to Paul, is often used as the main biblical authority for prohibiting women from becoming ordained clergy and or holding certain other positions of ministry and leadership in Christianity, though Paul's authorship of this letter is debated. The Letter to Timothy is also often used by many churches to deny women a vote in church affairs, reject women from serving as teachers of adult Bible classes, prevent them from serving as missionaries, and generally disenfranchise women from the duties and privileges of church leadership.[91]


1st Timothy 2:9 In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;
10 But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.
11 Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection.
12 But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.
13 For Adam was first formed, then Eve.
14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.
15 Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.

Authorized Version

The KJV translation of this passage seems[clarification needed] to be saying that women in the churches are to have no leadership roles vis-à-vis men.[92] Whether it also forbids women from teaching children and women is dubious as even those Catholic churches that prohibit female priests, permit female abbesses to teach and exercise authority over other females. Any interpretation of this portion of Scripture must wrestle with the theological, contextual, syntactical, and lexical difficulties embedded within these few words.[93] Fuller Seminary theologian J. R. Daniel Kirk finds evidence in Paul’s letters of a much more inclusive view of women. He writes that Romans 16 is a tremendously important witness to the important role of women in the early church. Paul praises Phoebe for her work as a deaconess and Junia who was (according to some scholars) an Apostle. Kirk points to recent studies that have led "many scholars" to conclude that the passage in 1 Corinthians 14 ordering women to "be silent" during worship was a later addition, apparently by a different author, and not part of Paul’s original letter to the Corinthians. Other scholars such as Giancarlo Biguzzi, claim that Paul's restriction on women speaking in 1Corinthians 14 is genuine to Paul but applies to a particular case of prohibiting asking questions or chatting and is not a general prohibition on any woman speaking since in 1Corinthians 11 Paul affirms the right of women to prophesy.[94] Kirk's third example of a more inclusive view is Galatians 3:28: "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus (italics added). In pronouncing an end within the church to the divisions which are common in the world around it, he concludes by highlighting the fact that "...there were New Testament women who taught and had authority in the early churches, that this teaching and authority was sanctioned by Paul, and that Paul himself offers a theological paradigm within which overcoming the subjugation of women is an anticipated outcome."[95]



Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....s#Role_of_women


***

The Evening Star's final words in this Section sting us with the sad truth, even 80 years later.


...Someday man should learn how to enjoy liberty without license, nourishment without gluttony, and pleasure without debauchery. Self-control is a better human policy of behavior regulation than is extreme self-denial. Nor did Jesus ever teach these unreasonable views to his followers.... P.977 - 2


In general, we haven't learned, have we?

***

Tomorrow's reading is on the mistaken tradition of having to give up something of value to get spirit insurance and material prosperity. Section 4 is titled: ORIGINS OF SACRIFICE

Thanks for reading. Forum Member's thoughts, reflections, insights, observations, comments, corrections and questions about today's OPAD presentation are invited. Join the Forum

Much love, Rick/OPAD host


Overview of: Paper 89 Sin, Sacrifice, and Atonement


1. The Taboo
2. The Concept of Sin
3. Renunciation and Humiliation

4. Origins of Sacrifice
5. Sacrifices and Cannibalism
6. Evolution of Human Sacrifice
7. Modifications of Human Sacrifice

8. Redemption and Covenants
9. Sacrifices and Sacraments
10. Forgiveness of Sin


[Presented by a Brilliant Evening Star of Nebadon.]


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#12 Rick Warren

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 04:45 AM



Welcome to UAI Forum's One-Page-A-Day Online Study Session

Today's Presentation:


PAPER 89 - SIN, SACRIFICE, AND ATONEMENT


4. ORIGINS OF SACRIFICE


P.977 - 3 Sacrifice as a part of religious devotions, like many other worshipful rituals, did not have a simple and single origin. The tendency to bow down before power and to prostrate oneself in worshipful adoration in the presence of mystery is foreshadowed in the fawning of the dog before its master. It is but one step from the impulse of worship to the act of sacrifice. Primitive man gauged the value of his sacrifice by the pain which he suffered. When the idea of sacrifice first attached itself to religious ceremonial, no offering was contemplated which was not productive of pain. The first sacrifices were such acts as plucking hair, cutting the flesh, mutilations, knocking out teeth, and cutting off fingers. As civilization advanced, these crude concepts of sacrifice were elevated to the level of the rituals of self-abnegation, asceticism, fasting, deprivation, and the later Christian doctrine of sanctification through sorrow, suffering, and the mortification of the flesh.

P.977 - 4 Early in the evolution of religion there existed two conceptions of the sacrifice: the idea of the gift sacrifice, which connoted the attitude of thanksgiving, and the debt sacrifice, which embraced the idea of redemption. Later there developed the notion of substitution.

P.977 - 5 Man still later conceived that his sacrifice of whatever nature might function as a message bearer to the gods; it might be as a sweet savor in the nostrils of deity. This brought incense and other aesthetic features of sacrificial rituals which developed into sacrificial feasting, in time becoming increasingly elaborate and ornate.


P.978 - 1 As religion evolved, the sacrificial rites of conciliation and propitiation replaced the older methods of avoidance, placation, and exorcism.

P.978 - 2 The earliest idea of the sacrifice was that of a neutrality assessment levied by ancestral spirits; only later did the idea of atonement develop. As man got away from the notion of the evolutionary origin of the race, as the traditions of the days of the Planetary Prince and the sojourn of Adam filtered down through time, the concept of sin and of original sin became widespread, so that sacrifice for accidental and personal sin evolved into the doctrine of sacrifice for the atonement of racial sin. The atonement of the sacrifice was a blanket insurance device which covered even the resentment and jealousy of an unknown god.

P.978 - 3 Surrounded by so many sensitive spirits and grasping gods, primitive man was face to face with such a host of creditor deities that it required all the priests, ritual, and sacrifices throughout an entire lifetime to get him out of spiritual debt. The doctrine of original sin, or racial guilt, started every person out in serious debt to the spirit powers.


P.978 - 4 Gifts and bribes are given to men; but when tendered to the gods, they are described as being dedicated, made sacred, or are called sacrifices. Renunciation was the negative form of propitiation; sacrifice became the positive form. The act of propitiation included praise, glorification, flattery, and even entertainment. And it is the remnants of these positive practices of the olden propitiation cult that constitute the modern forms of divine worship. Present-day forms of worship are simply the ritualization of these ancient sacrificial techniques of positive propitiation.


P.978 - 5 Animal sacrifice meant much more to primitive man than it could ever mean to modern races. These barbarians regarded the animals as their actual and near kin. As time passed, man became shrewd in his sacrificing, ceasing to offer up his work animals. At first he sacrificed the best of everything, including his domesticated animals.

P.978 - 6 It was no empty boast that a certain Egyptian ruler made when he stated that he had sacrificed: 113,433 slaves, 493,386 head of cattle, 88 boats, 2,756 golden images, 331,702 jars of honey and oil, 228,380 jars of wine, 680,714 geese, 6,744,428 loaves of bread, and 5,740,352 sacks of coin. And in order to do this he must needs have sorely taxed his toiling subjects.

P.978 - 7 Sheer necessity eventually drove these semisavages to eat the material part of their sacrifices, the gods having enjoyed the soul thereof. And this custom found justification under the pretense of the ancient sacred meal, a communion service according to modern usage.





***





[Each OPAD presentation is copied from The Urantia Book published by Urantia Foundation. Questions and comments related to the Paper under discussion are welcome. In-depth questions and related topics may be studied in branch threads in the OPAD, or other subforums, as you require. Thank you for studying with us!]


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#13 Rick Warren

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 07:22 AM

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Good Day Fellow Students, Forum Members and Guests,

Archaeologists report that the sacrificial concept, the desire to appease ghost spirits and imaginary gods, is ancient. And that it is still done today:

...The practice of sacrifice is seen in the oldest records. The archaeological record contains human and animal corpses with sacrificial marks long before any written records of the practice. Sacrifices are a common theme in most religions, though the frequency of animal, and especially human, sacrifices are rarely performed today.

Literally anything of some value may be a sacrifice in some religion's practices. The more valuable the offering, generally, the more highly the sacrifice is regarded but the more difficult to make. On a day-to-day basis, offerings may be quite simple indeed: flowers, candles, incense, spilling some of the drink from a cup before drinking.
Commonly, the most valuable sacrifices have been that of lives, animal or human.


...Animal sacrifice is the ritual killing of an animal as part of a religion. It is practiced by adherents of many religions as a means of appeasing a god or gods or changing the course of nature. It also served a social or economic function in those cultures where the edible portions of the animal were distributed among those attending the sacrifice for consumption. Animal sacrifice has turned up in almost all cultures, from the Hebrews to the Greeks and Romans (particularly the purifying ceremony Lustratio), Ancient Egyptians (for example in the cult of Apis) and from the Aztecs to the Yoruba. Animal sacrifice is still practiced today by the followers of Santería and other lineages of Orisa as a means of curing the sick and giving thanks to the Orisa (gods). However in Santeria, such animal offerings constitute an extremely small portion of what are termed ebos—ritual activities that include offerings, prayer and deeds. Christians from some villages in Greece also sacrifice animals to Orthodox saints in a practice known as kourbània. The practice, while publicly condemned, is often tolerated.


...Human sacrifice was practiced by many ancient cultures. People would be ritually killed in a manner that was supposed to please or appease a god or spirit.
Some occasions for human sacrifice found in multiple cultures on multiple continents include:

  • Human sacrifice to accompany the dedication of a new temple or bridge.
  • Sacrifice of people upon the death of a king, high priest or great leader; the sacrificed were supposed to serve or accompany the deceased leader in the next life.
  • Human sacrifice in times of natural disaster. Droughts, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, etc. were seen as a sign of anger or displeasure by deities, and sacrifices were supposed to lessen the divine ire.
Human sacrifices were practiced by various Pre-Columbian civilizations of Mesoamerica. The Aztec practiced human sacrifice on an unusually large scale; a sacrifice would be made every day to aid the sun in rising, the dedication of the great temple at Tenochtitlán was reportedly marked with the sacrificing of thousands, and there are multiple accounts of captured Conquistadores being sacrificed during the wars of the Spanish conquest of Mexico.

In Scandinavia, the old Scandinavian religion contained human sacrifice, and both the Norse sagas and German historians relate of this, see e.g. Temple at Uppsala and Blót.

There is evidence to suggest Pre-Hellenic Minoan cultures practiced human sacrifice. Sacrificed corpses were found at a number of sites in the citadel of Knossos in Crete. The north house at Knossos contained the bones of children who appeared to have been butchered. It is possible they may have been for human consumption as was the tradition with sacrificial offerings made in Pre-Hellenic Civilization. [1] The myth of Theseus and the Minotaur (set in the labyrinth at Knossos) provides evidence that human sacrifice was commonplace. In the myth, we are told that Athens sent seven young men and seven young women to Crete as human sacrifices to the Minotaur. This ties up well with the archaeological evidence that most sacrifices were of young adults or children.

Human sacrifice still happens today[citation needed] as an underground practice in some traditional religions, for example in muti killings. Human sacrifice is no longer officially condoned in any country, and these cases are regarded as murder.


***

"Sweet savor" of sacrifice is mentioned many times in the Christian Bible. Here are two:

King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)

And ye shall offer a burnt offering for a sweet savour unto the LORD; one young bullock, one ram, and seven lambs of the first year without blemish

King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
And the priest shall sprinkle the blood upon the altar of the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and burn the fat for a sweet savour unto the LORD.



Source/more: http://bible.cc/sear...p?q=sweet+savor

***

More about redemption:

...Redemption as a theological concept is found in several different religions. In Buddhist theology it encompasses a release from worldly desires. As a Christian theological term, it refers to the deliverance of Christians from sin.[1] In Judaism, redemption can refer both to the Exodus from slavery in ancient Egypt, and deliverance from exile.


...In Christian theology redemption is an element of salvation that broadly means the deliverance from sin. Leon Morris says that "Paul uses the concept of redemption primarily to speak of the saving significance of the death of Christ."[4] The English word redemption means 'repurchase' or 'buy back', and in the Old Testament referred to the ransom of slaves (Exodus 21:8).[5] In the New Testament the redemption word group is used to refer both to deliverance from sin and freedom from captivity.[6] Theologically, redemption is a metaphor for what is achieved through the Atonement.[6] Therefore there is a metaphorical sense in which the death of Jesus pays the price of a ransom, releasing Christians from bondage to sin and death.[7] Most evangelical theologians and Protestant denominations, however, reject the idea of Origen who held that redemption means that in the atonement God paid Satan with the death of Jesus.[8]

Controversy

Redemption during life, redemption at Death, and redemption after death are topics of major and ongoing disagreement in the history of the Christian churches.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia...._%28theology%29

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...Conciliation is an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) process whereby the parties to a dispute (including future interest disputes) agree to utilize the services of a conciliator, who then meets with the parties separately in an attempt to resolve their differences. They do this by lowering tensions, improving communications, interpreting issues, providing technical assistance, exploring potential solutions and bringing about a negotiated settlement.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....ki/Conciliation

***

About differing atonement concepts in Judaism and Christianity:

...While Christianity developed its concept of atonement out of the same roots in the Hebrew Bible (Christian Old Testament), the different theology of Christianity led it to develop that concept in ways distinctly different from Judaism. In Christianity atonement refers to the forgiving or pardoning of sin through the death of Jesus Christ by crucifixion. To some, this death is viewed as human sacrifice,[by whom?] and since the Hebrew Bible states that human sacrifice is an abomination in the sight of God (Lev. 18:21, 20:2-5, Deu. 12:31, Jer. 32:34-35), is a problematic view of atonement. However, Christians believe that Jesus is God and therefore, no "human" sacrifice exists and Jewish law does not apply. According to Jewish law, the blood of the atoning sacrifice was to be offered on the altar of the temple (Ex. 30:10, Lev. 16) and Jesus was crucified outside the temple. Moreover, the prophet Ezekiel speaks out against the idea of vicarious atonement, where one person can suffer punishment for another person's sin: "The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him" (Eze. 18:20). Thus although the Mosaic law prescribes animal sacrifices for ritual worship, this is by no means viewed as supporting the idea of vicarious atonement.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....ment_in_Judaism

***

Until recently the LDS church practiced "blood atonement":

...Blood atonement remains an important doctrine within Mormon fundamentalism.[4] Within mainstream Mormonism, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) has informally opined, since 1978, that the doctrine is no longer in force. LDS apostle Bruce R. McConkie, claiming to reflect the view of church leadership, wrote in 1978 that while he still believed that certain sins are beyond the atoning power of the blood of Christ, the doctrine of blood atonement is only applicable in a theocracy.[5] Nevertheless, given its long history, the doctrine still plays a role in some Utah death penalty trials.

Within Mormon fundamentalism, the concept of blood atonement is still recognized. In contrast, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) has stated that "the so-called "blood atonement", by which individuals would be required to shed their own blood to pay for their sins, is not a doctrine of [the LDS Church]".


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....Blood_atonement

***

These days so called original sin does not means everyone is guilty from birth to death:

...In the theology of the Catholic Church, original sin is regarded as the general condition of sinfulness, that is (the absence of holiness and perfect charity) into which humans are born, distinct from the actual sins that a person commits. This teaching explicitly states that "original sin does not have the character of a personal fault in any of Adam's descendants".[5] In other words, human beings do not bear any "original guilt" from Adam's particular sin, which is his alone. The prevailing view, also held in Eastern Orthodoxy, is that human beings bear no guilt for the sin of Adam.

Orthodoxy prefers using the term "ancestral sin",[6][7] which indicates that "original sin is hereditary. It did not remain only Adam and Eve's. As life passes from them to all of their descendants, so does original sin "[8] In this quotation, "original sin" is used not of the personal sin of Adam, which is his alone and is not transmitted, but in reference to the "distortion of the nature of man", which is inherited.

An important exposition of the belief of Eastern Christians identifies original sin as physical and spiritual death, the spiritual death being the loss of "the grace of God, which quickened (the soul) with the higher and spiritual life".


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....stern_Orthodoxy

***

What do you suppose the proud Egyptian ruler did with all that flesh and loot? Burn it, bury it with him, boats and all? Apparently no human was allowed to own or use any of it. Maybe they put it under and guard and let it rot. How strange the behavior of our forebears. But they were only doing what they imagined unseen spirits wanted in the absence of revelatory authority, celestial guidance and scientific enlightenment.

At least that behavior evolved into a beautiful and benign ritual still practiced today in most Christian sects:


...And this custom found justification under the pretense of the ancient sacred meal, a communion service according to modern usage.... P.978 - 7

Tomorrow's reading looks at human offerings and man-eating as a natural step in the early evolution of human more and sacrificial rites on Urantia, until replaced by animals. Section 5 is titled: SACRIFICES AND CANNIBALISM

Thanks for reading. Forum Member's thoughts, reflections, insights, observations, comments, corrections and questions about today's OPAD presentation are invited. Join the Forum

Much love, Rick/OPAD host


Overview of: Paper 89 Sin, Sacrifice, and Atonement


1. The Taboo
2. The Concept of Sin
3. Renunciation and Humiliation

4. Origins of Sacrifice
5. Sacrifices and Cannibalism
6. Evolution of Human Sacrifice
7. Modifications of Human Sacrifice

8. Redemption and Covenants
9. Sacrifices and Sacraments
10. Forgiveness of Sin


[Presented by a Brilliant Evening Star of Nebadon.]


Reader Tools, References & Links


***

#14 Rick Warren

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 04:25 AM



Welcome to UAI Forum's One-Page-A-Day Online Study Session

Today's Presentation:


PAPER 89 - SIN, SACRIFICE, AND ATONEMENT


5. SACRIFICES AND CANNIBALISM


P.978 - §8 Modern ideas of early cannibalism are entirely wrong; it was a part of the mores of early society. While cannibalism is traditionally horrible to modern civilization, it was a part of the social and religious structure of primitive society. Group interests dictated the practice of cannibalism. It grew up through the urge of necessity and persisted because of the slavery of superstition and ignorance. It was a social, economic, religious, and military custom.

P.979 - §1 Early man was a cannibal; he enjoyed human flesh, and therefore he offered it as a food gift to the spirits and his primitive gods. Since ghost spirits were merely modified men, and since food was man's greatest need, then food must likewise be a spirit's greatest need.

P.979 - §2 Cannibalism was once well-nigh universal among the evolving races. The Sangiks were all cannibalistic, but originally the Andonites were not, nor were the Nodites and Adamites; neither were the Andites until after they had become grossly admixed with the evolutionary races.

P.979 - §3 The taste for human flesh grows. Having been started through hunger, friendship, revenge, or religious ritual, the eating of human flesh goes on to habitual cannibalism. Man-eating has arisen through food scarcity, though this has seldom been the underlying reason. The Eskimos and early Andonites, however, seldom were cannibalistic except in times of famine. The red men, especially in Central America, were cannibals. It was once a general practice for primitive mothers to kill and eat their own children in order to renew the strength lost in childbearing, and in Queensland the first child is still frequently thus killed and devoured. In recent times cannibalism has been deliberately resorted to by many African tribes as a war measure, a sort of frightfulness with which to terrorize their neighbors.

P.979 - §4 Some cannibalism resulted from the degeneration of once superior stocks, but it was mostly prevalent among the evolutionary races. Man-eating came on at a time when men experienced intense and bitter emotions regarding their enemies. Eating human flesh became part of a solemn ceremony of revenge; it was believed that an enemy's ghost could, in this way, be destroyed or fused with that of the eater. It was once a widespread belief that wizards attained their powers by eating human flesh.

P.979 - §5 Certain groups of man-eaters would consume only members of their own tribes, a pseudospiritual inbreeding which was supposed to accentuate tribal solidarity. But they also ate enemies for revenge with the idea of appropriating their strength. It was considered an honor to the soul of a friend or fellow tribesman if his body were eaten, while it was no more than just punishment to an enemy thus to devour him. The savage mind made no pretensions to being consistent.

P.979 - §6 Among some tribes aged parents would seek to be eaten by their children; among others it was customary to refrain from eating near relations; their bodies were sold or exchanged for those of strangers. There was considerable commerce in women and children who had been fattened for slaughter. When disease or war failed to control population, the surplus was unceremoniously eaten.

P.979 - §7 Cannibalism has been gradually disappearing because of the following influences:



1. It sometimes became a communal ceremony, the assumption of collective responsibility for inflicting the death penalty upon a fellow tribesman. The blood guilt ceases to be a crime when participated in by all, by society. The last of cannibalism in Asia was this eating of executed criminals.

2. It very early became a religious ritual, but the growth of ghost fear did not always operate to reduce man-eating.

3. Eventually it progressed to the point where only certain parts or organs of the body were eaten, those parts supposed to contain the soul or portions of the spirit. Blood drinking became common, and it was customary to mix the "edible" parts of the body with medicines.

4. It became limited to men; women were forbidden to eat human flesh.

5. It was next limited to the chiefs, priests, and shamans.

6. Then it became taboo among the higher tribes. The taboo on man-eating originated in Dalamatia and slowly spread over the world. The Nodites encouraged cremation as a means of combating cannibalism since it was once a common practice to dig up buried bodies and eat them.

7. Human sacrifice sounded the death knell of cannibalism. Human flesh having become the food of superior men, the chiefs, it was eventually reserved for the still more superior spirits; and thus the offering of human sacrifices effectively put a stop to cannibalism, except among the lowest tribes. When human sacrifice was fully established, man-eating became taboo; human flesh was food only for the gods; man could eat only a small ceremonial bit, a sacrament.



P.980 - §5 Finally animal substitutes came into general use for sacrificial purposes, and even among the more backward tribes dog-eating greatly reduced man-eating. The dog was the first domesticated animal and was held in high esteem both as such and as food.







***





[Each OPAD presentation is copied from The Urantia Book published by Urantia Foundation. Questions and comments related to the Paper under discussion are welcome. In-depth questions and related topics may be studied in branch threads in the OPAD, or other subforums, as you require. Thank you for studying with us!]


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#15 Rick Warren

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 06:52 AM

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Good Day Fellow Students, Forum Members and Guests,


...Early man was a cannibal; he enjoyed human flesh, and therefore he offered it as a food gift to the spirits and his primitive gods.... P.979 - 1


No matter how acceptable eating people once was, it is all but unthinkable today, except perhaps in horror movies. If cannibalism is still being practiced in the early 21st century, it is not well known nor is it often reported.


...In recent times cannibalism has been deliberately resorted to by many African tribes as a war measure, a sort of frightfulness with which to terrorize their neighbors.... P.979 - 3


But there's this from Wikipedia about even more recent history in certain parts of Africa:

...In the 1980s, Médecins Sans Frontières, the international medical charity, supplied photographic and other documentary evidence of ritualized cannibal feasts among the participants in Liberia's internecine strife to representatives of Amnesty International who were on a fact-finding mission to the neighboring state of Guinea. However, Amnesty International declined to publicize this material; the Secretary-General of the organization, Pierre Sane, said at the time in an internal communication that "what they do with the bodies after human rights violations are committed is not part of our mandate or concern". The existence of cannibalism on a wide scale in Liberia was subsequently verified.[139]

The self-declared Emperor of the Central African Republic, Jean-Bédel Bokassa (Emperor Bokassa I), was tried on 24 October 1986 for several cases of cannibalism although he was never convicted.[140][141] Between 17 April and 19 April 1979 a number of elementary school students were arrested after they had protested against wearing the expensive, government-required school uniforms. Around 100 were killed. Bokassa is said to have participated in the massacre, beating some of the children to death with his cane and allegedly ate some of his victims.[142]

Cannibalism has been reported in several recent African conflicts, including the Second Congo War, and the civil wars in Liberia and Sierra Leone. A U.N. human rights expert reported in July 2007 that sexual atrocities against Congolese women go "far beyond rape" and include sexual slavery, forced incest, and cannibalism.[143] This may be done in desperation, as during peacetime cannibalism is much less frequent;[144] at other times, it is consciously directed at certain groups believed to be relatively helpless, such as Congo Pygmies, even considered subhuman by some other Congolese.[145] It is also reported by some that witch doctors sometimes use the body parts of children in their medicine.[146] In the 1970s the Ugandan dictator Idi Amin was reputed to practice cannibalism.[147][148]

In Uganda, the Lord's Liberation Army routinely engage in ritual or magical cannibalism.[149]


***

To the great majority of modern men and women the history presented in today's reading is surely the most revolting, repugnant and disgusting of all in the book, what with mothers eating their babies, young folks consuming their parents and shamen using body parts as medicine and power enhancers.

Posted Image
Menschenfresserin by Leonhard Kern, 1650

Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....iki/Cannibalism

As gross and distasteful as it might seem to us, the Evening Star starts off, in no uncertain terms, saying cannibalism, like war, is a common and acceptable practice in evolving civilizations. Presumably this happens at some point on all evolutionary worlds where food must be consumed to remain among the living.

Man-eating in Urantia's legends and myths:

...Cannibalism features in many mythologies, and is most often attributed to evil characters or as extreme retribution for some wrong. Examples include the witch in Hansel and Gretel, Lamia of Greek mythology and Baba Yaga of Slavic folklore.
A number of stories in Greek mythology involve cannibalism, in particular cannibalism of close family members, for example the stories of Thyestes, Tereus and especially Cronus, who was Saturn in the Roman pantheon. The story of Tantalus also parallels this. These mythologies inspired Shakespeare's cannibalism scene in Titus Andronicus.

The Wendigo (also Windigo, Weendigo, Windago, Windiga, Witiko, Wihtikow, and numerous other variants) is a mythical creature appearing in the mythology of the Algonquian people. It is a malevolent cannibalistic spirit into which humans could transform, or which could possess humans. Those who indulged in cannibalism were at particular risk,[50] and the legend appears to have reinforced this practice as taboo. The name is Wiindigoo in the Ojibwe language (the source of the English word),[51] Wìdjigò in the Algonquin language, and Wīhtikōw in the Cree language; the Proto-Algonquian term was *wi·nteko·wa, which probably originally meant "owl".[52]


Posted Image
Saturn Devouring His Son, from the Black Paintings series by Francisco de Goya, 1819

Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....iki/Cannibalism

***

Lest modern people think we left cannibalism far, far behind, remember it has not been long since most humans, of the east or west, thought it good to eat "placenta pie" at a new birth feast:

...Although the placenta is revered in many cultures, very few customarily eat the placenta after the newborn's birth. Those who advocate placentophagy in humans believe that eating the placenta prevents postpartum depression and other pregnancy complications[3]. Obstetrician and spokesperson for the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists Maggie Blott disputes the post-natal depression theory, stating there is no medical reason to eat the placenta; "Animals eat their placenta to get nutrition - but when people are already well-nourished, there is no benefit, there is no reason to do it."[4] Human placenta has also been an ingredient in some traditional Chinese medicines,[5] including using dried human placenta, known as "Ziheche" (simplified Chinese: 紫河车; traditional Chinese: 紫河車; pinyin: Zǐhéchē), to treat wasting diseases, infertility, impotence and other conditions.[6]


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....i/Placentophagy

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It's odd isn't it, that Urantia's most primitive and most advanced peoples weren't cannibalistic, at least in the beginning? But the colored races were!


...The Sangiks were all cannibalistic, but originally the Andonites were not, nor were the Nodites and Adamites; neither were the Andites until after they had become grossly admixed with the evolutionary races.... P.979 - 2


***

In studying our past, it seems wise to always keep in mind this statement:


...The savage mind made no pretensions to being consistent.... P.979 - 5


Scientific logic, even common sense, are missing in savage thinking. Ignorance of fact, truth and purpose is the mother of myth and the father of enduring falsehood, no?

***

It is difficult to imagine people as marketable food today, the thought is abhorrent! But apparently not so for our ancestors:


...There was considerable commerce in women and children who had been fattened for slaughter.... P.979 - 6


But if one did manage to imagine it, surely the ones being fattened knew their fate. And who knows, perhaps they enjoyed it and even rejoiced to know their bods would one day nourish those who fattened them. What a different world than the one most of us know.

***

Strange that sacrificing humans stopped the eating of humans! But, to their detriment, lower animals filled the need to sacrifice--and the bellies of the sacrificers:


...Finally animal substitutes came into general use for sacrificial purposes, and even among the more backward tribes dog-eating greatly reduced man-eating.... P.980 - 5


Tomorrow's reading continues the bloody story of our primitive evolution, from eating people to merely killing them for divine favor. Section 6 is titled: EVOLUTION OF HUMAN SACRIFICE

Thanks for reading. Forum Member's thoughts, reflections, insights, observations, comments, corrections and questions about today's OPAD presentation are invited. Join the Forum

Much love, Rick/OPAD host


Overview of: Paper 89 Sin, Sacrifice, and Atonement

1. The Taboo
2. The Concept of Sin
3. Renunciation and Humiliation

4. Origins of Sacrifice
5. Sacrifices and Cannibalism
6. Evolution of Human Sacrifice
7. Modifications of Human Sacrifice

8. Redemption and Covenants
9. Sacrifices and Sacraments
10. Forgiveness of Sin


[Presented by a Brilliant Evening Star of Nebadon.]


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***

#16 Rick Warren

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 03:37 AM



Welcome to UAI Forum's One-Page-A-Day Online Study Session

Today's Presentation:


PAPER 89 - SIN, SACRIFICE, AND ATONEMENT


6. EVOLUTION OF HUMAN SACRIFICE



P.980 - §6 Human sacrifice was an indirect result of cannibalism as well as its cure. Providing spirit escorts to the spirit world also led to the lessening of man-eating as it was never the custom to eat these death sacrifices. No race has been entirely free from the practice of human sacrifice in some form and at some time, even though the Andonites, Nodites, and Adamites were the least addicted to cannibalism.

P.980 - §7 Human sacrifice has been virtually universal; it persisted in the religious customs of the Chinese, Hindus, Egyptians, Hebrews, Mesopotamians, Greeks, Romans, and many other peoples, even on to recent times among the backward African and Australian tribes. The later American Indians had a civilization emerging from cannibalism and, therefore, steeped in human sacrifice, especially in Central and South America. The Chaldeans were among the first to abandon the sacrificing of humans for ordinary occasions, substituting therefor animals. About two thousand years ago a tenderhearted Japanese emperor introduced clay images to take the place of human sacrifices, but it was less than a thousand years ago that these sacrifices died out in northern Europe. Among certain backward tribes, human sacrifice is still carried on by volunteers, a sort of religious or ritual suicide. A shaman once ordered the sacrifice of a much respected old man of a certain tribe. The people revolted; they refused to obey. Whereupon the old man had his own son dispatch him; the ancients really believed in this custom.

P.980 - §8 There is no more tragic and pathetic experience on record, illustrative of the heart-tearing contentions between ancient and time-honored religious customs and the contrary demands of advancing civilization, than the Hebrew narrative of Jephthah and his only daughter. As was common custom, this well-meaning man had made a foolish vow, had bargained with the "god of battles," agreeing to pay a certain price for victory over his enemies. And this price was to make a sacrifice of that which first came out of his house to meet him when he returned to his home. Jephthah thought that one of his trusty slaves would thus be on hand to greet him, but it turned out that his daughter and only child came out to welcome him home. And so, even at that late date and among a supposedly civilized people, this beautiful maiden, after two months to mourn her fate, was actually offered as a human sacrifice by her father, and with the approval of his fellow tribesmen. And all this was done in the face of Moses' stringent rulings against the offering of human sacrifice. But men and women are addicted to making foolish and needless vows, and the men of old held all such pledges to be highly sacred.


P.981 - §1 In olden times, when a new building of any importance was started, it was customary to slay a human being as a "foundation sacrifice." This provided a ghost spirit to watch over and protect the structure. When the Chinese made ready to cast a bell, custom decreed the sacrifice of at least one maiden for the purpose of improving the tone of the bell; the girl chosen was thrown alive into the molten metal.

P.981 - §2 It was long the practice of many groups to build slaves alive into important walls. In later times the northern European tribes substituted the walling in of the shadow of a passerby for this custom of entombing living persons in the walls of new buildings. The Chinese buried in a wall those workmen who died while constructing it.

P.981 - §3 A petty king in Palestine, in building the walls of Jericho, "laid the foundation thereof in Abiram, his first-born, and set up the gates thereof in his youngest son, Segub." At that late date, not only did this father put two of his sons alive in the foundation holes of the city's gates, but his action is also recorded as being "according to the word of the Lord." Moses had forbidden these foundation sacrifices, but the Israelites reverted to them soon after his death. The twentieth-century ceremony of depositing trinkets and keepsakes in the cornerstone of a new building is reminiscent of the primitive foundation sacrifices.


P.981 - §4 It was long the custom of many peoples to dedicate the first fruits to the spirits. And these observances, now more or less symbolic, are all survivals of the early ceremonies involving human sacrifice. The idea of offering the first-born as a sacrifice was widespread among the ancients, especially among the Phoenicians, who were the last to give it up. It used to be said upon sacrificing, "life for life." Now you say at death, "dust to dust."

P.981 - §5 The spectacle of Abraham constrained to sacrifice his son Isaac, while shocking to civilized susceptibilities, was not a new or strange idea to the men of those days. It was long a prevalent practice for fathers, at times of great emotional stress, to sacrifice their first-born sons. Many peoples have a tradition analogous to this story, for there once existed a world-wide and profound belief that it was necessary to offer a human sacrifice when anything extraordinary or unusual happened.



***





[Each OPAD presentation is copied from The Urantia Book published by Urantia Foundation. Questions and comments related to the Paper under discussion are welcome. In-depth questions and related topics may be studied in branch threads in the OPAD, or other subforums, as you require. Thank you for studying with us!]


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#17 Rick Warren

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 05:30 AM

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Good Day Fellow Students, Forum Members and Guests,


...No race has been entirely free from the practice of human sacrifice in some form and at some time.... P.980 - 6


From Wikipedia:

...Human sacrifice was practiced by many ancient cultures. People would be ritually killed in a manner that was supposed to please or appease a god or spirit.

Some occasions for human sacrifice found in multiple cultures on multiple continents include:

  • Human sacrifice to accompany the dedication of a new temple or bridge.
  • Sacrifice of people upon the death of a king, high priest or great leader; the sacrificed were supposed to serve or accompany the deceased leader in the next life.
  • Human sacrifice in times of natural disaster. Droughts, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, etc. were seen as a sign of anger or displeasure by deities, and sacrifices were supposed to lessen the divine ire.
Human sacrifices were practiced by various Pre-Columbian civilizations of Mesoamerica. The Aztec practiced human sacrifice on an unusually large scale; a sacrifice would be made every day to aid the sun in rising, the dedication of the great temple at Tenochtitlán was reportedly marked with the sacrificing of thousands, and there are multiple accounts of captured Conquistadores being sacrificed during the wars of the Spanish conquest of Mexico.

In Scandinavia, the old Scandinavian religion contained human sacrifice, and both the Norse sagas and German historians relate of this, see e.g. Temple at Uppsala and Blót.

There is evidence to suggest Pre-Hellenic Minoan cultures practiced human sacrifice. Sacrificed corpses were found at a number of sites in the citadel of Knossos in Crete. The north house at Knossos contained the bones of children who appeared to have been butchered. It is possible they may have been for human consumption as was the tradition with sacrificial offerings made in Pre-Hellenic Civilization. [1] The myth of Theseus and the Minotaur (set in the labyrinth at Knossos) provides evidence that human sacrifice was commonplace. In the myth, we are told that Athens sent seven young men and seven young women to Crete as human sacrifices to the Minotaur. This ties up well with the archaeological evidence that most sacrifices were of young adults or children.

Human sacrifice still happens today[citation needed] as an underground practice in some traditional religions, for example in muti killings. Human sacrifice is no longer officially condoned in any country, and these cases are regarded as murder.

In the Aeneid by Virgil, the character Sinon claims (falsely) that he was going to be a human sacrifice to Poseidon to calm the seas.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....Human_sacrifice

***

The "Chaldeans", who exist today, are Andite in heritage:

...The Assyrian people,[23] most commonly known as Assyrians and other later names, such as: Chaldeans, Syrians, Syriacs (see names of Syriac Christians), are a distinct ethnic group whose origins lie in ancient Mesopotamia. They are Eastern Aramaic speaking Semites who trace their ancestry back to the Sumero-Akkadian civilisation that emerged in Mesopotamia circa 4000- 3500 BC, and in particular to the northern region of the Akkadian lands, which would become known as Assyria by the 24th Century BC. The Assyrian nation existed as an independent state, and often a powerful empire, from the 24th century BC until the end of the 7th century BC. Today that ancient territory is part of several nations; Assyria remained a Geo-political entity after its fall, and was ruled as an occupied province under the rule of various empires from the late 7th century BC until the mid 7th century AD when it was dissolved, and the Assyrian people have gradually become a minority in their homelands since that time. They are indigenous to, and have traditionally lived all over what is now Iraq, north east Syria, north west Iran, and Southeastern Turkey.[24] They are predominantly Christian.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....Chaldean_people

***

This is the story of Jephthah as presented in the old testament of the Christian Bible:

...Judges 11:30-39 "And Jephthah vowed a vow unto the Lord, and said, If thou shalt without fail deliver the children of Ammon into mine hands, Then it shall be, that whatsoever cometh forth of the doors of my house to meet me, when I return in peace from the children of Ammon, shall surely be the Lord's, and I will offer it up for a burnt offering.

So Jephthah passed over unto the children of Ammon to fight against them; and the Lord delivered them into his hands.
And he smote them from Aroer, even till thou come to Minnith, even twenty cities, and unto the plain of the vineyards, with a very great slaughter.


Thus the children of Ammon were subdued before the children of Israel.

And Jephthah came to Mizpeh unto his house, and, behold, his daughter came out to meet him with timbrels and with dances: and she was his only child; beside her he had neither son nor daughter.

And it came to pass, when he saw her, that he rent his clothes, and said, Alas, my daughter! thou hast brought me very low, and thou art one of them that trouble me: for I have opened my mouth unto the Lord, and I cannot go back.

And she said unto him, My father, if thou hast opened thy mouth unto the Lord, do to me according to that which hath proceeded out of thy mouth; forasmuch as the Lord hath taken vengeance for thee of thine enemies, even of the children of Ammon.

And she said unto her father, Let this thing be done for me: let me alone two months, that I may go up and down upon the mountains, and bewail my virginity, I and my fellows.

And he said, Go.

And he sent her away for two months: and she went with her companions, and bewailed her virginity upon the mountains.

And it came to pass at the end of two months, that she returned unto her father, who did with her according to his vow which he had vowed: and she knew no man.

And it was a custom in Israel.


***

About "foundation sacrifices":

...Greco-Roman: Archaeologists have found sacrificial victims buried in building foundations.

...Celts: Archaeological evidence from the British Isles seems to indicate that human sacrifice may have been practised, over times long pre-dating any contact with Rome. Human remains have been found at the foundations of structures from the Neolithic time to the Roman era, with injuries and in positions that argue for their being foundation sacrifices.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....Human_sacrifice

***

Historical evidence of burying slaves alive in China:

...The ancient Chinese are known to have made sacrifices of young men and women to river deities, and to have buried slaves alive with their owners upon death as part of a funeral service. This was especially prevalent during the Shang and Zhou Dynasties. During the Warring States period, Ximen Bao of Wei demonstrated to the villagers that sacrifice to river deities was actually a ploy by crooked priests to pocket money.[44] In Chinese lore, Ximen Bao is regarded as a folk hero who pointed out the absurdity of human sacrifice.

The sacrifice of a high-ranking male's slaves, concubines or servants upon his death (called Xun Zang 殉葬 or more specifically Sheng Xun 生殉) was a more common form. The stated purpose was to provide companionship for the dead in the afterlife. In earlier times the victims were either killed or buried alive, while later they were usually forced to commit suicide.


***

About the Segub sacrifice for Jericho, from the Bible's old testament:


...Joshua 6:26 "And Joshua adjured them at that time, saying, Cursed be the man before the Lord, that riseth up and buildeth this city Jericho: he shall lay the foundation thereof in his firstborn, and in his youngest son shall he set up the gates of it."

1 Kings 16:34 "In his days did Hiel the Bethelite build Jericho: he laid the foundation thereof in Abiram his firstborn, and set up the gates thereof in his youngest son Segub, according to the word of the Lord, which he spake by Joshua the son of Nun. "



***

About cornerstones:

...The cornerstone (or foundation stone) concept is derived from the first stone set in the construction of a masonry foundation, important since all other stones will be set in reference to this stone, thus determining the position of the entire structure.

...In modern practice, normally, a VIP of the organization, or a local celebrity or community leader, will be invited to conduct the ceremony of figuratively beginning the foundations of the building, with the person's name and official position and the date usually being recorded on the stone. This person is usually asked to place their hand on the stone or otherwise signify its laying.

Often still, and certainly until the 1970s, most ceremonies involved the use of a specially manufactured and engraved trowel that had a formal use in laying mortar under the stone. Similarly, a special hammer was often used to ceremonially tap the stone into place.

The foundation stone often has a cavity into which is placed a time capsule containing newspapers of the day or week of the ceremony plus other artifacts that are typical of the period of the construction: Coins of the year may also be immured in the cavity or time capsule.

Posted Image
A cornerstone with bronze relief images.

Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....iki/Cornerstone

***


...It used to be said upon sacrificing, "life for life." Now you say at death, "dust to dust...."P.981 - 4


Life for life, dust to dust references in the Bible:

Exodus 21:23 "And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life."
Ecclesiastes 3:20 "All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again."


***


Tomorrow's reading charts the slowly advancing mores around ritual giving to the gods. Section 7 is titled: MODIFICATIONS OF HUMAN SACRIFICE

Thanks for reading. Forum Member's thoughts, reflections, insights, observations, comments, corrections and questions about today's OPAD presentation are invited. Join the Forum

Much love, Rick/OPAD host



Overview of: Paper 89 Sin, Sacrifice, and Atonement


1. The Taboo
2. The Concept of Sin
3. Renunciation and Humiliation

4. Origins of Sacrifice
5. Sacrifices and Cannibalism
6. Evolution of Human Sacrifice
7. Modifications of Human Sacrifice

8. Redemption and Covenants
9. Sacrifices and Sacraments
10. Forgiveness of Sin


[Presented by a Brilliant Evening Star of Nebadon.]


Reader Tools, References & Links


***

#18 Rick Warren

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 05:36 AM

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PS. Three more bits about sacrificing innocent children that God is presumed to require:

From the Bible's old testament:

...Genesis 22:1-10 "And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am.

And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.

And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him.

Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.

And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you.

And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went both of them together.

And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son.

And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?

And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.

And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood.

And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son."


***

...The teachings of the Torah and Tanakh reveal the Israelites's familiarity with human sacrifices, as exemplified by the near-sacrifice of Isaac by his father Abraham (Genesis 22:1-24)...The king of Moab gives his firstborn son and heir as a whole burnt offering (olah, as used of the Temple sacrifice). It is apparently effective, as his enemy is promptly repelled by a 'great wrath' (2 Kings 3:27). In the book of Micah, one asks, 'Shall I give my firstborn for my sin, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?' (Micah 6:7), and receives a response, 'It hath been told thee, O man, what is good, and what the LORD doth require of thee: only to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God.' (Micah 6:8) Abhorrence of the practice of child sacrifice is emphasized by Jeremiah. See Jeremiah 7:30-32.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacrifice

Even Jesus' death is seen by some as God fulfilling the requirement to sacrifice his first born:

Christianity

...In trinitarian Christian teaching, God became incarnate in Jesus Christ, sacrificing his first-born son to accomplish the reconciliation of God and humanity, which had separated itself from God through sin (see the concept of original sin). According to a view that has featured prominently in Western theology since early in the 2nd millennium, God's justice required an atonement for sin from humanity if human beings were to be restored to their place in creation and saved from damnation. However, God knew limited human beings could not make sufficient atonement, for humanity's offense to God was infinite, so God created a covenant with Abraham, which he fulfilled when he sent his only Son to become the sacrifice for the broken covenant. In Christian theology, this sacrifice replaced the insufficient animal sacrifice of the Old Covenant; Christ the "Lamb of God" replaced the lambs' sacrifice of the ancient Korban Todah (the Rite of Thanksgiving), chief of which is the Passover in the Mosaic law.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacrifice

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#19 Rick Warren

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Posted 12 April 2012 - 03:56 AM



Welcome to UAI Forum's One-Page-A-Day Online Study Session

Today's Presentation:


PAPER 89 - SIN, SACRIFICE, AND ATONEMENT



7. MODIFICATIONS OF HUMAN SACRIFICE



P.981 - §6 Moses attempted to end human sacrifices by inaugurating the ransom as a substitute. He established a systematic schedule which enabled his people to escape the worst results of their rash and foolish vows. Lands, properties, and children could be redeemed according to the established fees, which were payable to the priests. Those groups which ceased to sacrifice their first-born soon possessed great advantages over less advanced neighbors who continued these atrocious acts. Many such backward tribes were not only greatly weakened by this loss of sons, but even the succession of leadership was often broken.

P.982 - §1 An outgrowth of the passing child sacrifice was the custom of smearing blood on the house doorposts for the protection of the first-born. This was often done in connection with one of the sacred feasts of the year, and this ceremony once obtained over most of the world from Mexico to Egypt.

P.982 - §2 Even after most groups had ceased the ritual killing of children, it was the custom to put an infant away by itself, off in the wilderness or in a little boat on the water. If the child survived, it was thought that the gods had intervened to preserve him, as in the traditions of Sargon, Moses, Cyrus, and Romulus. Then came the practice of dedicating the first-born sons as sacred or sacrificial, allowing them to grow up and then exiling them in lieu of death; this was the origin of colonization. The Romans adhered to this custom in their scheme of colonization.


P.982 - §3 Many of the peculiar associations of sex laxity with primitive worship had their origin in connection with human sacrifice. In olden times, if a woman met head-hunters, she could redeem her life by sexual surrender. Later, a maiden consecrated to the gods as a sacrifice might elect to redeem her life by dedicating her body for life to the sacred sex service of the temple; in this way she could earn her redemption money. The ancients regarded it as highly elevating to have sex relations with a woman thus engaged in ransoming her life. It was a religious ceremony to consort with these sacred maidens, and in addition, this whole ritual afforded an acceptable excuse for commonplace sexual gratification. This was a subtle species of self-deception which both the maidens and their consorts delighted to practice upon themselves. The mores always drag behind in the evolutionary advance of civilization, thus providing sanction for the earlier and more savagelike sex practices of the evolving races.

P.982 - §4 Temple harlotry eventually spread throughout southern Europe and Asia. The money earned by the temple prostitutes was held sacred among all peoples--a high gift to present to the gods. The highest types of women thronged the temple sex marts and devoted their earnings to all kinds of sacred services and works of public good. Many of the better classes of women collected their dowries by temporary sex service in the temples, and most men preferred to have such women for wives.


***





[Each OPAD presentation is copied from The Urantia Book published by Urantia Foundation. Questions and comments related to the Paper under discussion are welcome. In-depth questions and related topics may be studied in branch threads in the OPAD, or other subforums, as you require. Thank you for studying with us!]


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#20 Rick Warren

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Posted 12 April 2012 - 06:18 AM

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Greetings Fellow Students, Forum Members and Guests,

The word ransom is used many times in the old testament of the Christian Bible. And Moses' "systematic schedule" is enumerated in Leviticus:

...Leviticus 27:1-34 "And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When a man shall make a singular vow, the persons shall be for the Lord by thy estimation.

And thy estimation shall be of the male from twenty years old even unto sixty years old, even thy estimation shall be fifty shekels of silver, after the shekel of the sanctuary.

And if it be a female, then thy estimation shall be thirty shekels.

And if it be from five years old even unto twenty years old, then thy estimation shall be of the male twenty shekels, and for the female ten shekels.

And if it be from a month old even unto five years old, then thy estimation shall be of the male five shekels of silver, and for the female thy estimation shall be three shekels of silver.

And if it be from sixty years old and above; if it be a male, then thy estimation shall be fifteen shekels, and for the female ten shekels.

But if he be poorer than thy estimation, then he shall present himself before the priest, and the priest shall value him; according to his ability that vowed shall the priest value him.

And if it be a beast, whereof men bring an offering unto the Lord, all that any man giveth of such unto the Lord shall be holy.
He shall not alter it, nor change it, a good for a bad, or a bad for a good: and if he shall at all change beast for beast, then it and the exchange thereof shall be holy.

And if it be any unclean beast, of which they do not offer a sacrifice unto the Lord, then he shall present the beast before the priest: And the priest shall value it, whether it be good or bad: as thou valuest it, who art the priest, so shall it be.

But if he will at all redeem it, then he shall add a fifth part thereof unto thy estimation.

And when a man shall sanctify his house to be holy unto the Lord, then the priest shall estimate it, whether it be good or bad: as the priest shall estimate it, so shall it stand.

And if he that sanctified it will redeem his house, then he shall add the fifth part of the money of thy estimation unto it, and it shall be his.

And if a man shall sanctify unto the Lord some part of a field of his possession, then thy estimation shall be according to the seed thereof: an homer of barley seed shall be valued at fifty shekels of silver.
If he sanctify his field from the year of jubile, according to thy estimation it shall stand.

But if he sanctify his field after the jubile, then the priest shall reckon unto him the money according to the years that remain, even unto the year of the jubile, and it shall be abated from thy estimation.

And if he that sanctified the field will in any wise redeem it, then he shall add the fifth part of the money of thy estimation unto it, and it shall be assured to him.

And if he will not redeem the field, or if he have sold the field to another man, it shall not be redeemed any more.
But the field, when it goeth out in the jubile, shall be holy unto the Lord, as a field devoted; the possession thereof shall be the priest's.

And if a man sanctify unto the Lord a field which he hath bought, which is not of the fields of his possession; Then the priest shall reckon unto him the worth of thy estimation, even unto the year of the jubile: and he shall give thine estimation in that day, as a holy thing unto the Lord.

In the year of the jubile the field shall return unto him of whom it was bought, even to him to whom the possession of the land did belong.

And all thy estimations shall be according to the shekel of the sanctuary: twenty gerahs shall be the shekel.

Only the firstling of the beasts, which should be the Lord's firstling, no man shall sanctify it; whether it be ox, or sheep: it is the Lord's.

And if it be of an unclean beast, then he shall redeem it according to thine estimation, and shall add a fifth part of it thereto: or if it be not redeemed, then it shall be sold according to thy estimation.

Notwithstanding no devoted thing, that a man shall devote unto the Lord of all that he hath, both of man and beast, and of the field of his possession, shall be sold or redeemed: every devoted thing is most holy unto the Lord.

None devoted, which shall be devoted of men, shall be redeemed; but shall surely be put to death.

And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the Lord's: it is holy unto the Lord.
And if a man will at all redeem ought of his tithes, he shall add thereto the fifth part thereof.

And concerning the tithe of the herd, or of the flock, even of whatsoever passeth under the rod, the tenth shall be holy unto the Lord.

He shall not search whether it be good or bad, neither shall he change it: and if he change it at all, then both it and the change thereof shall be holy; it shall not be redeemed.

These are the commandments, which the Lord commanded Moses for the children of Israel in mount Sinai.


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...An outgrowth of the passing child sacrifice was the custom of smearing blood on the house doorposts for the protection of the first-born.... P.982 - 1


From Exodus 12:7:

"Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they eat the lambs."


...This was often done in connection with one of the sacred feasts of the year, and this ceremony once obtained over most of the world from Mexico to Egypt.... P.982 - 1


And without world-wide communications, or even global trade, did this happen!

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About Sargon:

...Sargon survives as a legendary figure into the Neo-Assyrian literature of the Early Iron Age. A Neo-Assyrian text from the 7th century BC purporting to be Sargon's autobiography asserts that the great king was the illegitimate son of a priestess. In the Neo-Assyrian account Sargon's birth and his early childhood are described thus:

"...My mother was a high priestess, my father I knew not. The brothers of my father loved the hills. My city is Azupiranu, which is situated on the banks of the Euphrates. My high priestess mother conceived me, in secret she bore me. She set me in a basket of rushes, with bitumen she sealed my lid. She cast me into the river which rose over me. The river bore me up and carried me to Akki, the drawer of water. Akki, the drawer of water, took me as his son and reared me..."


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....Sargon_of_Akkad


About Romulus' mythical origin:

...Amulius forces Rhea Silvia into perpetual virginity as a Vestal priestess, but she bears children anyway. In one variation of the story, Mars, god of war, seduces and impregnates her: in another, Amulius himself seduces her, and in yet another, Hercules.

The king sees his niece's pregnancy and confines her. She gives birth to twin boys of remarkable beauty; her uncle orders her death and theirs. One account holds that he has Rhea buried alive – the standard punishment for Vestal Virgins who violated their vow of celibacy – and orders the death of the twins by exposure; both means would avoid his direct blood-guilt. In another, he has Rhea and her twins thrown into the River Tiber.

In every version, a servant is charged with the deed of killing the twins, but cannot bring himself to harm them. He places them in a basket and leaves it on the banks of the Tiber. The river rises in flood and carries the twins downstream, unharmed.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....mulus_and_Remus

About Cyrus:

...The best-known date for the birth of Cyrus the Great is either 600-599 BC or 576-575 BC.[32] Little is known of his early years, as there are only a few sources known to detail that part of his life, and they have been damaged or lost.

Herodotus's story of Cyrus's early life belongs to a genre of legends in which abandoned children of noble birth, such as Oedipus and Romulus and Remus, return to claim their royal positions. Similar to other culture's heroes and founders of great empires, folk traditions abound regarding his family background. According to Herodotus, he was the grandson of the Median king Astyages and was brought up by humble herding folk. In another version, he was presented as the son of a poor family that worked in the Median court. These folk stories are, however, contradicted by Cyrus's own testimony, according to which he was preceded as king of Persia by his father, grandfather and great-grandfather.


Source/more: http://en.wikipedia....Cyrus_the_Great


Of course Moses' birth story may be the most well known of the baby in the bulrushes. From Exodus of the Bible:

...In the Exodus account, the birth of Moses occurred at a time when an unnamed Egyptian Pharaoh had commanded that all male Hebrew children born be killed by drowning in the river Nile. Jochebed, the wife of the Levite Amram, bore a son and kept him concealed for three months.[13][15][16] When she could keep him hidden no longer, rather than deliver him to be killed, she set him adrift on the Nile River in a small craft of bulrushes coated in pitch.[15] Moses' sister Miriam observed the progress of the tiny boat until it reached a place where Pharaoh's daughter (Bithiah,[13] Thermuthis [17]) was bathing with her handmaidens. It is said that she spotted the baby in the basket and had her handmaiden fetch it for her. Miriam came forward and asked Pharaoh's daughter if she would like a Hebrew woman to nurse the baby.[13] Thereafter, Jochebed was employed as the child's nurse. He grew up and was brought to Pharaoh's daughter and became her son and a younger brother to the future Pharaoh of Egypt.


Posted Image
Moses rescued from the Nile, 1638, by Nicolas Poussin

Source/more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moses

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Tomorrow's reading tells of a backlash against sacred harlotry, and how this rise in morality led to attempts to bargain with God. Section 8 is titled: REDEMPTION AND COVENANTS

Thanks for reading. Forum Member's thoughts, reflections, insights, observations, comments, corrections and questions about today's OPAD presentation are invited. Join the Forum

Much love, Rick/OPAD host


Overview of: Paper 89 Sin, Sacrifice, and Atonement


1. The Taboo
2. The Concept of Sin
3. Renunciation and Humiliation

4. Origins of Sacrifice
5. Sacrifices and Cannibalism
6. Evolution of Human Sacrifice
7. Modifications of Human Sacrifice

8. Redemption and Covenants
9. Sacrifices and Sacraments
10. Forgiveness of Sin


[Presented by a Brilliant Evening Star of Nebadon.]


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