Original Sin: A Really Bad Idea!
October 22, 2008 11:15pm CST
The whole idea of sin is really a bit strange. Sin is defined as something that goes against the word or law of God. What is the word or law of God? Where do we find it? Since we're talking about original sin, which is a uniquely Christian idea, I guess we must look to the Bible. The laws of God are primarily contained in the Old Testament so we must defer to that bloody, old genocidal tyrant. I hear you out there, you're saying look to the Ten Commandments, they aren't so bad. You're right; five of them aren’t bad at all and can be found in most religions. But there are more laws than the ten. If we are going to observe the laws of God we have to look to Leviticus. When we go there we find that we are required to stone people for some offenses so things start to get more than a little bit extreme. While sin itself is a weird concept, if we really want to get into the realm of the strange we need to look at original sin. Original sin did not really make its entry into Christianity until the second-century Bishop of Lyon, Irenaeus, made it the centerpiece of his struggle against Gnosticism. He was a great one for finding and defining heresy. With the concept of original sin he condemned all of humanity to hell if they did not accept the help and guidance of the clergy. He was a bit of a control freak and seemed to think that by expanding the concept of sin from the idea of personal responsibility to something that was unavoidable he strengthened the church's control over the people. The fact that this pretty much invalidated the rite of baptism; the idea that it could wash away a person’s sin, and did away with the whole idea of free will seems not to matter to him. The whole concept of original sin presents a rather gloomy picture of mankind. It looks at human nature and says that it is inherently bad. How much better is the doctrine of Pelagianism that man is not evil by nature, that he is good, and has free will? It held that man can become evil but he is not born that way. We need to free ourselves from the guilt imposed on us by original sin. The whole concept is repressive and decidedly unhealthy. Original sin is a very bad idea that was not a part of the original concept of Christianity. It is a dogma that was imposed in the second century CE as a means to eliminate people who were seen as heretics. It's about time we got rid of this old outdated concept. Even people who are devout Catholics have freed themselves from the total domination of the priests. It's time to get rid of this remnant of the priestly casts desire to control the masses. It's time to restore free will to Christianity.
3 people like this
• United States
23 Oct 08
You present a very interesting topic here. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. It does suggest that human beings are inherently bad. The idea of sinning insinuates that without these written "rules" that humans would run rampant killing, thieving, etc... Personally, I believe that some humans are good and some are bad. The bad humans will be bad whether sin exists or not and vice versa.
1 person likes this
• New Zealand
25 Oct 08
And yet millions of people swear by it and are ruled by the clergy that regularly invoke the Original sin. Attitudes towards the concept have softened over the years and yet it remains central to some Churches theology. As you are aware there are several Protestant sects that deny the concept of original or ancestral sin. Incumbent Pope Benedict has had the courage to question the concept of limbo. It may well be another generation before the concept of Original sin goes. "Pope Benedict XVI has reversed centuries of traditional Roman Catholic teaching on limbo, approving a Vatican report released Friday that says there were "serious" grounds to hope that children who die without being baptized can go to heaven." See this article for full story. http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1613390,00.html It must be noted that just a few years ago, his predecessor Pope John Paul had this to say: "Therefore, man is conceived and born without sanctifying grace. It is precisely this "initial state" of man linked to his origin, that constitutes the essence of original sin as a legacy (peccatum originale originatum)." The full copy of the former Pope's speech can be found here http://www.ewtn.com/library/PAPALDOC/JP2ORSIN.HTM It is worth taking a look at Section IV par. 5 Yes Chiang_Mai it is true that the Catholic Church needs to give up the concept of Original sin in its catechism; they have definitely made a good beginning with LIMBO, now it is a matter of going all the way!!
25 Oct 08
True that brother! F**K Sin, and anyone who thinks you're 'sinning' and try to guilt you into their fear-based beliefs. Enjoy life. Spread good energy and experiences. Help people. Party. Get high. Work. Invent. Contribute. Gather things you like. Make love. Stay healthy, stay safe, stay happy. Love and enjoy the good people around you. And if guilt sellers show up and try to tell you that you need their 'medicine' see there on the first line, what to tell them. Peace :)
25 Oct 08
A well written and well researched Post, Mai boy! I do not believe in sin either. Its non existent in my book. My God is a Loving God.My God loves me absolutely! Absolute Love demands Absolutely Nothing. How could God the Father of Mankind be anything else but a God who loves his children Absolutely? There is no way! For this reason I believe there is no such thing as sin.
• United States
23 Oct 08
It's difficult to tell whether you actually believe in God, as it seems your complaint is instead with Sin. Your concern is that maintaining the concept of Sin is strange and it paints a "gloomy" picture of mankind. There is nothing strange about sin and it does exist. Sin is the result of our choice to separate ourselves from our Father, and like it or not, a world without God is a gloomy one. At the moment of separation, we begin to think that we are our own beginnings and endings . . . and we're not. By attempting to eliminate our Father from our lives, we totally ignore His Will and His instructions, thereby ending up making many choices that are neither healthy for ourselves or for others. Mind you, I say we are "attempting" to eliminate our Father from our lives because what many people fail to accept is that it's impossible to eliminate our Father from our lives. He is the air that we breathe (want proof? do you know of any human being that maintains the air that we breathe???). He is the Grantor of life (want proof? do any of us really have control over whether we live or die (heart attacks? car accidents? contraction of terminal diseases???). He is the Supreme Organizer of our world (want proof? what would we do if gravity suddenly went crazy and all the stars and planets collided -- do you know of any humans that would be able to "fix" this problem???) Truth be told, we either accept and believe in our Father and our access to Him thru our Lord Jesus Christ . . . or we don't. If someone doesn't believe, then usually the best laid out facts and figures will never convince them to become a believer. Oh, you say "it's time to restore free will to Christianity". Well, our Father granted us free will a long time ago. In fact, it's each of us exercising that free will that has gotten this world into the depraved state it's currently in. Trust me: none of us human beings have the answers to solving the colossal mess we're now falling into -- we desperately need the intervention of a higher authority, and that authority is our Lord Jesus Christ. If we don't accept this fact, then Sin will prevail and things will only grow worse. No, I'm not preaching doomsday news: we can thank our Father (whether you believe in Him or not!) that He has worked out a plan to save this world and thru His Son Jesus Christ, we shall be given access to salvation!
• United States
23 Oct 08
Well I don't take the original sin to have a literal meaning I view it as a metaphor. I don't believe in a burning hell for sinners or the ungodly. I do however find it hard to believe people are so blind to the obvious that there is real sin in the world. Everyone looks as sin as being something as blatant as Gnosticquest's example of Jack the ripper, but in fact there are some very real statistics that show how messed up this world is that we are born into; Less than 10% of the worlds population own the majority of everything. Half the worlds population is so poor that it is literally dying from lack of food or basic medical supplies. I could go on all day with the greed of humanity. I keep seeing everyone trying to blame religion for all the ills of the world and how humans would evolve so much faster without it. You look at our current pop culture in the united states the addiction of trash television and trash media news this is the life you have without religion. So how is this better? You add up domestic violence and women murdered from it and its more than soldiers killed in the Vietnam war. There is real evil in this world and its a lot more than just Jack the Ripper. People have become engrossed with the idea that they have to be rich (although its statistically improbable) or they have to have their 15 minutes of trashy fame. The only people that seem to be holding any kind of standard is the religious community. Everyone else seems to be brought up on trash TV and the I am going to get mine attitude. Thats the real metaphor behind original sin, humanities greed and wanting to get theirs. So in my opinion to say there is no original sin is to say the world is just fine the way it is. I believe we could evolve to something higher and better than where we are now. But everyone will have to look at themselves and see they aren't as perfect as they think they are, and than when that time truly comes we will have empathy for one and another and stop worrying about the I got mine mentality that is the road of destruction to this world.
23 Oct 08
All these laws were made ages ago when mankind was living in the ancient ages and civilization had not developed as it has today. laws and concepts keep changing with time. The definition of sin too has changed. What the congress, senate and the president think is sin is actually sin. Even the religious leaders follow the political masters. They too need financial support to survive. So on point in going into sin. it is a tool in the hands of the politicians.
23 Oct 08
To measure correct length you need a yard stick.In the same manner you need a yard stick which will tell you what is right and what is wrong.You can make it Bible,Quran or other scripture. It is a Landmark that All of the sacred scriptures are not in their correct state except Quran. You might heard of bible versions.Why?Because they make changes if they find mistakes.Imagine God word having Mistakes.
23 Oct 08
If you want to find the will of God you should read the sacred scripture like bible,quran etc... In this some can be word of God,all can be word of God,only one can be completely word of God or some of the verses from these books can be word of God. What we have to do is read and understand which is the right path. See Brother Knowledge is very vast we cannot conclude by saying just two or three things.I can give answers to some of your questions most probably all but not in well presented manner. Worship the true Almighty God who created the Earth , heaven and all between them.