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View Diary: Genesis Chapter 1 - A not so new reinterpretation (24 comments)

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  •  We still run into trouble on Day #4 (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bhfrik, Navy Vet Terp, Eowyn9

    when the sun and moon and stars are created.  Or, possibly -- which I admit is a reach -- when the Earth's atmosphere became transparent, thus allowing the sun and moon and stars to be "set in the sky" to "rule the day [and] the night".

    The "bats are birds" thing is silly, though.  The Hebrew word generally translated as "bird" means "flying thing," and I don't think anybody disputes that bats are flying things.

    •  Bats/birds/flying things... (0+ / 0-)

      I agree on this being silly, because I don't insist that  the King James Bible is word for word infallible.  However according to King James version, bats are birds, full stop.  If the interpretation is off I, for one, can live with it, but I'm not sure your stereotypical crazy assed fundamentalist righty uncle could if push came to shove.

      I also allow in the first paragraph of my little dissertation on the basic roadmap for creation as laid out in Genesis allowing for the scientific perspective so long as we allow interpretation beyond the literal words.  Which interpretation may very well cover the progression of events  from a uniquely Terran perspective.  So your 'reach' for atmospherics accounting for day four is perfectly acceptable from my perspective...

      I am the neo-con nightmare, I am a liberal with the facts.

      by bhfrik on Sun Jan 05, 2014 at 07:26:57 PM PST

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      •  And according to Herman Melville (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Batya the Toon, Navy Vet Terp

        and presumably for centuries before him, whales are fish. Yet if you compare a fish skeleton to a human skeleton, the whale's is more like the human.

        Science allows us to learn more about the natural world.

        In the beginning of human history, religion and science were the same thing - attempts to make sense of a random and dangerous place, and our place within it. Sometimes it was seen as a hierarchy, sometimes as a coherent whole, as in animist religions.

        Science was already well developed in many ancient cultures, observing and measuring the movements of the planets, and using knowledge to get food and other necessary things.

        It should never be an either/or.

        Being attentive to the needs of others might not be the point of life, but it is the work of life. It can be ... almost impossibly difficult. But it is not something we give. It is what we get in exchange for having to die. - Jonathan Safran Foer

        by ramara on Sun Jan 05, 2014 at 07:46:10 PM PST

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      •  Well, MY hypothetical crazy-ass righty uncle (0+ / 0-)

        would probably object to even bringing up the KJV or any other goyish translation of the Torah, but your point stands: those who insist on literalism, or on any other single interpretation of the text, are not going to be convinced by reasonable arguments against it.

    •  Day 3 and Day 4 (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Batya the Toon

      If you keep listening to Haydn's Creation I copied and pasted from You Tube below, after Haydn's music seems to follow Rashi by being all chaos and formless until "And there was light.," Haydn proceeds onward in Genesis 1 with musical paintings of each day's events.  For day 3 he paints a meadow and a forest - you can close your eyes and picture the beautiful field and woods.  Then comes the sunrise - really nice and under a minute - starting softly and repeating the same theme with increased majesty and volume as the sun comes up in full view - later composers would adopt the same convention , e.g. Ferde Grofe in Grand Canyon Suite.  But after the meadow and the forest, the musical sunrise is really out of place.  There is no better illustration of the textual problem than this part of the oratorio.

      "Corporations exist not for themselves, but for the people." Ida Tarbell 1908.

      by Navy Vet Terp on Tue Jan 07, 2014 at 02:23:32 PM PST

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