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Journal Journal: Nothing to see here. Move along

Quote from: Brambila on April 01, 2004, 05:21:13 pm


The Bible does not condemn abortion, at least nowhere that I have seen. It does condemn murder, however.

Although the bible doesn't directly condemn abortion (and it doesn't condone it either), we don't get our beliefs on abortion from there. We get it from early Church fathers:

You shall not procure abortion, nor destroy a newborn child"-Didache (circa. 70 AD)

" . . . Thou shalt not slay the child by procuring abortion; nor, again, shalt thou destroy it after it is born"- The Letter of Barnabas (74 AD)

"And near that place I saw another strait place . . . and there sat women. . . . And over against them many children who were born to them out of due time sat crying. And there came forth from them rays of fire and smote the women in the eyes. And these were the accursed who conceived and caused abortion"- Apocalypse of Peter (137 AD)

However, the bible does recognize that the fetus is loved by God equally to man, as the Jeremiah quote goes: "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you."

My point is, we don't need the Bible to tell us abortion is wrong, because everyone, regardless of faith, believes that murder is wrong. By invoking scripture to argue against abortion, the pro-life movement undermines their position - especially since the question of abortion isn't addressed in scripture. But even an atheist should recognize that killing an infant is wrong, and that all human beings have an inalienable right to life, and can never be property of another.

Quote from: Brambila on April 01, 2004, 05:21:13 pm


Catholics condemn unnatural birth control. And that condemnation is (IMHO, realizing that I'm opening a huge can of worms) based on bad theology, bad philosophy, and bad biology(*). Most other Christian sects do not address it, or explicitly allow it. The Bible does not condemn contraception, except in special circumstances in which the man is obligated to provide seed.

I can tell you don't like Humanae Vitae.

First of all, the Vatican formed a commission of Catholic medical experts and lay people to study the issue. They responded overwhelmingly that the Church should allow contraception. Pope Paul chose to dismiss their findings.

Second of all, HV uses as one of its foundational principles the insulting notion that marital intercourse is something the husband "gets from" the wife. That contraception causes a man to expect constant sex from his wife, which she will be "forced to" comply with, leading the man to "dominate" his wife and lose respect for her. As a married man, I know what an utter crock this line of thinking is. It is blissful ignorance of the fact that women have sexual needs and desires, and a rich sexual life is just as fulfilling for a woman as it is for a man. But, then, the Catholic church has always had a problem with female sexuality, and seem to dismiss the fact that it even exists. They also refuse to accept that sexual intercourse exists for any purpose other than conceiving children. The Song of Soloman clearly refutes this priciple, as does the Apostle Paul's insistence that husbands and wifes not deny themselves of one another:

"The wife's body does not belong to her alone, but also to her husband. In the same way, the husband's body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self control." - I Cor. 7:4-5

I doubt, given the context of the passage, that St. Paul's intent was for Christians to have as many children as possible. When you read the Bible as a whole, you understand that sexual love between a man and a woman is a holy thing unto itself, and a reflection of God's complete love for us. This concept is lost on the Vatican.

Finally, the real reason for HV is that previous Popes had condemned contraception, and Paul knew full well admitting fallacy in earlier Holy Fathers would undermine the infallacy dogma. I don't believe in the infallacy, so I have no reason to believe HV. Were I a Catholic, however, I would be forced to begrudgingly accept it (whereas most Catholics simply ignore it).

Quote from: Brambila on April 01, 2004, 05:21:13 pm

The story of Onan clearly condemns contraception.

Only if taken out of context, and only filtered through the erroneous presupposition that the sole purpose of sexual intercourse is to produce children. Onan, living under laws that don't apply to us, was commanded by Judah to produce heirs for his brother. Onan took advantage of the situation by getting the pleasures of sex, while refusing to do his duty. This is not a condemnation of contraception.

Quote from: Brambila on April 01, 2004, 05:21:13 pm

Once again, the bible doesn't address contraception very much... however, the early fathers do (whom, in the two oldest Christian religions, Catholicism and Orthodoy, are equal to the bible). I can give you sources again (Council of Nicaea, Hippolytus, Clement of Alexandria),

Much of the early church's teaching on contraception was based on incorrect biological/metaphysical assumptions about male seed. It was assumed that the male seed contained complete human life, which was wasted when contraception was used. Today, we know that not to be true.

Quote from: Brambila on April 01, 2004, 05:21:13 pm

but I want to go back to the bible. The bible defines sex as the UNION between a man and a woman to create life. It does NOT define sex as a pleasurable thing to do with no intention of having children.

Song of Solomon contains lots of sex, and no mention (that I know of) of conception or child birth. Now, I agree that ONE of the purposes of sex is to produce children, but another is to form a permanent, lifetime bond between a man and a woman, so that when childern ARE produced, they can grow up in a loving environment.

Quote from: Brambila on April 01, 2004, 05:21:13 pm

The Catholic Church (and most Christian churches) use NFP, or Natural Family Planning, for natural contraception. However, this contraception is only for times where if you have a child it would be damaging to your family, and only is reserved for marriage.

"Most Christian chruches" allow contraception. In fact, I am unaware of any Protestant denomination (although I'm sure there are a few) that don't allow it. Furthermore, the idea that one method for avoiding children is ok, while others are not, is inconsistent and illogical.

Quote from: Brambila on April 01, 2004, 05:21:13 pm


Tell me why the left-wing is necessarily atheist. *Without* resorting to bogus slippery-slopes.

I'm not saying the left-wing is atheist. However, most atheists vote left-wing, and the left wing accepts atheism as one of the many subjective truths, while the right wing does not believe in that.

I've got news for you: there are plenty of atheists to be found in the right-wing, mostly of the social-darwinist and radical right-libertarian variety. Not as many as in the left, but a vote for the right-wing is NOT a vote against atheism.

Journal Journal: So far, so good.

Ok, so far I have posted two comments. One got four "Funny" mods, the other got no mods. Why is my karma now "Bad"?? My first comment is still score 5, and the second has been karma-adjusted to 0, still with no mods.

Anyone care to explain?

Thanks much.

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