[ExI] Are literalists the only consistent members of a faith?/was Re: Deuteronomy Chapter 13

Stefano Vaj stefano.vaj at gmail.com
Thu Jun 11 15:00:44 UTC 2009

On Wed, Jun 10, 2009 at 6:36 PM, Dan<dan_ust at yahoo.com> wrote:
> I think you're defining the various adherents purely in terms of being literalists.  This is an identity problem that depends on how you delimit these terms.  I'm not sure that those who fall outside your limits are necessarily inconsistent or unserious.

What is unserious is affirming something to be the Word of God, and at
the same time interpreting it in a way which is not "honest", but
consciously or inconsciously aimed at minimising conflict with the
Zeitgeist, other independent beliefs, your personal and collective
interests, or the contemporary "political correctness"; and in any way
which be however influenced by any other concern than the
reconstruction of what the author originally meant and intended.

So, it is no so much non-literalist interpretations that are
inconsistent with the monotheistic tenets (e.g., nothing requires a
literal interpretation of what is obviously a metaphor, of the kind of
"behave like a fox when you must outsmart your enemies"), but
objective/evolutive interpretations as opposed to

Note that as far legal texts are concerned, the solution adopted may
well be the opposite. For instance, the Corpus Juris was utilised as a
basis to develop opinions and precedents regulating the Renaissance
life and economy without no concern whatsoever for its "philological"
meaning or original intent. The same is still been declaredly done by
most interpreters of the US constitution, by whom it is mostly fully
accepted that nothing similar to its current application was either
intended or even imagined by its drafters...

>They might simply have different views of what it means to be a Christian, Jew, or Muslim.

Sure. Everybody has a right to have implausible views of anything.
Nothing prevents me from believing that general relativity arises from
the work of Newton, but this is remains nevertheless factually wrong,
no matter how much propaganda I deploy to support my theory.

Additionally, alternative interpretations to the obvious,
crystal-clear meaning of embarassing legacy in most cases are not even
seriously attempted, unless with a very few subjects such as the
Genesis, etc.  What is embarassing is usually ignored, swept under the
carpet or dealt with on the basis of Doublethink.

Stefano Vaj

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