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Snake oil

Reader comment on item: Musing on History
in response to reader comment: bleak?

Submitted by Michael S (United States), Dec 8, 2015 at 19:35

Hi, Moh. You said,

"Obviously the operative word here is 'was' otherwise you'd have a very bleak appreciation of people. So you can't extrapolate that onto all people at all times."

I can extrapolate (from "zero good" to "zero good", if you can call that extrapollation) -- should, in fact, because nothing has happened in our basic make-up over the past several thousand years, to indicate that any change to the better has occurred.

You went on,

"I meant fully enlightened, suffering from no illusions, complete clarity of mind, able to perceive the truth in everything, not affected by a lower nature etc."

"Fully enlightened"? Ah, I know a snake oil salesman who was peddling that stuff. He said,

Gen. 3:
[4] And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
[5] For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
[6] And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
[7] And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.

The above is, I believe, the "enlightenment" you've been talking about. It doesn't bring about good things. The Bible has a better idea:

Proverbs 1:
[7] The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.

and

Qoh. 12:
[13] Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.
[14] For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.

and

1 Cor. 1:
[22] For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:
[23] But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness;
[24] But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.
[25] Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

If you fail to see the point of this, don't be alarmed. What is missing, is the proper mindset. I see God in control of all things, showing up any "enligntenment" I might conjure up for what it is: pathetic, at its utmost attainment. Wisdom is far above "enlightenment". The latter is, as the snake oil salesman said, "becoming like God, knowing good and evil". Wisdom involves knowing God, and obeying Him. Adam had a relationship with God; he knew Him; but he disobeyed Him in pursuit of "enlightenment". As a result, he was cut off from the very relationship with God that he needed for life.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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