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Turning the Other Cheek


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#1 SquigPie

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 17:47

There's always been disagreements within Christianity, "...which means what...", "...is this to be taken literally...", stuff like that.
There's alot of passages in the Bible I sometimes have a hard time relating to, but there's one that's always bothered me:

Jesus Christ said:

You have heard that it was said, 'An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.' But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.
—Matthew 5:38-42, NIV


Now, I find that passage odd, it tells us to bow down and kiss the ass of the guys who torment us, something I've always had a problem with.
That is, until I found a different interpretation.
I got it from a comment on TvTropes and a Wikipedia article, so it may or may not be true.
You see:
Back in the time where Jesus lived, you didn't strike someone with your left hand. It was considered unclean, so you always hit people with your right hand.

Jesus Christ said:

“You have heard that it was said, 'An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.' But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.”

Striking with the back of your hand was the stuff you did to slaves and servants, people you didn't consider worthy of you. If you strike someone with your palm or hit them, that was seen as a challenge, something you did to equals.
So if someone hit you with the back of their hand, treating you like a slave, a servant, you don't hit them back, you'd just turn the other cheek.
They wanted to hit you again? Had to use their palm or fist,
They either had to treat you with respect. Or leave you alone.
The same can be said of the other passages,

Jesus Christ said:

“ And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well.”

By giving someone your both your coat and tunic, when he asked for the tunic, would leave you stark naked. But back then, being naked publicly wasn't considered shameful to the naked guy, it was considered shameful to the viewer, by dropping your closes, you essentially flipped him off, like if the bully at school told you to give him your cake, you'd spit on it and hand it to him.

Jesus Christ said:

“If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles.”

Back then there was this hated law the Romans had started, it gave their soldiers the right to force a local, to run a mile to bring messages and the like. If they demanded the local ran more, they faced punishment, so someone forces you to run a mile? Flip him off and run two!

All in all, Jesus didn't tell us to be humble to our enslavers and bend over, he told us to be strong, to look them in the eye and say:“"I'm not gonna sink to your level and hit you back, but I demand you treat me as an equal, demand you respect me!"
to say:
“"I'm not willing to kill for my cause,
But I'm more than willing to die for it!"

EDIT: word to FSF transfer sucks!

Edited by SquigPie, 17 September 2010 - 17:54.

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As long as the dark foundation of our nature, grim in its all-encompassing egoism, mad in its drive to make that egoism into reality, to devour everything and to define everything by itself, as long as that foundation is visible, as long as this truly original sin exists within us, we have no business here and there is no logical answer to our existence.
Imagine a group of people who are all blind, deaf and slightly demented and suddenly someone in the crowd asks, "What are we to do?"... The only possible answer is, "Look for a cure". Until you are cured, there is nothing you can do.
And since you don't believe you are sick, there can be no cure.
- Vladimir Solovyov

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#2 GuardianTempest

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 23:56

[compliment here]

If only people knew that.
OC's and stuff
DeviantArt
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#3 SquigPie

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Posted 18 September 2010 - 20:04

I've made it my mission telling fellow Christians about this.

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As long as the dark foundation of our nature, grim in its all-encompassing egoism, mad in its drive to make that egoism into reality, to devour everything and to define everything by itself, as long as that foundation is visible, as long as this truly original sin exists within us, we have no business here and there is no logical answer to our existence.
Imagine a group of people who are all blind, deaf and slightly demented and suddenly someone in the crowd asks, "What are we to do?"... The only possible answer is, "Look for a cure". Until you are cured, there is nothing you can do.
And since you don't believe you are sick, there can be no cure.
- Vladimir Solovyov

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#4 Wizard

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Posted 18 September 2010 - 23:34

That is certainly an interesting set of facts there. I wouldn't mind knowing where you got them from. Do you have any references? I wouldn't want to comment any further without seeing some citations, although I do think that perhaps, there may be an element of truth to all of them.

#5 Chyros

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Posted 19 September 2010 - 00:07

I need some serious sources here, but the story is interesting to say the least. It does certainly cast an entertaining light about one of the most controversial Christian standards in the bible...
TN



Our Master has no need of money. But still he sits and counts it. As a meditation.
-The Book of Cataclysm


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#6 TheDR

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Posted 19 September 2010 - 00:32

It reminds me of the American Constitution and the controversy around the "Right to bear arms".

It could be very likely that something like this could of happened and it's just a modern mistranslation. However if this was proven to be mistranslation it could cause riffs in the whole ideas of what is it to be a Christian. One mistranslation means there could be other mistranslations and other people could read different things from different parts. I can't imagine the damage it would cause to the religion.
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#7 GuardianTempest

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Posted 19 September 2010 - 08:47

So....should we start proclaiming all over the net? Nah...
OC's and stuff
DeviantArt
*RWUAAARAAUGHRWAGH!!*
--------------------------
Posted Image
"I am an artist of daydreams. With just a little material, be it a picture, audio or a simple thought, it could fuel a derivative masterpiece."
And I also do Walfas Comics...when I feel like it.

#8 SquigPie

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 07:19

 Wizard, on 19 Sep 2010, 1:34, said:

That is certainly an interesting set of facts there. I wouldn't mind knowing where you got them from. Do you have any references? I wouldn't want to comment any further without seeing some citations, although I do think that perhaps, there may be an element of truth to all of them.


Wikipedia article

And after looking through the discussion page, (mostly composed of people talking about Gandhi and typos) I found a link to the original article.

Quote

As long as the dark foundation of our nature, grim in its all-encompassing egoism, mad in its drive to make that egoism into reality, to devour everything and to define everything by itself, as long as that foundation is visible, as long as this truly original sin exists within us, we have no business here and there is no logical answer to our existence.
Imagine a group of people who are all blind, deaf and slightly demented and suddenly someone in the crowd asks, "What are we to do?"... The only possible answer is, "Look for a cure". Until you are cured, there is nothing you can do.
And since you don't believe you are sick, there can be no cure.
- Vladimir Solovyov

Posted Image

#9 BeefJeRKy

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 08:18

It's pretty much the same thing in the arabic translation of the bible I have (this version has been translated from ancient Aramaic versions over thousands of years). And I'd certainly interpret it the way Squigpie mentioned it. IMO, the "problems" with Christianity stem mostly from losses in translation over the years as well as misinterpretation of sayings in the bible. There are less understood idioms in there that we can no longer relate to.
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#10 SquigPie

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 09:28

Much like the Ten Plagues and the Revelations, the Ten Plagues where symbols of the Egyptian gods (the frogs were symbol of an egyptian goddess for instance), so YHWH turning their own gods against them was essentially the writer mocking the egyptian religion.
Revelations is pretty much the same, except it's a satire of the Roman Empire.

Edited by SquigPie, 23 September 2010 - 09:28.

Quote

As long as the dark foundation of our nature, grim in its all-encompassing egoism, mad in its drive to make that egoism into reality, to devour everything and to define everything by itself, as long as that foundation is visible, as long as this truly original sin exists within us, we have no business here and there is no logical answer to our existence.
Imagine a group of people who are all blind, deaf and slightly demented and suddenly someone in the crowd asks, "What are we to do?"... The only possible answer is, "Look for a cure". Until you are cured, there is nothing you can do.
And since you don't believe you are sick, there can be no cure.
- Vladimir Solovyov

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#11 BeefJeRKy

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 10:28

Yes the Revelations were a secret revolution message by John while he was exiled to Cyprus at the time against the emperor Nero who obviously used Christianity as a scapegoat for the Roman Fire.
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