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Featured Forget a second about spiritual...

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by Segev Moran, Oct 20, 2021.

  1. Segev Moran

    Segev Moran Well-Known Member

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    Regardless of the question of god or not, the Judaism, contains in it (as many other religions) many amazing insights about humanity and life.

    The "ten commandments" (which are not really commandments, but thumb rules, and there are only 9 rules and one statement).

    Looking at the history of humans, It is no doubt, that we are generations far away from living by these rules, let alone their more advanced meanings.

    What is your take on them?
    Why?
    (Please don't use things like, because God said so or that its a spiritual thing and the likes)

    To me,
    These are proven to be the most basic required rules to thrive as a society.
    So far, such societies, were... well... almost none, and even if such societies existed, they were quickly overrun by societies that didn't (or don't) really care about such rules.
    When it comes to these rules more "advanced" meanings, we are even farther than where we are from the basics.
     
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  2. JustGeorge

    JustGeorge Retired Ruler
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    I'm not sure what you mean by 'advanced' meanings. Taken at face value, some hold value, some don't(to me).

    I totally agree with not stealing, cheating on one's spouse and not killing.

    The not having any other gods before this particular god doesn't seem important to me. Perhaps it was important to the group of people the commandments were directed at, but I don't feel it personally influential.

    After being married to someone who was both neglected and severely abused by their parents, I feel honoring parents is something to be desired, but in some cases should be abandoned as a person's parents can be dangerous.

    Not taking a god's name in vain that I don't worship seems totally irrelevant, and the thing against making images seems detrimental, as images aid many people in various faiths in their worship. To me, keeping the sabbath also isn't relevant.
     
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  3. Twilight Hue

    Twilight Hue Twilight, not bright nor dark, good nor bad.

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    It's only something important to adherents.

    I doubt the rest really cares about the ten commandants all that much.
     
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  4. Nakosis

    Nakosis Time Efficient Lollygagger
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    Well, they worked well enough to keep the Jews around I suppose.
     
  5. epronovost

    epronovost Well-Known Member

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    I don't believe that a society needs to be monotheistic and possess only one religious faith. I don't think a society needs to respect the Sabbath. I don't think that a prohibition on all form of visual art be it sculpture, painting, drawing or others is a good idea. I believe this is the antithesis of civilization and culture. I don't believe that prohibition on envy is either possible nor desirable. I don't believe parents deserve special honor; honor they should gain through their accomplishments not through their status of parents. I don't believe adultery should be considered a crime though it's certainly "anti-social" and fornication shouldn't be considered criminal or even especially wrong either. Most of the 10 Commandments are crap or so basic it requires little forethought.
     
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  6. lewisnotmiller

    lewisnotmiller Grand Hat
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    I'm not sure about the amazing part, but there are insights, yes.

    I wouldn't hold those up as an example of insight, particularly.
    Is there something about them you feel is particularly insightful?
    You suggested that they were the basic rules to thrive as a society, but that appears an overstatement.
    Some of them are of value, I'm not questioning that, but equally some appear uninformative in terms of the health of a society (unless working from an assumed position that only a monotheistic society of God-believers can be 'healthy', but I think your intent here is to work from a more neutral view, right?).
     
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  7. PearlSeeker

    PearlSeeker Well-Known Member

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    In thread Yoga Sutras and Bible Parallels I wrote:

    I've noticed some interesting similarities in chapter Ashtanga Yoga. Five yamas (ethical don'ts) are similar to five of ten commandments that concern all fellow humans (6.-10.).

    Nonviolence. - - > You shall not murder.
    Truthfulness. - - > You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
    Not stealing. - - > You shall not steal.
    Chastity. - - > You shall not commit adultery.
    Non-possessiveness - - > You shall not covet your neighbor’s house, nor his wife, his man-servant, his maid-servant, nor his ox, nor his a**, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.

    We can also notice a difference. Yamas are more general while commandments are more specific.
     
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  8. mangalavara

    mangalavara Verified Account ✔
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    This is going to be a long post, so please forgive me. Nobody has to read it due to the length.

    How exactly the Ten Commandments found in the list in Exodus 20 are enumerated varies according to religion. Judaism enumerates them one way whereas Eastern Orthodox Christianity and Roman Catholicism have their own ways of enumeration. As someone who gives more credibility to Judaism rather than any other religion when it comes to the Hebrew Bible, I will enumerate the Ten Commandments the way Jewish people do.

    Allow me to briefly give my opinion on each commandment from a Hindu perspective.

    'I am the LORD thy God, who brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage' (Ex. 20.2, JPS 1917).​

    From what I recall, the Jewish interpretation is that there is an implicit commandment in this first statement, namely, to believe in God. From my perspective, at least, it means to believe in the god of Israel in particular. In my opinion, belief in the god of Israel is probably more relevant to Jews as well as non-Jews who are inclined toward a Judaic worldview than it is to any other people. For that reason, I don't think the first statement/commandment is universal.

    'Thou shalt have no other gods before Me. Thou shalt not make unto thee a graven image, nor any manner of likeness, of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; thou shalt not bow down unto them, nor serve them; for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate Me; and showing mercy unto the thousandth generation of them that love Me and keep My commandments' (Ex. 20.2-5).​

    Considering that the first statement/commandment is really something pertaining to Jews, this second commandment, which prohibits what Abrahamists call 'idolatry,' also pertains to them. This is evidenced by the god of Israel speaking to Jews in particular and calling himself a jealous god. Like the first commandment, this one is therefore not universal. As a Hindu, I have found the adoration of mūrtis or 'forms' useful and beneficial.

    'Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh His name in vain' (Ex. 20.6).​

    Knowing that the god of Israel is not my god, I could, theoretically speaking, misuse his name. However, I show him the same respect that I show the deities of other cultures, which includes not insulting or misusing their names. So far, this is the first of the Ten Commandments that I am okay with as a Hindu, but I disagree with the idea that the god of Israel is my god.

    'Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work; but the seventh day is a sabbath unto the LORD thy God, in it thou shalt not do any manner of work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, nor thy man-servant, nor thy maid-servant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates; for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested on the seventh day; wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it' (Ex. 20.7-10).​

    This is yet another commandment that pertains to the Jews. From my perspective, it is rooted in the creation story found in the first two or three chapters of Genesis. Considering that the Genesis creation story is part of the Jewish tradition, I do not see how observing the Sabbath or Shabbat is relevant to me as a Hindu. Also, there are already days that I observe on the Hindu Calendar that are meaningful to me as a Hindu. Further, studies show that having more than one day off from work every week is more beneficial to workers.

    'Honour thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee' (Ex. 20.11).​

    Yet another commandment that pertains to Jews. I think it pertains to them because of the promise associated with it: that they may live long lives on the particular land that the god of Israel gives them. However, if to honor means to respect, I have no problem with respecting my parents. As a Hindu, I intuit that respecting my parents is dharmic, and there is nothing higher than Dharma according to the Vedas.

    'Thou shalt not murder' (Ex. 20.12).​

    Agreed. This is compatible with the virtue of ahiṃsā or 'non-injury.'

    'Thou shalt not commit adultery' (Ex. 20.12).​

    Agreed. This is compatible with the virtue of brahmacarya or 'chastity.'

    'Thou shalt not steal' (Ex. 20.12).​

    Agreed. This is compatible with the virtue of asteya or 'non-stealing.'

    'You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor' (Ex. 20.12).​

    Agreed. This is compatible with the virtue of satya or 'truth.'

    'Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house; thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his man-servant, nor his maid-servant, nor his ox, nor his ***, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's' (Ex. 20.13).​

    Agreed. This is also compatible with satya, interestingly, and obviously with dama or 'self-restraint' or 'firmness of mind.'

    All in all, as a Hindu, I think the moral spirit behind commandments 5 to 10 (according to the Jewish enumeration) are natural and conducive to order in family and wider society all over the world. The first four commandments, to the letter, pertain to Jews. Non-Jews who have a Judaic worldview will find the first three if not all first four relevant. Finally, as a Hindu, I prefer a list of virtues over a list of commandments.

    Works Cited​

    JPS 1917 Jewish Bible. Jewish Publication Society, 1917. Mechon Mamre, www.mechon-mamre.org/p/pt/pt0.htm.
     
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  9. A Vestigial Mote

    A Vestigial Mote Well-Known Member

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    The first 3 (or 4 depending on the list) of the 10 commandments have nothing to do with how each human should treat their fellow humans. Nothing at all. That is profound, in my opinion, and points to their great and insurmountable failure to be worth much of anything at all. To (right out of the gate and to the tune of at least 30%!!!!) start blabbing about rules surrounding beings and realms one cannot even interact with or even know the reality of? Just horrid. May as well have started out telling people not to anger Bigfoot. Seriously... that's how worthwhile the first few commandments are.

    As others have stated, honoring your father and mother sounds nice and idealistic, but some people get stuck with really crummy parents. And I am not just talking about parents who make them do all the chores and homework before they can play with their friends... I'm talking the kind of parents who lock them in a cabinet to sleep at night, put cigarettes out on their skin and beat them to within an inch of their life, or to death. There ARE those kinds of parents... and a blanket statement like "honor your mother and father" is just plain naïve.

    Murder, thievery, adultery and lying are probably good things to try and keep some kind of rules surrounding - adultery less so, obviously, just as is the case now. The most you see in terms of legal consequences for adultery (in most places, I should add) are to have to forgo some of your ability to demand things over a break up and split of possessions.

    "Coveting" however? Trying to put rules on that is akin to convicting for thought crime. That's not something I would abide by. People have a basic right over their own thoughts, and to attempt to deny them that is strange... and also naïve as well I would say. I am sure this list was meant to be a list of what could be considered punishable offenses. I mean... people certainly thought these were the things God would punish you for undertaking, right? At least at some undetermined point in the future - possibly after you die or something, right? The moment thinking is a punishable offense is the moment a society or culture has abandoned reason. And so if God punishes for thoughts... well... then I feel He is unreasonable.
     
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  10. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

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    Jews don't just go by 10 commandments. We have 613. Yes, it is the Torah that has held the Jewish people together down through time.
     
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  11. PearlSeeker

    PearlSeeker Well-Known Member

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    Morally there are good deeds, words and also thoughts. Moral rules are not the same as legal system/consequences.
     
  12. Segev Moran

    Segev Moran Well-Known Member

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    Each word in Hebrew have more meaning than the basic word.
    These are also a part of the text, although most translations don't take it into account as they translate the "loose" meaning.
    Yes. Most people tend to only accept the ideas that suits their point of view :)
    These are called, "Person to his friend" rules.
    Actually, Its a very important one. Most atheist agree with it (without even knowing :))
    The verse is:
    לֹא יִהְיֶה לְךָ אֱלֹהִים אֲחֵרִים עַל פָּנָי, לֹא תַעֲשֶׂה לְךָ פֶסֶל וְכָל תְּמוּנָה אֲשֶׁר בַּשָּׁמַיִם מִמַּעַל וַאֲשֶׁר בָּאָרֶץ מִתָּחַת וַאֲשֶׁר בַּמַּיִם מִתַּחַת לָאָרֶץ. לֹא תִשְׁתַּחֲוֶה לָהֶם וְלֹא תָעָבְדֵם, כִּי אָנֹכִי ה' אֱלֹהֶיךָ אֵל קַנָּא, פֹּקֵד עֲוֹן אָבֹת עַל בָּנִים עַל שִׁלֵּשִׁים וְעַל רִבֵּעִים לְשׂנְאָי, וְעֹשֶׂה חֶסֶד לַאֲלָפִים לְאֹהֲבַי וּלְשֹׁמְרֵי מִצְוֹתָי.

    לֹא יִהְיֶה לְךָ אֱלֹהִים אֲחֵרִים עַל פָּנָי:

    This means "You will not have any god other than me". This is not a rule, rather a statement.
    Put a side for a second what you think the meaning of the word "god" is. What's important in this verse is the rest :)
    I think this is the only part of this rule you might not agree, even though there is no real need for you to accept it as long as you accept the rest of it.

    לֹא תַעֲשֶׂה לְךָ פֶסֶל וְכָל תְּמוּנָה אֲשֶׁר בַּשָּׁמַיִם מִמַּעַל וַאֲשֶׁר בָּאָרֶץ מִתָּחַת וַאֲשֶׁר בַּמַּיִם מִתַּחַת לָאָרֶץ

    This means: "You should not believe any material or idea based on them have any power to manipulate realty".
    Meaning, don't think a statue, or someone, or an image or thought of someone have any "force" that can give you any value.
    (This rule is what makes the idea of a cross so weird to the Jewish teachings, it is a clear "violation" of this rule.)

    לֹא תִשְׁתַּחֲוֶה לָהֶם וְלֹא תָעָבְדֵם

    Do not "bow" to them or work for them (symbols, pictures, statues, stars, or anything natural or artificial).
    Astrology for example, is considered a "violation" of this rule.

    כִּי אָנֹכִי ה' אֱלֹהֶיךָ אֵל קַנָּא, פֹּקֵד עֲוֹן אָבֹת עַל בָּנִים עַל שִׁלֵּשִׁים וְעַל רִבֵּעִים לְשׂנְאָי, וְעֹשֶׂה חֶסֶד לַאֲלָפִים לְאֹהֲבַי וּלְשֹׁמְרֵי מִצְוֹתָי.

    This is a bit tricky, but in a nut shell it means:

    כִּי אָנֹכִי ה' אֱלֹהֶיךָ אֵל קַנָּא
    I am you God. I am strict with these rules.

    פֹּקֵד עֲוֹן אָבֹת עַל בָּנִים
    I who commands "fathers" wrongs on their "sons" (which is something proven to be correct in both social and biological sense).

    שִׁלֵּשִׁים וְעַל רִבֵּעִים לְשׂנְאָי, וְעֹשֶׂה חֶסֶד לַאֲלָפִים לְאֹהֲבַי וּלְשֹׁמְרֵי מִצְוֹתָי
    This basically means, that "wrong doings" are less to affect humans than "right doing".
    It means that good deed's impact on humans have much more value than bad ones.
    Actually, it doesn't mean "respect" in the sense you understand today.
    The word "כבד" mean to have value or "weigh" (importance).

    It actually means that you need to understand the value and impact of your parents if you want to be able to live long life.
    It is a well known thing in psychology, that forgiving your parents (as hard as it can be), is the only true way to "cure" your self of their impact.
    We can see this many times, that no matter how harmful and abusive parents sometimes are, the children still love and respect them (not because their religious, rather this is how we evolved to behave).

    פֹּקֵד עֲוֹן אָבֹת עַל בָּנִים
    This part (from what I detailed above), is exactly speaking of abusive parents.
    It means that all the wrong doings of your parents, are "paid for" by their children. It seems harsh, but its an evolutionary "law" we today know as a fact.
    Once you "respect" (give weigh) and understand this rule, you can "heal" yourself from this wrong doings (An abused child can become an abuser or the exact opposite for example).
    Really?
    This rule is one of the most "neglected" rule humans neglect.
    It literally means that you shouldn't tell people you are doing something in the name of God without an actual proof.
    I think this is something most atheists (especially the famous ones like Dawkins, Harris and others) try to battle when ever they get the stage.
    Yes. That's exactly the problem.
    People give stuff (from all religions or beliefs, btw) much more value than other humans for example.
    It doesn't mean you should not use things to find comfort, rather don't think things have more value than they really are.
    The word Sabbath, means cease. The Jews describe it as a seventh day, but many religion adopted the idea and simply changed the day.
    So far, for the vast majority of people I met, the idea of sabbath (or weekly resting day) is practiced.
    I Assume you also appreciate and value the one day rest you have in a week. (If you don't have one, I really recommend having one :))
    This rule not only says you should remember this rest day, but you should guard it and work hard to have it.
    Not only that, it also states you should provide this rest for any living being you are responsible for (including animals and workers).
    The word "קדש" means "Make unique".
    It means you should make this day a unique day (it has got no literal spiritual meaning).
     
  13. Segev Moran

    Segev Moran Well-Known Member

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    Lol.. and Christians and Muslims and most people in the world :)
     
  14. Segev Moran

    Segev Moran Well-Known Member

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    These rules have nothing religious in them :)
    Not even the Idea? A one weekly resting day?
    Where does it say that? You are allowed to make art, just advised not to believe they have "super powers" :)
    Today, it is very twisted and misinterpreted, and even with that, only very few people actually follow this rule.
    Where does it say you shouldn't be envious?
    How does a parent gain respect?
    Where does it say it is considered a crime? (you are mixing it up with later rules :) that are a whole different issue)
    Obviously it should not be considered criminal, but do you think this rule leads to a better society or not?
    Can you show me one rule you live by today that did not derive from them?
     
  15. Segev Moran

    Segev Moran Well-Known Member

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    Where do you see a rule stating you should believe in god?
    The verse clearly states that no matter what you might think as Devine or godly.. is actually not :)
    The question of believing or not believing in god is not part of these rules.
     
  16. danieldemol

    danieldemol Well-Known Member
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    Why are they called commandments if they are only intended as guiding principles? That seems like a miscommunication.

    Could you be a bit more specific? An example would help to illustrate here.

    The ten commandments could do with some weight loss, as others have mentioned some of them are arbitrary silliness.

    Do you mean like the way the Jews were overrun by the Romans who didn't care about commandments such as (paraphrasing) "You shall have no other gods before me"?

    Again an example would help.

    In my opinion.
     
  17. PearlSeeker

    PearlSeeker Well-Known Member

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    As others have pointed out the first set of commandments (belief in one God, no graven images of God, not taking His name in vain, sabbath) are aimed at people of Israel and their exclusive covenant with God.

    Respecting parents

    It's ok but it should be mutual. From whom should children learn to respect?

    No murder, stealing, adultery, false witness

    These are more universal. All ok but there is still something missing - the inner and the positive aspect. If you don't murder it doesn't mean you don't hate inside. Christianity supplemented this with primacy of love, purity of heart and golden rule - this is also more basic because it covers all good living not just a few grave/extreme transgressions.

    Respecting marriage and private property

    This is ok. Marriage is in critical condition nowadays. It should be more respected. Respecting private property should be supplemented by mercy/charity/solidarity - covered also elsewhere in Torah.
     
  18. lewisnotmiller

    lewisnotmiller Grand Hat
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    In the ten commandments?
    Okay, I'm missing something here...can you post or link to a version you feel is a fair representation?
     
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  19. Wandering Monk

    Wandering Monk Well-Known Member

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    Wait. The only place in the Torah where they are explicitly called Ten Commandments is NOT in Exodus 20, but in Exodus 34. Notice how God says that he would write the same words on the second set of tablets that he wrote on the first, but that these commandment are nothing like the ones in Exodus 20, the presumptive first tablets:

    34:1The Lord said to Moses, “Cut for yourself two tablets of stone like the first, and I will write on the tablets the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke. 2 Be ready by the morning, and come up in the morning to Mount Sinai, and present yourself there to me on the top of the mountain. 3 No one shall come up with you, and let no one be seen throughout all the mountain. Let no flocks or herds graze opposite that mountain.” 4 So Moses cut two tablets of stone like the first. And he rose early in the morning and went up on Mount Sinai, as the Lord had commanded him, and took in his hand two tablets of stone. 5 The Lord descended in the cloud and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the Lord. 6 The Lord passed before him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, 7 keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children’s children, to the third and the fourth generation.” 8 And Moses quickly bowed his head toward the earth and worshiped. 9 And he said, “If now I have found favor in your sight, O Lord, please let the Lord go in the midst of us, for it is a stiff-necked people, and pardon our iniquity and our sin, and take us for your inheritance.”
    10 And he said, “Behold, I am making a covenant. Before all your people I will do marvels, such as have not been created in all the earth or in any nation. And all the people among whom you are shall see the work of the Lord, for it is an awesome thing that I will do with you.
    11 “Observe what I command you this day. Behold, I will drive out before you the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. 12 Take care, lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land to which you go, lest it become a snare in your midst. 13 You shall tear down their altars and break their pillars and cut down their Asherim 14 (for you shall worship no other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God), 15 lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, and when they whore after their gods and sacrifice to their gods and you are invited, you eat of his sacrifice, 16 and you take of their daughters for your sons, and their daughters whore after their gods and make your sons whore after their gods.
    17 “You shall not make for yourself any gods of cast metal.
    18 “You shall keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread, as I commanded you, at the time appointed in the month Abib, for in the month Abib you came out from Egypt. 19 All that open the womb are mine, all your male livestock, the firstborn of cow and sheep. 20 The firstborn of a donkey you shall redeem with a lamb, or if you will not redeem it you shall break its neck. All the firstborn of your sons you shall redeem. And none shall appear before me empty-handed.
    21 “Six days you shall work, but on the seventh day you shall rest. In plowing time and in harvest you shall rest. 22 You shall observe the Feast of Weeks, the firstfruits of wheat harvest, and the Feast of Ingathering at the year’s end. 23 Three times in the year shall all your males appear before the Lord God, the God of Israel. 24 For I will cast out nations before you and enlarge your borders; no one shall covet your land, when you go up to appear before the Lord your God three times in the year.
    25 “You shall not offer the blood of my sacrifice with anything leavened, or let the sacrifice of the Feast of the Passover remain until the morning. 26 The best of the firstfruits of your ground you shall bring to the house of the Lord your God. You shall not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk.”
    27 And the Lord said to Moses, “Write these words, for in accordance with these words I have made a covenant with you and with Israel.” 28 So he was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights. He neither ate bread nor drank water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant, the Ten Commandments.
     
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  20. epronovost

    epronovost Well-Known Member

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    Three of those commandments are devotional toward a deity.

    It's a Holy day not a day of actual rest; not working doesn't mean resting. You are supposed to pray and make devotional work during that day.

    Thou shalt not make unto thee a graven image, nor any manner of likeness, of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.

    Basically don't make any images of any likeness of anything in the world or ''above'' (so no imaginary things either). You can't venerate them either, but you can't make them to. So no visual art at all, especially not devotional art. The Sistine Chapel is an abomination according to this commandment yet, it's probably one of the greatest piece of art in humanity's history.

    Thys shall not covet (then proceeds to name all things of value). Coveting is an envious thought.

    By being good parents

    Not really no. Adultery and fornication have little impact on society.

    No slavery; men and women are equal; no employment discrimination based on race, sex, sexual orientation and identity, religion (or lack of); no raping; no assault on individuals (it says to not kill not to not hurt). Note that the 10 commandments are also basically copied from far older laws themselves from Ancient Sumer and Babylon like the Hammurabi Code or the Ur Codex. Hell, the Egyptians had one possibly has early as 6000 BC though no formal code of laws have yet been found by archeologist though traces that there must have been one in the Early dynastic era and forward (and in use until the conquest by Rome) have been found thanks to jurisprudence documents.
     
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