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Featured Were biblical humans less violent than modern humans?

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by Vaderecta, Jan 3, 2019.

  1. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Subway Stalinist
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    On a per capita basis, we're much, much less violent than societies of the past.

    I'd have to dig to find it again, but there's a Stephen Pinker lecture from a few years ago (from when "the past century" still included WWI) where summarized some of his book Better Angels of our Nature and made the case that in the past century, on average, people were less likely to die by violence than in any previous century... all despite WWI, WWII, many smaller wars, the Holocaust, the Rwandan Genocide, the Armenian Genocide, etc.
     
  2. ChristineM

    ChristineM "Be strong" I whispered to my coffee.
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    I think that overall we are more aware of human worth and suffering and so less violent than 2000(ish) years ago.
    But we have much more efficient ways of presenting the violent streak that remains.
     
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  3. Jollybear

    Jollybear Hey

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    I think the less challenged humans are, the less violence and crime there is.

    I also think thats unfortanate too because i think people should do right irregardless of having more challenges within a society.
     
  4. Axe Elf

    Axe Elf Prophet

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    I don't have to google basic concepts like God hating.

    Then I shouldn't have to educate you as to how I know that God hates.

    What else would I be full of?

    Stop accusing me of stuff and I'll stop defending myself.
     
  5. Thief

    Thief Rogue Theologian

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    fresh out of the garden.....Cain killed Abel

    probably with a rock
     
    #25 Thief, Jan 4, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2019
  6. BilliardsBall

    BilliardsBall Veteran Member

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    People then and now have a common marker, sin, which means "moral imperfection". IMHO, this moral imperfection precludes us from utopia unless we are transformed by Jesus's death and resurrection.
     
  7. Vee

    Vee Well-Known Member
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    Human nature hasn't changed that much. Violence might come naturally to some people, but I believe it is mostly about the environment surrounding them. People who are exposed to violence see it as natural and might become violent themselves. All it takes is a trigger or some peer pressure.
    In Bible times there were a lot less people on the earth than today, and events weren't known worldwide in a few seconds like today. Their battles were man to man, with a sword or some other rudimentary weapon. Today in order to kill thousands of people all it takes is a few bombs and those doing the killing don't even have to come close to the victims and look their opponent in the eyes when they kill.
    I don't think people today are more or less violent than in the past. However, today we have weapons that cause damage in a much greater scale than before. As a society we are probably in more danger than ever if we think about it that way.
     
  8. Ancient Soul

    Ancient Soul The Spiritual Universe

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    Not so fast.

    Your original thread headline and opening statement only stated "violent", now you jump to "killing".

    So I'm sticking to my original statement on "violence", it all depends upon where one lives.

    As to "killing", well, I suppose that also depends upon where one lives.

    Like anywhere in the world?
     
  9. Vaderecta

    Vaderecta Active Member

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    [​IMG]

    This is one picture of ancient times. Pictures are said to be worth a bit more then words. Humans were very violent in the past. Much more violent then you could probably even imagine. (The bible goes into detail a few times though)

    Over time the people have become more and more civilized. As Penguin mentioned even if you count the last two world wars the modern violence we face now pales in comparison to those of the ancients. And with luck the trend will continue. It wasn't that long ago that if you disagreed with someone you would ask for a duel yet now you can just trade words on a worldwide connected internet.
     
  10. TheresOnlyNow

    TheresOnlyNow The Mind Is Everything. U R What U Think

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    Likely more violent. The human animal is the only species capable of manifesting what is termed, "evil", in this world. And being we're biologically classified as animals, even part descendant of ape DNA, we're also the most violent, unconscionable "animal" on the planet. And, we're parasites.

    But God loves us.
    Go figure.
     
  11. Salvador

    Salvador RF's Swedenborgian

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    Ancient Jewish tribal members committed less rape than the overall world's population today, cause back in Biblical times, if a Jewish man were caught raping a Jewish woman, the rapist had to pay his rape victim's father 50 shekels and the rapist also may have been legally compelled to marry his rape victim. No doubt, these stiff penalties were a powerful deterrent against rape.

    [​IMG]
     
    #31 Salvador, Jan 4, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2019
  12. 74x12

    74x12 Well-Known Member

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    Well ... I think the outlook you're giving here is a bit naive. What we have right now is a bubble; it seems all cozy but it can burst any time. And then the world could see violence like it has never seen before.

    The fact that modern people are so "soft" and unused to violence will make it even worse for them to see their friends and families butchered.

    People in their normalcy bias tend to forget all about the fact that various countries have literally thousands of nuclear weapons waiting for the right war to set them off. Then there are other weapons of mass destruction such as chemical and biological weapons capable of (probably) the destruction of 99% of the world's population.

    There has not been a real serious war between state of the art militaries since world war 2. There has been a lot of insurgency situations like Vietnam, Afghanistan (both the Soviets and now the USA). As well as a lot of bloody wars between 3rd world countries and civil wars. But, meanwhile first world militaries such as that of the USA or Russia have become more and more deadly. Other countries such as China are not to be considered far behind.
     
  13. blü 2

    blü 2 Well-Known Member
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    According to Steven Pinker in his book The Better Angels of our Nature human society has never been less violent.

    According to the bible, acquisition of entire regions by unprovoked invasive war, massacres of entire city population, mass rape, enslavement and slave owning and trading, human sacrifice, seizure of animals and goods, belittlement of women, are all fine as long as God's on your side.

    Since to the best of my understanding none of those things is usual in my community, I'm inclined to side with Pinker.
     
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  14. Thief

    Thief Rogue Theologian

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    and the young woman is then victimized by that resolve

    for the rest of her life
     
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  15. Vaderecta

    Vaderecta Active Member

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    Most people think the world is more violent and spiraling into chaos even though that is not true. I have no idea why this idea is so controversial. People are getting less violent since as far as we can measure. Humans should be happy about this.
     
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  16. Twilight Hue

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

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    I would say instinctively we are as violent and destructive as we always were throughout our history. That said because of our brain capacity we've evolved enough to where we are more capable now than in the past of controlling violence through the use of violence due to our advances in technology and capabilities. I tend to think it's basically a natural evolutionary Fail-Safe that had developed over time to make sure we survive as a species and not end up destroying ourselves at some point. I supposed to latter could be contestable.

    Something that wasn't as developed when Heanderthals and Hobbits went extinct I think.
     
  17. 74x12

    74x12 Well-Known Member

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    How do you know it continues like this? One "good" war and it's all over. At that point you can chuck your statistics out the window.
     
  18. Looncall

    Looncall Well-Known Member

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    But why bother with the Bible? It's pretty clearly propaganda written by a people who were conquered by everyone who happened by (old testament) or an obvious scam (new testament).
     
  19. Jumi

    Jumi Well-Known Member

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    It's getting less violent. Age old genocides weren't even worth mentioning, the cultures and sometimes peoples just disappeared.
     
  20. Vaderecta

    Vaderecta Active Member

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    People have always reasoned this way. You think its great now but next year there could be a famine for our brothers to the north and they will come here to take what they will.

    It seems though that all humans are becoming more civilized and less violent. Granted the weapons we have today are beyond imagination of the past so I take your point.
     
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