Commandment of Love - Unethical? (And a Request for Assistance)
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25-02-2011, 02:17 AM
RE: Commandment of Love - Unethical? (And a Request for Assistance)
(23-02-2011 09:20 PM)Lilith Pride Wrote:  The people who support this book say it's all about interpretation,

That is right. What they fail to say is that interpretation means to affect some kind of a change from it's original form. So this leaves us with a book that is absolutely perfect, BUT, you have to change the meanings a certain way. And everybody has contradicting meanings, BUT, they all are right.

Holy Shit!

When I find myself in times of trouble, Richard Dawkins comes to me, speaking words of reason, now I see, now I see.
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25-02-2011, 08:24 AM
RE: Commandment of Love - Unethical? (And a Request for Assistance)
The thing that gets me about the "interpretation" part is that it doesn't make sense. Not only for the reason No J. mentioned, but for this: this entire book, though written down by many people, was supposedly "inspired" (whatever that actually means) by one being. And now that we have it, the interpretation is supposed to be "guided" (another vague term in these circumstances) by one entity (the Holy Spirit).

Yet people who seek and ask for this guidance are led in multiple directions.

Yep, clear as mud.

Our brains deceive us on a regular basis, so we have to find ways to fight back.
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25-02-2011, 10:10 AM
RE: Commandment of Love - Unethical? (And a Request for Assistance)
Hey.

"Love one another." I still can't see the controversy.

I finally had the chance to view that video. I don't know what the hubub is about. I'm a student of love. What that man is talking about is pretty straight forward and, frankly, quite a lovely message. I honestly cannot penetrate what is meant by 'commanding love is an unethical request'.

All I've heard so far is that loving as a way to show that one is a follower of Christ and to bring glory to God is somehow self-serving. But all love is self-serving. Altruism is self-serving. Love and altruism are also the things that make human society possible. So what's the deal? More to the point, if people are living in a way in which they offer love to everyone, what does it matter what the motivation is?

Multiple people have asked for a clarification of what love is (aparently we're in a Foreigner song). Shouldn't the Biblical definition of love be referenced here? Or does Jesus never explain what it means to love?

Video man discusses agape. Does anyone know if this is indeed the sort of love that Christ is commanding or is it something other?

Hey, trillium13.

Quote:Personally, I think the whole "love one another" thing is pretty hypocritical, because I've heard more hate spew out of "Christians" than I would be able to measure.

I don't disagree that there are a number of people who, in the name of Christ, act like douchebags and spew hate. My question is does that really make a message of love hypocritical? As a Canadian, I grew up hating Americans. In the name of the USA, horrible things are done. Millions are killed, lands are stolen, resources are plundered, societies are destroyed and the list goes on. And I hated Americans for it. But when I got to know actual Americans, like the people, I realised that the people, by and large, were decent people, worthy of my love and friendship and that those others who did these aweful things would not be dissuaded by my hatred.
Quote:In the application of Satyagraha, I discovered, in the earliest stages, that pursuit of Truth did not admit of violence being inflicted on one's opponent, but that he must be weaned from error by patience and sympathy. For, what appears to be truth to the one may appear to be error to the other. And patience means self-suffering. So the doctrine came to mean vindication of Truth, not by infliction of suffering on the opponent but one's own self.
-Gandhi

Self-sacrifice is an integral component of agape; self-sacrificial love.

Anyhoo, all of this is to say that I think it's a disservice to denounce an entire people over the actions of a few. There are many good Americans who interpret what it means to be American positively, just as there are many good Christians who interpret what it means to be Christian positively and that the message, "love one another," is not invalidated by the people who disregard it.

Hey, TheSixthGlass.

Quote:Go further and think of a despicable person. Bigoted, selfish, harmful, abusive, violent, destructive. Do you love them? Even more doubtful. Should you love them? Why? Now, in this case you might pity them. You might still have empathy for them as a human being. You might still do things to help them. But to somehow offer them your utmost emotional state?

Because love is the breeding ground of healing.

Nothing occurs in a vacuum. These people are not broken. They can be as fully functioning and socialised as anyone. But if they're carrying pain or fear around with them, how will they heal? Hatred? Marginalisation? Being ignored? Or being loved?

Perfect and simple example. Steven Biko and Donald Woods. Woods was a South African journalist that was writing ill of the rights movement. Steven Biko, a leader, could have denounced him, but instead, he invited him in. He welcomed him and respected him and showed him love and Woods wound up writing in support of Biko and South African blacks. Woods was eventually declared a banned person for his new writing. Check out the Donald Woods biopic Cry Freedom.

But that's just one example among millions of the transformative power of love and I believe that it is that transformative power that Jesus was after; the ability to make the world the best it can be through love. I must admit that I am quite shocked that people here are doubting that power.

Hey, Lilith Pride.

Quote:Im thinking Glass is talking more about how a lot of people make it very hard to care for them, and it's kind of depressing to be expected to care anyway.

See Vader, Darth, in Star Wars: Episode 6: The Return of The Jedi.

Quote:Dregs: So I interpret the command literally, but I do also find it to absolutely unrealistic, and possibly not the smartest thing either.

No. J: If you love a stranger like you love your family, your are insane. If you love those who victimize you or your family, you are insane.

TheSixthGlass: Now, think of someone whom you have zero compatibility with, someone's opinions you do not agree with, whose actions you do not agree with. Do you love them just because? I doubt it.

This to me seems like the cynical viewpoint. It speaks to me of a world in which certain people are simply unworthy of love and a world in where to love is to be a chump.

The bravery demanded by Christ (and by any philosopher throughout history that has commanded love, because Christ is absolutely not the only one) is to love in the face of hatred. It's easy to love those that love you back. The difficulty and the reason the commandment is necessary, is to love those that you might not otherwise. If no one loves, then yes, absolutely, we wind up with that cynical world where everyone is determined to take advantage of everyone else and where people are discarded.

So if asking people to love everyone is unethical (I still don't understand why that is) I'm assuming that the suggested alternative is not to ask people to hate everyone (as that was stated as equally unethical). So what is the proposed alternative? Ie, what is the ethical suggestion?

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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25-02-2011, 10:28 AM
 
RE: Commandment of Love - Unethical? (And a Request for Assistance)
It's not asking us politely to love. It's commanding us. It's ordering us to love another. I must love those who hate me, detest me, and when the hard knocks come, I am supposed to turn the other cheek for their benefit. I must endure pain and suffering at the hands of others, and I must love them, for this is good. To dislike or hate is a selfish request, and does not do them good, and so it is not good; it is evil.

"Your code provides a consolation prize and booby-trap: it is for your own happiness, it says, that you must serve the happiness of others, the only way to achieve your joy is to give it up to others, the only way to achieve your prosperity is to surrender your wealth to others, the only way to protect your life is to protect all men except yourself-- and if you find no joy in this procedure, it is your own fault and the proof of your evil; if you were good, you would find your happiness in providing a banquet for others, and your dignity in existing on such crumbs as they might care to toss you."

- Ayn Rand, The Fountainhead

---

I refuse to destroy myself for another's happiness. That is the true evil, the destruction of self.
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25-02-2011, 10:45 AM (This post was last modified: 25-02-2011 02:25 PM by Lilith Pride.)
RE: Commandment of Love - Unethical? (And a Request for Assistance)
EDIT: I originally cited BnW yay late night posting sorry for that.
Way to misquote me Ghost =p I was trying to state my supposition of Glass's opinion before my statement.

There is a limit to how much you can help. There are people who take and take, until you can't give any more. If I get to this point with people I distance myself, but I don't start disliking them for doing it. Love one another is not a command to act, it is a command to sympathize and understand others.

I'm the poor sap who helps out anyone that needs help and you know what? A lot of times I get immediate results of my help, and furthering results down the road. There are people I've found who don't want help, and people who can't properly use it. Helping out a stranger in small ways is perfectly fine. If someone is agressively against you try not to be as agressive in return. If you're agressive you know what to expect.

No one is suggesting that you should be gullible, just take some of the opportunities to help others. You don't have to act with every case, but at least listen to what others have to say. If I found a man starving on the street I wouldn't ask him anything about himself before getting him food. For me there is a level of worth everyone gets just for existing, it's nothing that radical. It just means I'm not going to ignore people just because of a few differences.

I'm not a non believer, I believe in the possibility of anything. I just don't let the actuality of something be determined by a 3rd party.
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25-02-2011, 11:21 AM
RE: Commandment of Love - Unethical? (And a Request for Assistance)
(25-02-2011 10:45 AM)Lilith Pride Wrote:  Way to misquote me BnW =p I was trying to state my supposition of Glass's opinion before my statement.

Huh

How did I misquote you? I had not made a single comment on this thread.

Shackle their minds when they're bent on the cross
When ignorance reigns, life is lost
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25-02-2011, 04:16 PM
RE: Commandment of Love - Unethical? (And a Request for Assistance)
Love is an overly-used and multi-meaning word. There are a big variation from simple respect to total intimacy. To make this conversation applicable to everyone here, we could use a few more words to describe the different levels, or definitions, of love so that we are all on the same page as to what each one of us means when we say the word love.

When I find myself in times of trouble, Richard Dawkins comes to me, speaking words of reason, now I see, now I see.
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25-02-2011, 05:20 PM
RE: Commandment of Love - Unethical? (And a Request for Assistance)
I don't know enough greek to read a greek bible or have the interest to, and I only have a simplistic understanding of the greek types of love. Since greek is the best language I know of for determining which love is being discussed.

I'm discussing an idea, not words from a book. I don't want to try making sense of the book. Already said that it proves itself wrong because not even the "god" of the book can follow the laws.

Yes it can be misinterpreted, but as was stated there are better prophets with this message than Jesus.

I'm not a non believer, I believe in the possibility of anything. I just don't let the actuality of something be determined by a 3rd party.
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25-02-2011, 05:31 PM
RE: Commandment of Love - Unethical? (And a Request for Assistance)
(25-02-2011 10:45 AM)Lilith Pride Wrote:  EDIT: I originally cited BnW yay late night posting sorry for that.
Way to misquote me Ghost =p I was trying to state my supposition of Glass's opinion before my statement.

Well, now I feel both better and worse. Better because it means I'm not going crazy. Worse because you confused me with Ghost!
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(everyone relax, it's just a joke)

Shackle their minds when they're bent on the cross
When ignorance reigns, life is lost
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25-02-2011, 10:39 PM
RE: Commandment of Love - Unethical? (And a Request for Assistance)
(25-02-2011 10:10 AM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, trillium13.

Quote:Personally, I think the whole "love one another" thing is pretty hypocritical, because I've heard more hate spew out of "Christians" than I would be able to measure.

I don't disagree that there are a number of people who, in the name of Christ, act like douchebags and spew hate. My question is does that really make a message of love hypocritical? As a Canadian, I grew up hating Americans. In the name of the USA, horrible things are done. Millions are killed, lands are stolen, resources are plundered, societies are destroyed and the list goes on. And I hated Americans for it. But when I got to know actual Americans, like the people, I realised that the people, by and large, were decent people, worthy of my love and friendship and that those others who did these aweful things would not be dissuaded by my hatred.


I was sort of speaking off the cuff when I said that, and not without some bitterness. Wink The truth is that before I lived here in the BB I would probably never have thought of it. I knew plenty of Christians prior to living here that seemed like quite nice people. Truly good people. Most of them really were trying to live by the whole "love thy neighbor" sort of motto.

Around here I've run into many more of the hateful kind who don't really have an inkling of what the word "love" means. So it has made me quite bitter and hateful at times myself. I don't think the message itself its hypocritical necessarily, it all depends on who is delivering it. If the message is to "love everyone, except gays, liberals, Obama, atheists, and anyone else who doesn't think like me or go to my church", then that is hypocrisy.

My reason for being is to serve as a cat cushion. That is good enough for me. Wink
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