Thursday, October 28, 2010

The teaching of"Original Sin": Debunked

We are going to talk about the doctrine of "Original sin." We are going to explain exactly what it is;  and discuss the adverse effects on the human psyche. The teaching in a nutshell states that all mankind was "placed" in a sinful state when the first man, Adam sinned. God told Adam he would die in the day that he ate of the "forbidden" tree (Genesis 2:16,17). So when Adam "sinned;" according to the teaching the entire human race "sinned" also. The logic lies in the idea that since Adam was the first man and we are the progeny; we "inherit" the sin. Lets move on to see how this idea progresses in the Bible. In psalms 51:5 King David says he was "conceived (e.g born) in iniquity." In the book of Job in the Old Testament: "What is man, that he could be pure? And he who is born of a woman, that he could be righteous?" (Job 15:14).
Now we progress hundreds of years into the New testament. Romans 5:18 -19 says, "through one man's trespass, judgment came to all men, for by one man's disobedience all were made sinners."
Romans 3:23 says, "All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God."Finally Romans 6:23 states that the "wages of sin is death" OK, I think we have made the point; and defined what original sin is, thanks for bearing with me. So think about it; you are born into this world. You did not ask to be here; just one day you wake up in a crib or playpen if you are lucky. As far as I know, no one asked to be here on this beautiful earth; but somehow we are all here. All of a sudden; as you reach an "age of understanding," you are told that basically you are a ticking time bomb. You are filled with sin, and are going to a fiery hell(another fictional place we`ll discuss later) unless you find God and get right with him(why is God a he?). Based on logic alone the entire premise is absurd; to hold someone accountable for something they no nothing about. However logic is often placed aside in favor of superstition; so at times we must "over" explain things. Briefly I will discuss the "origin" of original sin. It is a fragment of "pagan" philosophy and promoted in Christianity by St.Augustine. His influence derived from the teachings of Paul and from his pagan influences in Manichaeism. One must understand, that many early writers of Christianity converted from these polytheistic religions or "pagan" if you like that term. They often incorporated rituals and concepts from them into Christianity. I give you the example of Easter; although it is out side the scope of this essay. Common sense should tell you that Rabbits and eggs have nothing to do with Jesus death or Resurrection; nevertheless it is a mainstay in our yearly observance.   Augustine thought that sin was "transmitted" generation to generation by sexual intercourse. "
...whenever it comes to the actual process of generation, the very embrace which is lawful and honourable cannot be effected without the ardour of lust....
[This lust] is the daughter of sin, as it were; and whenever it yields assent to the commission of shameful deeds, it becomes also the mother of many sins.
Now from this concupiscence whatever comes into being by natural birth is bound by original sin... (St.Augustine, De Bono Coniugali)." Now by the time of the Council of Trent in 1545-63; the church officially made this a doctrine. Now the only way to get rid of the original sin  was to accept Christ and be baptized. Now the sacrament (baptism) had to be administered by a priest, and guess what? There was a fee. That is alot of sin and alot of money to be made for the church. Now I want to list the obvious problems with such a dubious teaching. First of all; it devalues people. We are not perfect, most of us know that already. What this idea does is place people in a state of constant "unworthiness" or "guilt" for no reason. This often leads to extreme Asceticism; where people often reject the "world" altogether, engaging in acts of self loathing and sacrifices in order to get "closer" to God. On the other hand, extreme indulgence; as people may feel "damned" already and over coming sin is too much to bear. The doctrine is misogynistic for sure; as I discussed in my  previous blog concerning women. The "blame" was placed on the woman for the entry of sin into the human race; therefore the teaching is responsible for centuries of "Christian" discrimination against women. It is grossly unfair; even a child knows that he/she should not be blamed for something he/she did not do. The "anti-sex" attitude of Augustine and the church; passed through the centuries mixed up sex and sin together and created a distorted view of sexuality and confusion for many (We need not mention the sexual scandals in the church).Let it be known also that before the 13th Century; the Catholic church taught that un baptised babies went to hell . This was challenged by the secular philosopher Peter Abelard, who bravely proved the absurdity of this. However, he came up with another absurd idea.  "Limbo," this was where unbaptised babies that lived before Jesus would go. They would not "be with the Lord" but not in hell either.Eventually the church accepted this "modification." "Babies dead without baptism go to Limbo, where they do not enjoy God, but neither do they suffer, because, having Original Sin alone, they do not deserve Paradise, but neither do they merit Hell or Purgatory
In April 2007 Pope Benedict XVI approved the findings of a report by the International Theological Commission, a Vatican advisory body, which found grounds that the souls of unbaptized children would go to heaven,thus reversing the teachings on Limbo. Still many parents rush to baptize children; as a matter of fact I have observed the ceremony. Having a child of a few months old, squirming around, not having a CLUE in the world what is going on, having water(excuse me "holy water") sprinkled makes no sense.Finally; the idea that I feel is very dangerous, and is inherent within the doctrine of original sin, is the idea that man needs an outside force(i.e God) in order to do good. This keeps people in a constant state of dependence on an external force; instead of relying on themselves . After all; if you feel that you are "no good" to begin with, it is hard to trust your own ideas and thoughts after a while.My hope is that people will wake up, and see themselves not as a "fallen" being or someone in need of redemption, nor as a "saint" but simply as human being . 

(On babies and "Limbo")
Pope Pius X catechism,1904
St.Augustine, De Bono Coniugali (this book is very expensive;I suggest you look for a Pdf file online)
Bible (KJV)
Suggested Reading:
Yes! read all of the religious texts! Quaran,Rig Veda,I Ching etc
St.Augustine confessions 

Canon and Decrees of the Council of Trent (1978)   You will learn a great deal about why certain books were omitted or added to the bible. There are tons of books "missing" from the bible today. These decisions were made at these various councils.What books are "acceptable," "conforming" and those that are not.(Another Blog! :-)

1 comment:

Chuck Ishman said...

There is no God, hence, there is no original sin. Problem solved. For additional information you can reach me via email at

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