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Author Topic: Organ Donation and Necrophilia  (Read 3984 times)
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Matt
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« Reply #20 on: March 31, 2011, 07:19:47 »

CONCUBINES: (A lengthy quote from "The Dictionary of Bible and Religion" Probably in several parts.. Depending how quickly the "window" starts jumping.)
PART 1:
The term means 'one (female) who cohabits with another (male),' with the perjorative connotation that the cohabitation is irregular; that the relationship is one of man and mistress rather than husband and wife.  It is, therefore, a term that presupposes as a normative, a society based on a monogamous family household.  Obviously, it has no meaning --- or at least no perjorative meaning--- in a society that recognizes polygamy or polandry; that otherwise departs from the one-man-one-woman nuclear family concept; or that has more than a single concept of what it is 'to be married', for which there are different kinds of marriages that impose different kinds of obligations.
As far as the last mentioned is concerned, we have instances from the Bible to indicate that marriage concepts existed for which there are hardly parallels to what we understand the institution to imply today. [1986]  Samson was 'married' to a Philistine woman whom he only visited on occasion and who eventually became the wife of someone else (Judg. 14).  Was the woman his wife or concubine? In a polygamous society a fine distinction could hardly have been drawn.  When Abraham's wife Sarah, who was sterile, gave her husband the handmaid Hagar, that she might bear children by surrogate, it was as 'wife' not as 'concubine'. (Gen. 16:1-4). So also with Rachel and Leah, the two wives of Jacob: their maids Bilhah and Zilpah were also his 'wives'.

On to Part 2...
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« Reply #21 on: March 31, 2011, 07:37:10 »

CONCUBINES,
PART 2 (Continuation of quote from "Dictionary of Bible and Religion")

"What then, was the pilegesh, the concubine as distinguished from the wife or wives, even as the much married Solomon is said to have had seven hundred wives--- 'princesses'--- and three hundred concubines. (1 Kings 11:3)?  If we can judge from Gen 35:22 (wher Bilhah is called a concubine), Genesis 22-24, Judges 19, II Samuel 5:13, and similar passages, the distinction had to do simply with fiscal legalities. The 'wife' was--- or her family was--- the social equal of her husband.  Not only would a dowry be provided on her part, there would also be a corresponding bridal gift (mohar, 'purchase price') paid by the groom, which in some instances might entail an international alliance if not simply the allieance of two important families.
A 'concubine' on the other hand, was simply one more wife in a polygamous marriage.  She may, indeed, have been among others, favored by her husband in a love-match that he did not reserve for his 'official' wives.  We have no information on the subject, and biblical law has nothing to say about the matter.  We can only surmise what the situation must have been, on the presuppostion tht numan nature has not radically change over the past few centuries. " B.V." 


The Dictionary of Bible and Religion, William H. Gentz, General Editor, Abingdon, Nashville,1986.
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Matt
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« Reply #22 on: March 31, 2011, 07:43:50 »

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And I suppose I should ask you as a good sudent of the Qu'ran when is a corpse a corpse, or how long after the heart stops beating is the "soul" still present?
Well, according to Islam ...

In Canada, there is a law something about the wrong treatment of a body.  I can't remember the correct term right now, but it is on the books and a "murderer" can be charged with it if they can't find any other charge, if they have chopped up the body,.. or fed it to the pigs, or jammed it in a trunk etc.  That seems that sex with a corpse may come under that heading if they couldn't justify any other excuse.
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« Reply #23 on: April 02, 2011, 10:50:12 »

Now, to address replies #12 and 13:

To me, morality is largely a case or reciprocity. For example, somebody may think "I don't like the idea of having my stuff thieved. If I don't want to have my stuff stolen, then presumably there are other people out there who do not want their stuff stolen." Then perhaps that person has a chat with other people in their tribe and determines that nobody wants to have their stuff stolen - only those so impoverished that they have nothing that others would want to steal don't wholly agree with the statement "I don't want other people to take my stuff without my permission," and even those people are apathetic about the issue. Thus the tribe comes to the consensus that nobody wants their stuff to be stolen, and so a tribe-wide pact is formed: I won't thieve your stuff if you don't thieve mine. To ensure fairness, those who break the pact are punished in some way - perhaps, to remain in the tribe, thieves must return any stolen items and pay a fine - so, in a way, some of the theives' money is 'stolen' by the tribe as a whole to show the thieves what it's like to have one's stuff stolen.

In other words, if you don't want something done to you, under normal circumstances it would be immoral of you to do that to others without their explicit and uncoerced consent.
NOt much to add here.   Your maxim is the OLD version of the golden rule.  Jesus changed it or revolutionised it from being reactive to being PROactive. FRom negative "don't" to positive "do".  "Whatever you would like OTHERS to do FOR you, (in your wildest dreams of what would be good and rewarding, YOU should do for them."

But how do you explain laws or morality like laws obout sex with corpses?

The kind of morality you propose, the reciprocal kind would lead naturally to capital punishment wouldn't it, and would there be any concept of human dignity by virtue of being "born" or only if the birth could be seen to lead immediately to some profit for the community as a whole?
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steka
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« Reply #24 on: April 04, 2011, 03:15:43 »

I shall reply to your latest replies in reverse order. So, firstly, to the latest post:

You call my maxim an old version of the golden rule. I call it a better version of the golden rule. Because telling a masochist to "Do unto others as you would have others do unto you" may not be a brilliant idea. A smoker might like the idea of being offered a cigarette - for someone who is trying to quit smoking, however, this would be an unwanted temptation. I believe that the proverb is "Different strokes for different folks."

That's why I would go with the negative that you shouldn't do to others what you don't want done to you without their consent, as this doesn't assume that everybody wants the same things. One thing that I'm sure that you wouldn't want others to do to you is for them to inflict x on you because they assumed that you would enjoy x because they do. Ergo, under my supposedly inferior rule, you would not do this to others. Under your supposedly superior rule, your reasoning would be "I would like others to do x to me, therefore I ought to do x to as many others as possible." Perhaps x could be an opportunity to give a public speech - a charismatic extrovert may jump at such a chance, but that doesn't mean that an introvert would be happy if they were lumbered with this task by a well-meaning extrovert.

My rule also encourages proactiveness, under the right circumstances. "I wouldn't like others to leave me to starve due to misfortune, therefore I oughtn't stand idly by whilst others are in extreme poverty." Sorted.

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The kind of morality you propose, the reciprocal kind would lead naturally to capital punishment wouldn't it,
Yes, I suppose that it would. I actually think that sending someone to prison forever with no hope of release is somewhat less humane than just killing them. I think I heard somewhere that a group of lifers actually requested the death penalty, but were refused. Can't be bothered to google that though. The only convincing argument against capital punishment that I've heard is that innocents could inadvertently be killed. For an atheist, this is a problem, because an innocent prisoner can be released, but there is no bringing back a dead innocent. However, for a theist such as yourself, this oughtn't be a problem - after all, the prisoners would all be being sent to be judged by God: the truly innocent would just be sent to heaven that bit earlier.

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But how do you explain laws or morality like laws obout sex with corpses?
I've said already: as a corpse has, by definition, no functioning nervous system (or any other system, come to that), it cannot feel pain. Therefore, I do not see how any action with respect to a corpse could be said to be either moral or immoral - all actions with respect to inanimate objects are, as far as I am concerned, amoral. That is, until the actions start to impact living beings - so I suppose that cremating a corpse before its organs have been removed for transplantation could be immoral if living beings die as a result of this.

Oh, and by the way, Jesus wasn't the one who came up with the golden rule. He plagiarised it from the Chinese philosopher Mozi (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mozi#Philosophy).
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steka
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« Reply #25 on: April 04, 2011, 03:44:00 »

So in Canada, the law against mistreatment of a corpse is used sort of like Al Capone's tax evasion - if they can't prove that a murderer did the murder, but they suspect them strongly of committing the murder, and they can prove that they mistreated the corpse of the murder victim, then they'll nick them for the mistreatment of a corpse, and impose a longer sentence than they normally would for such a crime to compensate for the fact that they strongly suspect the person of murder, but can't prove it. I would disagree with using laws in this way - it sort of violates the principle of being innocent until proven guilty.

I also don't like laws being used to 'send a message'. The UK government recently rejected calls to decriminalise sexual acts between teenagers, so at the moment, if two 14-year olds engage in a sexual act with each other, they could both technically end up on the Sex Offenders' Register for life. In practice, such a case would not go to court, as it would not be in the public interest. But the government refuses to turn this unofficial practice into official law by, say, making it legal for an under-18 to have sex with someone else who is under 16 but over another lower age (perhaps 12 or 14). The reason they give for keeping the strict "Under-16 = unable to consent to sex, no exceptions" law on the books, despite not always enforcing it in practice, is that they want to 'send the message' that teenagers shouldn't be having sex.

But criminal law is a rather dangerous tool to be using to 'send a message'. Police could abuse this law to threaten teenagers who are nuisances (for example, they may frequently engage in antisocial behaviour) when the police should be dealing with the antisocial behaviour as antisocial behaviour, rather than as a minor crime which can be dealt with by threatening the offender with prosecution for a serious crime.

So as far as I'm concerned, the law should mean exactly what it says. Being convicted of mistreatment of a corpse should mean that you mistreated a corpse, not that you really committed murder but they couldn't prove it so they got you on something else instead. Of course, there will always be cases like Al Capone, where a criminal breaks a number of laws, but only one of their crimes can be proven beyond a reasonable doubt, so they're just given the maximum sentence for that crime to 'compensate' for the other strongly suspected but ultimately unprovable crimes. However, there is a difference between Al Capone and Murderer A. In Al Capone's case, there would have been laws against tax evasion regardless of the activities of the mobs. The laws against tax evasion were written to be laws against tax evasion, but were used in Al Capone's case to bring down a mob boss whose other crimes couldn't be proven. However, in Murderer A's case, the laws against mistreating a corpse seem to have been written solely to allow murderers whose murders cannot be proven to be done - if some new technology were to come along which meant that every single murder case could be solved, with all murderers proved to be murderers without exception or doubt, would there be any need for a law against simple 'mistreatment' of a corpse?
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« Reply #26 on: April 04, 2011, 03:58:19 »

As per concubines: so, from what I understand of what you have said, your theory is as follows:

In God's eyes, the act of having sex would in and of itself create a marriage. However, down here in the Earthly realm, things ain't always that simple, and man's law thus often differs from God's law - in the area of marriage, and in other areas too. Thus, as far as God is concerned, there are no such statuses as 'betrothed', 'unmarried but having sex' or 'concubine' - you're either having sex and thus married, or you're not. However, down here in the world of men, human nature means that such statuses end up being created. Is this a fair summary of your theory?

So then you believe that the law requiring that a betrothed virgin who has sex with another men be put to death cannot be God's law, as it hinges on a status not recognised by God (that of being betrothed), and that it must therefore be a law of man rather than a law of God?

As to the issue of a man having sex with an underage girl: such events are likewise 'unimaginable' today. That is why cases of this happening make the news, and cause such disgust. But, despite being an unthinkable crime, there are still people today who abuse children. This must also have been the case back in the time of the Old Testament. Therefore, there must have been a girl who was abused at some point during the time of the Old Testament - therefore, her status (virgin, betrothed or adultress) would have needed to have been known.

Even if no girl was ever abused in Old Testament times, there have certainly been cases recently of girls being sexually abused. And you said that you think that in God's eyes, the act of having sex constitutes the act of getting married. This would be the case today as it was in the Old Testament, no? So in God's eyes, an abused girl is married to her abuser from the first act of abuse?
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