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SCIENCE AND THE GD OF GENESIS (BERESHIT)

August 8, 2013

HAVING YOUR CAKE AND EATING IT, TOO

26 And G-d said: ‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth’.

I.

OUR ENDANGERED VALUES (2005)

Jimmy Carter set out, in his book (2005) to balance a vision of man and life between Judeo-Christian faith and science, for he is both a man of faith as morality and a man of science, as well.

A most laudable task for a former man of state, in my opinion, as an act of true care and responsibility with regards to his fellow man, no doubt.

And on another level the 39th president of the United States stands out, for me, in a certain uniqueness of his figure as wedged, historically, between Nixon (Ford) and Reagan, the Ronald McDonald himself of historical Pentagon Democracy.

And key to that uniqueness, from where I see things, is in fact Carter’s moral fabric and the educated man he was as president.

And it is most likely because of this, in part, that his administration is normally perceived as calamitous by the official hagiographers of American historical establishment narrative.

But verse 26 of Genesis can in no way ever be reconciled between a creationist, faith-based vision of human history and science, specifically with anthropology.

And in regards to this particular verse, it is not a question of interpretation or the possible insurmountable ambiguity of different aspects of the language of Genesis.

The verse represents, in fact, a sine qua non dividing line of brutal and total exclusion of one or the other of the competing visions of the understanding of reality as narratives.

And because of this verse-in this verse-there is no possibility of compatibility whatsoever, rendering any attempt in that sense, an example of subjective wishful thinking as, simply, intellectual banality that gravitates towards the sweet fruit drink and chocolate cake of nursery school afternoons, and away from the difficulty of arduous-and responsible-intellectual reasoning.

Of course it is not an issue that just has consequences for our endangered values-or social-political system (Carter, of course, means essentially the US), but rather for the Western world-for the world as whole, actually, in man’s understanding, finally, of what religion as story really is and the purpose-function-it serves.

What is the decisive element of verse 26 of Genesis-of Bereshit?

Clue: based on verse 26, account for the existence of our universal understanding of pre-agricultural human groups, and particularly pre-historic man, the caveman.

Yabadabadooooooo!

II.

INFERENCES TO BE GRAVELY CONSIDERED

There is no covenant between man and Yahweh without agriculture-no pact or deal that can actually be cut between man and G-d without the payment-through life itself and the possibility of sustenance for collective groups-for man’s subjugation as love of G-d to Father.

Father of life, Father of man-but most importantly, Father of light:

3 And G-d said: ‘Let there be light’ And there was light.

Because before Yahweh-before agriculture-there most certainly was darkness; but there was also man-if you accept the caveman-and in a certain sense it can be understood that man in such pre-agricultural darkness, outside of the covenant– the pact of life-did not really live, not fully, but rather as part of an infraworld in which man transpired in almost permanent vital and physiological strife for want of food; where life was truly terror, vulnerability and brutality;

Where human groups were forced-not only in times of extra-dire circumstances-to feed off of the flesh of other human beings, both in an inter-clan sense, and-originally-within the clan itself.

And yes, because children were more easily subdued-and because of the tenderness of younger, underdeveloped meat, they were an important source of permanent, staple nourishment for collective, pre-agricultural human groups.

Particularly, the female child.

But because man is-has always been-cognizant, he was required to actually think of such things-to contemplate and decide and allocate resources, in this sense.

And because he is cognizant-and because of the gradual historical drive as tendency towards agriculture-he also felt progressively complex feelings of weight verging, eventually, on guilt.

And the complexity of the parallel evolution of human systems of belief as the cosmology as structure itself of more and more complex social systems-based, all of this on technical progress, on knowledge-had to account also for the ever growing-or developing-human psyche as conscience.

Because conscience, as we understand it, is imbricate-necessarily-to social man, to human interaction; and social man depends historically on-is a product of-the evolution of human technical capacity-of the knowledge, in a technical sense, possessed by man.

You have no choice but to forgive my anthropological Marxist approach in terms of historical evolution-but it is correct in its coherence as conceptual model in regards to the force behind human history.

Ultimately, the cognizance of man.

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