Re: virus: God and dirty pigs

Lior Golgher (
Sat, 31 Aug 1996 22:22:41 -0700

> Drakir posted:
> > Do not eat Pork - I can't see any reason for this at all, and
> > the argument that says Pigs are dirty
> > animals is wrong, because they're
> > actually some of the cleanest!
> >These moral codes and others simply help to stifle the further intellectual
> >development of the human race, by imposing restraints on people's
> >thinking. Unless we get rid of them, then I believe that the world's
> >going to end pretty soon, through pointless differences imposed by religion.
> The Hebrew and Moslem prohibition against pork does make sense if you
> look at the environments where these religions developed. The Biblical
> lands are generally arid pastures and the early Hebrew were a semi-nomadic
> people who raised goats, sheep and cattle. These animals could be herded
> with relative ease and could be milked. These animals could survive solely
> on grasses.
> Pigs are a totally different story. Pigs are not herd animals. You cannot
> easily milk a pig. Pigs do not live in arid environments and most importantly
> they eat the same things people do. They compete with man for scarce
> resources in arid climates.
> The same applies to the Moslem prohibition against alcohol (Not good in
> the desert), the Hindu prohibition against eating cows (eating your beast of
> burden when times are hard may get you through one bad year but you'll
> surely starve next year).
> If any of this stuff seems interesting check out Marvin Harris's "Cows,
> Wars & Witches. The Riddles of Culture". I found it to be a real eye-opener.
> A lot of religion can be summed up by what I call the Harris principle:
> "The greater the temptation- the greater the need for divine interdiction."

Firstable an informative correction - Except of sharing the same specie,
there's a very poor link between the
ancient Hebrew and the Nomadic people.
As for your claims, they all try to find some functional\moral basis to
religious commandments. Sometimes it
works, sometimes it doesn't, yet that kind of comparison is basically
It's like a basketball player who judges soccer by comparing it to
basketball - They defend their side and
that's reasonable, they try to pass the other team with the ball and
score and that's very reasonable, but I
can't see any reason why they try to fetch the ball with their legs!
Now, if you work hard enough you may find a functional basis to a
considerable amount of religious
commandments, both because once-functional cultural tradition tend to be
assimilated into religions, and
because there are commandments whose results, and not themselves, are to
be obtained [e.g. the Jewish
commandments for butchering, which prevent any pain from the butchered
animals, not because Jews necessarily
love\respect all living creatures, but because preventing unnecessary
pain from animals is itself one of the
things a Jew is required to do]. 8 of the 10 commandments may be
distorted and thereby claimed to have a
moral\functional basis, but no such basis can be claimed on "I'm your
God..." nor on "Make no altars of
mine...". In the christian bible, the difference between "love the other
as yourself" [social principle] and
"love the other as yourself for I'm your God" [original commandment] is
not emphasized enough. Both Judaism and
Islam do emphasize the only consistantly sustainable argumentation for
all religious commandments, that is to
totally accept the duty of preforming them with love and determination.
That is an object you either accept or
you don't. Judging it according to causes different than its real cause
is just not to the point. And as Drakir
pointed out, keeping such restraints without a cause is only harmful.
It would be interesting to check the Hindu view.