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Hamartia: I'm Not Good Enough


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Many before me have pitted the concepts of theosis and hamartia against each other. For those who don't know what they mean, theosis is about deification and divinization whereas hamartia is about falling short (Rom. 23).

 

I believe that such a theological idea [hamartia] is a tool to demean all persons in the sight of God. I know that considering the website I'm at right now that this doesn't seem to be a concern to the primary audience. However, I thought that I would discuss this and see if others in their journeys out of faith believed the same way.

 

I reason that hamartia is oppressive and coerces the faithful into complying with statutes that are either beyond their time or simply irrelevant. Sort of like putting the fear of God in someone. It's a device that is not meant to uplift and promote love but to downtrod and instill negative emotion.

 

While I am LDS (Mormon--no stones please) I consider myself to be able to identify more closely with the pluralistic and egalitarian characteristics specifically portrayed in the character of Jesus in the four Gospels. I also identify closely to Paul Toscano (an excommunicated Mormon--Google September Six) when he stated in his speech The Sacrament of Doubt, “I fear that Jesus, whom I love so much, may be a fiction”, and again when states, "If Jesus was not the Christ, he should have been. If he is not god, he should be."

 

I'm relating this closely to the rebellious nature that is portrayed in Jesus' actions in the NT gospels. He didn't follow the trends of the Jewish culture and their own forms of theosis and hamartia.

 

I won't insult the board membership by attempting to 'evangelize' you. But I wish to say as a LDS-Christian (no oxymoron jokes please biggrin.png ) is that I do care and think fondly of my non-religiously or blood related atheist and agnostic brothers and sisters. You all do more for humanity than most of us 'God-fearing heathens'. I hope to empathize more closely with you all as I get to know you.

 

And by the way...you are all good enough to me.

 

I look forward to any responses and constructive criticism.

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Many before me have pitted the concepts of theosis and hamartia against each other. For those who don't know what they mean, theosis is about deification and divinization whereas hamartia is about falling short (Rom. 23).

 

Dwayne, Welcome! Personally, I don't have 2 clues what you are talking about here, (I'll let the others who know much more than me respond to this) but I did want to welcome you to EX-C today!! biggrin.pngbiggrin.png

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Interesting ideas, Dwayne. When I was in Christianity, I thought Christianity was about doctrines, creeds, etc. Now that I am out, I realize that Jesus would have (provided he existed) been been considered something of what we would call a humanist today, i.e. helping the downtrodden and poor and ticking off the religious establishment that believed in doctrines and creeds. While I think I now have a better understanding of what Jesus' actual message was, I don't have any plans of calling myself a Christian humanist or anything like that, because the word "Christian" has far too much baggage with it. Could someone be a "Christian Atheist"? GONZ9729CustomImage1539775.gif

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I believe that such a theological idea [hamartia] is a tool to demean all persons in the sight of God. I know that considering the website I'm at right now that this doesn't seem to be a concern to the primary audience. However, I thought that I would discuss this and see if others in their journeys out of faith believed the same way.

 

I reason that hamartia is oppressive and coerces the faithful into complying with statutes that are either beyond their time or simply irrelevant. Sort of like putting the fear of God in someone. It's a device that is not meant to uplift and promote love but to downtrod and instill negative emotion.

 

While I have never heard the term "hamartia" before, I suppose that was the emphasis in Christianity that was presented in the church I was brought up in. It is one of the reasons I rejected Christianity. I agree that there is little in it that is uplifting. Indeed, the harm it caused in my relationships (or lack thereof) with the rest of humanity has been well demonstrated to me.

 

The term "theosis" or deification, held some attraction for me. I was never aware of this idea until I studied Eastern Orthodoxy. That was the only place where I saw this presented as an emphasis. Both concepts are in the Bible, why did the protestant and western catholic church choose this hamartia? I don't know.

 

At this point I am really not too interested in any of it. Fundamentally, don't believe in a dualistic conception of God who is "out there". Since the main idea of Christianity is to reconcile oneself with this outside entity, I can't relate that to reality as I see it.

 

"Deification", yes, but we already are that.

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The term "theosis" or deification, held some attraction for me. I was never aware of this idea until I studied Eastern Orthodoxy. That was the only place where I saw this presented as an emphasis. Both concepts are in the Bible, why did the protestant and western catholic church choose this hamartia? I don't know.

 

At this point I am really not too interested in any of it. Fundamentally, don't believe in a dualistic conception of God who is "out there". Since the main idea of Christianity is to reconcile oneself with this outside entity, I can't relate that to reality as I see it.

 

As a former Eastern Orthodox, let me clarify some concepts: "theosis" and "hamartia" (sin) aren't at odds with each other at all. The western Church chose to take a more legal view of what salvation is, whereas the Eastern Church tends to take therapeutic view of salvation. The western Church saw sin as a legal transgression, whereas the eastern Church tended to emphasize the idea of sin as a sickness that leads people away from God or that clouds their "noetic vision" (intuition of divine things). In some ways, it is closer to an eastern religion such as Taoism or Buddhism in this regard.

 

BTW, Eastern Orthodoxy would tend to agree that God is not "out there"; there is an immanent aspect to God that is part of Orthodox beliefs. It's just not emphasized as much as transcendence. In many ways I find Orthodox theology and spirituality to be very deep. But I also found so much to be very, very unliveable and at odds with our culture, rooted in a conservative mindset that often rejects empiricism and a bunch of other western "baggage" that I found in time I really appreciated.

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Interesting ideas, Dwayne. When I was in Christianity, I thought Christianity was about doctrines, creeds, etc. Now that I am out, I realize that Jesus would have (provided he existed) been been considered something of what we would call a humanist today, i.e. helping the downtrodden and poor and ticking off the religious establishment that believed in doctrines and creeds. While I think I now have a better understanding of what Jesus' actual message was, I don't have any plans of calling myself a Christian humanist or anything like that, because the word "Christian" has far too much baggage with it. Could someone be a "Christian Atheist"? GONZ9729CustomImage1539775.gif

 

I'm good with humanism. Its philosophy is pure at heart. I read Greg Epstein's Good Without God. I found it to be an amazingly well put together discussion of humanism. I would love to meet him.

 

I see Jesus not as Christian but as a revolutionary, a rebel, and a pluralist. All three of these qualities are found in the core of humanism. I applaud Archbishop Desmond Tutu for writing his book God Is Not A Christian and furthermore for titling it as such. There is much to be learned from him.

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