When it comes to my worst disagreement with the majority’s beliefs I would have to say faith in the Bible takes the cake and swallows it whole. This is because I live in Western society and am surrounded by people who swear to get their morals from both the old and new testaments, as if these were the actual words and history of god and the guidelines which he — because they call god a “he” — recorded for us to follow. But the Bible isn’t the only text which deals with the same stories, rules, and claims of the true word of god. The Koran also speaks of the same people the Bible does. So too does the Talmud. All of these works deal with the same mythology, though their accounts differ, and all of them can be traced back to one character and the actions which led to him being chosen by god as his favorite human. This man is Abraham.
Abraham, according to religious texts, was born in a rich metropolis called Ur, which would be in modern day Iraq, about two-thousand years before the reported life and death of Jesus Herman Christ — I’m speculating his middle name here. The Bible tells us that one day out of the blue god decided to start talking to Abraham in his head, much like schizophrenics hear voices. He told Abraham that he must prove his devotion to him, and the only way to do that was to take his infant son up a mountain, place him on a slab of stone, butcher his guts with a knife and then light his dead body on fire — quite a demand from the “all merciful god”. It seems disgusting, yes, but let’s remember this is the same god that murdered his own son on a cross 20 or so centuries later according to the same book. The god of the Bible is really into killing your own kids to prove your love. Anyway, after hearing this voice in his head command him to do this repulsive action to his son, whose name was Isaac and whose mother was also Abraham’s sister, Abraham grabbed him and headed to the mountain god specified without a question. Luckily for Isaac, just as Abraham lifted the blade over his belly, an angel appeared and prevented him from ripping Isaac’s guts to shreds and instead a ram appeared in his place. Because he was willing to do it, though, we are told, it was good enough for god, so he granted Abraham and his descendants — Isaac, Ishmael, Jacob and his sons who fathered the twelve tribes, Jesus, etc. — the land of Israel, which was called Canaan and already populated by another group of people called the Canaanites at that time. Either way, Abraham traveled from Ur to Canaan and claimed it as his own.
Then he reached out his hand and took the knife to slay his son.”
Koran, which is the religious authority of the Islamic faith, takes the story a bit further when it comes to Abraham’s authority. They refer to Abraham as Ibraham, and because he did everything god asked him he was granted leadership over all the nations of the world, not just Canaan. In the Koran Abraham doesn’t actually receive the command to kill Isaac from god as he does in the Jewish/Christian scriptures. According to the Islamic story, the Koran’s telling, Abraham has a dream which he interprets as a command from god to kill his son, but instead of Isaac, this time it’s his other son, Ishmael. As the twisted tale goes, when Abraham attempts to murder Ishmael an angel stops him, telling him god had nothing to do with his infanticidal vision, so Ishmael, like Isaac in the Bible, is spared.
No matter which story you go by, the Koran or the Bible, and whether Isaac or Ishmael, the message is clear: Abraham was so devout to the voice in his head — which he said was god — he was willing to murder his own son. This, somehow, is supposed to be an inspirational story and character in the world of monotheism; and this is where the hypocrisy of the three main religions of the world comes to the forefront.
Every member of Christianity, Islam, or Judaism must claim they admire Abraham for his willingness to do anything his god asked of him, even if it meant killing his own son with his own two hands and lighting him on fire, in order to belong to the respective faith they belong to. To call Abraham a madman would be to turn their backs on the very man who fathered the religions they swear devotion to. Not only that, but to call Abraham’s actions psychotic, homicidal, infanticidal and all the rest of the categories they aptly fit into, at least in Christianity’s and Judaism’s case, is to condemn their very god to the same categories for suggesting such sadistic, cruel, and evil things in the first place. But, the followers of religion who know this story — which is by no means close to all of them — can’t bring themselves to admittance that this is one of the most disturbing, immoral pieces of literature to ever exist. Yes, hypocrisy says it best. None of the people — one would hope — who claim to admire Abraham and the god who spoke to him would make the same decision if it was their own child they were told to sacrifice. What’s more, they would hate anyone, including god, for asking them to — most would instictually want to kill someone for even mentioning the murder of their child. But still Abraham is reveared, loved, admired, respected. How does this work?
The truth of the matter is that the story of Abraham has no truth involved in it in the least. There is no evidence in existence to show that Abraham or his sons ever really existed. They are, as most scholars in theology will tell you, mere folk tales written first around 1500 years after Abraham was said to live by Israelites, and then retold a thousand years later by Islamics, which would make it nearly impossible for any of the stories about him to be close to accurate in any way. Abraham was simply the name of a character used to justify the ancient Jewish people’s claim on the land of Israel, as he again is today to modern Jewish people and true Christians. It’s startling in this day and age that any grown adult could actually believe there is a god that talks to people directly, has spoken to people directly, and tells them to kill people. If this were to happen in modern times, and it has, the person making the claim, or worse, going through with the command, would be locked up for life in psychiatric care or given the death penalty. Society as a whole would shun them. With Abraham it’s different though, and that right there shows what indoctrination of religion can do to a person. Like hard liquor or drugs, religion intoxicates and makes otherwise morally thinking people throw their inborn beliefs out the window to convince themselves and those around them that they believe what the good book says is morally right, even when what the good book says is abhorrent and wrong in every way. Religion is something that needs to disappear if we are to progress any further as a civilization; as a species, and the story of Abraham is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to vile stories the Bible preaches and passes off as authority. Nothing could be or has been more poisonous to mankind than these three religions, and Abraham is proof.
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