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2011-12-13

So are they supposed to stop saying ďI amĒ and all the other goofy names for God that arenít actually names? Remember, God has not, nor will he ever, reveal his name in the bible. Maybe this commandment would hold some weight if it was even possible to say the Lordís name to begin with, let alone say it in vain.

Like all of the commandments, people interpret the ďGodís name in vainĒ commandment in many different and conflicting ways. It was probably intended to prohibit blasphemy, that is, using Godís name in dishonest ways like lying or intimidation. Plenty of believers agree with that interpretation, but many more do not. One biblical commentary Iíve read took it a step further and explained this commandment by saying the Lordís name is holy, and our filthy mortal lips have no business uttering it except in prayer.

The commandment has also evolved over the centuries. If it began as an anti-blasphemy commandment, it sure didnít stay that way. By the time of the Hellenistic Jews, it was believed that any utterance of the Lordís name was a stoning offense. Some Jews still avoid writing or vocalizing the Tetragrammaton or any of Godís other names from the Tanakh, and instead use euphemisms or alter the letters. In English, this is often seen as ďG-dĒ instead of ďGodĒ. Thatís as lame and dishonest as saying ďgosh darn itĒ instead of ďGod damn itĒówe all know what you meant! I trust I donít have to bring up the He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named corollary.

Some Jews even take it a step further and refuse to even dispose of objects or documents with the name of God on them. Instead, they store these objects in a Genizah until they can perform a proper ceremony for the inanimate objects and bury them in a cemetery. This is especially annoying for Jewish children who are named after one of Godís names, because anything they write their name on (think homework) becomes sacred and canít be thrown away.

Obviously, blasphemy holds a special place in my heart, and I try to break this commandment as often and as lavishly as I can! I swear to God Iíve broken this God damn commandment!

 

Comments

Samael writes:

 

And yet you aren't smited, as what happens so often during the Old Testament. If God is willing to turn a woman into a pillar of salt for rotating her neck a few degress too far to the right, he's certainly been lax on enforcing the commandments.

Goddamnit.

someguy writes:

 

i had always been told by Christians that this was an injunction against swearing

but i had always instead interpreted this to mean that if one swore an oath and invoked god as his witness that he needed to abide by that oath no matter what. i.e. don't break promises if those promises are sworn by an oath to god. which is different from bearing false witness which will be covered later.

as an atheist child raised by atheists i suppose i came to this interpretation because; what the Christians said it meant didn't make any sense, Why would they think a God that they thought was so powerful and benevolent care about such a trifling matter? Whereas a law against breaking serious promises seemed like a much better interpretation...

after having grown up and seen what the rest of the bible looks like... i think the commandment not making sense is more on par with the general theme of the bible. as a child i was wrong for giving them the benefit of the doubt that their beliefs probably had some sense to them.

Richard writes:

 

I would trust someone more for swearing with their hand on a fresh dog turd than on a stack of bibles in god's name. Yes, god's name is worth less than than a pile of fresh dog crap.

Maju writes:

 

For all the Catholic tradition, one of the most common interjections in Spanish is "me cago en Dios" ("I crap on God"). You can hear it daily, although some social sectors may refrain (they don't swear or do swear but do not blaspheme).

It'd be the equivalent of "fuck!" wouldn't be that there is a more genuine equivalent ("joder!") and is also used a lot.

English lacks this potential of the quotidian blasphemy so cherished in Spanish.

Willy Galleta writes:

 

Certainly, the blasphemies in Spain are part of the culture. You can see it if you watch some spanish cinema satires. If you have never heard of a priest shitting on god you haven't lived much in Spain.

Yeshivakid writes:

 

Oh, the stories I could tell about not speaking/writing the name of god in yeshiva.

Some students even believed we weren't allowed to write the single letter shorthand "heyh" that stands for "hashem", which is basically the Hebrew informal name for god. It literally means "the name" (ha shem). Those students instead wrote a daled to stand in for the heyh, JUST in case the paper they were writing on ended up in the garbage.

And of course there were those students who headed every single paper they ever put a mark on with the besiyata dishmaya. (Here's the wiki page about it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Besiyata_Dishmaya ) It's actually kind of interesting (if not a bit overkill), and the part under the "Acronym" heading has a bit about the heyh and daled standing in for god's name as well.

economico bulgari anello writes:

 

While the positive flow theory is widely taught, is the oldest electrical theory and the math works in just about all situations, it was proven to be the exact opposite of how things really are over 50 years ago. It lacks the ability to explain many proven facts about the nature of electricity and what it has been proven to do in some situations. It is hard to explain why many places still teach positive flow theory. Many of the people teaching electrical theory learned it that way and have had a hard time adapting to explaining things in a manner that is 180 degrees out of how they learned them.
economico bulgari anello http://www.aluxury.nl/it/


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Oh the irony!