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does feminism conflict with your religious beliefs? - Page 2

post #21 of 62
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My spiritual path constantly affirms the worth of women and the sacred feminine.
Mine too!
post #22 of 62
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Originally Posted by EFmom
I am a very liberal Christian. The words, acts and spirit of Jesus are important to me. What the Old Testament and the words of people like Paul have to say come in a very distant second.
Paul said this:

Gal 3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.

Paul didn't say this:

Eph 5:22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.

Col 3:18 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.

Those 2 epistles, and others, are thought to be pseudonymous. Only believing fundamentalist scholars disagree with this finding. For more on the authenticity controversy:

http://www.religioustolerance.org/chr_ntb3.htm


I could say more, but just don't have the energy...
post #23 of 62
Daryl, I know, I've read a lot about this and I agree. But the bottom line to me is even if he were the author, I just don't think his opinions on the subject are particularly important as compared to the actions and message of Christ.
post #24 of 62
EFMom an "Old Testament" person ... and have absolutely no clue what it has to do with feminism, or why it has what to do with what you're rejecting ... since as a Christian you consider it 2nd anyway, right?

Though I prefer not to call my religious books "old" as in Old and In The Way ...

Anyway, for its time it did okay ... the land-ownership/daughters of Tzelafkhad thing was up there.

And have noticed that a whole passle'o'us "Old Testament" mamas have thrown our lots in with feminism on this thread ... not sure I get it.





Don't mind me. Republicans to the left of me, protestors to the right ... here I am, stuck in the middle with you ...




post #25 of 62
merpk, I hope what I wrote didn't offend you. If the term OT bothers you, what do you think Christians should call it? I'm not being snarky, just would like to hear your view.

How to explain... A lot of fundamentalists like to claim the label "Christian" as if theirs was the only viewpoint on Christianity out there. That always sticks in my craw. Many fundamentalists base much of their religious belief and practice on the OT (for want of a better term). I think we both can agree that the social role of women was considerably different during the times these scriptures were written than it is today.
post #26 of 62
Thanks for the great discussion. This is a huge issue I'm sorting through right now. I'm Mormon and love so many things about the theology, including believe in Eve's courage and importance in the Divine Plan, and the existence and importance of a Maternal counterpart to God the Father. Yet in practice, women are "under" the hierarchical "direction" of men, and do not currently exercise priesthood power outside of the temple (though that has not always been the case). This does bother me, especially now that I have a daughter.

I'm reading a really good book on the subject: "Good News for Women: A Biblical Picture of Gender Equality" by Rebecca Merrill Groothuis that I highly recommend to any other Christians on this thread. Good support for the argument that Christ placed women on equal footing spiritually as well as socially and otherwise, and that observing the aforementioned "Pauline teachings" about female submission out of their cultural context serves no one--male or female.
post #27 of 62
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I think we both can agree that the social role of women was considerably different during the times these scriptures were written than it is today.
See, I just don't know what you mean by that.

To understand the "issue" jews have with the term "OT" you can find previous posts on this forum.
post #28 of 62
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Originally Posted by BelovedBird
To understand the "issue" jews have with the term "OT" you can find previous posts on this forum.
BB, I don't mind answering her and saving her the trouble.

Jews call it Tanakh, T for Torah, N for Nevi'im (prophets), K for Kethuvim (writings).

Scholars tend to call it the Hebrew Scriptures.

This is a helpful website.

http://www.jewfaq.org/toc.htm

EFMom, I also object to you throwing out Paul, the one person, and the first, most represented in his own words on the subject of what it means to be "in Christ." But that's just me.

I understand the role of women in Judaism has evolved quite a bit from the old days BCE. Many Xtians (and even secular Jews) do not realize this, however. It was news to me a few yrs ago. Rabbis spent centuries doing what is called misrash to further interpret Scripture, bringing it up to date, so to speak.

Unfortunately Xtian women have not been quite so lucky. Here is a webbsite I have been sitting on since the boards went down. Give a look:

Eve and the Identity of Women

http://witcombe.sbc.edu/eve-women/1evewomen.html

below from chapter 3:

Quote:
Eve represents everything about a woman a man should guard against. In both form and symbol, Eve is woman, and because of her, the prevalent belief in the West has been that all women are by nature disobedient, guileless, weak-willed, prone to temptation and evil, disloyal, untrustworthy, deceitful, seductive, and motivated in their thoughts and behaviour purely by self-interest.

The early Christian theologian Tertullian (c. 155/160-220 CE) reminded women that they all share Eve's "ignominy...of original sin and the odium of being the cause of the fall of the human race":


Do you not believe that you are (each) an Eve? The sentence of God on this sex of yours lives on even in our times and so it is necessary that the guilt should live on, also. You are the one who opened the door to the Devil, you are the one who first plucked the fruit of the forbidden tree, you are the first who deserted the divine law; you are the one who persuaded him whom the Devil was not strong enough to attack. All too easily you destroyed the image of God, man. Because of your desert, that is, death, even the Son of God had to die.
But my favorite was chapter 6, The Old Testament[sic], Women and Evil, the story of the battle between the Canaanite religion and YHWHism.
post #29 of 62
Daryl, in my view I would just change a bit of what you said. The oral torah (midrash) are all things that existed and were in practice from the giving of the Torah.
post #30 of 62
Then what do you call the further exegesis from the rabbinic period in the early centuries CE, not to mention Kabbalah?
post #31 of 62
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..........Christ placed women on equal footing spiritually as well as socially and otherwise.....
As someone (I apologize for not remembering who) said in another feminism thread equal does not mean they are the same. Women and men have always had equal social and spirtual impotance within judaism. Always. As I have stated so many times in this forum, men and women have different spiritual makeups. That equals different spiritual needs and functions. As far as oppertunities, there are many different types of individuals in judaism and none are of less importance. The jewish nation is divided into twelve tribes, 11 tribes being called "yisrael" one of which has kings (yehuda), one scholars, etc. The 12th tribe are the Leviim, and the Kohanim. It is not just women that have different spiritual makeup.
This could really turn into a rather long discussion, just from the jewish (torah) POV.
post #32 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaryLLL
Then what do you call the further exegesis from the rabbinic period in the early centuries CE, not to mention Kabbalah?
http://www.jewfaq.org/torah.htm#Talmud
The kabbalah is a part of the Torah known as "sode". The torah as a whole has 4 levels of understandng, called "PaRDeS" (orchard) Pshat (simple understanding) Remez (understanding by allusions in the text) Drash (medrashim, diriving ) and Sode, meaning hidden things/ secrets. All of these aspects of the torah were incleded when it was given to Moshe rabeinu on har sinai. The written torah is said to be like a student's class notes- in no way all inclusive or meant to be understood on their own. The oral torah as it was told to Moshe at har sinai, and then taught to all of the jewish nation is "the class".
post #33 of 62
Thanks. So as I understand it, all or most of the Torah was oral until the Babylonian exile? Some of it was written down during and after the Babylonian exile, since the Israelites did not have the Temple at that time, they felt it neccessary to preserve at least the Torah.

In the early centuries CE, the oral torah was written down.

From the link:

Quote:
Orthodox Jews believe G-d taught the Oral Torah to Moses, and he taught it to others, down to the present day. This tradition was maintained in oral form only until about the 2d century C.E., when the oral law was compiled and written down in a document called the Mishnah.
With all respect, were I a Jew, I would not believe God "gave" either Torah to Moses. I think they evolved around the campfire and coffee table so to speak. But that's just me.


Quote:
Over the next few centuries, additional commentaries elaborating on the Mishnah were written down in Jerusalem and Babylon. These additional commentaries are known as the Gemara. The Gemara and the Mishnah together are known as the Talmud. This was completed in the 5th century C.E.
These 2 taken together, are what I call exegesis and evolution of BCE thought, more favorable to women than the Tanakh stuff.

BTW, I love that Judaism has an official policy of 4 levels of understanding. In Xtianity, if you dare to interpret Scripture too deeply or symbolically, you run the risk of being called an occultist or heretic.
post #34 of 62
DaryLLL-The Eve quote you posted is a belief I am glad that Mormons differ w/ other Christians about. There book I mentioned before is not by an LDS author. Two LDS books on the subject I would recommend are:

Eve and the Choice Made in Eden by Campbell
and
Women in Eternity, Women of Zion by Sorensen & Cassler (BYU professors)

Here's an LDS Apostolic view:

"Some Christians condemn Eve for her act, concluding that she and her daughters are somehow flawed by it. Not the Latter-day Saints! Informed by revelation, we celebrate Eve’s act and honor her wisdom and courage in the great episode called the Fall." Elder Dallin H. Oaks, Oct 1993 General Conference address
post #35 of 62
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These 2 taken together, are what I call exegesis and evolution of BCE thought, more favorable to women than the Tanakh stuff.
Written torah= "5 books of Moses" from "genesis" to the last sentence before "joshua" (last of the five books is "deutoronomy"). That was given to Mosge, along with the oral law, to Moshe and har sinai. That. Nach is completely seperate from either "written torah" or "oral torah" in this context. The written torah (in "our" view) was written, word for word, by Moshe, as G-d dictated, as G-d dictated Moshe "saw" the explaination of the oral torah, all the levels. This explaination, which is actually much more information than just the words written in the written part was then taught to all the jewish people. It was passed along orally until it began to be forgtten, then the mishna was written, and sealed (could not be added to after the seal date), then the gemarah, etc.
We do not believe that any of these aspects of torah are new or were thought up by individuals...
I do not see how torah is not favorable to women.

NaCh is Neviim (prophesies) and Writings these were written by people, some we know who wrote them, others not, some are true historicaly (believed to be), some are allegory, some not known, there were many more prophesis than the ones included, some were written but lost, whatever. Either way, my point is TaNaCh is not all "the word of G-d" to the same degree. I have asked christians this before and they never have any clue what I am reffering to when I ask if they view all of "the ot" as the same importance...

Anyway, what you call "exegesis and evolution of BCE thought" is torah and is completely binded to the written torah.
NaCh is different though.
post #36 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by BelovedBird
Written torah= "5 books of Moses" from "genesis" to the last sentence before "joshua" (last of the five books is "deutoronomy"). .
It is confusing, b/c your website seems to include the prophets and writings in the Written Torah. They list all the books of Tanakh, then add:

Written Torah is often referred to as the Tanakh, which is an acrostic of Torah, Nevi'im and Ketuvim.

Thank you for the other insights.
post #37 of 62
I think she is using "written torah" as a synonnym for "hebrew bible" or "hebrew scriptures" it is so har when you are coming at the subject from different languages and different cultural perspectives!
I don't remember ever hearing NaCh included in the term torah shebichsav. Maybe I'll email her and clarify.

Do you understand now, how (written) torah is different then NaCh and what the two parts of the torah are?

Oh, and from your other post
Quote:
In Xtianity, if you dare to interpret Scripture too deeply or symbolically, you run the risk of being called an occultist or heretic.
I never understand how than can "interpret it" at all, it is in plain english. The reason why there are so many levels available in the wording of the torah is because of the language system used. There are root words and numerical values and the wording used or the words left out tell us something-
Here is an example of PaRDeS:
http://ohr.edu/ask_db/ask_main.php/163/Q2/
post #38 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by meowee
Are there any women here who feel that feminism conflicts with their religious beliefs?

...

So whatever your religion-- Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, what ever religion-- do you feel your religious beliefs prevent you from embracing mainstream feminism, and how does this affect you IRL or elsewhere?
The way this question is worded, means the answer coming from any woman would be no. That is because you are asking about personal religious beliefs, and of course we are not going to be oppressed by our own beliefs. It is the practices of many religious organizations that oppress women. And, the women being oppressed don't realize it, or else they would be "liberated"...right? And they will deny that they are oppressed with every ounce of energy within themselves, because that is part of their upbringing and the level of control the men in their lives have over them. But even those women don't have a conflict between their beliefs and feminism, because their version of feminism is in line with their beliefs.....

...

...


...now I'm starting to not make sense... my thoughts made perfect sense to me before I tried typing them out.
post #39 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by stafl
The way this question is worded, means the answer coming from any woman would be no. That is because you are asking about personal religious beliefs, and of course we are not going to be oppressed by our own beliefs. It is the practices of many religious organizations that oppress women. And, the women being oppressed don't realize it, or else they would be "liberated"...right? And they will deny that they are oppressed with every ounce of energy within themselves, because that is part of their upbringing and the level of control the men in their lives have over them. But even those women don't have a conflict between their beliefs and feminism, because their version of feminism is in line with their beliefs.....

...

...


...now I'm starting to not make sense... my thoughts made perfect sense to me before I tried typing them out.
I think that I understand you, and I am kinda concerned. I mean does that mean that if you don't believe a woman when she says that her religious beliefs don't oppress her that it means she is simply to indoctrinated to see her own oppression clearly? If so, that strikes me as....well... there's that chorus of condescension again.

Actually there are women here (on MDC and i think one in this thread) who feel that feminism seems to conflict with their beliefs.
post #40 of 62
no, that's not what I'm saying at all. I'm saying that it isn't religious beliefs that oppress women, it's... uh... it's the actions of certain men (often in the name of religion) that oppress women. I shouldn't have posted when I knew my words weren't coming out right. sorry
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