Abortion In America: The Facts

There is a great deal of opinion on abortion and the recent restrictive Alabama law. My goal here today is to shove these opinions to the side and simply look at the science behind reproduction, consciousness, and what constitutes life. I’m not focusing on religion because religion is subject to interpretation and therefore subjective. I will lay out the facts here. Let’s begin.

First some definitions:

Embryo- An unborn or unhatched offspring in the process of development, in particular a human offspring during the period from approximately the second to the eighth week after fertilization (after which it is usually termed a fetus).

Fetus: An unborn offspring, from the embryo stage (the end of the eighth week after conception, when the major structures have formed) until birth.

Life- An organismic state characterized by capacity for metabolism, growth, reaction to stimuli, and reproduction

Consciousness- The state of being characterized by sensation, emotion, volition, and thought

The Facts On Human Reproduction

These are the essential characteristics of human reproduction according to Brittanica, “ 1)liberation of an ovum, or egg, at a specific time in the reproductive cycle, (2) internal fertilization of the ovum by spermatozoa, or sperm cells, (3) transport of the fertilized ovum to the uterus, or womb, (4) implantation of the blastocyst, the early embryo developed from the fertilized ovum, in the wall of the uterus, (5) formation of a placenta and maintenance of the unborn child during the entire period of gestation, (6) birth of the child and expulsion of the placenta, and (7) suckling and care of the child, with an eventual return of the maternal organs to virtually their original state.”

The female germ cells are located in the ovary. The male germ cells are located in the testes. Gestation occurs in the uterus of the female. During copulation spermatozoa passes the vagina through the uterus to the Fallopian tube to fertilize the ovum.

The human body develops from a single cell produced by the male and female gamete. There are three stages to prenatal development. The pre-embryonic stage lasts for two weeks and involves cell division and cell maturity. The embryonic period lasts from the third to eighth week of development. During the fetal period the maturation of organs and tissues occurs and the body experiences rapid development.

The zygote is the first stage in the development of living organism. It contains all the necessary information needed to produce that unique organism. The zygote is filled with the 23 chromosomes from the parents. The proteins in a zygote are not activated until several cell divisions into cleavage where the zygote undergoes cell division to prepare it for creating the organism.

Blood, kidney, and nerve cells develop at the 5th week of during the embryonic stage. The brain, spinal cord, and heart begin to develop at this stage as well.

At week 6-7 the arms and legs begin to form. The brain forms into five different areas and some cranial nerves are visible. Tissue grows at this time to form the spine and other bones. Blood begins to pump through the primary vessels.

At week 8 the brain continues to grow and lungs start to form.

At week 9 essential organs begin to grow.

At week 10 the embryonic stage ends and the fetal stage begins.

Abortions Before Roe V. Wade

Karissa Haugeberg, Assistant Professor of History at Tulane University was interviewed by NPR regarding what life was like for women seeking abortion prior to Roe V. Wade. Before this case an estimated 200 women died per year. Women attempted to seek perform abortion by self harm such as falling down the stairs, ingesting rat poison, etc. There were providers that performed abortions safely, but at great risk to their medical careers and professions.

Geography is extremely significant in looking at abortion history in America. Certain states and cities offered abortion services, but women in rural areas and states were mostly without hope in finding a way to afford to go to these providers. States with a significant African-Americans population and poor rural women are slowly seeing their rights to an abortion wither away.

Professor Haugeburg noted that Americans could see the access of chemical abortion pills i.e. contraception be next on the chopping block.

Interesting to note is the fact that 70% of women who’ve had an abortion identify as Christian. 33% of Protestant women who’ve had an abortion are Baptist. An additional 31% are affiliated as Lutheran, Methodist, or Presbyterian.

There is a significant amount of information that you should thoroughly examine in the links below. I hope that this article gave you enough information to make informed arguments.

Any comments and/or questions are appreciated.

References:

https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/embryo

https://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=3424

https://www.britannica.com/science/prenatal-development

https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002398.htm

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/life

https://www.npr.org/2019/05/20/725139713/what-

abortion-was-like-in-the-u-s-before-roe-v-wade

https://lifewayresearch.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Care-Net-Final-Presentation-Report-Revised.pdf

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What You Know About Satanism Is Wrong

There was a significant controversy in August of 2016 that gained national attention. The Church of Ahriman is based in Oklahoma City and is based on the ancient Persian deity Angra Mainyu, the God of Destruction. The church produced a Black Mass at the Civic Center which was met with intense scrutiny and protests from various Christian denominations many of whose adherents came across state lines to be a part of the protest.

I went to cover the protest for my college paper. I took photos of the event and gathered statements. At that time I was under the impression that Satanists were a monolith and that they actually worshipped the physical entity Satan.

Now that I have more knowledge of the history of what and who Satan has become over time I would like to inform you of what Satanists truly believe. For more on the history of Satan read my article Ha-Satan: The Adversary.

There are two main organizations which the public misidentifies with the other. These are the Church of Satan and The Satanic Temple. These organizations are vastly different despite Satan being in their names.

The Church of Satan was created by Anton LaVey in the 1960’s. Adherents follow his writings as scripture. They do not worship the Devil or see him as a physical entity. The Church makes a distinction between the supernatural Devil and the symbol of Satan. They believe that they are the One True Church as opposed to the Satanic Temple. They are unhappy with the Temple of Satan’s activities saying that they are making a mockery of the religion.

The Satanic Temple, however is very active politically and socially and only growing. They have a worldwide presence and chapters across the globe. They state that the Church of Satan has been reduced to online forums.

The website of the Temple of Satan states, “Satan to us is a symbol of pride, liberty and individualism, and it serves as an external metaphorical projection of our highest personal potential. We do not believe in Satan as a being or person.” Most Satanists believe that they are their own God. Satan is instead seen as the Eternal Rebel and one who fought against tyranny, the status quo, doctrines, traditions, and dared to become a heretic. He is seen to be the embodiment of independence, free will, and rational thinking. The Temple states, ” Our metaphoric representation is the literary Satan best exemplified by Milton and the Romantic Satanists from Blake to Shelley to Anatole France.

As a religion the Temple wants to represent their faith in the public realm. In 2015, again in Oklahoma it was the Temple which was stirring up controversy. They wanted to put a statue of Baphomet on the steps of the state capitol building next to the Ten Commandments monument. Their motion wasn’t met without controversy, however their point in doing this was to point out how these states favored one religion, specifically Christianity, over others.

The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled that the statue couldn’t reside on the capitol steps. It was removed, but petitions for the statue to be placed in Detroit and Little Rock, Arkansas and were granted.

The Temple has a basic set of rules. These are called Tenets of which there are seven. They are:

    • One should strive to act with compassion and empathy toward all creatures in accordance with reason.
    • The struggle for justice is an ongoing and necessary pursuit that should prevail over laws and institutions.
    • One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone.
    • The freedoms of others should be respected, including the freedom to offend. To willfully and unjustly encroach upon the freedoms of another is to forgo one’s own.
    • Beliefs should conform to one’s best scientific understanding of the world. One should take care never to distort scientific facts to fit one’s beliefs.
    • People are fallible. If one makes a mistake, one should do one’s best to rectify it and resolve any harm that might have been caused.
    • Every tenet is a guiding principle designed to inspire nobility in action and thought. The spirit of compassion, wisdom, and justice should always prevail over the written or spoken word.
  • If your looking or worried about the Temple selling your soul, joining the Illuminati, etc. then you’ve barked up the wrong tree. As the Temple simply says, “Please look elsewhere.”

    The Temple does not promote evil, they instead do what they can to prevent unnecessary harm to all living things.

    They don’t have a Satanic Bible or any scripture, it is simply their faith that guides them. Their rituals are not a requirement of their religion.

    The Church of Satan set the groundwork for the Satanic Temple to rise. It seems that the Church is growing out of fashion and is out of date. The Temple wants to do the hard work of changing the landscape and both have been very successful in that endeavor.

    The Temple of Satan’s HQ is located in Salem, Massachusetts. The Church of Satan’s headquarters is in Hell’s Kitchen in New York.

    You can find more information about the Church of Satan and the Satanic Temple and their adherents at these sites.

    References:

    https://www.okgazette.com/oklahoma/black-mass-and-the-consumption-of-mary-set-for-aug-15/Content?oid=2981723&media=AMP+HTML

    https://www.britannica.com/topic/Satanism

    https://www.revealnews.org/article/oklahoma-man-wants-to-bring-satanic-churchs-teachings-to-schools/amp/

    https://www.theparisreview.org/blog/2014/10/30/satan-comes-to-oklahoma-city/

    https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/weird/ct-satanic-goat-idol-arkansas-capitol-20180817-story,amp.html

    https://kfor.com/2015/07/02/satanic-temple-looking-for-new-home-for-baphomet-statue-after-oklahoma-courts-ruling/amp/

    https://thesatanictemple.com/pages/tenets

    https://thesatanictemple.com/pages/what-is-the-difference-between-the-satanic-temple-and-the-church-of-satan

    https://thesatanictemple.com/pages/faq

    https://www.churchofsatan.com/faq-fundamental-beliefs/amp/

    https://therooster.com/blog/drama-between-two-satanic-churches-really-giving-satan-bad-name

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_of_Satan#CITEREFPopular_Witchcraft:_Straight_from_the_Witch’s_MouthJack_Fritscher2004

    What You Need To Know About Selective Service

    United States citizens are generally aware of the basics of what Selective Service is and what it entails, however there is a pervasive myth which has come to be believed as fact. I want to give a history of the Selective Service program, explain the function of it, and to debunk the myth behind it.

    The History

    Military conscription is an involuntary list of civilians who must participate in service to their nation. Conscription has been practiced for centuries going back to ancient Egypt. It was rarely universal.

    Conscription in the US was first implemented during the Civil War. Congress passed this conscription act on March 3, 1863 drafting men aged 20-45 to fight for the Union. The provision was added in the act to include a commutation fee of $300 for draftees who refused enlistment. This provision sparked protests in New York City as the price for exemption was seen as privileging the wealthy. Lincoln was forced to send in federal troops to quell the protests. The Confederacy introduced conscription as well in 1862, but it had the same result.

    The Selective Service Act was passed into law in 1917 and allowed the president to draft men into WWI. President FDR signed the Selective Training and Service Act of 1940 during WWII which created a separate federal agency dedicated to Selective Service enforcement. This legislation called for 12 months of military service, but it was later expanded to 18 months as a result of the US getting involved in various conflicts.

    In 1948 the age of conscription was reduced to civilians 18-26. The draft continued into the Korean and Vietnam Wars. There were exemptions depending on region including those who were members of the clergy, medical restrictions, educational obligations, membership in the National Guard and other exemptions. Because of high price of exemption the draft disproportionately affected minority and poor communities. In 1973 President Richard Nixon signed legislation ending the draft, and those who enter military service now do so as volunteers.

    There has been a debate on women being drafted into service. In 1981, the SCOTUS case of Rostker V. Goldberg argued that the clause mandating and that only men be drafted was unconstitutional. The Justices disagreed saying that Congress had the authority to restrict the draft to men because only they saw combat. These combat restrictions were cited to deny the change again in 1994 when President Bill Clinton reviewed the policy. However, they added that as more women joined the military there would be a need to change it in the future.

    In 2015, women were finally allowed to fight in every branch of the military. In February 2019, a Texas federal judge ruled that the Selective Service provision excluding women from the draft was unconstitutional and the case that women weren’t allowed to serve in combat is no longer valid. However, this ruling by the judge didn’t mean women could now sign up for the draft. The judge failed to file a motion to order the provision change. This may soon change however, because a woman has filed a lawsuit asking to register.

    Function of Selective Service

    The function of Selective Service is to maintain a battle ready populace and to provide a contingency plan for the nation in case of a crisis. In the event that a situation proves too great a burden for the All-Volunteer servicemen and women then the general populace of men in the nation would have to step up and help defend the nation.

    A Pervasive Myth

    A myth that I’ve continuously heard claimed as fact is about single male households. The belief is that if a family has only one son then he would be exempt from the draft. However, this claim is not accurate. There must be an immediate family service-related death for the exemption to take affect. This is the only exemption that the Selective Service will allow for family members.

    I hope this article gave you a sense of the Selective Service’s background and history. There is still much debate, as I’ve mentioned, on women being allowed to register for the draft and furthermore the ethics behind it. That hasn’t been solved in this article, but I hope it could give you something to consider and talk about amongst your friends and family.

    References:

    https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/conscription

    https://www.encyclopedia.com/social-sciences-and-law/political-science-and-government/us-government/selective-service#A

    https://amp.cnn.com/cnn/2019/03/23/opinions/women-register-for-draft-kayyem-medina/index.html

    https://www.sss.gov/About/What-does-the-Agency-provide-for-the-Nation

    https://www.sss.gov/About/Return-to-Conscription/Only-Sons-and-Sole-Surviving-Sons

    The United States Constitution: A Beacon and A Curse

    A well respected and admired President once said,

    “Through this Golden Door, under the gaze of that Mother of Exiles, has come millions of men and women, who first stepped foot on American soil right there, on Ellis Island, so close to the Statue of Liberty.

    These families came here to work. They came to build.

    Others came to America in different ways, from other lands, under different, and often harrowing conditions, but this place symbolizes what they all managed to build, no matter where they came from or how they came or how much they suffered.

    They helped to build that magnificent city across the river. They spread across the land building other cities and towns and incredibly productive farms.

    They came to make America work. They didn’t ask what this country could do for them but what they could do to make this, this refuge the greatest home of freedom in history.

    They brought with them courage, ambition and the values of family, neighborhood, work, peace and freedom. We all came from different lands but we shared the same values, the same dream.”

    That President was Ronald Reagan on Labor Day, Sept. 1st, 1980.

    Fredrick Douglass was an orator, writer, Abolitionist, and statesman who gave a speech titled The Meaning of July 4th for the Negro at Corinthian Hall on July 5th, 1852.

    “What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July? I answer; a day that reveals to him, more than all other days in the year, the gross injustice and cruelty to which he is the constant victim. To him, your celebration is a sham; your boasted liberty, an unholy license; your national greatness, swelling vanity; your sound of rejoicing are empty and heartless; your denunciation of tyrants brass fronted impudence; your shout of liberty and equality, hollow mockery; your prayers and hymns, your sermons and thanks-givings, with all your religious parade and solemnity, are to him, mere bombast, fraud, deception, impiety, and hypocrisy — a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages. There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practices more shocking and bloody than are the people of the United States, at this very hour.”

    I was watching NBC’s For the People the other day, aptly titled This Is America. The program’s subject was immigration and how the United States and ICE treats immigrants and refugees among other topics. This episode was particularly heartbreaking to the point of tears forming, however what made it that much more tragic was the fact these cases are far too real.

    There was a central point in this episode where Clerk of Court Tina Krissman, played by Anna Deavere Smith gives a piercingly honest monologue on the organism that is America. She explained to her collegue Federal Public Defendant Jay Simmons, played by Wesam Keesh that America is a nation founded on freedom, but built on slavery. She states that America expands and contracts and that the Constitution is both a beacon and a curse. A document of hope and despair. This is America right now, but America never ends.

    Immigrants have been mistreated, dehumanized and discriminated against for centuries in this country. John Tracy Ellis in his book American Catholicism wrote that “universal anti-Catholic bias was brought to Jamestown in 1607 and vigorously cultivated in all the thirteen colonies from Massachusetts to Georgia.”

    Many European’s from Germany, Poland, Russia, etc were considered less than white, but overtime became Anglicized. The amount of anti-immigrant sentiment ran deep in the nation disseminated through prejudices and pseudoscientific studies.

    The Chinese Exclusion Act was passed in 1882 which halted the immigration of Chinese laborers to America. Scholars believe that anti-Chinese sentiment in California led to this law being enacted. Chinese laborers were forced to urban communities and made to work in the most dangerous and unsanitary environments.

    Japanese citizens were taken to internment camps by Executive Order 9066 from 1942-1946 by President Franklin Roosevelt. This action was in response to the attack on Pearl Harbor and the circumstances of WWII. Numerous civil rights were violated during that time, including illegal arrests, search and seizures, inbounding property, and other heinous acts of violence.

    Islamophobia is a mischaracterization and misinformed fear of Muslims and has extended to the Arab community and indeed just about anyone Middle Eastern even though the nations, peoples, cultures, and religions are as diverse and complex as those in America. Islamophobia has risen since 9/11 and acts of terrorism against the Muslim community in America and abroad have been numerous. The most recent case being committed in Christchurch, New Zealand where 51 worshippers were killed including women and children, with 50 people injured. With the psychological gaslighting, verbal abuse, harassment and violence the freedom and protection that the US constitution offers seems to be sorely lacking. Muslim leaders, scholars, and individuals fight tirelessly to combat the racism, islamophobia and hatred they see on a day to day basis.

    The Constitution was written back in 1787. Its words sparked inspiration and envisioned a utopian perspective of how the world should function, however the truth was far more violent, manipulative, and hypocritical than how the document reads. The ideal of the document was always a goal to strive for, but was never a set reality.

    As the nation continues each generation tries to fulfill the true meaning of the document hoping that one day soon all people from various religions, cultures, ethnicities, etc will have the same rights, opportunities, protections, and freedoms that the Founders envisioned for themselves.

    References:

    https://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2018/jul/03/becoming-american-initiative/did-ronald-reagan-say-immigrants-made-america-grea/

    https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/aia/part4/4h2927.html

    https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/aia/part4/4h2927.html

    Ellis, John Tracy (1956). American Catholicism.

    https://www.pbs.org/newshour/amp/nation/white-u-s-immigration-policy

    https://www.britannica.com/topic/Chinese-Exclusion-Act

    https://www.history.com/.amp/topics/world-war-ii/japanese-american-relocation

    https://religionnews.com/2018/09/10/seventeen-years-after-9-11-muslims-are-still-presumed-guilty/

    The Basics of Economics

    For the benefit and education of you the reader and myself that are not well versed in the language of economics, I wanted to write an article on the basics of economics. We use economics everyday when we buy, sell, market ourselves, etc. I’ll discuss 5 important terms and the economic system that we use.

    Terms

    Diminishing Marginal Utility – As a product increases in supply the less the consumer will derive satisfaction from that product. The fact that a good or service is readily available devalues it in the mind of the consumer. As a result, prices are set accordingly.

    Inflation and Deflation – Inflation occurs when a good or service is in high demand and supply is low. Companies then have to increase prices to make a profit. Deflation describes when a product is in low demand and supply is high. Prices must be dropped in order to get consumers to buy the readily available product.

    Interest Rates – Interests rates are utilized when loans are taken out to pay for a good or service. These rates are used as compensation opportunity costs and risk of no return. Interest rates are high or low depending on the risk the lender deems the borrower.

    Fiscal Policy – Fiscal policy describes how governments monitor and influence their nations economy by controlling its spending and tax rates. This concept states that increased spending and low tax rates will stimulate economic growth and a decrease in spending and increase in taxes will slow it down.

    Monetary Policy- Monetary Policy calls for the drafting, announcement, and implementation of the efforts of central banks or currency boards to adjust a nations supply of money. Buying or selling government bonds or altering interest rates is one way of achieving this.

    American Economic System

    By now you’ve probably wondered what type of economic system the US has. The answer is a mixed market system. The US runs on capitalism and socialism. The government has controlled various industries for decades by controlling their markets and regulating their influence and power in the economic world in favor of competition between companies. This is the socialist part of the economy. However, the nation allows and has allowed for a great deal of freedom to consumers and industries to create and run their companies without consequence or regulation. This is an example of the free market or capitalism.

    Economics controls every aspect of our lives. Our economic system has developed over the centuries and decades since the nations government was founded. The current system the US has today is a mixed market system which, like all systems has its pros and cons.

    Hopefully, the 5 terms explained above gives you a beginners look into the economic and financial world. Enjoy success!

    References:

    https://www.investopedia.com/ask/answers/013015/what-does-law-diminishing-marginal-utility-explain.asp

     

    https://www.investopedia.com/ask/answers/111414/what-difference-between-inflation-and-deflation.asp

    https://www.investopedia.com/terms/i/interestrate.asp

     

    https://quickonomics.com/12-things-you-know-economics/

     

    https://www.investopedia.com/insights/what-is-fiscal-policy/

    https://www.investopedia.com/terms/m/monetarypolicy.asp

    https://www.investopedia.com/ask/answers/031815/united-states-considered-market-economy-or-mixed-economy.asp

    https://www.investopedia.com/terms/c/capitalism.asp

    https://www.investopedia.com/terms/s/socialism.asp

    Ha-Satan: The Adversary

    The embodiment of evil, Satan is considered to be the cause of wars, strife, political and social upheaval and everything and everyone in between. He prowls like a lion waiting to devour unguarded and unsuspecting victims for Hell.

    Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Russian tsar Peter the Great, Benito Mussolini, Ronald Reagan, Barack Obama and countless others have all been accused of being or in league with the Devil himself. Martin Luther, the Protestant reformer accused the papacy of being the antichrist. The Jewish people for centuries have been violently accused of being aligned with the Prince of Darkness with egregious defamations, lies, and misinformation. The same has been done to Muslims and Middle Eastern individuals. The names and people groups are endless.

    However, is the public and those who profess to know who and what the devil is and where he lurks aware of who this figure is or his origins. I’ll attempt to give a history of The Satan and in part 2 explain what modern Satanists are and whether or not they worship the modern understanding of Satan.

    The Origins

    Zoroastrianism was the ancient religion of the Persians and had a very profound influence on the Jewish understanding of good and evil. The Persians controlled the Middle East, including Israel from 539-332 BCE. During that time the concept of dualism, the idea that evil cannot originate from good, took hold in the Jewish faith. Zoroaster was the prophet and founder of Zoroastrianism which acknowledged Ahura Mazda, the wise lord, and Ahriman, the fiendish spirit. Ahriman, also known as Angra Mainya was said to be the one who brought death, diseases, and lies into the world.

    This idea spread into the Jewish faith who’s adherents struggled with theodicy, that is the question of why a good God allows or creates suffering. In the Jewish faith this later developed into the belief that God doesn’t personally cause suffering, but chooses lowly characters to do it with his approval. This eventually evolved into the figure of Satan.

    Satan in Jewish belief is not a separate individual having equal power and status with God, but he is an adversary designed to put human beings on the path to God.

    In the early Jewish text the Life of Adam and Eve 17:4 the text retells the story of Adam and Eve, but reprises the serpents role to make him the single embodiment of evil, Satan. During this time in 1 CE, the Greeks and Romans had conquered the land and its people, including Israel. The violence and oppression coupled with the fact that many of their own people were starting to work with the Romans set the stage for the final development of Satan. In the Life of Adam and Eve 12:3, the text describes the fall of Satan and cites the cause as being a failure on the the part of Satan and his followers to worship God and Adam as the Image of God.

    Elaine Pagels, a professor of religion at Princeton University and author of “The Origin of Satan” (Random House, 1995) states that the idea of the character Satan originated from the Hasids, a Jewish sect which separated from Jewish society and started preaching about the end of the world. They asserted that the Romans and the Jews working with them were of the dark side or the Devil. Pagels says that while researching this she had a revelation. Satan appears when communities are divided. She says that it’s easier to disassociate and condemn people with whom you disagree when they are seen as the personification of evil. Pagels believes that the Hasids may have influenced Jesus and John the Baptist who shared many of the same ideas about the end times and God’s intolerance of the wicked.

    For the Jewish people today, Satan is an obstacle or adversary attempting to make humans sin, but he is not the sentient being that other faiths claim he is. The power of good and evil lie within God according to Jewish sources and the faith is strictly monotheistic.

    Stay tuned for Part 2 on Satanists.

    References:

    https://www.iup.edu/WorkArea/DownloadAsset.aspx?id=161917

    https://amp.livescience.com/56341-where-did-satan-come-from.html

    http://www.religioustolerance.org/chr_sat2.htm

    https://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/512017/jewish/Is-there-any-sort-of-Purgatory-or-Satan-in-Jewish-teachings.htm

    https://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/112325/jewish/Rabbi-Shmuel-Satan.htm

    https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/satan

    https://www.thoughtco.com/jewish-view-of-satan-2076775

    Take Your Independence From the Bible

    People like to hold onto the Bible and Holy Writ in general because it gives them a since that God is right there in the room. It’s a security blanket for the uncertainty of life and a vital substitution for the physical absence of God.

    We have to experience things with the five senses or we’ll look like we’re crazy. The Bible gives people a way to avoid that.

    Here’s the thing though. The Bible shouldn’t be your security blanket or your substitution. The Bible is a tool to get you to your destiny, but it is not the destiny itself. Your destiny is to be in relationship with God, but you can’t really do that if you’re holding on to the Bible.

    If I told you how to get food and water in the woods and you clung to me because I led you to it then you’re not growing and learning like you should. (Thank you, Keith Giles.) You’re being dependent instead of independent. Your parents were your guides to coming into the real world, but they weren’t perfect and there were things that you had to learn by yourself and through others. All of this came by utilizing their teachings.

    The Bible is simply a recording of humans’ attempt to understand the Divine throughout the centuries. It was produced by humans. Fallible and subject to the culture and understandings of their time, but it is a progression of man’s knowledge of God. You see contradictions because there’s not one mind, but many at different times all learning something new and profound. They also correct past mistakes because what does it matter if people have a better understanding if they don’t learn to correct themselves to get them on track.

    This Independence Day people should be free from the shackles and monarchy of the Bible and learn to focus on Christ. The Bible isn’t necessary to know God and have a relationship, but it is a tool which you can learn and grow from.

    Happy Independence Day. It’s now time to build something new and build upon the tools that the monarchy gave us. It’s time to build our own nation.