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Re: Sacrificing to standards

At 09:23 11/03/97 EST, PWEGNER@BROWNVM.brown.edu wrote:
>However, in all cases, from the totem pole to the American flag, what is being
>worshipped is the idea BEHIND the image, not the image itself.  It is only the
>polemics of the Bible, inveighing against idols of silver and gold, wood an
>stone, that has led us moderns  to assume that the representation itself was
>the object of worship -- though no doubt in most times and places the ignorant
>populace have ascribed more power to the concrete object than the system itself
>Judith Romney Wegner
>Connecticut College

Worshipping "the idea BEHIND the image, not the image itself" is also the
case in Christian worship of icons from 135 CE or so to today.  To maintain
that ancient idolatry was any different in this respect is, in my opinion,
ascribing to ancient peoples who show remarkable intelligence in many ways
the intelligence of a chimp. I don't think we're *that* vastly more advanced
than they were or, conversely, that they were *that* primitive and
cave-man-like.  It just doesn't compute.  Despite superstitions that the
icon obtains magical powers from "the idea BEHIND the image," I doubt
there's ever been a human of average intelligence that actually worshipped
"the image itself" in the sense Judith has clarified.  So I think that
Judith is absolutely right (and that David Suter has also agreed), and I see
no reason to think that it didn't also apply to the Roman standards as well
to the Roman gxds, Greek gxds, etc.  After all, wasn't Caesar regarded as
gxd?  And what was the symbol of Rome and Ceasar?

Yirmiyahu Ben-David
Paqiyd 16, Global Congregation of Nazarene Jews

N'tzarim Viritual Community Center
Ra'anana, Israel

		N'tzarim...  Authentic