The Theft of “Good”: How Christianity Stole Decency

You’ve heard it a thousand times: “How can you have Good without God?”

Christians love to point out that the word good is derived from the word God. What they fail to point out is that the word God is not Christian. The Christian names for God are from the Greek (theos), Hebrew (Eli), and Latin (Dei). Most scholars agree that the word GOD actually comes from the Sanskrit gheu, meaning “to invoke or to sacrifice to”. Basically, then, what the Christians are saying is that you can’t have good without sacrificing to some ancient Vedic god from India.

I love it when they try semantic arguments.

Anyway…

What really ticks me off about things like this is that there’s an overt theft going on that no one seems to notice. It works like this:

Every time Christianity finds a human trait or action that is beneficial to society (say, giving food to starving children) they decide that they own the concept. From that time on, the action becomes a “Christian act”, and the non-religious are left out of it. Their logic works like this: Giving food to starving children is a Christian act.  Atheists are not Christians. Therefore,  Atheists do not give food to starving children.

For a thousand years Christianity has owned the English lexicon, and they’ve used it to portray anyone who is not Christian as an evil bastard who’d kick a starving child or throw widows out of their homes. “Good” is equal to “Christian” in their parlance. If you are not Christian, you can not be good.

It’s moronic. The problem is, it works.

You will not get elected to any office of power in the USA without saying you are religious. If you are trying to do business anywhere south of the Mason-Dixon Line, you have to go to church. That’s where the deals are done. That’s where the networking is. Why? Because people only trust those they meet at church, simply because they say they are Christian.

Religions can show people that they’re being bastards, but it doesn’t prevent it. Regardless of religious affiliation, people are people and will do as they please. In the end, whether you are good or not has a lot more to do with who you are than the god you worship.

Written by Wm. Hopper, http://www.heathensguide.com.




The Heathen’s Guide to World Religions.NOT FOR SHEEP.

10 Responses to “The Theft of “Good”: How Christianity Stole Decency”

  1. Lois Carneiro Says:

    We all know that it’s wrong to kill, steal, cheat, lie, practice acts of cruelty, and vandalism. Christians know it, Hindus know it, Jews know it, Muslims know it and non-believers know it.

    Isn’t there more virtue in behaving morally simply because it’s right, and not because you fear that some geezer in the sky is going to smite you from on high? Isn’t the fear of eternal damnation just a hyperbolic version of getting a lump of coal in your stocking on Christmas?

    In other words, isn’t religion something we should outgrow?

    In case your’re interested, here is my blog entry on why I dislike the term ‘Atheist’.

    http://tacomagalblog.blogspot.com/2008/12/i-wouldnt-belong-to-any-club-that-would.html

  2. stanzebla Says:

    Around 20 years ago I have been reading a book by Sigmund Freud about the names of the christian god (formerly known as jewish god) in the Old Testament, there were two different names, Jehowa and Elohim. The latter was a plural form of a name, because the god in that area had been developped of a horde of spiritlike entities. I loved that short book but forgot the title. And I also forgot what and if those names have any meaning (unlike most american names, Bill, Jack, Tom a.s.o.) names had meanings in the rest of the world. :D
    Was searching my oldgerman dictionary, it seems to hide, but I found an oldicelandic one. goðr meant good and goð meant god, but a heathenish god (Thor, Oðinn, Freya a.s.o.), not the christian one. And before the Teutons were christianized they used to think christians are cannibals, they drink blood and eat fleah of humans in their rituals. The christian god crucified his own son. That’s not a nice god. No good god. :D

    I can imagine that living in USA is no fun and am happy not to live there.
    Keep a stiff upper lip!
    stanze

    • heathensguide Says:

      Elohim is a Judaic name of god from Genesis. It’s actually plural (meaning ‘gods’, not ‘God’).

      ‘Yahweh’ is the name of god given to Moses when he was on Mount Sinai. Moses asked for the god’s name, and the burning bush said “I am that I am”. The name Yahweh is simply Hebrew for I am.

      Jehovah is from the the exact same Hebrew passage and also means I am. The difference is that the King James group (and others) decided that the original translation was wrong, so they wrote out the Hebrew name ‘I Am’ with different letter.

      I think you just inspired a new post…

  3. StruttinWolf Says:

    “Every time Christianity finds a human trait or action that is beneficial to society (say, giving food to starving children) they decide that they own the concept.”

    I don’t know much about this. Is this merely your opinion or do you have some proof of this? Seems like you are painting with a broad brush.

  4. modestypress Says:

    I tend to agree with you. I am not a religious believer. I call myself a “radical agnostic” because atheists like to kick sand in the faces of agnostics as wimps.

    However, there is still a philosophical problem about what is “good.” Secular people tend to say it’s fairly obvious and a matter of common sense. Such a complacent dismissal of the problem evades the problem of why both secular people and religious people engage in activities such as genocide.

  5. tylerbrown Says:

    Interesting thoughts. Although I don’t agree with everything, you have some points on how culture can misrepresent what it is to be a Christian.

    I don’t think one can give a blanket statement about what Christians think. I don’t play semantic games and I am a believer in Christ, a Christian. I am well aware of the Christmas holiday and the origins of traditions associated with it. My wife grew up not celebrating any traditions with pagan origins.

    Anyway, God’s Word states that no one is good. Only God is good. Reason being, good is defined by God. I think of good as being of God and ‘bad’ as being not of God. To say that morals exist outside religion is accurate. However, because of my beliefs, I think that my God extends passed religion and that the inherit sense of right and wrong comes from God. Morals come from God, not religion. The knowledge of good and evil came from Adam and Eve eating from the tree. Before that, they were innocent.

    If an Athiest gives food to starving children, I would think that is a ‘good’ act. I don’t see the logic in assuming that, becuase we believe that all good is from God that if someone who doesn’t believe in God does nothing ‘good’. Everything good is from God, not Christians. This is why I think Jesus said it is easier for a rich man to pass through the eye of a needle than to enter the kingdom of God. He is caught up in worldy possessions, pride of self-worth, etc. God’s Word says that He uses anyone for good. I am not in the business of demonizing those who don’t believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God. I believe we are all sinners. Sin being defined as anything against God. No one can live up to that, and that is why Jesus came. For it is by Grace that we have been saved through faith and not by works so no one can boast. Everyone is in the same boat. It all depends on if you accept Jesus as the ultimate sacrifice to pay for the sin that we all have. I’m not trying to preach, it’s just what I believe.

    Stanzebla, God gave His son to pay for the world’s sins. It was out of love for us, not hatred.

    To sum up, it is God who is good. Not humans. I can’t claim to be ‘good’ or any better than anyone else because I’m not. We all need Christ to intervene on our behalf when we all are judged against God’s perfect will. Sorry this is so long.

    • heathensguide Says:

      Thanks for the reply. I wanted to clarify something for you, if I may. In general, when I speak of “Christianity” I am speaking of the powerful, political body that is Christianity in our world… the “institution” of Christianity. The decisions I refer to are made by delegations and quorums, councils and edicts. The thoughts and affairs of an average Joe who believes the Jesus tale are never being attacked on my site. Only the political powers that affect the world everyone lives in.

  6. tylerbrown Says:

    Correction, in my typing frenzy, I totally misquoted scripture. I meant to say it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.

    Sorry about that!

  7. stanzebla Says:

    @tylerbrown
    I wrote what the Teutons thought about the christian god (I agree with them though and can’t see any logic reason for watching your son die on a cross, being omnipotent and doing nothing, saying it’s for some kind of greater good.) The myth about the catholics (at those times all christians were catholics) being cannibals derives from the transubstantiation during the Eucharist (don’t mind my bad english please), to the sound of a bell the wine turns into the blood of Jesus Christ, then the Christians drink it. Tasty. :D

  8. white truffles Says:

    white truffles…

    [...]The Theft of “Good”: How Christianity Stole Decency « Heathen’s Guide Blog[...]…

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